July 26, 2011
Helen Beverley, 94, actress
Actress Helen Beverley, who performed in Yiddish theater and films, and was the first wife of actor Lee J. Cobb, died July 15 at the Motion Picture and Television Fund hospital in California at 94.
“Green Fields” (“Grine Felder”), a 1937 film in which Beverley portrayed the female lead, was an adaptation of Peretz Hirshbein’s play that “heralded the Golden Age of Yiddish cinema.”
Her 1939 film, “The Light Ahead,” offered a “consciousness of the danger looming over European Jewry (that) was painfully apparent even though the film was shot in New Jersey.”
Beverley also acted in Hollywood films, including the Charlie Chan movie “Black Magic” and 1944’s “The Master Race,” which “envisaged the dangers of Nazism even after the fall of Germany.”
Beverley married Cobb, born Leo Jacob, in 1940; they divorced in the 1950s. Cobb died in 1976.