86 (passed away Dec. 6th, 1989)
Dec. 14th, 1902
New York City, New York, USA
Frances Bavier's Main TV Roles
Main Movie Roles1974 - Benji
1956 - The Bad Seed
1952 - Bend of the River
1951 - The Day the Earth Stood Still
Guest TV Roles
Aunt Maggie Sawtelle
Frances Bavier was born in New York City on December 14, 1902. Her first Broadway appearance was in April 1925 in "The Poor Nut", the start of a successful Broadway career. She traveled with the USO to entertain the U.S. troops in the Pacific during World War II. Her last appearance on Broadway was in the 1951 play, "Point of No Return" starring Henry Fonda. It ran for 356 performances.
Her first movie was the 1951 sci-fi classic The Day the Earth Stood Still (1951). The Day the Earth Stood Still (1951) was the first time Frances appeared with Olan Soule (Mayberry's choir director, John Masters). They were both boarders in the rooming house where the alien stayed. She made many movies during the 50s and appeared on TV as featured characters on shows like "It's a Great Life" (1954) and "The Eve Arden Show" (1957).
- Despite her good-hearted image on screen, cast members of The Andy Griffith Show often remember her as difficult, temperamental and somewhat cold. Griffith himself said "There was just something about me she did not like."
- She performed in the live action reference footage for Walt Disney's "Sleeping Beauty" (1959).
- "Nobody will move me, I am not a dining room table, I am not a sofa, I am not a rug, how dare you!" [her reaction to Howard Morris trying to rearrange the set].
- A life-long exponent of Studebaker automobiles. The last car she bought was a 1966 model, the last model year for the make, made in the Canadian plant in Hamilton, Ontario. Some accounts say that the car was a 1964, the last year of production in the US plant in South Bend, Indiana. During the production of _"The Andy Griffith Show" (1960)_ (qv) and _"Mayberry R.F.D." (1968)_ (qv) she drove herself to and from the studio in it. Reportedly, it can be seen in the latter series. Miss Bavier took it to her home in North Carolina after she retired there and is believed to have last driven it in 1983. After her death in 1989, it was found sitting on four flat tires and its interior had been ruined by cats. Even so, two Andy Griffith fans bought it for $20,000 at auction.
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