Legendary Actor Mickey Rooney Has Passed Away at Age 93 … Rest in Peace

Another one of our great actors from the Golden age of Hollywood has passed away …

Mickey Rooney, the iconic actor whose prolific career on stage and screen that spanned eight decades, has died at the age of 93 on Sunday.  Rooney died Sunday of natural causes at age 93 surrounded by family at his North Hollywood home. He was born Joseph Yule, Jr. on September 23, 1920 in Brooklyn, New York and began his acting career shortly after his first birthday, appearing on vaudeville stages with his parents. Rooney’s career is a who’s who of movies such as Boy’s Town, Babes in Arms, National Velvet, The Bold and the Brave, It’s a Mad, Mad, Mad, Mad World, Bill and of course his role in numerous films as the original Andy Hardy with actress Judy Garland. EIGHT DECADES!!!  They do not make them like this anymore.

Mickey Rooney:  September 23, 1920 – April 6, 2014, Rest in Peace

Mickey-Rooney_Babes-On-Broadway-Judy-Garland

Mickey Rooney and Judy-Garland from ‘Babes on Broadway’ together again in Heaven

As adept at comedy as drama and an excellent singer and dancer, Rooney was regarded as the consummate entertainer. During a prolific career on stage and screen that spanned eight decades (“I’ve been working all my life, but it seems longer,” he once said), he was nominated for four Academy Awards and received two special Oscars, the Juvenile Award in 1939 (shared with Deanna Durbin) and one in 1983 for his body of work.

He also appeared on series and TV and in made for television movies, one of which, “Bill,” the touching story of a mentally challenged man, won him an Emmy. He was Emmy nominated three other times. And for “Sugar Babies,” a musical revue in which he starred with Ann Miller, he was nominated for a Tony in 1980.

‘Yankee Doodle Boy’

Both in his professional and personal life Rooney withstood many peaks and valleys. He was married eight times — first and most famously to his MGM co-star Ava Gardner — and filed for bankruptcy in 1962, having gone through the $12 million he had earned. And until middle age, he was never able to quite cast off his popularity as a juvenile. Nonetheless, Rooney’s highs more than compensated for his lows. Via his “Andy Hardy” series of films, the five-foot-three Rooney came to embody the virtues of small-town American boyhood. Those films and a series of musicals in which he co-starred with Judy Garland made him the nation’s biggest box office attraction for three years running.

From Hollywood.comThe Tributes pour in for acting icon, Mickey Rooney.

Tributes are flooding in from celebrities following the death of Hollywood actor Mickey Rooney on Sunday (06Apr14). The acting veteran, whose career spanned over nine decades, passed away aged 93. His cause of death has not been released. Stars took to their Twitter.com pages to mourn the actor and pay their respects on Sunday. Oscar-winning actress Marlee Matlin wrote, “A lovely man, talented actor & friend, Mickey Rooney has passed at 93. He is with his dear friend Judy Garland putting on shows in heaven”. Star Trek actor William Shatner adds, “My thoughts and prayers go out to the family of Mickey Rooney.

Daily Commentary – Friday, March 28, 2014 – Homeland Star James Rebhorn Wrote His Own Obituary

  • Dying of melanoma, his obituary focuses on his family and the support he received from others throughout his acting career

Daily Commentary – Friday, March 28, 2014 Download

Actor James Rebhorn Who Appeared in “Independence Day”, “Scent of a Woman” & “Homeland” Dies at Age 65 of Melanoma … Rest in Peace

Character actor James Rebhorn dies far too young at age 65 …

Actor James Rebhorn, who appeared in dozens of popular movies like ‘Independence Day’, ‘Scent of a Woman’ and ‘Meet the Parents’, and television shows like Showtime hit “Homeland,” died on Friday at his home in South Orange, N.J. at the age of 65 from skin cancer. As reported at TMZ, Rebhorn’s wife Rebecca said that James Rebhorn was diagnosed with melanoma in 1992 and he had been getting treatments ever since. Rest in Peace.

