Eva Marie Saint is an American actress who has starred in films, on Broadway, and on television in a career spanning seven decades. Saint won an Academy Award for Best Supporting Actress for her performance in On the Waterfront, and later starred in Alfred Hitchcock's classic thriller North by Northwest. She received Golden Globe and BAFTA nominations for A Hatful of Rain and won an Emmy Award for the miniseries People Like Us. Her film career also includes roles in Raintree County, Because of Winn-Dixie, and Superman Returns. Saint was born in Newark, New Jersey, the daughter of Eva Marie and John Merle Saint. She attended Bethlehem Central High School in Delmar, New York, graduating in 1942. Eva Marie was inducted into the high school's hall of fame in 2006. She studied acting at Bowling Green State University, while a member of Delta Gamma Sorority. There is a theater on Bowling Green's campus named for her. She was an active member in the theater honorary fraternity, Theta Alpha Phi.
Saint's introduction to television began as an NBC page. In the late 1940s, she began doing extensive work in radio and television before winning the Drama Critics Award for her Broadway stage role in the Horton Foote play The Trip to Bountiful, in which she co-starred with such formidable actors as Lillian Gish and Jo Van Fleet. In 1955, she was nominated for her first Emmy for "Best Actress In A Single Performance" on The Philco Television Playhouse for playing the young mistress of middle-aged E. G. Marshall in Middle of the Night by Paddy Chayefsky. She won another Emmy nomination for the 1955 television musical version of the Thornton Wilder classic play Our Town with co-stars Paul Newman and Frank Sinatra. Her success and acclaim were of such a high level that the young Saint earned the nickname "the Helen Hayes of television."
Saint's first feature motion picture role was in On the Waterfront, directed by Elia Kazan and starring Marlon Brando - a performance for which she won the Academy Award for Best Supporting Actress. Her role as Edie Doyle, which she won over such leading contenders as Claire Trevor, Nina Foch, Katy Jurado, and Jan Sterling also earned her a British Academy of Film and Television Award nomination for "Most Promising Newcomer." In his New York Times review, film critic Bosley Crowther wrote: