Biography

Daughter of Bernard 'Bunny' Granville and Rosina Timponi, Bonita Granville was born into an acting family on 2 Febuary 1923, in New York, New York. It's not surprising that she herself became a child actor, first on the stage and, at the age of 9, debuting in movies in Westward Passage (1932). She was regularly cast as a naughty little girl, as in These Three (1936) where she played Mary, an obnoxious girl spreading lies about her teachers. Her performance left an impression on the audience, and she was nominated for a Best Supporting Actress award.

In 1938-39 came the movies she is now best remembered for -- playing the bright and feisty detective/reporter Nancy Drew in the Nancy Drew series. She also appeared with Mickey Rooney in a few Andy Hardy movies. She never really had a movie breakthrough, and after marrying oil millionaire and later producer Jack Wrather, she retired from acting in the middle of the 1950s, although she went on to produce the Lassie (1954) TV series.

After her marriage to oil millionaire Jack Wrather in 1947, she appeared in only three more movies. She became an executive in the Wrather Corp., and first associate producer, then executive producer of the Lassie (1954) TV series. After Wrather's death in 1984, she took over as chairman of the board. She was also involved in many civic and cultural groups, and she was chair of American Film Institute, trustee of John F. Kennedy Center, as well as other well known organizations and charities.

Walt Disney personally convinced the Wrathers to build the Disneyland Hotel when Disney could not raise the money to do so -- his credit was all tied up in building the theme park itself. After the phenomenal success of Disneyland, Disney attempted to buy the hotel; but the Wrathers steadfastly refused to sell. Long after Jack and Bonita Wrather's and Walt Disney's deaths, the Disney Company bought the Wrather Corporation. The Disney Company thus acquired the Disneyland Hotel, the Queen Mary and Spruce Goose attractions in Long Beach, California, the rights to The Lone Ranger (1949) TV series, as well as other properties.

Bonita Granville Rather died of cancer on 11 October 1988, in Santa Monica, California. She and Wrather had four children (two from Wrather's first marriage).

Daughter of Bernard 'Bunny' Granville and Rosina Timponi, Bonita Granville was born into an acting family on 2 Febuary 1923, in New York, New York. It's not surprising that she herself became a child actor, first on the stage and, at the age of 9, debuting in movies in Westward Passage (1932). She was regularly cast as a naughty little girl, as in These Three (1936) where she played Mary, an obnoxious girl spreading lies about her teachers. Her performance left an impression on the audience, and she was nominated for a Best Supporting Actress award.

In 1938-39 came the movies she is now best remembered for -- playing the bright and feisty detective/reporter Nancy Drew in the Nancy Drew series. She also appeared with Mickey Rooney in a few Andy Hardy movies. She never really had a movie breakthrough, and after marrying oil millionaire and later producer Jack Wrather, she retired from acting in the middle of the 1950s, although she went on to produce the Lassie (1954) TV series.

After her marriage to oil millionaire Jack Wrather in 1947, she appeared in only three more movies. She became an executive in the Wrather Corp., and first associate producer, then executive producer of the Lassie (1954) TV series. After Wrather's death in 1984, she took over as chairman of the board. She was also involved in many civic and cultural groups, and she was chair of American Film Institute, trustee of John F. Kennedy Center, as well as other well known organizations and charities.

Walt Disney personally convinced the Wrathers to build the Disneyland Hotel when Disney could not raise the money to do so -- his credit was all tied up in building the theme park itself. After the phenomenal success of Disneyland, Disney attempted to buy the hotel; but the Wrathers steadfastly refused to sell. Long after Jack and Bonita Wrather's and Walt Disney's deaths, the Disney Company bought the Wrather Corporation. The Disney Company thus acquired the Disneyland Hotel, the Queen Mary and Spruce Goose attractions in Long Beach, California, the rights to The Lone Ranger (1949) TV series, as well as other properties.

Bonita Granville Rather died of cancer on 11 October 1988, in Santa Monica, California. She and Wrather had four children (two from Wrather's first marriage).

