Minerva Urecal

Active - 1934 - 1965  |   Born - Jan 1, 1894   |   Died - Jan 1, 1966   |   Genres - Comedy, Drama, Western, Romance, Crime

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Biography by Hal Erickson

Actress Minerva Urecal claimed that her last name was an amalgam of her family home town of Eureka, California. True or not, Urecal would spend the balance of her life in California, specifically Hollywood. Making the transition from stage to screen in 1934, Ms. Urecal appeared in innumerable bits, usually as cleaning women, shopkeepers and hatchet-faced landladies. In B-pictures and 2-reelers of the 1940s, she established herself as a less expensive Marjorie Main type; her range now encompassed society dowagers (see the East Side Kids' Mr. Muggs Steps Out) and Mrs. Danvers-like housekeepers (see Bela Lugosi's The Ape Man). With the emergence of television, Minerva Urecal entered the "guest star" phase of her career. She achieved top billing in the 1958 TV sitcom Tugboat Annie, and replaced Hope Emerson as Mother for the 1959-60 season of the weekly detective series Peter Gunn. Minerva Urecal was active up until the early '60s, when she enjoyed some of the most sizeable roles of her career, notably the easily offended Swedish cook in Mr. Hobbs Takes a Vacation (1962) and the town harridan who is turned to stone in Seven Faces of Dr. Lao (1964).

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