Angela Lansbury, legendary actress of stage, screen and television, has died. She was 96.
Lansbury’s death was confirmed in a statement from her children to the media saying, “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.”
The statement continued, “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. 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’s incredible acting career spanned eight decades dating back to the 1940s. Born in London in 1925, Lansbury and her family moved to the United States in 1940 due to “The Blitz,” the bombing campaign by Germany against the United Kingdom during World War II. Lansbury’s mother, Moyna Macgill, was an actress, while her father, Edgar Lansbury, was a politician.
Two years after coming to the United States, Lansbury signed a multi-picture deal with MGM. Out the gate, Lansbury’s first film, 1944’s Gaslight, earned her an Academy Award nomination for Best Supporting Actress. She would net another Academy Award nomination for Best Supporting Actress for her performance in 1945’s The Picture of Dorian Gray.
In 1957, Lansbury made her Broadway debut in Hotel Paradiso. However, her big break on Broadway came in 1966 in the title role of Mame, which earned Lansbury a Tony Award for Best Leading Actress in a Musical. At the time, Lansbury being cast in the role was a surprise considering it was her first lead role and she was already in her 40s.
Lansbury’s acting career soared to new heights in the 1980s when she starred in the CBS series Murder, She Wrote as Jessica Fletcher. The series ran for 12 seasons from 1984-1996 and lead to four TV movies. Lansbury was nominated for the Emmy Award for Outstanding Lead Actress in a Drama Series for all 12 seasons of Murder, She Wrote, however, she failed to win.
Trying to summarize Lansbury’s incredible career is truly difficult. There are just so many outstanding credits to her lengthy resume from 1963’s The Manchurian Candidate to 1971’s Bedknobs and Broomsticks to 1991’s Beauty and the Beast to 1997’s Anastasia. Simply put: She was one-of-a-kind.