James Rebhorn discusses the power of his Liberal Arts Education at Wittenberg University

Veteran character actor James Rebhorn, known for his roles in “Homeland,” “White Collar” and dozens of TV shows and films over a five-decade career, has died of melanoma, his wife, Rebecca Linn, said Sunday. Rebhorn died Friday at his home in South Orange, N.J., at the age of 65.

Able to perform in comedies or dramas, as well as on stage, TV or film, the Philadelphia native racked up an impressive list of credits, including playing the father of Claire Danes’ character on “Homeland.”

His film roles included such titles as “Silkwood,” “Shadows and Fog,” “Basic Instinct,” “My Cousin Vinny,” “Scent of a Woman,” “Carlito’s Way,” “Independence Day,” “The Talented Mr. Ripley,” “The Game,” “Far From Heaven” and “Cold Mountain.” Recent film appearances included “The Odd Life of Timothy Green,” “Sleepwalk With Me,” “Real Steel” and “The Box.”

Rebhorn was a character actor for five decades in New York and Hollywood. You may not know the name, but you certainly will recognize James Rebhorn when you see his face. My favorite roles of James Rebhorn were of him as Headmaster Trask of the Baird School in ‘Scent of a Woman’, George Wilbur, the expert witness in the area of tire tread identification and automobiles, in ‘My Cousin Vinny’ and Defense Sec. Albert Nimziki from ‘Independence Day’.

WAPO – Obituary: James Rebhorn, character actor, dies at 65.

James Rebhorn, one of the busiest character actors in New York and Hollywood who specialized in flawed, authority figures, including the bipolar father of a CIA agent in the HBO series “Homeland,” died March 21 at his home in South Orange, N.J. He was 65.

On television, Mr. Rebhorn had a recurring part on the HBO show “White Collar” (2009-2014) and, playing a district attorney, memorably prosecuted the “Seinfeld” cast on that series’ 1998 finale.

Rebhorn’s movie roles, though small, were often pivotal to the plot. In“The Talented Mr. Ripley” (1999), he played the wealthy shipbuilder whose spoiled son (Jude Law) disappeared, killed by sociopath Tom Ripley (Matt Damon) who has taken the son’s identity. As the headmaster Mr. Trask in “Scent of a Woman” (1992), he faced off against a blind and argumentative Vietnam vet Al Pacino defending one of Trask’s students accused of cheating.

Legendary Child Star Shirley Temple Passes Away at age 85 … Rest in Peace

Arguably the most famous child star ever has passed away …

This hardly seems possible … legendary child actress Shirley Temple Black has died at the age of 85.  The child star known for her curly hair and dimples died of natural causes Monday night at her Woodside, California home surrounded by her family and caregivers. Shirley Temple Black lifted America’s spirits as a bright-eyed, dimpled child movie star during the Great Depression and later became a U.S. diplomat.

The bright-eyed, adorable little actress was a No. 1 box-office draw in the 1930s, helping to boost America’s spirits after the Great Depression and saving the Fox studio from bankruptcy.

Shirley Temple, the enchanting singing and dancing child star with the glowing corkscrew curls who saved a Hollywood studio and helped yank America from the throes of the Great Depression, died Monday night. She was 85.

CNN: Shirley Temple Black, the former child star who later became a U.S. ambassador, has died at 85, her publicist says.

Temple began acting at age 3 and starred in four massive box-office draws before she turned 10, commanding a then-unheard of $50,000 per movie.

Her first film of notice appeared in 1932, when she played the part of the Baby Burlesks in a series of short films called “War Babies.”

For about 18 years, she sang, tap danced and acted her way into the hearts of millions.

She retired from filmmaking at 22, after marrying Charles Black and changing her last name to Temple Black.

But she did not fade from the public eye. Far from it.