Personal Info

Known For Acting

Gender Female

Known Credits 62

Birthday 1923-02-02

Day of Death 1988-10-11

Place of Birth New York City, New York, USA

Official Site -

Also Known As

  • Bonita Granville Wrather

Acting TV ShowsMovies

1981 The Legend of the Lone Ranger as Woman (uncredited)
1971 V.I.P. Schaukel (1 episode)
1959 The Velvet Alley as Mrs. Kirkley
1956 The Lone Ranger as Welcome Kilgore
1954 Climax! (2 episodes)
1954 Lassie (2 episodes)
1951 Schlitz Playhouse of Stars (1 episode)
1950 Lux Video Theatre (2 episodes)
1950 Guilty of Treason as Stephanie Varna
1948 Strike It Rich as Julie Ann Brady
1948 Studio One (1 episode)
1947 The Guilty as Estelle Mitchell / Linda Mitchell
1947 Love Laughs at Andy Hardy as Kay Wilson
1946 Suspense as Ronnie
1946 The Truth About Murder as Christine Allen
1946 Breakfast in Hollywood as Dorothy Larson
1945 Senorita from the West as Jeannie Blake
1945 The Beautiful Cheat as Alice
1944 Youth Runs Wild as 'Toddy' Jones
1944 Song of the Open Road as Bonnie
1944 Andy Hardy's Blonde Trouble as Kay Wilson
1943 Hitler's Children as Anna Miller
1942 Seven Miles from Alcatraz as Anne Porter
1942 Now, Voyager as June Vale
1942 The Glass Key as Opal 'Snip' Madvig
1942 Syncopation as Kit Latimer
1941 H.M. Pulham, Esq. as Mary Pulham
1941 Down in San Diego as Betty Haines
1941 The People Vs. Dr. Kildare as Frances Marlowe
1941 Wild Man of Borneo as Francine 'Frankie' Diamond
1940 Gallant Sons as Kate Pendleton
1940 Escape as Ursula
1940 Third Finger, Left Hand as Vicky Sherwood
1940 Those Were The Days! as Martha Scroggs
1940 The Mortal Storm as Elsa
1940 Forty Little Mothers as Doris
1939 Nancy Drew and the Hidden Staircase as Nancy Drew
1939 Angels Wash Their Faces as Peggy Finnegan
1939 Nancy Drew... Trouble Shooter as Nancy Drew
1939 Nancy Drew... Reporter as Nancy Drew
1938 Nancy Drew: Detective as Nancy Drew
1938 Hard to Get as Connie Richards
1938 My Bill as Gwen Colbrook
1938 White Banners as Sally Ward
1938 The Beloved Brat as Roberta Morgan
1938 Merrily We Live as Marian Kilbourne
1938 Breakdowns of 1938 as Herself
1937 It's Love I'm After as Gracie Kane
1937 Call It a Day as Ann Hilton
1937 Quality Street as Isabella (uncredited)
1937 Maid of Salem as Ann
1936 The Plough and the Stars as Mollser Gogan
1936 The Garden of Allah as Convent Girl (uncredited)
1936 These Three as Mary Tilford
1936 Song of the Saddle as Jen as a Child
1935 Ah, Wilderness! as Mildred Miller
1934 The Life of Vergie Winters as Joan Shadwell as a Child (uncredited)
1933 Little Women as Amy's Classmate (uncredited)
1933 Cradle Song as Carmen (uncredited)
1933 Cavalcade as Young Fanny
1932 Silver Dollar as Liddy (uncredited)
1932 Westward Passage as Little Olivia Allen (age 9)

Directing

1954 Lassie (1 episode)Director

By signing up for an account on TMDb, you can post directly to Twitter and Facebook.

You need to be logged in to continue. Click here to login or here to sign up.

Global

s focus the search bar
p open profile menu
esc close an open window
? open keyboard shortcut window

On media pages

b go back (or to parent when applicable)
e go to edit page

On TV season pages

(right arrow) go to next season
(left arrow) go to previous season

On TV episode pages

(right arrow) go to next episode
(left arrow) go to previous episode

On all image pages

a open add image window

On all edit pages

t open translation selector
ctrl+ s submit form

On discussion pages

n create new discussion
w toggle watching status
p toggle public/private
c toggle close/open
a open activity
r reply to discussion
l go to last reply
ctrl+ enter submit your message
(right arrow) next page
(left arrow) previous page