Displaying items by tag: the Betty White challenge

It all began in 1971 on one of Los Angeles' busy freeways. It was on such a freeway that the late actor Richard Basehart and his wife, Diana, watched in horror as someone in a car ahead of them nonchalantly tossed a dog out of the car window to a grisly death.  Both Richard and Diana were animal lovers and very aware of the daily cruelties that so many animals endured. Their shock and outrage that day motivated them to gather fellow actors and members of the community together to work to stop such inhumane treatment.

When we opened our doors in 1971, our objectives were to provide proper care for and prevent the inhumane treatment and destruction of animals.  The common belief of the day was to simply rescue and adopt.  Right from the beginning, our founding members recognized that there were too many animals being destroyed in animal shelters because no one was paying attention to how many were being born.  They recognized that pet overpopulation was rooted in a lack of education and availability of services.  That was the key, and it was straightforward.  Stop the flow of animals being bred and you stop the unregulated killing.

The founding members knew that these goals were not going to be easily attainable. They would require stamina, resourcefulness and a long-standing commitment. The story of Actors and Others for Animals is also the story of compassionate people - donors, celebrities, supporters, volunteers, staff and board members - who helped take a fledgling organization and through hard work, dedication and loving kindness made it a leader in the elimination of pet overpopulation through spay and neuter, long before those words were part of the American jargon.

And while our history is rich with many accomplishments on behalf of animals, we are especially proud to have been the prevailing force behind the elimination of the decompression chamber in California. Working closely with the County of Los Angeles in the 1970's, it was agreed that if the County did not use the decompression chamber at the new Agoura shelter but instead used a euthanasia injection, Actors and Others would fund such a pilot project. It was so successful that it soon was adopted by all the other county shelters - then by the City - then in 1979 by all of California.

Dear Friends:

It was my friend, Jackie Joseph, one of the founding members of Actors and Others, who first introduced me to this wonderful organization. That first meeting was held, as I remember, in someone’s home where many of us sat on the floor, neophytes to the cause. I was immediately hooked. Improving the lives of animals, what better gig was there!

I’ve worked in many different capacities since that first meeting. As an entertainer, a volunteer, PSA spot maker, errand runner and all around worker bee. I joined the Board of Directors in 1982 served as Vice President for approximately eight years. I am very proud, honored and humbled to now serve as president.

Whenever I do a show, either in or out of town, I always ask people about their pets and if they are spayed or neutered. I am lucky to have had a great teacher in Earl Holliman, who taught me that getting the message out sometimes means doing so every day, one day at a time, one person at a time and one animal at a time.

We have all been privileged to have the “Earl Example” to learn from, and it is because of his great leadership that Actors and Others has grown to be the well-respected organization that it is today. It shall be my job to make sure that we continue on that same path.

My little rescue dog, Harmony, is a constant reminder to me of how important it is to take care of our animal companions and friends. My goal in life is "to be the kind of person my dog thinks I am."

JoAnne Worley’s instinctive comedic timing and irrepressible laugh makes her a favorite of audiences everywhere. Her work runs the gamut from television, movie and stage productions to game shows, talk shows, commercials, cartoons and opera. Most currently, JoAnne starred with a celebrated cast in the New York City Center’s Encores! Production of Steven Sondheim legendary "Follies," had a successful Broadway run in “The Drowsy Chaperone” and the Los Angeles production of "Wicked". She also has guest starred on "Bones," "Curb Your Euthusiasm," "Jessie" and “The Middle".

Jo Anne Worley (born September 6, 1937) is an American actress, comedian, and singer. Her work covers television, films, theatre, game shows, talk shows, commercials, and cartoons. Worley is widely known for her work on the comedy-variety show Rowan & Martin's Laugh-In

Early life and education

Worley was born on September 6, 1937, in Lowell, Indiana,[1] the third child of Rose Irene (née Gardner) and Joseph Lauraine Worley. In 1962, her parents divorced and her father remarried, having four children with his second wife, Nancy.[1]

Always known for her loud voice, Worley once said that when she attended church as a little girl, she never sang the hymns but would only lip sync them for fear that she would drown out everyone else. Before graduating from high school, she was named school comedienne.[1]