She embarked on a new career as a foreign diplomat: She served in the U.S. delegation to the United Nations from 1969 to 1974, was U.S. ambassador to Ghana from 1974 to 1976, and U.S. ambassador to Czechoslovakia from 1989 to 1992.

Shirley Temple – On The Good Ship Lollipop

FOX News: Former Hollywood child star Shirley Temple dies at 85.

Temple became a nationwide sensation. Mothers dressed their little girls like her, and a line of dolls was launched that are now highly sought-after collectables. Her immense popularity prompted President Franklin D. Roosevelt to say that “as long as our country has Shirley Temple, we will be all right.”

“When the spirit of the people is lower than at any other time during this Depression, it is a splendid thing that for just 15 cents, an American can go to a movie and look at the smiling face of a baby and forget his troubles,” Roosevelt said.

She followed up in the next few years with a string of hit films, most with sentimental themes and musical subplots. She often played an orphan, as in “Curly Top,” where she introduced the hit “Animal Crackers in My Soup,” and “Stowaway,” in which she was befriended by Robert Young, later of “Father Knows Best” fame.

She teamed with the great black dancer Bill “Bojangles” Robinson in two 1935 films with Civil War themes, “The Little Colonel” and “The Littlest Rebel.” Their tap dance up the steps in “The Little Colonel” (at a time when interracial teamings were unheard-of in Hollywood) became a landmark in the history of film dance.

Wiki: Political ambitions -

Following her venture into television, Temple became active in the Republican Party in California. In 1967, she ran unsuccessfully in a special election in California’s 11th congressional district to fill the seat left vacant by the death of eight-term Republican J. Arthur Younger from leukemia.[93][94] She ran as a conservative and lost to law school professor Pete McCloskey, a liberal Republican who was a staunch opponent of the Vietnam War.[95]

She was appointed Representative to the 24th United Nations General Assembly by President Richard M. Nixon (September – December 1969),[96][97] and was appointed United States Ambassador to Ghana (December 6, 1974 – July 13, 1976) by President Gerald R. Ford.[98] She was appointed first female Chief of Protocol of the United States (July 1, 1976 – January 21, 1977), and was in charge of arrangements for President Jimmy Carter’s inauguration and inaugural ball.[98][99] She served as the United States Ambassador to Czechoslovakia (August 23, 1989 – July 12, 1992), having been appointed by President George H. W. Bush.[33]

Phil Everly, One Half of the Famed Everly Brothers, Dies at Age 74

Phil Everly, Dead at the age of 74 … Rest in Peace.

Phil Everly, the legendary singer, who along with his brother Don, made up the iconic singing duo, The Everly Brother died Friday at the Providence St. Joseph Medical Center in Burbank, California  from chronic obstructive pulmonary disease brought on after a lifetime of cigarette smoking. He was 74. The music icons, the Everly Bothers, were highly influential with other such recording acts as the Beatles, the Beach Boys, the Byrds and countless other rock, folk and country singers.  Phil Everly also wrote Linda Ronstadt’s biggest hits of her career in 1975 with her recording of “When Will I Be Loved.” Rolling Stone named the Everly Brothers are the most important vocal duo in rock. The  The Everly Brothers were among the first 10 performers inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1986. Phil Everly will truly be missed and so will the fantastic sound of the Everly Brothers. They just don’t make ‘em like this anymore. Thank you so much for the music.

Singer Phil Everly Dies but his Music will live on Forever … Rest in Peace

VIDEO – CNN

Legendary pop singer Phil Everly, who together with his brother, Don, formed one of the 1960s most popular pop duos, died Friday, his wife, Patti Everly, told the Los Angeles Times. He was 74.

“We are absolutely heartbroken,” she told the newspaper, adding that Everly’s death from chronic obstructive pulmonary disease was brought on after a lifetime of cigarette smoking. “He fought long and hard.”

