Binnie Barnes Poster


Jump to: Overview (5)  | Mini Bio (2)  | Spouse (2)  | Trivia (17)  | Personal Quotes (3)  | Salary (1)

Overview (5)

Born in Finsbury, London, England, UK
Died in Beverly Hills, Los Angeles, California, USA  (natural causes)
Birth NameGittel Enoyce Barnes (later called Gertrude Maude Barnes)
Nickname Texas Binnie Barnes
Height 5' 5" (1.65 m)

Mini Bio (2)

British-born actress who appeared in both British and American films, but who found her greatest success in Hollywood second leads. After a variety of jobs, including nurse, chorus girl and milkmaid, Barnes entered vaudeville. She appeared in more than a score of short comedies with comedian Stanley Lupino before making her feature bow in 1931. Two years later she achieved prominence as one of the half-dozen wives of the King in The Private Life of Henry VIII. (1933). The following year she moved to Hollywood and began a career as the smart-aleck pal of the lead or as the angry "other woman." Barnes also played numerous leading roles, but spent most of the 1930s and 40s in strong supporting parts. In 1940 she married football star (and later producer) M.J. Frankovich and after the war, they moved to Italy and appeared in several films there and elsewhere in Europe. She retired from films in 1954, but returned for a few roles in the late 60s and early 70s. She worked busily with numerous charities until her death in 1998.

- IMDb Mini Biography By: Jim Beaver <jumblejim@prodigy.net>

Her early work, beginning at age 15, included milkmaid, nurse, chorus girl, dance hostess and a vaudeville rope-twirling act in which she was known as "Texas Binnie Barnes." Her acting debut, with Charles Laughton, was in 1929 in Silver Tassie; her film debut was the English movie Night in Montmartre (1931). She did 26 comedy shorts with Stanley Lupino, which led to her playing Catherine Howard in Laughton's The Private Life of Henry VIII. (1933) and a year later a part in Douglas Fairbanks' The Private Life of Don Juan (1934). In 1934, Carl Laemmle Jr. brought her to Hollywood where she played in more than 75 movies including Diamond Jim (1935) with Edward Arnold, The Adventures of Marco Polo (1938) with Gary Cooper, and The Three Musketeers (1939) with Don Ameche. In 1940, she married UCLA football star (and later Columbia Studios producer) M.J. Frankovich. They moved to Italy after World War II where she made more films. She returned to Hollywood in the 1960s, playing in TV series and as Sister Celestine in the two Rosalind Russell "Angels" movies. Her last film was 40 Carats (1973) starring Liv Ullmann and Gene Kelly. Her husband died in 1992; she died six years later, aged 95, at her home in Beverly Hills. She was survived by two sons and a daughter.

- IMDb Mini Biography By: Ed Stephan <stephan@cc.wwu.edu>

Spouse (2)

M.J. Frankovich (28 September 1940 - 1 January 1992) ( his death) ( 3 children)
Samuel Joseph (3 January 1931 - 15 October 1936) ( divorced)

Trivia (17)

Before her screen debut in 1929, she worked as a nurse, chorus girl, dance hostess and vaudeville comedienne.
Made 26 comedy shorts with Stanley Lupino
Mother of Mike Frankovich Jr. (born 1942), Peter Frankovich (born 1946) and Michelle Frankovich De Motte (born 1944). Aunt of Rayford Barnes.
She was awarded a Star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame at 1501 Vine Street in Hollywood, California on February 8, 1960.
Biography in: "American National Biography". Supplement 1, pp. 29-30. New York: Oxford University Press, 2002.
She and her husband are buried alongside Joe E. Brown in his grave site at Forest Lawn Memorial Park in Glendale, California.
Shares a large monument and grave site with Joe E. Brown at Forest Lawn Memorial Park in Glendale, California.
She played poker with Clark Gable at the studio and at the actor's home.
Roomed with Pat Paterson when both were struggling starlets in England.
When the Jewish Barnes converted to Catholicism, Loretta Young acted as her sponsor/godmother.
She played Fanny in the original London stage version of Noël Coward's play "Cavalcade", but was signed by Fox for a different role in the film adaptation. She sailed to New York on the Queen Mary and was taken to the Waldorf Towers. It was a stormy night, and when no one from the studio showed up to meet her, she sailed back to Britain the next day.
She sued Harry Cohn of Columbia Pictures because he supposedly ordered her to be photographed in her garters behind a screen, but it was just a publicity stunt cooked up by Barnes and Cohn.
Had appeared with Cesar Romero in five films: Diamond Jim (1935), Rendezvous (1935), Always Goodbye (1938), Wife, Husband and Friend (1939) and Frontier Marshal (1939).
Had appeared with John Carradine in five films: Gateway (1938), The Three Musketeers (1939), Frontier Marshal (1939), Barbary Coast Gent (1944) and It's in the Bag! (1945).
Had appeared with Rosalind Russell in four films: Rendezvous (1935), This Thing Called Love (1940), The Trouble with Angels (1966) and Where Angels Go Trouble Follows! (1968).
Had appeared with Merle Oberon in four films: The Private Life of Henry VIII. (1933), The Private Life of Don Juan (1934), The Divorce of Lady X (1938) and 'Til We Meet Again (1940).
In a 1973 interview on the Johnny Carson Show, she claimed to be 59 years old. However, according to her biographical details, we know she was actually 70 years old at the time of the interview.

Personal Quotes (3)

I'm no Sarah Bernhardt. One picture is just like another to me as long as I don't have to be a sweet woman.
[In a 1990 interview] Look at some TV series which masquerade as glamor and see how much they have fallen into cheapness and tawdriness. So you ask me if I miss the business. I have to say it just isn't there any more. I've made all the comebacks I intend to, thanks very much!
[on Robert Taylor when they co-starred in "There's Always Tomorrow"] A nice boy but bad teeth and rather simian features. He went back to MGM where they fixed his hairline and capped his teeth. The next I knew he was a big star in "Small Town Girl" and I was the featured player.

Salary (1)

Love Lies (1931) 35 pounds per week

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