Anne Bancroft Trivia

Anne Bancroft



Anne Bancroft Trivia

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Six degrees of separation (link): Anne once dated Scott Brady, who dated Adele Jergens, who dated Ronald Reagan.
Per Max Brooks: "My mother met Winston Churchill. She played his mother in the movie Young Winston. She told us this story about when Winston came on the set. He was showing everyone pictures, and he brought out pictures of his dad and pictures of his friends. And then he took out a picture of his mother and he actually started crying."
Arthur Penn declared that Anne Bancroft was the greatest actress he had ever worked with.
The Slender Thread trivia (thanks to Jody H.):

- The only other time AB and Sidney Poitier were together onscreen (even though they don’t share a single frame in the film) was at the 1963 Academy Awards when she presented him with his Best Actor Oscar for “Lilies of the Field.” Poitier says that AB leaned over and whispered in his ear, “Enjoy it, it doesn’t last long.”
- Elizabeth Ashley was originally set to play Inga, but due to a contract dispute with Paramount, AB got the part.

Both Anne and Colleen Dewhurst turned down the role of Nurse Ratched in One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest specifically because they found it anti-feminist and downright misogynistic.
According to her autobiography, before Ellen Burstyn was given the role of Alice Hyatt in Alice Doesn't Live Here Anymore, Anne Bancroft was attached to the project.
Grace Kelly and Audrey Hepburn were considered for the role of Emma in The Turning Point.
For her role in The Turning Point, Anne received ballet training from Lawrence Rosenberg, Sarma Lapeniek Rosenberg, Sono Osato and Nora Kaye.
Anne refused Francis Ford Coppola's offer to star as the Corleone family matriarch in The Godfather. Morgana King got the part.
Anne's husband, Mel Brooks, purchased the rights to 84 Charing Cross Road for her as a twenty-first wedding anniversary present.
The film version of Gore Vidal's "Myra Breckinridge" was supposed to mark the reunion of Anne with "Graduate" director Mike Nichols. Raquel Welch got the part instead.
Anne enjoyed and collected the work of deaf artist Robert Freiman.
Max Brooks says that his mother "was a closet scientist. She loved the book 'The Microbe Hunters' and was fascinated by survival issues, had an organic garden and canned food."
One set of Anne's grandparents hailed from Calabria -- the boot tip of Italy, the part that kicks you in the backside.
At the 2006 Oscars, the music for "In Memoriam" (which included Anne) was a combination of the original movie scores for Now Voyager and Johnny Belinda.
According to director Ang Lee: "The Graduate was a big film for me. I realised it had done something more than just be entertaining. It was censored in Taiwan. It reached us about five years after it was released in America, and they changed the dialogue between the mother and daughter (Anne Bancroft, who played Mrs Robinson, and actress Katharine Ross) so they became sisters. They said 'sisters' on the screen.... and the censors stopped [the dubbing] in certain scenes, and I couldn't tell what was being said from the actors' mouthing."
Screenwriter Evan Hunter had Anne Bancroft in mind to play the doomed schoolteacher Annie Hayworth in The Birds. Suzanne Pleshette got the part.
Here are 2 Jeopardy questions to which Anne was the answer:

