Ann Rutherford, actress in 'Gone With the Wind,' dies at 94
Rutherford, who also portrayed Mickey Rooney’s teenage girlfriend in the Andy Hardy movies, died Monday night at her home in Beverly Hills, said her close friend and fellow actress Anne Jeffreys. Rutherford had been in declining health with heart problems.
As she became one of the last surviving cast members of “Gone With the Wind,” Rutherford made a second career out of attending festivals featuring the beloved Civil War epic.
Under contract with MGM, she was a regular in the hugely successful Andy Hardy series when studio head Louis B. Mayer informed her that his son-in-law, producer David O. Selznick, wanted to borrow her for “Gone With the Wind.”
Mayer called it “a nothing part” and planned to say no, Rutherford told The Times in 2010.
A fan of the Margaret Mitchell novel, Rutherford implored Mayer to reconsider. When she uncharacteristically burst into tears, he relented.
“I just wanted to watch the book come to life,” she said in The Times interview.
A full obituary will follow at latimes.com/obits.
-- Valerie Nelson and Claire Noland
Top photo: Actresses, from left, Ann Rutherford, Vivien Leigh and Evelyn Keyes in "Gone With the Wind."
Bottom photo: Ann Rutherford in “Andy Hardy Gets Spring Fever.”