Saturday, 3 September 2011

Spotlight on a Character Actress: Agnes Moorhead

Having been obsessed with "Bewitched" for several years now, I think I can almost quote every line of Endora's (Agnes Moorehead) dialogue. Gotta love Agnes Moorehead.

Agnes Moorhead (1900-1974)

Agnes Moorhead is perhaps best known for her performance in the 1950s TV series, "Bewitched" as the main character Samantha's (Elizabeth Montgomery) mother, Endora. Both of them being witches. Agnes Moorhead grew up with a strong ambition to be an actress. She sang in church (she and her family were very religious) and joined other groups and organisations which she hoped would further her as an aspiring actress. She later joined Orson Welles's famed Mercury Theatre company with Joseph Cotten and George Coulouris. Orson Welles used her in some of his films when he made his venture out to Hollywood to make it big in movies (boy  did he ever!) including Citizen Kane and The Magnificent Ambersons.

I first "discovered" Agnes Moorhead when we stumbled upon the third series of "Bewitched" at our local supermarket (we have all been hooked ever since!) and we all thought she was hilarious!!! Since then we have spotted her in movies like Citizen KaneThe Magnificent Ambersons, and Showboat. She manages to be quite mannered but also give a very good understanding of her characters at the same time (a quality not always associated with character actresses). My personal favourite from her is her performance as Aunt Fanny in The Magnificent Ambersons, and I love "Bewitched" too, but I didn't feel that they were in the same category... :-)

Best Films To Start With:

  1. The Magnificent Ambersons
  2. Bewitched
  3. Citizen Kane


Meredith said...

great choice! she was fantastic.

pablo said...

We used to watch BEWITCHED in México in the 70s and I loved it! Mrs. Moorhead stole the show every time ahe appeared on screen(and so did Selena, Sam's cousin played by Mrs MOntgomery, too), but Endora was great! She had the wit and the looks! A few years ago one of my friends gave me the first season for my birthday, colorized, and I fell in love again! Mrs. Moorhead attire, purple and green, in high contrast with her orange hair, made her look just the way she always behaved. Outrageous and unique!
A few days ago I saw JANE EYRE, and there she was again, making another poor girl's life miserable... Great actress!

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