More than 50 years ago, Mary Badham was just ten years old when she received an Academy Award nomination — and then she retired from acting.
Not exactly your typical Hollywood story! But Mary, who received critical acclaim for playing Scout Finch in 1962’s “To Kill a Mockingbird,” wasn’t one to follow the rules. She starred in a few more films before stepping away from the limelight in her later teenage years.
But despite her decision to walk away from Hollywood, Mary has never walked away from “To Kill a Mockingbird.” Throughout her life, she’s traveled the world to share the iconic story and its message of compassion, aiming to inspire generations upon generations of students.
Mary stayed close over the years with actor Gregory Peck, who played her father, Atticus Finch, in the classic film. Peck passed away in 2003.
In 2005, Mary was in fact temporarily coaxed out of her retirement from the acting world. Director Cameron Watson was adamant that she was the only actress suited for a part in his film “Our Very Own,” and he tracked her down in Alabama to convince her to take the part.
Wish you could hear Mary, now 66, discuss “To Kill a Mockingbird” in person? Her official website includes a contact form for speaking engagements — maybe a chat is in your future.
You can also snag tickets to Aaron Sorkin’s acclaimed Broadway adaption of the novel here on StubHub.
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