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Granville Bates

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Granville Bates
Bates in the trailer for My Favorite Wife, 1940
Born(1882-01-07)January 7, 1882
DiedJuly 8, 1940(1940-07-08) (aged 58)
Burial placeGraceland Cemetery
OccupationFilm actor
Years active1917-1940
Spouse(s)Josephine Weller (1930-1940)

Granville Bates (January 7, 1882 – July 8, 1940) was an American character actor and bit player, appearing in over ninety films.


Bates was born in Chicago in 1882. He began his film career in the 1910s with Essanay Studios of the Chicago film industry.[1] He appeared on Broadway in the late 1920s and early 1930s, notably in the original production of Merrily We Roll Along (1934) by George S. Kaufman and Moss Hart.[2] He was also the Conductor in the original production of Twentieth Century (1932).[3]

Bates' grave at Graceland Cemetery
Bates' grave at Graceland Cemetery

From the 1930s, he appeared in a number of classic films, although sometimes uncredited. He received favorable notice for his character roles, such as in My Favorite Wife (1940), where he played an irascible judge - The New York Times critic Bosley Crowther wrote "Mr. Bates deserves a separate mention for his masterpiece of comic creation."[4] Another New York Times reviewer noted that "Edward Ellis and Granville Bates provoked an early audience yesterday to gentle laughter in a brief but quietly amusing sequence" in Chatterbox (1936),[5] while Crowther praised his work in Men Against the Sky (1940): "The players' performances are stock and pedestrian, excepting that of Granville Bates as a cynical banker".[6]

Bates died of a heart attack in Hollywood on July 9, 1940.[7] He was buried at Graceland Cemetery in Chicago.

Selected filmography


  1. ^ "No Holiday for Death". Oakland (CA) Tribune. July 14, 1940. Retrieved January 1, 2018.
  2. ^ "Granville Bates". Playbill. Retrieved January 1, 2018.
  3. ^ Twentieth Century at the Internet Broadway Database
  4. ^ Bosley Crowther (May 31, 1940). "The Screen; 'My Favorite Wife' a Lively Farce, With Cary Grant and Irene Dunne, at the Music Hall--2 Other Films". The New York Times.
  5. ^ T. M. P. (February 15, 1936). "At the RKO Albee". The New York Times.
  6. ^ Bosley Crowther (September 12, 1940). "The Screen; At the Rialto". The New York Times.
  7. ^ "Veteran Actor Taken by Death". Los Angeles Times. July 10, 1940. p. 37. Retrieved November 21, 2021 – via
  8. ^ The American Film Institute Catalog of Motion Pictures Produced in the United States, Volume 1. University of California Press. 1993. p. 63. ISBN 9780520079083. Retrieved January 1, 2018.
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Granville Bates
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