The Everly Brothers charted nearly three dozen hits in their heyday from the late ’50s through the early ’60s. Some of their most notable songs – “Cathy’s Clown,” “Wake Up Little Susie,” “Bye Bye Love,” “When Will I Be Loved” and “All I Have to Do is Dream” – have become pop staples and influenced major acts such as the Beatles, the Beach Boys and the Byrds, the Times reported.

In all, their career spanned five decades, although they performed separately from 1973 to 1983. In their heyday between 1957 and 1962, they had 19 top 40 hits.

The two broke up amid quarrelling in 1973 after 16 years of hits, then reunited in 1983, “sealing it with a hug,” Phil Everly said.

And the song that launched their career … The Everly Brothers: Live – Bye Bye Love, 1957

Dick Clark presenting his top 10 from July 1960 … One of my favorites, “Cathy’s Clown”

The Everly Brothers Reunion Concert Live at the Royal Albert Hall in London, 1983

Legendary Actor Peter O’Toole of Arabia Dies at Age 81 … Rest in Peace

How did Peter O’Toole never win an Oscar for best actor?

Peter O’Toole, the legendary actor who appeared in such classic movies like, Lawrence of Arabia, The Lion of Winter, My Favorite Year, The Stunt Man and so many more has died at the age of  81. They just don’t make them like this any more and sadly we are losing them far too often these days. Peter O’Toole received eight Academy awards nominations for best actor, but he never won. However, he did receive a ‘Lifetime Achievement’ award in 2003 for his brilliant acting work throughout his career.  My favorite role of O’Toole’s is still Lawrence of Arabia, rest in peace.

The actor Peter O’Toole who found stardom in David Lean’s masterpiece Lawrence of Arabia, has died aged 81, his family has announced.

The acclaimed leading man who overcame stomach cancer in the 1970s passed away at the Wellington hospital in London following a long illness.

His daughter Kate O’Toole said: “His family are very appreciative and completely overwhelmed by the outpouring of real love and affection being expressed towards him, and to us, during this unhappy time. Thank you all, from the bottom of our hearts.”

O’Toole announced last year he was stopping acting saying: “I bid the profession a dry-eyed and profoundly grateful farewell.”

VIDEO – CNN

The UK Telegraph provides us with Peter O’Toole’s top 10 films.

Peter O’Toole Bio:

He was born Peter Seamus O’Toole in Ireland in 1933. His father, known as “the Captain,” lived the itinerant life of a racetrack bookie and settled in Leeds, England, where the young Peter grew up avoiding school and its attendant nuns as much as possible. An early, abortive career in journalism led to the Navy, which led to nothing much, and in 1952, O’Toole found himself stranded in Stratford with 30 shillings to his name. He spent the money on a theater ticket; the play was King Lear and the star Sir Michael Redgrave. O’Toole immediately knew what he wanted to do with his life.

The next day he hitchhiked to London and charmed his way into the Royal Academy, scholarship and all. After seven years of the itinerant players’ life, O’Toole caught the critics’ notice in Hamlet and scored a triumph in the anti-war play The Long and the Short and the Tall. The film offers poured in.

O’Toole was part of the 1954 graduating class of London’s Royal Academy of Dramatic Art along with Richard Burton, Albert Finney, and Alan Bates. After a supernova first decade — a 10-year run from 1958 to 1968 that included two stage Hamlets, two filmed Henry IIs, and an incandescent, career-defining title role in David Lean’s Lawrence of Arabia — O’Toole let the momentum slip. The 1970s were a blur of bombs and bad health; the comeback in the early 1980s was gratifying but never fully took hold.

Lawrence of Arabia (1962) Original Theatrical Trailer

Rock Pioneer & Legend Lou Reed Dead at Age 71 … Rest in Peace

American rock singer, songwriter and guitar legend Lewis Allan “Lou” Reed passed away Sunday at the age of 71 at his home in South Hampton, NY on Long Island. The cause of death was not provided; however,  Reed underwent a liver transplant in May 2013. On a personal note I was saddened to learn this news as I was a huge Reed fan. Having older sisters that introduced me to his music at a young age, I just loved his sound and song writing. From his days with the Velvet Underground to going solo, when music was music, what a tremendous talent … he will be missed. Thank you for your music and Rest in Peace.

