Obituary: Ann Rutherford, actress
Born: 2 June, 1917, Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada. Died: 11 June, 2012, in Beverly Hills, aged 94.
Ann Rutherford, who has died of heart problems after months of illness, played the sweetheart in the long-running Andy Hardy series and Scarlett O’Hara’s youngest sister in Gone With the Wind.
Rutherford was a frequent guest at Gone With the Windcelebrations in Georgia and, as one of the few remaining actors from the movie, continued to attract fans from around the world.
She was also known for the Andy Hardy series, a hugely popular string of comical, sentimental films, that starred Lewis Stone as a small-town judge and Mickey Rooney as his spirited teenage son.
Rutherford first appeared in the second film of the series, You’re Only Young Once, in 1938, and she went on 11 more. She played Polly Benedict, the ever-faithful girlfriend that Andy always returned to, no matter what other, more glamorous girl had temporarily caught his eye. (Among the other girls: Judy Garland and Lana Turner.)
It was said she won the part of Carreen – the youngest of the three O’Hara sisters in Gone With the Wind – because Judy Garland was filming The Wizard of Oz.
Rutherford said in 2010 that MGM head Louis B Mayer was going to refuse her the role, calling it “a nothing part.” But Rutherford, who was a fan of the novel, uncharacteristically burst into tears and he relented.
In 1989, she was one of ten surviving “GWTW” cast members who gathered in Atlanta for the celebration of the film’s 50th anniversary.
“Our obituary will say we were in Gone With the Wind and we’ll be proud of it,” she said.
Rutherford, the daughter of an opera tenor and an actress, began performing on the stage as a child. She launched her movie career in Westerns while still in her teens, often appearing with singing cowboy hero Gene Autry and sometimes with John Wayne.
She joined MGM in 1937, playing a variety of roles before going freelance. Her films include Orchestra Wives, with Glenn Miller, 1942; and The Secret Life of Walter Mitty, with Danny Kaye, 1947. She largely retired from the screen in 1950.
Her first marriage, to David May in 1942, ended in divorce; they had two children. In 1953, she married producer William Dozier, a union that lasted until his death in 1991.
Search for a job
Search for a car
Search for a house
Weather for Edinburgh
Sunday 19 May 2013
Temperature: 9 C to 16 C
Wind Speed: 7 mph
Wind direction: North east
Temperature: 9 C to 20 C
Wind Speed: 8 mph
Wind direction: North