During the 1930s, Hollywood film star Bette Davis (1908-89) acquired the persona of ‘Battling Bette,’ a fighter on screen and off. This made her well suited to the ideological demands of wartime, 1939 to 1945 marking the highpoint of her success and stardom. Thereafter, it made her a more controversial figure, notably during the 1950s when Davis’ film career foundered, forcing the actress to concentrate on family life. According to B.D. Hyman’s memoir of her mother, Davis’ frustrated career ambitions turned her into a controlling parent. In My Mother’s Keeper (1985), Davis’ daughter also suggests that she became a monster mother; manipulative, confrontational and demanding, while always taking up the position of a victim by proclaiming herself to be ‘got at’ by friends and family. Given that this book was written as an exposé, and was designed to make the bestseller lists by disclosing personal and shocking details of Davis’ life, there is no reason to accept this as a truthful account of the star’s off-screen behavior. Yet if there is any truth in this account (and there may well be), it suggests that Davis’ personality became subsumed by her public persona in later life, one that corresponded closely to her roles in Jezebel (1938), Dark Victory (1939) and All About Eve (1950). As such, this suggests that the public persona of a star could eventually become their personality. This paper considers the possibilities and implications of this, using Bette Davis as a case study.