And for one final time, let’s ‘Take a Walk on the Wild Side’

The condolences and well wishes are pouring in on Lou Reed’s Facebook.

Official Lou Reed website.

Rolling Stone:

Lou Reed, a massively influential songwriter and guitarist who helped shape nearly fifty years of rock music, died today on Long Island. The cause of his death has not yet been released, but Reed underwent a liver transplant in May.

With the Velvet Underground in the late Sixties, Reed fused street-level urgency with elements of European avant-garde music, marrying beauty and noise, while bringing a whole new lyrical honesty to rock & roll poetry. As a restlessly inventive solo artist, from the Seventies into the 2010s, he was chameleonic, thorny and unpredictable, challenging his fans at every turn. Glam, punk and alternative rock are all unthinkable without his revelatory example. “One chord is fine,” he once said, alluding to his bare-bones guitar style. “Two chords are pushing it. Three chords and you’re into jazz.”

Lewis Allan “Lou” Reed was born in Brooklyn, in 1942. A fan of doo-wop and early rock & roll (he movingly inducted Dion into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1989), Reed also took formative inspiration during his studies at Syracuse University with the poet Delmore Schwartz. After college, he worked as a staff songwriter for the novelty label Pickwick Records (where he had a minor hit in 1964 with a dance-song parody called “The Ostrich”). In the mid-Sixties, Reed befriended Welsh musician John Cale, a classically trained violist who had performed with groundbreaking minimalist composer La Monte Young. Reed and Cale formed a band called the Primitives, then changed their name to the Warlocks. After meeting guitarist Sterling Morrison and drummer Maureen Tucker, they became the Velvet Underground.

Guest on Night Music w/ David Sanborn 1989 TV

New York Times Obit:

The cause was liver disease, said Dr. Charles Miller of the Cleveland Clinic in Ohio, where Mr. Reed had liver transplant surgery earlier this year and was being treated again until a few days ago.

“I’ve always believed that there’s an amazing number of things you can do through a rock ‘n’ roll song,” Mr. Reed once told the journalist Kristine McKenna, “and that you can do serious writing in a rock song if you can somehow do it without losing the beat. The things I’ve written about wouldn’t be considered a big deal if they appeared in a book or movie.”

Mr. Reed played the sport of alienating listeners, defending the right to contradict himself in hostile interviews, to contradict his transgressive image by idealizing sweet or old-fashioned values in word or sound, or to present intuition as blunt logic. But his early work assured him a permanent audience.

Long Time Liberal White House Reporter Helen Thomas Dead at 92

Helen Thomas dead at age  92 …

Helen Thomas, the long time liberal White House reporter is dead at the age of 92. She was considered the dean of the White House press corp at the height of her career; however, sadly she became seen as come one who hated and was bitter to conservatives and Jews.   Although she was a trailblazer for female reporters, sadly and more so pathetically her career as a White House legend collapsed in a 2010 interview with a rabbi in which she said Israelis should “get the hell out of Palestine” and “go home” to Germany and Poland.”

Helen Thomas

Helen Thomas, whose career covering the White House dated back to the Kennedy administration, died on Saturday at the age of 92, the Gridiron Club announced in an email to members on Saturday.

Thomas was the first woman to join the White House Correspondents’ Association, and the first woman to serve as its president. She was also the first female member of the Gridiron Club, Washington’s historic press group. She served for 57 years at United Press International, first as a correspondent then as a White House bureau chief, before becoming a columnist for Hearst Papers.

“Former Gridiron Club president Helen Thomas, our first female member, died Saturday morning at her Washington apartment after a long illness,” Gridiron’s Carl P. Leubsdorf wrote in an email to members. “She would have been 93 next month.”

