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Rue McClanahan (1934–2010)

A New York stage actress in the 1950s, McClanahan was plucked from the stage by Norman Lear for roles on All in the Family (1971) and later Maude (1972). For two years (1982 - 1984), she played "Aunt Fran" on Mama's Family (1983) until her character was killed off and she joined the cast of Golden Girls. She hit her comedic stride as a sharp ... See full bio »


(age 76) in New York, New York, USA

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Nominated for 3 Golden Globes. Another 5 wins & 3 nominations. See more awards »

Known For

The Golden Girls
The Golden Girls Blanche Devereaux
Starship Troopers
Starship Troopers Biology Teacher
Maude Vivian Cavender Harmon / Vivian Cavender
Another World
Another World Caroline Johnson (1970-1971)


Hide Hide Show Show Actress (120 credits)
 2009 Meet the Browns (TV Series)
- Meet Mr. Wrong (2009) ... Lorraine
 2009 Law & Order (TV Series)
Lois McIntyre
- Illegitimate (2009) ... Lois McIntyre
 2008 Generation Gap (TV Movie)
 2007 King of the Hill (TV Series)
- Hair Today, Gone Today (2007) ... Bunny (voice)
 2005 Back to You and Me (TV Movie)
Helen Ludwick
 2005 Hope & Faith (TV Series)
- O' Sister, Where Art Thou? (2005) ... Sylvia
 2005 Wit's End
Dean Madison
 2004 Wonderfalls (TV Series)
Millie Marcus
- Barrel Bear (2004) ... Millie Marcus
 2004 Whoopi (TV Series)
- American Woman (2004) ... Marian
 2003 The Fighting Temptations
Nancy Stringer
 2003 Miracle Dogs (TV Movie)
Katherine Mannion
 2001 Nuncrackers (Video)
Reverend Mother
 2000 The Moving of Sophia Myles (TV Movie)
 2000 Ladies Man (TV Series)
Aunt Lou
- Romance (2000) ... Aunt Lou
- Travels with My Aunt (2000) ... Aunt Lou
 1999 The Lot (TV Series)
Priscilla Tremaine (1999)
 1999 Blue's Big Treasure Hunt (Video short)
 1999 The Wonderful World of Disney (TV Series)
Aunt Fanny
- A Saintly Switch (1999) ... Aunt Fanny
 1998 Nunsense Jamboree (TV Movie)
Mother Superior
 1998 Love Boat: The Next Wave (TV Series)
Abigail Jordan
- Captains Courageous (1998) ... Abigail Jordan
 1998 Columbo (TV Series)
Verity Chandler
 1998 Rusty: A Dog's Tale
Edna Callahan
 1998 Border to Border
Mrs. Kirby
 1997 Annabelle's Wish (Video)
Scarlett (voice)
 1997 Out to Sea
Mrs. Ellen Carruthers
 1997 Murphy Brown (TV Series)
Virginia Redfield
- Mama Miller (1997) ... Virginia Redfield
 1997 Promised Land (TV Series)
Valerie Carter
- Intolerance (1997) ... Valerie Carter
 1997 Dads (TV Short)
Dr. Neuhauser
 1997 This World, Then the Fireworks
Mom Lakewood
 1996 Remember WENN (TV Series)
Dusty Foxx
- The Diva That Wouldn't Die (1996) ... Dusty Foxx
 1996 Innocent Victims (TV Movie)
Marylou Hennis
 1995 Blackbird Hall (TV Movie)
 1995 A Holiday to Remember (TV Movie)
Miz Leona (Clay's Aunt)
 1995 The Mommies (TV Series)
Amanda Kellogg
- The Mother of All In-Laws (1995) ... Amanda Kellogg
 1994 A Burning Passion: The Margaret Mitchell Story (TV Movie)
Grandma Stephens
 1994 Burke's Law (TV Series)
Jinxy Duke
- Who Killed the Host at the Roast? (1994) ... Jinxy Duke
 1994 Days Like This (TV Movie)
 1993 Nunsense (TV Movie)
Rev. Mother Mary Regina
 1993 Boy Meets World (TV Series)
Bernice Matthews
- Grandma Was a Rolling Stone (1993) ... Bernice Matthews
 1993 Message from Nam (TV Movie)
Beatrice Andrews
 1993 Mother of the Bride (TV Movie)
Margaret Becker Hix
 1992 Nurses (TV Series)
Blanche Devereaux
 1991 Biosphere 2
 1991 Baby of the Bride (TV Movie)
Margaret Hix
 1990 Masquerade (TV Movie)
 1990 The Dreamer of Oz (TV Movie)
Matilda Electa Joslyn Gage
 1990 To My Daughter (TV Movie)
Laura Carlson
 1990 Children of the Bride (TV Movie)
Margret Becker
 1990 After the Shock (TV Movie)
Sherra Cox
 1990 Modern Love
Mrs. Evelyn Parker
 1990 American Playwrights Theater: The One-Acts (TV Series)
Miss Moray
- Let Me Hear You Whisper (1990) ... Miss Moray
 1989 The Wickedest Witch (TV Movie)
 1989 The Man in the Brown Suit (TV Movie)
Suzy Blair
 1988 Take My Daughters, Please (TV Movie)
Lilah Page
 1988 Liberace (TV Movie)
Frances Liberace
 1987 The Little Match Girl (TV Movie)
Frances Dutton
 1986 Picnic (TV Movie)
Flo Owens
 1985 Murder, She Wrote (TV Series)
Miriam Radford
- Murder Takes the Bus (1985) ... Miriam Radford
 1985 Crazy Like a Fox (TV Series)
- Turn of the Century Fox (1985) ... Angie
 1984 Cover Up (TV Series)
Mattie Bemstein
- Murder in Malibu (1984) ... Mattie Bemstein
 1984 Alice (TV Series)