After graduating from high school in 1955, Worley moved to Blauvelt, New York, where she began her professional career as a member of the Pickwick Players.[2] This led to a drama scholarship to Midwestern State University in Wichita Falls, Texas.[3]

Career

Worley signing autographs at a Wicked performance

After studying at Midwestern for two years, Worley moved to Los Angeles to study at Los Angeles City College and the Pasadena Playhouse.[4][5][6][7] She was soon given her first musical role in a production of Wonderful Town. In 1961, Worley received her first major break when she appeared in the musical revue Billy Barnes People in Los Angeles; this production moved to Broadway, where it ran for only six performances. However, the New York Times reviewer wrote: "Jo Anne Worley has an earthy style that suggests she could be a rowdy comedienne."[4][5][6][8] In 1964, she was selected to appear as a stand-in on the original Broadway production of Hello, Dolly! One year later, Worley created her own nightclub act in Greenwich Village, where she was discovered by Merv Griffin in 1966.[4][5][6]

Impressed by Worley's talents, Griffin engaged her to be one of his primary guest stars on his show, where she made approximately 40 appearances on The Merv Griffin Show.[4][5][6] In 1966, she appeared Off-Broadway in The Mad Show, a musical revue based on Mad Magazine.[9] In 1967, Worley's stint on Griffin's show led to her discovery by George Schlatter, who soon cast her in Rowan & Martin's Laugh-In.[4][5][6]

In 1970, Worley left Laugh-In to pursue other projects and has made guest appearances on several television series, including Love, American Style, The Tonight Show Starring Johnny Carson, The Andy Williams Show, Adam-12, Emergency!, Murder, She Wrote, The Middle, and different game shows such as Super Password, Hollywood Squares, and the many versions of Pyramid. She continued working in various movies, television series, and theatrical performances (original productions and revivals alike) over the years. Worley also became known for her work as a voice provider for several cartoons, animated movies, and video games. Her voice work includes Nutcracker Fantasy (1979), the Disney movies Beauty and the Beast (1991), A Goofy Movie (1995), Beauty and the Beast: Belle's Magical World (1998), and the voice of the Wardrobe in the video game Kingdom Hearts II (2005). She remains involved with Disney, making cameos in several Disney Channel sitcoms such as Kim Possible playing the role of Bonnie Rockwaller's mother, Wizards of Waverly Place, and Jessie.

Worley performed in regional theater, such as the Melody Top Theater in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, where she appeared in Gypsy: A Musical Fable as Rose (1984), Annie Get Your Gun (1982), Hello Dolly! (1980), Anything Goes (1978) and Once Upon a Mattress (1974),[10] She also appeared at the Welk Dinner Theater in San Diego, California in Same Time, Next Year in 1985,[11] Call Me Madam at the California Music Theatre, Pasadena, California, in 1987,[12] and Nunsense at the La Mirada Theatre for the Performing Arts, La Mirada, California, in 1991.[13]

In 1989, Worley returned to Broadway to appear in Prince of Central Park, but the show was canceled after four performances.[14] She was cast as the Wicked Witch of the West in a 1999 musical production of The Wizard of Oz, directed and adapted by Robert Johanson, with Mickey Rooney playing the eponymous role. The production had a limited run at the Pantages Theater, Hollywood, California and at the Theater at Madison Square Garden, and she also joined the limited US tour.[15][16] Worley played Mrs. Tottendale in the Broadway musical, The Drowsy Chaperone at the Marquis Theatre from July through December 2007. She then reprised the role of Mrs. Tottendale at The Cape Playhouse from June to July 2015.

From January 8 until August 24, 2008, Worley played the role of Madame Morrible in the Los Angeles production of Wicked.[17]

Personal life

Worley married actor Roger Perry on May 11, 1975. They divorced in 2000.[18]

Worley is an animal lover. For more than 40 years she has been involved with the organisation Actors and Others for Animals, founded in 1971, which funds spay-and-neuter programmes, and provides veterinary financial assistance to pet guardians in Southern California.[19][20][21] She served on a voluntary basis on the board of directors for several years before becoming vice president, and since 2007, has served as president of the organisation.[20][22]

