Billie Burke

Do you recognize this actress?

Billie Burke

How about now?

Billie Burke Oz3a

Long before she was Glinda the Good Witch in The Wizard of Oz (1939) Billie Burke began her career on the stage in 1903. Her first movie Peggy was in 1916. The stage was her first love and she was the toast of Broadway. Burke also appeared on radio and television. She was married to Florenz Ziegfeld, Jr. from 1914 until his death in 1932. She was nominated for an Academy Award for her performance of Emily Kilbourne in Merrily We Live (1938).

She retired in 1921. However, after the stock market crash where her and her husband’s investments were tied up, she went back to work in the movies. Burke became a memorable character actor who often played featherbrained, upper class roles. Some of her films include: A Bill of Divorcement (1932), Dinner at Eight (1933), Topper (1937), Father of the Bride (1950) and Father’s Little Dividend (1951). She will forever be remembered for her role in The Wizard of Oz.

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