Full Name:

Ann Rothschild

Occupation / Title:

,

Date of birth:

1910

Date of death:

22/10/1981

Birthplace:

American

Biography


Ann L. Rothschild, better known as Little Ann Little, started in show business in 1925 as a part of the Greenwich Village Follies. In the early 1930s, she auditioned for the part of a new cartoon character at Fleischer Studios. Impressed by her high-pitched, childlike voice, as well as her petite stature, Max Fleischer hired her as the first actress to play Betty Boop. To promote the cartoons, Little went on tour with Fleischer Studios and artist Pauline Comanor, who would draw the actress as Betty Boop while she posed. 

In 1934, Fleischer Studios and Little faced a lawsuit from singer Helen Kane, who claimed that they had plagiarized her signature baby talk. The lawsuit attracted some media attention, and grew to involve many other actresses and singers who voiced Betty Boop, including Mae Questel. In the end, the court ruled in favour of Fleischer, determining the Ann Little was, indeed, the original Betty Boop.

Little would continue to provide the voice for Betty Boop until the late 1940s, when she instead began to teach dancing, singing, and acting, and later, in the 1950s, became a Christian Minister. She died at the age of 71 in Fort Myers, Florida. 

References:


“‘Betty Boop’ Dead at 71.” The Gadsden Times, 25 October 1981.

“Little Ann Little.” Betty Boop Wiki, bettyboop.wikia.com/wiki/Little_Ann_Little. Accessed 31 December 2018.

Upchurch, C. Winn. “Betty Boop Studying for the Ministry.” The Evening Independent, 2 October 1948.


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