Helen Thomas Wiki

UPDATE I: Isn’t this special, HAMAS Mourns Helen Thomas’ death.

Not long after the passing of veteran American journalist Helen Thomas yesterday, aged 92, Hamas’ very own “military wing”, the Izzedeene al-Qassam Brigades, posted on its website a heartfelt eulogy.

The post – highlighted by the Elder of Zion blog – was entitled: “Rest in Peace Helen Thomas. We respect you for taking a stand.”

Tony Soprano … Actor James Gandolfini Dies of Massive Heat Attack At 51 in Italy, RIP

Actor James Gandolfini, better known for his role as Tony Soprano, suffered a massive heart attack and is dead at age 51. Gandolfini was in Italy to attend the 59th Taormina Film Festival in Sicily. How very sad, Gandolfini was one of my favorite actors. Maybe because for many years I lived in New Jersey and pretty much knew every location where they shot scenes of The Soprano’s. Like the Bada Bing, that was really Satin Dolls in Lodi, NJ. Then there was Beansie’s pizzeria in Paterson, Bates College was Drew University in Madison and last but not least, Tony’s home in North Caldwell, NJ. How I miss the show and will miss James Gandolfini. He rose to stardom in 1999 when he was cast as Tony Soprano and won 3 Emmy awards as the troubled and flawed crime boss during the show’s six season run.

As stated at IMDb, New Jersey-born James Gandolfini began acting in the New York theater. His Broadway debut was in the 1992 revival of “A Streetcar Named Desire” with Jessica Lange and Alec Baldwin. James’ breakthrough role was his portrayal of Virgil the hitman in Tony Scott’s True Romance. James Gandolfini also stared in some of my favorite movies, Crimson Tide, A Civil Action, The Mexican, The Last Castle, but will always be known for his role as Tony Soprano.

More at Deadline Hollywood.

James Gandolfini,  (September 18, 1961 – June 19, 2013) … Rest in Peace

James_Ganfolfini

James Gandolfini, the New Jersey-bred actor who delighted audiences as mob boss Tony Soprano in “The Sopranos” has died following a massive heart attack in Italy, a source told the Daily News.

“Everyone is in tears,” the source close to the 51-year-old TV tough guy said.

A press-shy celeb who got his start as a character actor and became famous relatively late in his career — thanks to his breakout role on “The Sopranos,” Gandolfini has largely avoided the spotlight since the last season of the beloved show aired in 2007.

Entertainment community mourns James Gandolfini.

Wiki:  Gandolfini was born in Westwood, New Jersey. His mother, Santa, a high school lunch lady, was born in the USA, of Italian ancestry, and raised in Naples, Italy. His father, James Joseph Gandolfini, Sr., a native of Borgotaro, Italy, was a bricklayer, cement mason, and later the head custodian at Paramus Catholic High School, New Jersey. James, Sr., also earned a Purple Heart in World War II. His parents were devout Roman Catholics and spoke Italian at home. Due to such influence, Gandolfini had a strong sense of being Italian, and regularly visited Italy.

NY Times Obit.

Mr. Gandolfini’s death was confirmed by HBO. He was traveling in Rome, where he was on vacation and was scheduled to attend the Taormina Film Festival. A cause of death was not immediately announced; a press representative for HBO said that Mr. Gandolfini may have died from a heart attack, though other news reports said he died from a stroke.

Mr. Gandolfini, who grew up in Park Ridge, in Bergen County, N.J., came to embody the resilience of the Garden State on “The Sopranos,” a television drama that made its debut in 1999 and ran for six seasons on HBO.

In its pilot episode, viewers were introduced to the richly complicated life of Tony Soprano, a New Jersey mob kingpin who is suffering from panic attacks and begins seeing a therapist. Over 86 episodes, audiences followed Mr. Gandolfini in the role as he was tormented by his mother (played by Nancy Marchand), his wife (Edie Falco), rival mobsters, the occasional surreal dream sequence and, in 2007, a famously ambiguous series finale which left millions of viewers wondering whether or not Tony Soprano had met his fate at the table of a diner.

