EXPIRED: 09/15/11 – Frances Bay, 92, was a Canadian radio actress in the 1930s, but quit when she got married. She didn’t return to work for 40 years but found fame playing roles most actresses thought unglamorous.
Her first movie role came at the age of 60 in 1976 in the 1976 film “Foul Play” starring Goldie Hawn and Chevy Chase. After that she appeared on TV shows like “The Jeffersons,” “The Dukes of Hazzard,” “Who’s The Boss?” and as Fonzie’s grandmother on “Happy Days.”
Director David Lynch loved her, and used her in his movie Blue Velvet and the TV series Twin Peaks. She also had small roles in “The Karate Kid.” “Big Top Pee-wee” and “Twins.”
Roles she might be best remembered for are Adam Sandler’s loving grandmother in the film “Happy Gilmore,” the foul-mouth whorehouse madam in “Wild At Heart,” the patient who wouldn’t die in “Grey’s Anatomy,” and the Marble Rye lady, from whom Jerry steals a loaf of bread in “Seinfeld.”
After the death of her husband in 2002, she was struck by a car, had part of her right leg amputated, and worked with a prosthetic from then on. Her last part was a recurring role as the chain-smoking, wheelchair-bound, and rarely heard Aunt Ginny on “The Middle.”