Ruth Elizabeth Davis (April 5, 1908 – October 6, 1989), known as Bett Davis, was an American actress of film, television and theater. Regarded as one of the greatest actors in world cinema history, she was noted for her willingness to play unsympathetic, sardonic characters and was reputed for her performances in a range of film genres.
Bett was the co-founder of the Hollywood Canteen, and was the first female president of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences. She won the Academy Award for Best Actress twice, was the first person to accrue 10 Academy Award nominations for acting, and was the first woman to receive a Lifetime Achievement Award from the American Film Institute.
Betts’ career went through several periods of eclipse, and she admitted that her success had often been at the expense of her personal relationships. Married four times, she was once widowed and thrice divorced, and raised her children as a single parent. Her final years were marred by a long period of ill health, but she continued acting until shortly before her death from breast cancer, with more than 100 films.