Angela Lansbury dies at age 96 after notable hollywood roles


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Melani Bonilla, Multimedia Editor

Angela Lansbury, most known for her role on “Murder, She Wrote,” has died at age 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 11, 2022, just five days shy of her 97th birthday,” her family said in a statement.

Her legacy as an actress has shaped the role of women in film, since her debut in the 1944 film“Gaslight.” The production earned her two Academy Award nominations and a Golden Globe Award for best supporting actress.

The film is a psychological thriller that tells the story of emotional abuse and manipulation. Lansbury played the role of Nancy Oliver, a maid, at the age of 17.

However, her career and passion for acting started before then. In 1935 her father passed away, as a result Lansbury started playing characters as a way to cope with her loss.

After this, Lansbury continued acting for her middle and high school productions. Once she graduated she moved to New York City and worked at a department store in order to financially support her family.

While working in the department store, Lansbury’s mother connected her to a scriptwriter, who had just finished drafting his contract. With this, her path to stardom began.

After the release of “Gaslight” and her nominations, Lansbury was signed to MGM where she was cast in several other productions. However, her contract was set to end in 1951.

After it ended, Lansbury  joined the national touring productions of “Remains to Be Seen” and “Affairs of State,” according to The New York Times. But after returning to film as a freelance actress, she found that she was typecast. In her own words, she was“bitches on wheels and people’s mothers.”

This sparked her interest in Broadway and her desire to be cast in a different light. She starred in several big-name productions like “Gypsy” and “Sweeney Todd.”

After her time on Broadway, Lansbury starred as the voice for Mrs. Potts on “Beauty and the Beast,” Dowager Empress Marie in “Anastasia” and her most notable role as Jessica Fletcher in “Murder, She Wrote.”

Jessica was a retired English teacher who became a successful mystery writer. Lansbury played the role for twelve seasons,  and the series became one of CBS’ biggest hits.

From the show she was nominated for 12 Emmys. Lansbury never took the Emmy home, but she did inspire many other women in Hollywood to take lead roles.

Lansbury’s journey in Hollywood, Broadway and media has made her a lasting household name.