Anne Bancroft was born Anna Maria Louisa Italiano on September 17, 1931 in the Bronx, New York to Mildred and Michael G. Italiano. She attended the New York Academy of Dramatic Arts. She married Martin A. May and then married filmmaker Mel Brooks, with whom she had her son Maximilian.
The marquees of Broadway theaters were dimmed in her honor on June 8, 2005.