R.I.P. Angela Lansbury, Golden Age Hollywood Star Dead at 96

With a career spanning eight decades, Lansbury was celebrated for roles in Murder, She Wrote, Beauty and the Beast, and more

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Dame Angela Lansbury, the acclaimed British-American actress and one of the last surviving film stars of Hollywood’s Golden Age, has died at 96.

“The children of Dame Angela Lansbury are sad to announce that their mother died peacefully in her sleep at home in Los Angeles at 1:30 AM today, Tuesday, October 11th, 2022, just five days shy of her 97th birthday,” her family said in a statement.

Angela Brigid Lansbury was born in London to an English father and Northern Irish mother. After her father died from stomach cancer when Lansbury was nine years old, she coped by throwing herself into films and acting. The onset of the Blitz during World War II prompted Lansbury and her mother to relocate to the United States, where Lansbury began her stage acting career in New York City.

In 1944, Lansbury landed her debut film role as Nancy Oliver in George Cukor’s psychological thriller, Gaslight. She subsequently appeared in the 1945 adaptation of Oscar Wilde’s The Picture of Dorian Gray, with the two films earning her two Oscar nominations and a Golden Globe Award. Though she primarily appeared in supporting roles throughout the late 1940s and ’50s, she reached A-list status when she was cast as the lead in Jerry Herman’s 1966 Broadway musical Mame, which earned her the first of five Tony Awards. She’s often been dubbed the “First Lady of Musical Theatre,” as well as a gay icon.

In 1970, Lansbury relocated to County Cork, Ireland, where she took on leading stage roles in musicals including Gypsy, Sweeney Todd, and The King and I. By the ’90s, she reached international fame with the CBS crime series Murder, She Wrote, and began taking on voice acting work; she played Mrs. Potts in Disney’s Beauty and the Beast (1991), and Dowager Empress Marie in 20th Century Fox’s Anastasia (1997). Throughout the 2000s and 2010s, Lansbury continued taking on various film and television roles, as well as stage roles both on Broadway and in London’s West End.

In 1994, Lansbury was appointed a Commander of the Order of the British Empire (CBE), and in 2014, she was promoted to a Dame Commander of the Order of the British Empire (DBE) for services to drama, charitable work, and philanthropy. Throughout her nearly eight-decade career, her other awards and accolades include a Lifetime Achievement Award from the British Academy of Film and Television Arts, an Honorary Academy Award from the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences, and multiple Golden Globe and People’s Choice Awards.

Outside of acting, Lansing took on a slew of hobbies including piano, reading, gardening, and various sports. A staunch supporter of the US Democratic Party and the British Labour Party, she also supported numerous charities, specifically those benefitting survivors of domestic abuse, rehabilitation for drug users, and the fight against HIV and AIDS.


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