Filmography

Film

Television

YearFilmRoleNotes
1962 Moon Pilot Extra
1968 Head Woman in Playtex Bra Ad Adventure musical satirical film featuring The Monkees and directed by Bob Rafelson.[24]
1976 The Shaggy D.A. Katrinka Muggelberg Comedy film and sequel to The Shaggy Dog and directed by Robert Stevenson.[25]
1979 Nutcracker Fantasy Queen Morphia くるみ割り人形 (Kurumiwari Ningyō, lit. The Nutcracker) Japanese-American stop motion animated film. directed by Takeo Nakamura.[26]
1991 Beauty and the Beast Armoire the Wardrobe Animated musical and fantasy film directed by Gary Trousdale and Kirk Wise.[27]
1995 A Goofy Movie Miss Maples Animated musical road comedy film directed by Kevin Lima.[28]
1998 Beauty and the Beast: Belle's Magical World Armoire the Wardrobe
  • Direct-to-video
  • Musical romantic fantasy film directed by Cullen Blaine, Daniel de la Vega, Barbara Dourmashkin, Dale Kase, Bob Kline, Burt Medall, and Mitch Rochon.
  • Credited as Joanne Worley
1999 Belle's Tales of Friendship Armoire the Wardrobe
  • Direct-to-video
  • Live action/animated directed by Jimbo Mitchell.
2004 Goodnight, We Love You Herself Documentary written and directed by Gregg Barson.
2008 Forever Plaid: The Movie The Usher
2012 Carol Channing: Larger Than Life Documentary Herself Documentary directed and co-written by Dori Berinstein.
2019 Still Laugh-In: The Stars Celebrate Herself
YearTitleRoleNotes
1960 The Many Loves of Dobie Gillis Myrtle Tarantino Episode: "Baby Talk" (S 2:Ep 3)
1961 Adventures in Paradise Guest Episode: "Act of Piracy" {S 2:Ep 18}
The Many Loves of Dobie Gillis Myrtle Tarantino Episode: "Goodbye, Mr. Pomfritt, Hello, Mr. Chips" (S 2:Ep 34)
1967 Captain Nice Rusty Episode: "One Rotten Apple" (S 1:Ep 14)
1968–1970 Rowan & Martin's Laugh-In Performer Contract role
1970 Hot Dog Host
  • Contract role
  • Saturday morning documentary series for children
Pat Paulsen's Half a Comedy Hour Underwater Wife Episode: "Episode #1.4" (S 1:Ep 4)
Love, American Style Maggie Episode:"Love and the Coed Dorm/Love and the Optimist/Love and the Teacher" (S 1:Ep 19)
1971 The Feminist and the Fuzz Dr. Debby Inglefinger TV movie directed by Jerry Paris.[29]
Love, American Style Guest Episode: "Love and the Boss/Love and the Jury/Love and the Logical Explanation/Love and the Pregnancy" (s 2:Ep 21)
Night Gallery Iris Travers Episode: " House — With Ghost/A Midnight Visit to the Neighborhood Blood Bank/Dr. Stringfellow's" (S 2:Ep 9)
What's a Nice Girl Like You...? Cynthia TV movie directed by Jerry Paris.[30]
Love, American Style Housewife Episode: "Love and the Detective/Love and the Guilty Conscience/Love and the Mixed Marriage/Love and the Wake-Up Girl" (S 3:Ep 5)
Susie Episode: "Love and the Baby/Love and the Big Mother/Love and the Free Weekend/Love and the Jealous Husband/Love and the Old Cowboy" (S 3:Ep 9)
1972 Mrs. Stevens Episode: "Love and the Big Surprise/Love and the Security Building/Love and the Ski Lodge/Love and the Happy Unhappy Couple/Love and the Topless Policy" (S 3:Ep 16)
Adam-12 Juju Perrin Episode: "Mary Hong Loves Tommy Chen" (S 4:Ep 19)
The Paul Lynde Show Fay Episode: "An Affair to Forget" (S 1:Ep 12)
1973–1974 It Pays to Be Ignorant Herself Panelist
1973–1991 Pyramid Recurring celebrity guest Its subsequent versions
