British character actress, long in the United States. The daughter of an actress and the granddaughter of a high-ranking politician, Lansbury studied acting from her youth, departing for the United States as the Second World War began. She was contracted by MGM while still a teenager and nominated for an Academy Award for her first film, Gaslight (1944). Two pictures later, she was again nominated for Best Supporting Actress, this time for The Picture of Dorian Gray (1945). Now established as a supporting player of quality, she began a long career, often as "the other woman" in major productions and as the leading lady in lesser films. Her features, while not at all old-appearing, gave her an air of maturity that allowed her to pass as much older than she actually was, and she began playing mother roles, often to players of her own age, while yet in her thirties. She concentrated more and more on stage work, achieving notable success in a number of Broadway plays and musicals, winning four Tony Awards in sixteen years. Although active in television since the early 1950s, she obtained her greatest fame in the 1980s by starring in the light mystery program "Murder, She Wrote" (1984). As Jessica Fletcher, she became known and loved by millions for well over a decade. She also became known for the odd fact of almost annual Emmy Award nominations for the role without ever winning for it. An institution in American theatre and television, she is also an inspiration for the graciousness of her personality, which is often exploited and always admired.IMDb Mini Biography By: Jim Beaver <email@example.com>
|Peter Shaw||(12 August 1949 - 29 January 2003) (his death) 2 children|
|Richard Cromwell||(27 September 1945 - August 1946) (divorced)|
Granddaughter of George Lansbury, British Labour Party leader in 1930s.
Wearing just conventional makeup (i.e., not studio made-up to look "old"), she was most chilling and unforgettable (and convincing!) as the manipulating mother of Laurence Harvey in The Manchurian Candidate (1962), while in real life being scarcely three years Harvey's senior.
She, her mother Moyna MacGill and her twin younger brothers were in the last boatload of family members evacuated from London to America during the WWII blitz.
A recent authorized biography, "Balancing Act," states that her first husband, Richard Cromwell was gay, a fact she didn't know until after their separation.
She was awarded a C.B.E. (Commander of the Order of the British Empire) for her services to drama in 1994.
2000: She was the recipient of the John F. Kennedy Center Honors in 2000 for her services to the arts.
As for 2012, Ms. Lansbury holds the record for the most Emmy nominations without a single win among performers with 18 unsuccessful nominations.
She reunited with Death on the Nile (1978) co-star Olivia Hussey in the "Murder, She Wrote" (1984) episode "Sing a Song of Murder" (#27), seven years after that film. Olivia played Rosalie Otterbourne in the movie and she was the daughter of Salome Otterbourne, played by Lansbury.
July 21, 2000: She withdrew from a Broadway musical, "The Visit," due to her husband's impending heart surgery.
She was among the special guests who were invited to the Grand Opening of the first Disney Park in Europe (Disneyland Resort Paris, formerly known as EuroDisney Resort), where she impressed her hand prints.
She trained at the Webber Douglas Academy of Dramatic Arts in London, England whose alumni include Terence Stamp, Elizabeth Knowelden, Hugh Bonneville, Rupert Friend, Antony Sher, Matthew Goode, Sue Johnston, Minnie Driver and Julian Fellowes.
She has been nominated 12 times for Outstanding Lead Actress in a Drama Series on "Murder, She Wrote" (1984), plus four more before, during and after the series, but didn't win.
She was one of the last guest stars on "Newhart" (1982).
On the last episode of "Murder, She Wrote" (1984), she didn't work on the final day of production as there was too much emotion going on.
11/25/75: Her mother, Moyna MacGill, died.
1951: Became a U.S. citizen.
Her twin brothers are both film producers.
She had performed with the Mormon Tabernacle Choir in their annual public Christmas concerts at Temple Square in Salt Lake City, Utah.
She was offered the role of "Nurse Ratchet" in One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest (1975) but turned it down because she didn't think she could handle the role.
2005: To date, she is the only actress with more than two nominations in Tony Award competition to go undefeated, having won all four for which she was nominated. Her Tony wins, all in the Best Actress (Musical) category, are: in 1966, "Mame"; in 1969, "Dear World"; the musical version of "The Madwoman of Chaillot"; in 1975, a revival of "Gypsy"; and, in 1979, "Sweeney Todd", a performance she recreated in the television production of the same title, Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street (1982) (TV).
1985: She accepted the Oscar for "Best Actress in a Supporting Role" on behalf of Peggy Ashcroft, who wasn't present at the awards ceremony.
July 14, 2005: She had knee replacement surgery.
She has been the co-recipient of 3 Grammy Awards for the Broadway stage shows, "Mame" (1966) and "Sweeney Todd" (1979) in which she played the female lead.
2006: To date, she has hosted (or co-hosted) more Tony Awards telecasts than any other individual: (1968, 1971, 1987, 1988, and 1989).
1997: She was awarded the American National Medal of the Arts by the National Endowment of the Arts in Washington, DC.
Her performance as Mrs. John Iselin in The Manchurian Candidate (1962) is ranked #91 on Premiere Magazine's 100 Greatest Movie Characters of All Time.
She was one of the speakers at Jerry Orbach's memorial service.
Though she's not hailed for her singing voice often, she has won 4 Tony Awards for Best Actress In A Musical, and is best known for being in musicals.
