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What Ever Happened to Baby Jane? (1962)

Not Rated | | Drama, Horror, Thriller | 31 October 1962 (USA)
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A former child star torments her paraplegic sister in their decaying Hollywood mansion.

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(from the novel by), (screenplay)
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1,942 ( 233)
Won 1 Oscar. Another 1 win & 11 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
...
...
...
Marty Mc Donald
Julie Allred ...
Anne Barton ...
Cora Hudson (as Ann Barton)
...
Dehlia Flagg
...
Ben Golden
...
Mrs. Bates
...
...
Ray Hudson
William Aldrich ...
Lunch Counter Assistant at Beach
...
Police Officer
Maxine Cooper ...
Bank Teller
Robert Cornthwaite ...
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Storyline

In a tale that almost redefines sibling rivalry, faded actresses Blanche and 'Baby' Jane Hudson live together. Jane was by far the most famous when she performed with their father in vaudeville but as they got older, it was Blanche who became the finer actress, which Jane still resents. Blanche is now confined to a wheelchair and Jane is firmly in control. As time goes by, Jane exercises greater and greater control over her sister, intercepting her letters and ensuring that few if anyone from the outside has any contact with her. As Jane slowly loses her mind, she torments her sister going to ever greater extremes. Written by garykmcd

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Things you should know about this motion picture before buying a ticket: 1) If you're long-standing fans of Miss Davis and Miss Crawford, we warn you this is quite unlike anything they've ever done. 2) You are urged to see it from the beginning. 3) Be prepared for the macabre and the terrifying. 4) We ask your pledge to keep the shocking climax a secret. 5) When the tension begins to build, try to remember it's just a movie. See more »

Genres:

Drama | Horror | Thriller

Certificate:

Not Rated | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

31 October 1962 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

¿Qué pasó con Baby Jane?  »

Box Office

Budget:

$980,000 (estimated)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(RCA Sound Recording)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The principal shooting was completed in roughly a month. "[Aldrich] really cut the picture in the camera," said Bette Davis. "He had to, because we didn't have time for many setups, and he wanted to show the picture for a week in the Los Angeles area to qualify for Academy consideration." Robert Aldrich told the New York Times, "We finished shooting on schedule on September 12. Exactly one month later, we held our first sneak preview, at the State Theatre in Long Beach, California. That we were able to get the picture in shape in this incredibly short time is due to a group of dedicated craftsmen who performed above and beyond the call of duty--and almost beyond physical endurance--who worked virtually around the clock to meet our schedule." See more »

Goofs

A graphic after the credits identifies the film's main narrative as beginning "Yesterday", though the events appear to take place over the course of several days and nights. However, it has been debated that "Yesterday" can merely be a synonym for "in the past". See more »

Quotes

Jane: It's just that nosy Mrs. Bates going on about your picture last night.
Blanche: Oh, really, did she like it?
Jane: [imitating Blanche's voice] Oh, really, did she like it?... She liked it!
See more »

Crazy Credits

introducing Victor Buono See more »

Connections

Remade as What Ever Happened to Baby Jane? (1991) See more »

Soundtracks

I've Written a Letter to Daddy
Music by Frank De Vol
Lyrics by Bob Merrill
Performed by Bette Davis
Also performed by Julie Allred (dubbed by Debbie Burton)
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Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

 
Sibling Jealousy, Rivalry, Malevolence and Insanity
2 July 2013 | by (Rio de Janeiro, Brazil) – See all my reviews

In 1917, Baby Jane is a famous, but spoiled child star that performs a show with her father under the jealous look of her sister Blanche. In 1935, Blanche Hudson (Joan Crawford) becomes a famous and glamorous actress in Hollywood and the untalented Baby Jane Hudson (Bette Davis) only acts because Blanche forces the producers to give parts to her. One night, they go to a party and there is a car accident.

In 1962, Blanche is a crippled woman that has been left wheelchair-bound after the accident that lives with her alcoholic sister Baby Jane in a decaying Hollywood mansion. Baby Jane does not recall the accident since she was drunk and is in absolute control over Blanche that is completely isolated without any contact with the outside world and dumping her correspondence in the trash. As Baby Jane becomes more insane, she decides to return to the stage and hires the idle Edwin Flagg (Victor Buono) to play piano. Meanwhile she continues to torment Blanche and her cruelty increases.

"What Ever Happened to Baby Jane?" is one of the greatest American movies ever, with top-notch performances of Bette Davis and Joan Crawford. The disturbing story of sibling jealousy, rivalry, malevolence and insanity has a surprising plot point in the end that really surprises. I believe the three lead characters – Baby Jane, Blanche and Edwin Flagg – are a field day for psychologists. My vote is ten.

Title (Brazil): "O Que Terá Acontecido com Baby Jane?" ("What Might Have Happened to Baby Jane?")


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