Ann Gillis



Place of birth:

Little Rock, Arkansas, USA:


Ann Gillis was born Alma Mabel Conner on February 12, 1927, in Little Rock, Arkansas. At age seven, she appeared in her first film, Men in White (1934), as an extra. During the next two years, she had uncredited appearances in six more films until she received her first major role in King of Hockey (1936). Warner Brothers Studios gave significant screen time to Gillis in this movie, in hopes that she would become another Shirley Temple. Although (like all child stars of the 1930s) she never achieved Temple's level of fame, for the next several years Gillis starred in many films, almost always playing a spoiled, bratty character. She had two rare sympathetic roles as Becky Thatcher in The Adventures of Tom Sawyer (1938) and as the title character in Little Orphan Annie (1938). One scene in The Adventures of Tom Sawyer called for her to go into screaming hysterics when her character was trapped in a cave of bats, and Gillis delivered in a powerful performance that is probably the most memorable scene of her film career. As Gillis grew older, however, her career slowed down, and she left Hollywood in 1947. When she left Hollywood she married Paul Ziebold and had 2 sons. She then divorced, relocated to New York City and married Richard Fraser, a Scottish-born actor (they had a son born in 1958). During the 1950s and '60s, Gillis made sporadic television appearances, and in 1959, she hosted a national telecast presentation of The Adventures of Tom Sawyer. Gillis and her husband moved to England in 1961, and they were living in London when they heard of a casting call for 2001: A Space Odyssey (1968) that called for an American actress living in the city. Gillis auditioned and got the role; it remains her final film to date. Ann moved to Belgium in 1972 where she met and married Belgian René Van Hulst (deceased 1999). She lived in Belgium from 1972 to 2014 and became a Belgian citizen, devoting much of her time to painting and music, she was an accomplished pianist and harpist. She moved to England, UK in December 2014 and passed away peacefully on 31/1/2018.


2001: A Space Odyssey (1968)
as Poole's Mother
Big Town After Dark (1947)
as Susan Peabody LaRue (as Anne Gillis)
Gay Blades (1946)
as Helen Dowell (as Anne Gillis)
The Cheaters (1945)
as Angela Pidgeon
A Wave, a WAC and a Marine (1944)
as Judy (as Anne Gillis)
Janie (1944)
as Paula Rainey
In Society (1944)
as Gloria Winthrop
Since You Went Away (1944)
as Becky Anderson - Class President (uncredited)
Man from Music Mountain (1943)
as Penny Winters
Stage Door Canteen (1943)
as Ann Gillis
'Neath Brooklyn Bridge (1942)
as Sylvia
Bambi (1942)
as Adolescent Faline (voice)
Tough as They Come (1942)
as Frankie Taylor
Meet the Stewarts (1942)
as Jane Goodwin
Glamour Boy (1941)
as Brenda Lee
Mr. Dynamite (1941)
as Joey aka Abigail
Nice Girl? (1941)
as Nancy Dana
Little Men (1940)
as Nan
My Love Came Back (1940)
as Valerie Malette
All This, and Heaven Too (1940)
as Emily Schuyler
Edison, the Man (1940)
as Nancy Grey
The Under-Pup (1939)
as Letty Lou
Beau Geste (1939)
as Isobel Rivers as a Child
Peck's Bad Boy with the Circus (1938)
as Fluerette de Cava
Little Orphan Annie (1938)
as Annie
The Adventures of Tom Sawyer (1938)
as Becky Thatcher
The Californian (1937)
as Rosalia as a Child
You Can't Buy Luck (1937)
as Peggy
King of Hockey (1936)
as Peggy O'Rourke
The Singing Cowboy (1936)
as Lou Ann Stevens