Her singing voice was dubbed in The Harvey Girls (1946).
Before becoming a professional performer she went by her middle name Brigid. MGM wanted her to take the name Angela Marlowe but she refused.
Her performance as Mrs. John Iselin in The Manchurian Candidate (1962) is ranked #21 in AFI's 100 Years...100 Heroes and Villains for villains.
Ex-stepmother-in-law of Catherine Bach.
Daughter: Deirdre Angela Shaw, born April 26, 1953, Los Angeles, California.
2nd cousin, via cousin Coral Lansbury, to Australian Federal Liberal Party leader, Malcolm Turnbull.
Cousin to Coral Lansbury, (died 4/4/1991), Rutgers University Camden Campus Dean of the Graduate School of English and mother to Australian Liberal Party leader, Malcolm Turnbull.
She was nominated for the 2007 Tony Award (New York City) for Actress in a Drama for "Deuce".
With her 2009 Tony Award for Actress in a Featured Role in a Play on June 7, 2009, she and Julie Harris are the only two actresses to win five Tony Awards. In 2012, Audra McDonald became the third actress to win 5 Tony Awards. Additionally Angela Lansbury is the only actress and the third performer ever to be nominated for all four performance awards at the Tony Awards. She won Best Actress in a Musical for Mame (1966), Dear World (1969), Gypsy (1975), and Sweeney Todd (1979). She was nominated for Best Actress in a Play for Deuce in 2007. She won Best Featured Actress in a Play for Blithe Spirit in 2009. She was nominated for Featured Actress in a Musical for A Little Night Music in 2010.
She was awarded the 2009 Tony Award for Actress in A Featured Role in a Play for her performance in "Blithe Spirit" on Broadway in New York City.
As for February 2010, she holds the record for youngest actress to get two Oscar nominations (by the age of 20). Was tied with Meryl Streep, Jack Nicholson and Alan Alda for the most Golden Globe Award wins: six, until Streep's seventh win on January 17, 2010.
Best known by the public as Jessica Fletcher on "Murder, She Wrote" (1984).
Angela Lansbury recreated the role of Mrs. Pollifax in the 1999 TV movie who was originally in the movie was played by Rosalind Russell. She also recreated Miss Russell's title role in Auntie Mame (1958) in the original Broadway cast of the musical "Mame".
Is a member of St. David's Anglican Church in North Hollywood, California.
She created the role of Mame Dennis in Jerry Herman's Mame. When Jack L. Warner decided to make the movie he refused to cast Angela Lansbury (despite intense pressure from Jerry Herman to do so) because she wasn't a big enough star. He cast Lucille Ball instead. The film was a flop and to this day Angela Lansbury has never forgiven Warner.
The Oscar-winning song "Beauty and the Beast" almost wasn't sung by Angela Lansbury. Because it was a slow, romantic ballad, something she wasn't used to singing, Angela suggested that another character should sing it. The filmmakers asked her to try it just once, and Angela nailed the song in that one take. It is that take that you hear in the film.
Friends with: Shirley Jones, Bea Arthur, Charlotte Rae, Carroll O'Connor, Martin Milner, Wayne Rogers, Harry Morgan, Norman Lloyd, Dick Van Dyke, Julie Adams, James Garner, Laraine Day, Lauren Bacall, William Windom, June Allyson, Ernest Borgnine, Tom Bosley, Steve Forrest, Jerry Orbach, Bob Hope, Van Johnson, Delbert Mann and Peter Lawford.
Is the only actress to appear in all 264 episodes of "Murder, She Wrote" (1984).
Actors are not made, they are born.
I've had an incredible relationship with my husband, with my family. I know they've had problems of their own, but we have never wavered in our closeness as a family. I've had a hell of a life.
I just stopped playing bitches on wheels and peoples' mothers. I have only a few more years to kick up my heels!
[on working with the choir, the first time] I felt extremely nervous. I felt I was working with a group of people who are so wonderfully integrated among themselves to produce wonderful sound, music, singing - their voices are so pure, so clear. I've listened so much to them in the past to be singing down with them, I was very nervous.
I'm never left behind. I'm the bionic woman.
Providing I can put one foot in front of the other, I will continue to act.
It has been erroneously reported that I am a Republican! I am not a Republican. It's all over the Internet and It's bizarre. I'm a huge Obama fan. I've already voted for him by absentee ballot. I am Democrat from the ground up.
[on handling the early success and Oscar nominations while still being in her teens.] I was a very serious teenager at that time and I considered the work to be the most important thing and I concentrated on that. I was a bit goody goody. I didn't fool around at all, which is a bit of a shame, I think. I've missed on a lot of fun, but I've made up for it later [laughs].
|"Murder, She Wrote" (1984)||$300,000 per episode|
(March 2006) Had Knee Replacement Surgery provided by DePuy Orthopaedics (as reported on The Washington Post)
(April 2007) Appearing in 'Deuce' at The Music Box on Broadway.
(February 2009) Currently starring in a Broadway revival of Noel Coward's "Blithe Spirit", as eccentric medium "Madame Arcati".
(June 2009) Radio City Music Hall, New York, NY.
(March 2012) New York, NY, USA: Currently playing Mrs. Sue-Ellen Gamadge in the Broadway revival of Gore Vidal's The Best Man.
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