Mother Goose
- Big Bad Mel (1984) ... Mother Goose
 1981-1984 Gimme a Break! (TV Series)
Katrina / Marian
- Grandpa's Secret Life (1984) ... Katrina
- The Second Time Around (1981) ... Marian
 1983 Small & Frye (TV Series)
Miss Parsifal
- Small and Frye (1983) ... Miss Parsifal
 1983 Newhart (TV Series)
Eleanor Smathers
- The Way We Thought We Were (1983) ... Eleanor Smathers
 1979-1982 Fantasy Island (TV Series)
Gertie / Margaret Fielding
- Dancing Lady/The Final Round (1982) ... Gertie
- Bowling/Command Performance (1979) ... Margaret Fielding
 1982 Trapper John, M.D. (TV Series)
Mary Renquist
- John's Other Life (1982) ... Mary Renquist
 1982 The Day the Bubble Burst (TV Movie)
Barbara Arvey
 1981 Darkroom (TV Series)
Mrs. Louise Michaelson
- Daisies (1981) ... Mrs. Louise Michaelson
 1981 And They All Lived Happily After (TV Movie)
Liz Wescott
 1981 Word of Honor (TV Movie)
Maggie McNeill
 1980 Gridlock (TV Movie)
Adele Sherman
 1980 Here's Boomer (TV Series)
- Private Eye (1980) ... Thelma
 1980 Lou Grant (TV Series)
Maggie McKenna
- Guns (1980) ... Maggie McKenna
 1979 That's Life
 1979 Topper (TV Movie)
Clara Topper
 1979 Mother and Me, M.D. (TV Movie)
Lil Brenner
 1979 Supertrain (TV Series)
- Where Have You Been Billy Boy (1979) ... Janet
 1979 $weepstake$ (TV Series)
- Episode #1.3 (1979)
 1978 Rainbow (TV Movie)
Ida Koverman
 1978 Grandpa Goes to Washington (TV Series)
- Pilot (1978) ... Grace
 1978 Sergeant Matlovich vs. the U.S. Air Force (TV Movie)
Mat's Mother
 1978 Having Babies III (TV Movie)
Gloria Miles
 1978 Apple Pie (TV Series)
Ginger-Nell Hollyhock
- Tornado (1978) ... Ginger-Nell Hollyhock
- They Walk Among Us (1978) ... Ginger-Nell Hollyhock
- Pilot (1978) ... Ginger-Nell Hollyhock
- Ginger-Nell Loses Her Touch (1978) ... Ginger-Nell Hollyhock
- A Man from Ginger Nell's Past (1978) ... Ginger-Nell Hollyhock
 1975-1977 Insight (TV Series)
Mary Margaret / Linda
- A Slight Drinking Problem (1977) ... Mary Margaret
- Seventeen Forever (1975) ... Linda
 1971-1975 Great Performances (TV Series)
Faye Precious / Cora / Josey Finn
- Who's Happy Now? (1975) ... Faye Precious
- Hogan's Goat (1971) ... Josey Finn
 1974 Mannix (TV Series)
- Game Plan (1974) ... Gloria
 1973 The ABC Afternoon Playbreak (TV Series)
Carol Babcock
- My Secret Mother (1973) ... Carol Babcock
 1973 Blade
 1972 All in the Family (TV Series)
Ruth Rempley
- The Bunkers and the Swingers (1972) ... Ruth Rempley
 1971 Some of My Best Friends Are
Lita Joyce
 1971 They Might Be Giants
 1971 The Pursuit of Happiness
Mrs. O'Mara
 1970 The People Next Door
 1969 Where the Heart Is (TV Series)
Margaret Jardin #2 (1971-1972)
 1968 Walk the Angry Beach
 1965 Angel's Flight
Dolly (as Rhue McClanahan)
 1964 How to Succeed with Girls
Lorena (as Patty Leigh)
 1964 Another World (TV Series)
Caroline Johnson (1970-1971)
 1964 Burke's Law (TV Series)
- Who Killed April? (1964) ... Waitress (uncredited)
 1963 Five Minutes to Love
Sally 'Poochie'
 1961 Five Minutes to Live
Pamela (uncredited)
 1961 The Grass Eater
 1961 The Aquanauts (TV Series)
 1951 Love of Life (TV Series)
Mrs. Braylee (1971)
Show Show Soundtrack (3 credits)
Show Show Producer (2 credits)
Show Show Self (84 credits)
Show Show Archive footage (12 credits)

Related Videos


Personal Details

Other Works:

(April 3 to May 24, 1986) She acted in William Inge's play, "Picnic," at the Ahmanson Theatre in Los Angeles, California with Gregory Harrison, Jennifer Jason Leigh, Dick Van Patten, Dana Hill, Timothy Shelton and Michael Learned in the cast. Marshall W. Mason was director. John Lee Beaty was scenic designer. See more »

Publicity Listings:

1 Print Biography | 6 Articles | 3 Pictorials | See more »

Alternate Names:

Patti Leigh | Patty Leigh | Rhue McClanahan


5' 3" (1.6 m)

Did You Know?

Personal Quote:

[on her religion when asked about it] Yes, I am a Methodist. I have been affiliated with the Methodist church since I was a child and I must say that I simply love it! There are three things in this world that I love; animals, my Golden Girls and being a Methodist. I can't fathom being a member in any other religion than the Methodist church. It is so relaxed and welcoming and you can just be ... See more »


She kept every outfit she wore while on The Golden Girls (1985) and used a majority of them for her everyday wear away from the show. See more »



Star Sign:


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