Oscar Roles: Sanders, George in All About Eve

In 1950, George Sanders deservedly won the Supporting Actor Oscar for “All About Eve,” in which he played the acerbic theater critic Allison De Witt. It's his through his perspective that we see the story of the aging star, Bette Davis' Margo Channing, and the rising one, Anne Baxter's Eve Harrington.

Arguably, Joseph L. Mankiewicz, who won the Best Director and Screenplay, wrote the sharpest, wittiest, most cynical lines for Sanders. In voice-over narration, De Witt says: “No brighter light has ever dazzled the eyes than Eve Harrington. Eve. But more of Eve later, all about Eve, in fact.”

“Margo Channing is a star of the theatre. She made her first stage appearance at the age of four in “A Midsummer Night's Dream. She played the fairy and entered quite unexpectedly, stark naked. She has been a star ever since. Margo is a great star, a true star. She never was nor ever will be anything else.”

Later on, when he introduces his date, Miss Caswell (Marilyn Monroe) to Margo, De Witt says: “Miss Caswell is an actress. A graduate of the Copacabana School of Dramatic Arts.”

But the best lines are in the exchanges between De Wiit and Eve, which get darker and more cynical as the tale progresses. Says De Witt on the occasion of the sense of calm at her debut: “The mark of a true killer. Sleep tight, rest easy, and come out fighting.”