Category: BROADWAY


Anne was originally set to portray Joan Crawford in Mommie Dearest, but she exited the project once she read the screenplay. Faye Dunaway was cast instead.
Anne was only 6 years older than Dustin Hoffman when she played his girlfriend's mother in The Graduate. She was only about 8 years older than "daughter" Katharine Ross.
Judy Garland was considered for the role of Mrs. Robinson in The Graduate.
Anne's grandparents came from DiNapoli-Muro Locano, a small town in the mountains in the province of Potenza -- the Italianos are from Benovento. DiNapoli -- according to Gore Vidal, originally Sephardic Jews. The origin of this name is a group of men who fought with Garibaldi to unite Italy and were from Piedmont in the north, remained in the south after the war and were called: "The Italianos". (source: Anne's sister, Phyllis)
The brief Anna Karenina piece in The Turning Point was choreographed by Anne herself.
Anne wore a Harry Winston diamond engagement ring in The Graduate.
According to Hal Erickson in the All Movie Guide: "Whenever Mel Brooks wanted to get a rise out of wife Anne Bancroft during their joint talk-show appearances of the 1970s, Brooks would bring up the subject of Gorilla at Large. Easily the low point of Ms. Bancroft's movie career...."
Anne was offered the role of Chris MacNeil (the mother) in The Exorcist (1973), but had to turn it down because she was pregnant.
Anne was a leading choice to play Aurora Greenway (the mother) in Terms of Endearment (1983).
In The Graduate, to be true to the movie, Anne drank bourbon and once, a martini.
Mel Brooks so revered his spouse that he always referred to her by both of her names.
United Artists originally offered a $2 million budget if William Gibson and Arthur Penn would cast either Elizabeth Taylor or Audrey Hepburn in the role of Annie Sullivan in The Miracle Worker. When they insisted that the part be recreated by Tony Award Winner Anne Bancroft, the studio cut the budget by $1.5 million.
Early in her career, Anne's coded casting card kept by Franklin Schaffner read "CDXX," meaning that Anne could play comedy or drama and was an excellent actress.
In The Graduate, a body double was used for the extremely brief nude shots.
Anne Italiano had performed in early TV as Anne Marno -- a combination of MARie and ItaliaNO. When she went to Hollywood, Darryl F. Zanuck feared that an ethnic sounding name like Marno would condemn Anne to typecasting. He gave her a list of names from which to choose a new surname, and she chose Bancroft "because it was the only one which sounded like I didn't look like Lana Turner."
Because she had encouraged him to turn The Producers into a Broadway musical, Mel Brooks referred to his wife as "Obi-Wan Kenobi."
When she was nine years old, Anne scrawled, "I want to be an actress" on the back fence of her flat.
Anne's height: I've seen it listed at 5' 6½" and 5' 8", but in an interview, she herself gave the writer the information that she is 5' 6"; and measurements: 38-23-35. A dress at eBay which is purported to have belonged to Anne is size 7-8.
In most of her films, Anne habitually removes an earring before answering a telephone.
For her first Hollywood movie, Don't Bother to Knock, Anne was cast as a singer. However, it was felt that her voice was weak in the upper registers, so she had to lip-synch to the dulcet tones of Eve Marley.
While on trial for his life in Texas in 1995, Scott Panetti decided to defend himself. He dressed for court like a make-believe cowboy, with jeans stuffed into his boots and a cowboy hat dangling from a string around his neck. He tried to call John F. Kennedy, Jesus Christ and Anne Bancroft as witnesses for his defense.
Anne only watched The Graduate once.
Anne was raised Catholic by her parents, and contrary to anything you may hear otherwise, she did not convert to Judaism after marrying Mel Brooks.
Anne wasn't present to receive her Oscar for Best Actress on awards night in 1963. She was in New York performing in Mother Courage and her award was accepted on her behalf by Joan Crawford. Anne watched the ceremony on TV at her apartment after the show.
It was Richard Basehart who recommended Anne to Fred Coe for Two for the Seesaw, the stage play which changed the direction of Anne's entire career.
Doris Day said in her published memoirs, co-authored by A.E. Hotchener, that she rejected the part of Mrs. Robinson in The Graduate "on moral grounds."
In the winter of 1962, Ray Stark and David Merrick developed a musical based on the life of Ziegfeld Follies star Fanny Brice (Stark's mother-in-law). Composer Jule Styne was interested in Barbra Streisand playing Fanny. At the time, Anne Bancroft was the lead candidate to play Fanny. Styne asked songwriter Bob Merrill to write lyrics. After hearing the songs -- written with Streisand in mind -- Bancroft decided she wanted no part of the show.
The leg on the poster for The Graduate belongs to model Linda Grey, who later went on to star in the TV show "Dallas."
The role of Nurse Ratched in One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest was offered to, and turned down by, Anne Bancroft, Angela Lansbury, Ellen Burstyn, Colleen Dewhurst, and Geraldine Page.
Once asked to explain the success of their marriage, Mel Brooks said that 1) he always made his wife laugh, and 2) he was always scared of her.
Broadway's marquees dimmed at 8pm on June 8, 2005 in tribute to Anne.
"Yes, Mel Brooks and Anne Bancroft are both godparents of my children and very, very close friends of mine." -- Alan Yentob, who ran BBC2 from 1987 to 1992
Anne, Mel and son Max have each won Emmy awards.
As a young girl, Anne had seriously considered a career as a lab technician; later as a successful performer, she still enjoyed reading scholarly science journals on the side, with a particular interest in genetics and alternative medicine.
When the American Film Institute polled Hollywood for its list of the top films of all time, Anne chose #1 The Informer, #2 The African Queen, and #3 Dumbo.
Jeanne Moreau was also considered for the role of Mrs. Robinson in The Graduate.
Anne said that director Arthur Penn had the greatest impact on her career.
According to Anne, when Mel told his Jewish mother he was marrying an Italian girl, she said: "Bring her over. I'll be in the kitchen -- with my head in the oven."

... more to come!



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