Cat on a Hot Tin Roof (1958 Film) Characters

Cat on a Hot Tin Roof (1958 Film) Character List

Maggie "The Cat" Pollitt

Beautiful woman made tough and determined by growing up poor who marries into the wealthy Pollitt family. Relations with husband Brick are strained in part due to the fact that she has yet to produce a baby which has long-term potential of leaving her and Brick at the mercy of Brick’s brother, Gooper and his especially fertile wife.

Brick Pollitt

Brick is an alcoholic who has fallen far from his glory days as a rich kid start athlete in high school. He is tormented by guilt over doing nothing when his best friend Skipper was desperately reaching out to him right before Skipper committed suicide. The relationship with Skipper estranged Brick from Maggie and the alcoholism and failure to produce a child has estranged him from his father, Big Daddy.

Big Daddy Pollitt

The patriarch of the Pollitt family is living a lie: telling everyone that a recent visit to the doctor resulted in good news about his cancer when in fact his cancer is inoperable and he’s not expected to live another year. The doctor has kept this information from Big Daddy; the rest of the family, however, has been told the truth. When Big Daddy finally learns the truth by virtue of Brick emotionally blurting it out. Angered by this confirmation of the view he already holds that the world is nothing but lies and deceptions, he retreats to be alone before finally achieving a reconciliation of sorts with Brick.

Big Mama Pollitt

Victim of verbal and emotional abuse from the privileged and narcissistic Big Daddy, she is typical of the wives of rich and powerful men. When the rest of the family starts coming apart at the seams once Big Daddy retreats into solitude, she also reveals she is typical of the strong Southern matriarchs who are the secret glue holding the whole thing together.

Gooper Pollitt

Brick’s older brother who views himself as the natural inheritor of the Big Daddy’s wealth since he is the responsible son and he also has delivered him a brood of grandchildren. Even though he, Brick and Big Daddy all know Maggie is lying when she delivers Big Daddy his birthday present of announcing she is pregnant, even Gooper comes around to a sense of admiration for her spirit of life. Nevertheless, he has always viewed Maggie as an anarchic outsider.

Mae Pollitt

Gooper’s fertile wife who is jealous of the attention that the beautiful Maggie gets from Big Daddy and other men and is the only family member willing to assert that Maggie is lying when she tells Big Daddy she’s finally pregnant. This proves to no avail, however, as both Brick and Big Daddy quickly rise to Maggie’s defense.

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