Popular actress, Dame Angela Lansbury dead at 96

Angela Lansbury publicity photo from 1966. By MGM, Public Domain, https commons.wikimedia.org

FROM WIKIPEDIA COMMONS

Dame Angela Brigid Lansbury DBE (16 October 1925 – 11 October 2022) was an Irish-British and American actress and singer who played various roles across film, stage, and television. Her career, one of the longest in the entertainment industry, spanned eight decades, much of it in the United States; her work also received much international attention. She was one of the last surviving stars from the Golden Age of Hollywood cinema at the time of her death.

Lansbury was born to an upper-middle-class family in central London, the daughter of Irish actress Moyna Macgill and English politician Edgar Lansbury. To escape the Blitz, she moved to the United States in 1940, studying acting in New York City. Proceeding to Hollywood in 1942, she signed to MGM and obtained her first film roles, in Gaslight (1944) and The Picture of Dorian Gray (1945), earning her two Academy Award nominations and a Golden Globe Award. She appeared in eleven further MGM films, mostly in minor roles, and after her contract ended in 1952 she began supplementing her cinematic work with theatrical appearances. Although largely seen as a B-list star during this period, her role in the film The Manchurian Candidate (1962) received widespread acclaim and is often cited as one of her career-best performances, earning her a third Academy Award nomination. Moving into musical theatre, Lansbury finally gained stardom for playing the leading role in the Broadway musical Mame (1966), which won her her first Tony Award and established her as a gay icon.

Amidst difficulties in her personal life, Lansbury moved from California to County Cork, Ireland in 1970, and continued with a variety of theatrical and cinematic appearances throughout that decade. These included leading roles in the stage musicals GypsySweeney Todd, and The King and I, as well as in the hit Disney film Bedknobs and Broomsticks (1971). Moving into television in 1984, she achieved worldwide fame as fictional writer and sleuth Jessica Fletcher in the American whodunit series Murder, She Wrote, which ran for twelve seasons until 1996, becoming one of the longest-running and most popular detective drama series in television history. Through Corymore Productions, a company that she co-owned with her husband Peter Shaw, Lansbury assumed ownership of the series and was its executive producer for the final four seasons. She also moved into voice work, contributing to animated films like Disney’s Beauty and the Beast (1991) and Don Bluth‘s Anastasia (1997). She toured in a variety of international productions and continued to make occasional film appearances such as Nanny McPhee (2005) and Mary Poppins Returns (2018).

Lansbury received an Honorary Academy Award, a Lifetime Achievement Award from the BAFTA, a Lifetime Achievement Tony Award and five additional Tony Awards, six Golden Globes, and an Olivier Award. She also was nominated for numerous other industry awards, including the Academy Award for Best Supporting Actress on three occasions, and various Primetime Emmy Awards on 18 occasions, and a Grammy Award. In 2014, Lansbury was made a Dame Commander of the Order of the British Empire by Queen Elizabeth II. She was the subject of three biographies.

On 11 October, Lansbury’s children issued a statement saying that she had died “peacefully in her sleep” at 1:30 am PDT / 8:30am GMT/UTC Time on 11 October 2022, five days short of her 97th birthday, at her home in Los Angeles.

RELATED ARTICLES
NFL WEEK 18 SCHEDULE
3 weeks ago
NFL Week 17 Schedule
4 weeks ago