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Cara Williams (born June 29, 1925, Brooklyn, New York) is a retired American film and television actress.

Contents

Biography

Born as Bernice Kamiat to an Austrian emigrant father and a mother of Rumanian descent,[1] she began her screen acting career in 1941, and was initially billed as Bernice Kay. Williams earned an Academy Award for Best Supporting Actress nomination in 1959 for her role in the film, The Defiant Ones.

Career

She starred opposite Harry Morgan in the CBS situation comedy Pete and Gladys (1960–1962), and earned an Emmy Award nomination in 1962 for Best Actress in a Series. She later had her own CBS sitcom, The Cara Williams Show (1964–1965), with costars Frank Aletter, previously the star of Bringing Up Buddy on CBS, and Jack Sheldon, later star of the short-lived 1966 series, Run, Buddy, Run, also on CBS. Williams and Aletter played a married couple trying to keep their union secret because company policy did not permit employees to marry within the company. The series was created by Keefe Brasselle's Richelieu Productions, along with two other programs that season, The Reporter starring Harry Guardino and Gary Merrill and Paul Ford's sitcom The Baileys of Balboa. All three series were ordered by CBS president James T. Aubrey without formal pilot episodes (he was a close friend of Brasselle's), and all of them, including Cara's, were cancelled after Aubrey was fired from the network in February 1965.

In Meet Me in Las Vegas (1956) she played a redheaded dancer who performed a notable number, declaring she did not like rock 'n' roll. She played James Cagney's girl friend in the musical comedy Never Steal Anything Small (1959) and even had a duet with Cagney. During the early to mid-1960s, CBS executives groomed Williams to be the next Lucille Ball, but these plans never materialized. After the demise of her show, she did guest roles on other shows, briefly appearing as a regular on Valerie Harper's CBS series Rhoda.

Personal life

Williams married John Drew Barrymore (later the father of Drew) in 1952. They divorced in 1959. Their son, John Blyth Barrymore, is also an actor. She married, secondly, to Alan Gray (1945-47), which union also produced a child, but ended after two years. She is currently married to her third husband, Los Angeles real estate entrepreneur Asher Dann.

Select filmography

External links

References

  1. ^ U.S. Census, 1 April 1930, State of New York, County of Kings, enumeration district 355, p. 12-B, family 248.
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