Image of Edith Fellows

Edith Fellows

Edith Fellows was born on May 20, 1923, in Boston, Massachusetts. When she was a year old, she and her father and grandmother moved to Charlotte, North Carolina. As a toddler, Edith was pigeon-toed and had trouble walking, and one doctor suggested that dance lessons might cure this condition. At age four, Edith entered Henderson's School of Dance, where she was spotted by a man claiming to be a talent scout, who told her grandmother that he could get Edith into show business for a fifty-dollar fee. The dance school raised the money, but when Edith and her grandmother arrived in Hollywood, they discovered that the address the man had given them did not exist, and they realized he was a fraud. Stranded in Hollywood with no means to return to North Carolina, Edith's grandmother began doing housework to earn a living. While she worked, she left Edith with a neighbor and her young son. One day Edith was taken along when the neighbor's son had an audition for the film Movie Night (1929), and she ended up getting the part. Although she never become a child star, Edith appeared in many popular films of the 1930s, most notably Pennies from Heaven (1936). She also proved herself to be a very versatile actress, playing roles ranging from a spoiled rich girl, as in Heart of the Rio Grande (1942), to a poor orphan girl, as in Pennies from Heaven. Edith was even given her own series, The Five Little Peppers, while under contract to Columbia, and she made four of the Pepper films (the first was Five Little Peppers and How They Grew (1939)) in two years. Between 1929 and 1954, Edith appeared in some fifty films, mostly in juvenile roles due to her short 4' 10" stature. But her career suddenly slowed down in the mid-1950s. Between 1955 and 1980, she appeared in only one film, Lilith (1964), in which she had a bit part. During this time, Edith chose to focus on her family life; she had married producer Freddie Fields in 1946, and their only child, daughter Kathy, was born in 1947. But Edith and Fields divorced in 1955, and the end of her marriage, coupled with other factors, caused Edith to have a nervous breakdown. She recovered, and in 1981, she returned to acting in numerous supporting roles on television. In 1985, fellow former child actor Jackie Cooper announced plans to make a TV movie based on Edith's life, but this project never happened.

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May 20, 1923 In Boston, Massachusetts, USA
Movie/TV Credits:
First Appeared:
In the movie Movie Night 1929-05-11
Latest Project:
Series ER 1994-09-19
Known For
Poster of The Brady Brides
Poster of Mrs. Wiggs of the Cabbage Patch
Poster of Law and Lawless
Poster of The Rider of Death Valley
Series ER Sadie Hubbell 1994-09-19
Movie Hollywood’s Children Self 1982-02-24
Series The Brady Brides Unknown 1981-02-06
Movie Girls' Town Sue Norman 1942-03-06
Movie Heart of the Rio Grande Connie Lane 1942-03-11
Movie Stardust on the Sage Judy Drew 1942-05-25
Movie Criminal Investigator Ellen 1942-10-23
Movie Her First Beau Milly Lou 1941-05-08
Movie Music in My Heart Mary O'Malley 1940-01-04
Movie Five Little Peppers at Home Polly Pepper 1940-02-08
Movie Out West with the Peppers Polly Pepper 1940-06-30
Movie Her First Romance Linda Strong 1940-12-25
Movie Nobody's Children Pat 1940-12-12
Movie Five Little Peppers in Trouble Polly Pepper 1940-09-01
Movie Five Little Peppers And How They Grew Polly Pepper 1939-08-22
Movie Pride of the Blue Grass Midge Griner 1939-10-06
Movie Little Miss Roughneck Foxine LaRue 1938-01-23
Movie City Streets Winnie Brady 1938-07-01
Movie Life Begins with Love Dodie Martin 1937-10-06
Movie And So They Were Married Brenda Farnham 1936-05-10
Movie Pennies from Heaven Patsy Smith 1936-11-25
Movie Dinky Sally 1935-05-11
Movie The Keeper of the Bees Jean Marie Meredith / Little Scout 1935-07-14
Movie One-Way Ticket Ellen 1935-11-25
Movie She Married Her Boss Annabel Barclay 1935-09-19
Movie Two Alone Rogers' Daughter (uncredited) 1934-01-26
Movie Cross Streets Little Sister 1934-07-05
Movie His Greatest Gamble Alice (as a child) 1934-07-18
Movie Kid Millions Little Girl in Ice Cream Number (uncredited) 1934-11-10
Movie Mrs. Wiggs of the Cabbage Patch Australia Wiggs 1934-10-28
Movie Jane Eyre Adele Rochester 1934-08-15
Movie Mush and Milk Edith 1933-05-27
Movie Divorce In The Family Little Girl with Kite 1932-08-27
Movie The Rider of Death Valley Betty Joyce 1932-04-23
Movie Law and Lawless Betty Kelley 1932-11-29
Movie Birthday Blues Girl with String in Mouth 1932-11-12
Movie Penguin Pool Murder Little Girl at Aquarium 1932-12-09
Movie Cimarron (uncredited) 1931-02-09
Movie Second Hand Kisses Orphan girl 1931-03-29
Movie Huckleberry Finn Schoolgirl (uncredited) 1931-08-07
Movie Daddy Long Legs Orphan (uncredited) 1931-06-05
Movie Shivering Shakespeare Girls Scared of Elephant 1930-01-25
Movie Movie Night Daughter 1929-05-11
Movie Madame X Child at Puppet Show (uncredited) 1929-08-17