10 Marvelous Things Most Fans Don’t Know About Betty White

by Grace Eire
Grace plays in a band and is the mother to a black cat named Fitzhugh.

Betty White is an American television icon, yes, but she’s also arguably everyone’s favorite grandma.

No, Betty doesn’t have any biological children of her own, but she’s been there for all of us for such a long time. And she’s simply so lovable that it’s hard not to think of her as a grandmother figure. But what do you really know about Betty?

These 10 things about Betty will help you feel even closer to The Golden Girls actress.

At age 98, Betty shows no signs of slowing down. She’s always all smiles and full of good advice.

On top of being an extremely accomplished actress, Betty also loves to works for animal rights.

If she were to have picked a job other than one in entertainment, she’s said that she’d certainly pick one in zoo keeping!

What is your favorite project Betty has ever worked on? What would you like to see her do in the future?

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Photos: Wikimedia Commons / Angela George; Wikimedia Commons / Ogunquit Playhouse

1. She Holds The Record For Longest TV Career For A Female

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Betty holds the Guinness record for the longest TV career a female has ever had, starting all the way back in 1939. She danced on an experimental West Coast TV show, the first of its kind.

2. Allen Ludden Proposed To Her With An Easter Bunny

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The two fell in love while both working on the Cape Cod straw-hat circuit. A year later, he proposed by sending Betty a stuffed Easter bunny with gold and sapphire earrings, along with a note that read, “Now, come on, will you marry me?”

Apparently, it wasn’t the earrings that did it, but the bunny! As of a 1976 People magazine article, Betty still had the bunny in her possession.

3. She's Worth $75 Million

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Betty is worth more than a few dollars and cents, that’s for sure. According to Yahoo Finance, she’s worth a cool $75 million. What do you think she spends her money on? Probably Werther’s Originals and expensive jewelry.

4. She Was Originally Supposed To Play Blanche

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Betty originally auditioned for Blanche, the promiscuous Golden Girl. However, producers were worried that it would be too similar to her character on The Mary Tyler Moore Show. According to CBS, producers asked Betty and Rue McClanahan to switch which parts they were reading, and the rest is history.

5. She Was Almost In As Good As It Gets

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Betty was very close to being cast as Beverly Connelly in As Good As It Gets, but she did not approve of a scene where Jack Nicholson’s character tosses a small dog down a garbage chute. Being an animal rights activist, she didn’t want any viewers to get any ideas from the scene; in her book, she says she didn’t think it was very funny. She tried to get the scene removed from the script, but director James L. Brooks cast Shirley Knight instead.

6. She's A Part Of The Television Academy Hall Of Fame

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In 1995, Betty was rightfully inducted into the Television Academy Hall of Fame to honor her work on the likes of The Golden Girls and The Mary Tyler Moore Show. She was nominated for three Emmys for her work on Mary Tyler Moore, winning two of them, according to Encyclopedia Brittanica.

7. She Loves Junk Food

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In an article on US WeeklyBetty’s costars from Hot in Cleveland reveal that she loves to eat licorice, French fries, diet soda, and hot dogs. They say this lifestyle isn’t sustainable, but it seems to be working for Betty!

8. She's The 'Luckiest Old Broad Alive'

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Well, at least according to her! When speaking to the fact that she gets to act and work with animals, her Biography.com page says that she calls herself the “luckiest old broad alive” for getting to do what she loves all the time. I have to say, I can’t really disagree with her.

9. She Studied To Be A Dramatic Soprano

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Betty was gung ho about being an opera singer from a very young age — age 14, in fact. She studied with the best and had big dreams. Her voice, however, wasn’t as big. Rip Rense, in his biography on Betty, quotes her as saying that, “I think I discovered boys and all kinds of other good stuff,” and that’s how she ended up straying from singing and into television and movies instead.

10. She's The Oldest Person To Host SNL

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After starring in a humorous Super Bowl commercial in 2010, fans petitioned that she host Saturday Night Live, according to the Encyclopedia Brittanica. Lo and behold, it came to fruition. That year, at age 88, she became the oldest host the show has had. She still holds that record today.

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