Lizabeth Scott was an American actress known for her various leading roles in film noir through the 1940s and 50s. A true femme fatale, she captivated her audiences with her allure and vivacity. Scott’s contributions to Hollywood film earned her a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame.
Born on September 29, 1922 in Scranton, Pennsylvania, under her birth name, Emma Matzo, Scott was the oldest of six children. She decided to be an actress at the age of eleven much to her strict Catholic parents’ dismay. At seventeen, she boldly moved to New York City, where she established her new life by adopting the name Lizabeth Scott as homage to Mary, Queen of Scots and Elizabeth I.
In 1941 Lizabeth Scott began her career starring in various Broadway shows, her most notable and dynamic part being Sabina in The Skin of Our Teeth. In 1943, Scott met Hal Wallis, a film producer for Warner Brothers. Her beauty and smoky voice charmed him and he saw her potential to be a leading onscreen siren. Scott signed with Wallis, and under his agency made her film debut at the young age of 22 in the feature You Came Along opposite Robert Cummings. This sparked an illustrious career for the actress.
Scott brought a great deal of energy and artistry to her roles. She appeared in twenty-two feature films in which she played the leading lady in all but one. Her most well-known roles were in The Strange Love of Martha Ivers (1946), Dead Reckoning (1947), Desert Fury (1947), and her ultimate femme fatale performance in Too Late for Tears (1949). Other projects included Elvis Presley’s 1957 musical, Loving You, and starring in Pulp in 1972 opposite Michael Caine and Mickey Rooney.
Lizabeth Scott’s career and life thereafter took her around the world and she often kept the company of a fair number of notable individuals. In addition to Elvis Presley, Scott was a friend to the writer Ayn Rand and the Dalai Lama. She made Humphrey Bogart’s personal list of the nine “most potent kissers in movie love scenes” in which he participated.
Throughout her life Scott kept a curated collection of fine art and objects including ceramics by Pablo Picasso, and paintings by Dimitrie Berea. From the 1970s on, Scott was a passionate volunteer for various charities such as Project HOPE and the Ancient Arts Council of LACMA.