Fay Baker Age, TV, Movies, Husband, wiki

Fay Baker Portrait.jpg

Fay Baker (born Fay Schwager; January 31, 1917 – December 8, 1987) was an American stage, film and television actress, and a successful author under the pen name Beth Holmes. Her novel, The Whipping Boy, made the Los Angeles Times bestseller list in 1978. She also published, under her own name, My Darling, Darling Doctors.

Fay Baker
BornFay Schwager

(1917-01-31)January 31, 1917

New York City, U.S.

DiedDecember 8, 1987(1987-12-08) (aged 70)
Other namesBeth Holmes
Years active1938–1965

Arthur Weiss

(m. 1940; div. 1965)


Early years

Baker’s father was a surgeon, and her mother was a pharmacist. She attended Smith College.

Roles on radio soap operas provided Baker’s early professional acting experience. Her Broadway career began in 1938 with a role in Danton’s Death. Her final Broadway role was in Wonderful Journey (1946). She changed her name to Baker (from her mother’s family) in 1944 in Another Love Story at New York’s Fulton Theatre. She was “discovered” by Alfred Hitchcock in 1946 and given the role of Ethel in Notorious. While the part was minor, she told her daughter that Hitchcock made her stay on the set for the entire film shoot. The director felt that she should be standing by at all times because he was paying her salary. She claimed she had a larger role in the film but that much of her work had been cut from the final film.

Baker remained in Hollywood for nearly two decades, acting in two dozen films, including star billing in The House on Telegraph Hill (1950). She had one of the leading roles in the 1950 crime drama Double Deal, and later played one of Ethel Barrymore’s two daughters trying to seize control of and sell editor Humphrey Bogart’s newspaper in the 1952 drama Deadline – U.S.A..

During her California years, she also appeared frequently on television. She is credited with guest parts on 30 different series beginning with Your Show Time in 1949 up to her final performance on Dr. Kildare in 1963. Her roles included comedy sitcoms (Hazel, The Donna Reed Show), drama (Perry Mason), and westerns (Have Gun – Will Travel). In 1958, she made two guest appearances on Perry Mason, playing Marian Newburn in “The Case of the Demure Defendant” and Stephanie Sabin in “The Case of the Perjured Parrot”.

Prior to 1963, Baker began writing when a problem with her back prevented her from acting. She began work on a book and sold some nonfiction pieces to magazines, in addition to receiving $50,000 from a producer for one of her stories.

Personal life

Baker married writer/producer Arthur Weiss on August 3, 1940 in New York City. They had two children, her son Jonathan’s being born in 1950, before divorcing in 1965. While Weiss remained in California working for Irwin Allen, she returned to New York City with her two children and began a new career as an author.

After her son Jonathan died from a drug overdose in 1971, Baker dedicated herself to the topic of how parents enable bad behavior in children. This inspired her most successful novel, The Whipping Boy (1978), which focused on the “emotional abuse” of children. She used the pen name “Beth Holmes” to shield her family from being compared with fictional characters in the novel.

Baker was diagnosed with breast cancer in 1972 and described the experience humorously in her book My Darling, Darling Doctors in 1975. She lost her 15-year battle with breast cancer on December 8, 1987 at age 70.

TV ShowRoleEpisodeYear
Your Show TimeThe Necklace1949
Fireside TheatreDinner for Three1950
Dangerous AssignmentCountess TodescaThe Knitting Needle Story1952
The DoctorThe Hiding Place1952
Cavalcade of AmericaA Romance to Remember1952
Sky KingLucille BradleyWings of Justice1952
ReboundQuiet Sunday1953
The MillionaireMargaret BrowningThe Margaret Browning Story1955
The Loretta Young ShowPat WadlingtonLet Columbus Discover You1955
Damon Runyon TheatreAdele SalisburyOld Em’s Kentucky Home1955
Four Star PlayhouseClaire DumontMan in the Cellar1954
NadineThe Case of Emily Carmeron1956
State TrooperJudith AndrewsWeep No More O’Grady1957
Schlitz Playhouse of StarsSylviaThe Girl in the Grass1957
The Ford Television TheatreLaura Van CleveSingapore1957
The Adventures of Jim BowieCharlotte De VauxA Fortune for Madame1957
The Life and Legend of Wyatt EarpMarie BurdenBad Woman1957
San Francisco BeatElsie FolgerThe Jealous Mambo Dancer Case1958
Mickey Spillane’s Mike HammerMargaret GreenLetter Edged in Blackmail1958
The Court of Last ResortMrs. Laura BarclayThe Stephen Lowell Case1958
M SquadHelen GrevilleDay of Terror1958
Perry MasonMarian NewburnThe Case of the Demure Defendant1958
Stephanie SabinThe Case of the Perjured Parrot1958
Have Gun – Will TravelMrs. GraysonLady on the Stagecoach1959
The David Niven ShowSarah WinterThe Promise1959
MaggieAnnie BradleyUnsold Pilot1960
The Donna Reed ShowHopeDonna Goes to a Reunion1960
77 Sunset StripCaroline KinaresStrange Bedfellows1961
The Ann Sothern ShowMildred HollidayFive Year Itch1959
LouiseThe Roman Hatter1960
Miss NortonPandora1961
This Is the LifeThe Sin of Silence1961
The Roaring 20’sCarlotta La SalleNo Exit1961
HazelMadeleine Van DykeNumber, Please?1962
Dr. KildareMrs. TuckerA Very Infectious Disease1963


1948Trapped by Boston BlackieMargie O’Reilly, alias Sandra DorayIMDb
The Gentleman from NowhereCatherine Ashton
The Saxon CharmMrs. NobleUncredited
No Minor VicesMrs. FeltonUncredited
Family HoneymoonFran WilsonUncredited
1949Manhattan AngelVi LangdonIMDb
Black MidnightMartha BaxterIMDb
Tell It to the JudgeValerie Hobson
1950Chain LightningMrs. Willis
Father of the BrideMiss Bellamy (Stanley’s secretary)Uncredited
Double DealLilly Sebastian
1951The Company She KeepsTilly Thompson
The House on Telegraph HillMargaret
Reunion in RenoMiss PearsonIMDb
1952Deadline – U.S.A.Alice Garrison Courtney
The StarFaith, Margaret’s sister
1953The Blue GardeniaSwitchboard MonitorUncredited
Invaders from MarsMrs. WilsonUncredited
1954Phffft!Radio Actress as ‘Nurse Serena’Uncredited
1955I Died a Thousand TimesWoman in Tropico LobbyUncredited
1956Don’t Knock the RockArlene MacLaine
1957She DevilEvelyn KendallIMDb
Sorority GirlMrs. Tanner
1965The Slender ThreadTelephone SupervisorUncredited, (final film role)


1946Wonderful JourneyJulia FarnsworthDec 25, 1946 – Jan 1, 1947
1944VioletCrystalOct 24, 1944 – Nov 11, 1944
1943Another Love StoryCelia HaleOct 12, 1943 – Jan 8, 1944
1942The Sun FieldMildred DeagonDec 9, 1942 – Dec 12, 1942
1942Journey to JerusalemThe Greek WomanOct 5, 1940 – Oct 19, 1940
The Taming of the ShrewBiancaFeb 5, 1940 – Feb 10, 1940
1938Danton’s DeathVoice in the StreetNov 2, 1938 – Nov 1938


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