Iconic actress Angela Lansbury, best known for playing mystery novelist Jessica Fletcher on CBS’ ‘Murder, She Wrote’ has passed away at the age of 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 a.m. today, Tuesday, October 11, 2022, just five days shy of her 97th birthday,” her family says in a statement.
“In addition to her three children, Anthony, Deirdre and David, she is survived by three grandchildren, Peter, Katherine and Ian, plus five great-grandchildren and her brother, producer Edgar Lansbury,” the statement adds. “She was proceeded in death by her husband of 53 years, Peter Shaw. A private family ceremony will be held at a date to be determined.”
Lansbury won five Tony Awards for her Broadway performances and a lifetime achievement award. She earned Academy Award nominations as a supporting actress for two of her first three films, ‘Gaslight’ (1945) and ‘The Picture of Dorian Gray’ (1946), and was nominated again in 1962 for ‘The Manchurian Candidate’ and her deadly portrayal of a Communist agent and the title character’s mother.
“It was thanks to my mother who recognized in me an ability to cut up, to make believe, to run around being somebody other than the little girl that I was,” Lansbury told Masterpiece Studio podcast in 2018 of getting into show business. “It made her realize that I was a natural, and she, bless her heart, made the decisions for me very, very, very young.”
Her stardom came in middle age when she became the hit of the New York theatre scene, winning Tony Awards for ‘Mame’ (1966), ‘Dear World’ (1969), ‘Gypsy’ (1975) and ‘Sweeney Todd’ (1979).
Murder, She Wrote and other television work brought her 18 Emmy nominations, but she never won one. She holds the record for the most Golden Globe nominations and wins for best actress in a television drama series and the most Emmy nominations for lead actress in a drama series.