1973 Love, American Style Beverly Arnold Rhode Episode: "Love and the Games People Play/Love and High Spirits/Love and the Memento/Love and the Single Husband/Love and the Stutter" (S 5:Ep 4)
Emergency! Screaming Woman Episode: "Zero" (S 3:Ep 10)
1974–1976 Match Game Herself Panelist
1974 The Six Million Dollar Man Mona Episode: "Survival of the Fittest" (S1 :Ep 2)
1975 Get Christie Love! Miss Holmes Episode: "Murder on High C" (S 1:Ep 16)
New Zoo Revue Vanessa Gramcracker Episode: "September 2, 1975"
1977 The Riddlers   unsold game show pilot
Walt Disney's Wonderful World of Color Miss Osborne Episode: "The Mouseketeers at Walt Disney World" (S 24:Ep 6)
Hawaii Five-O Anna Jovanko Episode: "Blood Money Is Hard to Wash"
1978 The Love Boat Sandy Beal Episode: "A Time for Everything/The Song Is Ended/Accidental Cruise/Anoushka" (S 2:Ep 8)
The Gift of the Magi Star Adapted made-for-TV-Movie directed by Marc Daniels.
1979 The Love Boat Dottie Anderson Episode: "The Stimulation of Stephanie/The Next Step/Life Begins at 40" (S 3:Ep 14)
CHiPs Herself
  • Episode: "Roller Disco: Part 2" (S 3:Ep 2)
  • Uncredited
The Arthur Godfrey Special Herself Sketch comedy musical directed by Sterling Johnson.
1981 Through the Magic Pyramid Mutnedjmet TV movie directed by Ron Howard.[31]
1981–82 The All New Popeye Hour Sgt. Bertha Blast Contract role
1983 The Love Boat Mrs. Honeycutt Episode: "The Dog Show: Going to the Dogs/Putting on the Dog/Women's Best Friend/Whose Dog Is It Anyway" (S 6:Ep 25)
1985 Murder, She Wrote Carla Raymond Episode" "My Johnny Lies over the Ocean" (S 1:Ep 13)
Super Password Herself Game Show Contestant / Celebrity Guest Star
Pound Puppies Nose
The Wuzzles Hopopotamus Contract role
1989 DuckTales Guest
  • Episode: "The Good Muddahs" (S 2:Ep 14)
  • Credited as JoAnne Worley
1990 Match Game Herself Panelist
1992 The Elf Who Saved Christmas Mrs. Buzzard Short film directed by Bob Sykes.[32]
1993 Tom & Jerry Kids Guest
  • Episode:"Penthouse Mouse/Twelve Angry Sheep/The Ant Attack" (S 3:Ep 21)
  • Credited as JoAnne Worley
The Elf and the Magic Key Mrs. Buzzard TV movie directed by Bob Sykes.[33]
The Pink Panther Mrs. Chubalingo
  • Episode: "Pilgrim Panther/That Old Pink Magic" (S 1:Ep 10)
  • Credited as Joanne Worley
1995 Family Reunion: A Relative Nightmare Aunt Kate TV movie directed by Neal Israel.[34]
1996 Mad About You Herself Episode: "Dream Weaver" (S 4:Ep 12)
1998 Caroline in the City Herself Episode: "Caroline and the Sandwich" (S 3:Ep 22)
Sabrina, The Teenage Witch Aunt Beulah Episode: "Good Will Haunting" (S 3:Ep 6)
1999 Boy Meets World Mrs. Stevens Episode: "Pickett Fences" (S 7:Ep 10)
2001 Kim Possible Mrs. Rockwaller Episode: "Downhill" (S 1:Ep 5)
2004 Hollywood Squares Herself Recurring
2005 Kathy Griffin: My Life on the D-List Herself Episode: "Out & About" (S 1:Ep 1–Pilot)
2009 Wizards of Waverly Place Maggie Episode: "Alex Does Good" (S 2:Ep 17)
2011 Unscripted Herself
  • Episode: "Jo Anne Worley" (S 1:Ep 6)
  • Biography
Bones Diane Michaels Episode "The Truth in the Myth" (S 6:Ep 18)
Curb Your Enthusiasm Rosemary Episode: "The Smiley Face" (S 8:Ep 4)
Jessie Nana Banana
  • Episode: "Zuri's New Old Friend" (S 1:Ep 6)
  • Credited as JoAnne Worley
2012 The Middle Miss Lambert Episode: "The Guidance Counselor" (S 3:Ep 21)