Kate Phillips, who had mostly supporting roles and bit parts in more than 50 films during the 1930s and ’40s and co-wrote the 1958 cult movie, “The Blob,” has died in Keene, N.H., her son said. She was 94.

Phillips, who died Friday at Cheshire Medical Center, went by the name of Kay Linaker. She had small parts in a number of popular films, such as “Drums Along the Mohawk,” “Blood and Sand,” “Laura,” and a number of the “Charlie Chan” detective movies.

One of her more notable roles was a rich society matron who marries Ginger Rogers’ ex-husband in the 1940 film, “Kitty Foyle.” She visits an upscale department store with her young son and is waited on by the working-class Rogers, not knowing the two of them have something in common. Rogers won an Oscar for her performance.

Phillips “never became a leading actress,” said Lawrence Benaquist, the chair of film studies at Keene State University, where Phillips taught film classes. But “she was as good as Joan Crawford.”

Phillips began teaching at the university in the early 1980s, Benaquist said. She retired in 2006.

“My mother was a person that lived truly without limits,” Bill Phillips said. “She was a remarkable woman.”

Every year on her birthday, she would do something she had never done before, Bill Phillips said. When she turned 85, she went skydiving.

Phillips was born in Pine Bluff, Ark. She told co-workers she vacationed near Thomas Edison as a child.

Phillips retired from filming movies during World War II, later turning to screenwriting for film and television.

She married writer-turned-television executive Howard Phillips. They moved to Dublin, N.H., in 1964.

In addition to her son, she is survived by a daughter, Regina Paquette.


Only subscribers are eligible to post comments. Please subscribe or to participate in the conversation. Here’s why.

Use the form below to reset your password. When you've submitted your account email, we will send an email with a reset code.