Sadly, it appears that there will be no Soprano’s movie now. I was kind of hoping that the cast would get back together as the show ended far too soon. We are only left with the final scene of The Soprano’s.

Final Scene of HBO’s The Soprano’s

‘All in the Family’s’ Edith Bunker … Jean Stapleton Dies at Age 90 … Edith and Archie Bunker Reunited in Heaven, Rest in Peace

Edith Bunker dead at age 90.

Emmy award winning actress Jean Stapleton, who is best known for her role as Archie Bunker’s wife Edith in the long-running 1970′s television series “All in the Family,” died Friday at her New York City home at the age of  90. According to reports she died of natural causes. She is survived by her son, John Putch, and her daughter, television producer Pamela Putch. Her husband, William Putch, died in 1983.

How very, very sad. How I loved ‘All in the Family’. Carol O’Conner and Jean Stapleton were a perfect match. Stapleton appeared in “All In The Family,” one of the greatest comedy shows of all time, from 1971 to 1979.  Although Jean Stapleton, Edith Bunker, played the submission wife to Archie who was constantly told to “stifle” and called a “ding-bat,” her heart was huge and her submissive, not so bright nature was only to a point. Her rye sense of humor was fantastic. However, there was an unselfish love between Edith and Archie, where she could see more in him than just a loud mouth bigot. The Normal Lear comedy was ground breaking an spun off other great shows like ‘The Jefferson’s’ and ‘Maud”. Carol O’Conner passed away on June 21, 2001.

Those were the days … they certainly were.

All in the Family Theme song - the late Carol O’Conner and Jean Stapleton

From the LA Times:

She had been a veteran of stage, film and television when she was cast in the CBS sitcom opposite Carroll O’Connor’s loud-mouthed, bigoted Archie Bunker, who often addressed her as “dingbat.” She won three Emmys for the role.

“The benign, compassionate presence she developed made my egregious churl bearable,” O’Connor wrote of Stapleton in his 1998 autobiography. He died in 2001.

Born in New York City on Jan. 19, 1923, Stapleton was the daughter of a billboard advertising salesman and an opera singer.

All_In_the_Family

Source: IMDb

NY Times Obit:

Jeanne Murray was born in Manhattan on Jan. 19, 1923. Her father, Joseph, was an advertising salesman; her mother, Marie Stapleton, was a concert and opera singer, and music was very much a part of her young life. Young Jeanne was a singer as well, which might be surprising to those who knew Ms. Stapleton only from “All in the Family,” which opened every week with Edith and Archie singing the song “Those Were the Days.” Ms. Stapleton’s screechy half of the duet was all Edith; the actress herself had a long history of charming musical performances. She was in the original casts of “Bells Are Ringing” and “Damn Yankees” on Broadway in the 1950s, and “Funny Girl,” with Barbra Streisand, in the 1960s, in which she sang “If a Girl Isn’t Pretty” and “Find Yourself a Man.” Off Broadway in 1991, she played Julia Child, singing the recipe for chocolate cake in the mini-musical “Bon Appétit.” On television, she sang with the Muppets.

“All in the Family” was Ms. Stapleton’s first television series, but before that she appeared as a guest on several shows, including “Dr. Kildare,” with Richard Chamberlain, “My Three Sons,” “Car 54, Where Are You?” and the courtroom drama “The Defenders,” starring E.G. Marshall, in which she played the owner of a boarding house who accused one of her tenants — played by Mr. O’Connor — of murder.

UPDATE I: Ann Althouse has a fantastic, must see VIDEO of an interview with Jean Stapleton from 2000. Stapleton talks about her entire career, including the first time she met Carol O’Conner and her later role as Edith Bunker providing zingers at  Archie. that broke his “hot air” and “burst his bubble”.

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