122 Facts About Angela Lansbury


Dame Angela Brigid Lansbury was born on 16 October 1925 and is an Irish-British and American actress and singer who has played many film, theatre and television roles.

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Angela Lansbury was born to an upper-middle-class family in central London, the daughter of Irish actress Moyna Macgill and English politician Edgar Angela Lansbury.

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Angela Lansbury's appeared in 11 further MGM films, mostly in minor roles, and after her contract ended in 1952 she began supplementing her cinematic work with theatrical appearances.

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Amid difficulties in her personal life, Angela Lansbury moved from California to County Cork, Ireland in 1970, and continued with a variety of theatrical and cinematic appearances throughout that decade.

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Angela Lansbury's moved into voice work, contributing to animated films like Disney's Beauty and the Beast and Don Bluth's Anastasia (1997).

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Angela Lansbury has received an Honorary Academy Award, a Lifetime Achievement Award from the BAFTA, a Lifetime Achievement Tony Award and five additional Tony Awards, six Golden Globes, and an Olivier Award.

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Angela Lansbury's has been nominated for numerous other industry awards, including the Academy Award for Best Supporting Actress on three occasions, and various Primetime Emmy Awards on 18 occasions, and a Grammy Award.

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In 2014, Angela Lansbury was made a Dame Commander of the Order of the British Empire by Queen Elizabeth II.

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Angela Lansbury was born to an upper middle class family on 16 October 1925 in the district of St Pancras in central London.

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Angela Lansbury says she has ancestral connections to Poplar but she was born in Regent's Park, Central London.

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Angela Lansbury had an older half sister, Isolde, who was the daughter of Moyna's previous marriage to writer and director Reginald Denham.

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In January 1930, when Angela was four, her mother gave birth to twin boys, Bruce and Edgar, leading the Lansburys to move from their Poplar flat to a house in Mill Hill, North London; on weekends they would vacate to a rural farm in Berrick Salome, near Wallingford, Oxfordshire.

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Angela Lansbury's nevertheless considered herself largely self-educated, learning from books, theatre and cinema.

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Angela Lansbury's became a self-professed "complete movie maniac", visiting the cinema regularly and imagining herself as certain characters.

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Year, Angela Lansbury's grandfather died, and with the onset of the Blitz, Macgill decided to take Angela Lansbury, Bruce and Edgar to the United States; Isolde remained in Britain with her new husband, the actor Peter Ustinov.

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Angela Lansbury gained a scholarship from the American Theatre Wing allowing her to study at the Feagin School of Drama and Radio, where she appeared in performances of William Congreve's The Way of the World and Oscar Wilde's Lady Windermere's Fan.

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Angela Lansbury's graduated in March 1942, by which time the family had moved to a flat in Morton Street, Greenwich Village.

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Angela Lansbury's returned to New York City in August 1942, but her mother had moved to Hollywood, Los Angeles, in order to resurrect her cinematic career; Lansbury and her brothers followed.

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At a party hosted by her mother, Angela Lansbury met John van Druten, who had recently co-authored a script for Gaslight, a mystery-thriller based on Patrick Hamilton's 1938 play Gaslight.

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Van Druten suggested that Angela Lansbury would be perfect for the role of Nancy Oliver, a conniving cockney maid; she was accepted for the part, although, since she was only 17, a social worker had to accompany her on the set.

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Already her casting received attention, with Variety magazine in August 1943 claiming Angela Lansbury to have gone from unknown to movie star in just four days.

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Angela Lansbury next starred in The Picture of Dorian Gray, a cinematic adaptation of Oscar Wilde's 1890 novel of the same name, which was again set in Victorian London.

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On September 27, 1945, Angela Lansbury married Richard Cromwell, an artist and decorator whose acting career had come to a standstill.

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Angela Lansbury played her first American character as "Em", a tough honky-tonk saloon singer who slaps Judy Garland's character in the Oscar-winning Wild West musical The Harvey Girls.

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Angela Lansbury's appeared in The Hoodlum Saint, Till the Clouds Roll By (1947), If Winter Comes (1947), Tenth Avenue Angel (1948), The Three Musketeers (1948), State of the Union (1948) and The Red Danube (1949).

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Angela Lansbury's was loaned by MGM first to United Artists for The Private Affairs of Bel Ami, and then to Paramount for Samson and Delilah (1949).

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Angela Lansbury's appeared as a villainous maidservant in Kind Lady and a French adventuress in Mutiny (1952).

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Unhappy with the roles she was being given by MGM, Angela Lansbury instructed her manager, Harry Friedman of MCA Inc, to terminate her contract in 1952, in the same year that her son Anthony was born.

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However, Angela Lansbury did not feel entirely comfortable in the Hollywood social scene, later asserting that as a result of her British roots, "in Hollywood, I always felt like a stranger in a strange land.

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Angela Lansbury's obtained minor roles in the films A Life at Stake, A Lawless Street (1955) and The Purple Mask (1955), later describing the last as "the worst movie I ever made".

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Angela Lansbury's played Princess Gwendolyn in the comedy film The Court Jester, then took the role of a wife who kills her husband in Please Murder Me.

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Angela Lansbury's appeared as Minnie Littlejohn in The Long Hot Summer, and as Mabel Claremont in The Reluctant Debutante, which she filmed in Paris.

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Angela Lansbury was only three years older than actor Laurence Harvey who played her son in the film.

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Angela Lansbury's had agreed to appear in the film after reading the original novel, describing it as "one of the most exciting political books I ever read".

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Angela Lansbury followed this with a performance as Sybil Logan in In the Cool of the Day, a film she renounced as awful, and appeared as wealthy Isabel Boyd in The World of Henry Orient (1964), the widow Phyllis in Dear Heart (1964) and as the mother of screen actress Jean Harlow (Carroll Baker) in Harlow (1965).

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Angela Lansbury declined several cinematic roles, including the lead in The Killing of Sister George and the role of Nurse Ratched in One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest (1975).

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Angela Lansbury's later noted that as a big commercial hit, this film "secured an enormous audience for me".

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Angela Lansbury spent most of the 1970s on stage rather than on screen, but was acclaimed for her supporting performance in 1978's Death on the Nile, which Johnny Depp cited as one of his inspirations for his portrayal of Ichabod Crane in Tim Burton's Sleepy Hollow.

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Angela Lansbury appeared as Miss Froy in The Lady Vanishes, a remake of Alfred Hitchcock's earlier film released in 1938.

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Angela Lansbury hoped to get away from the depiction of the role by Margaret Rutherford, instead returning to Christie's description of the character; in this she created a precursor to her later role of Jessica Fletcher.

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Angela Lansbury's was signed to appear in two sequels as Miss Marple, but these never were made.

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Angela Lansbury's appeared as the protagonist's mother in Rage of Angels: The Story Continues and portrayed Nan Moore – the mother of a victim of the real-life Korean Air Lines Flight 007 plane crash – in Shootdown (1988); being a mother herself, she had been "enormously touched by the incident".

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Angela Lansbury's next starred as the Cockney Mrs Harris in a film adaptation of the novel Mrs 'Arris Goes to Paris, which was directed by her son and executive produced by her stepson.

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Angela Lansbury performed the title song to the film, which won the Academy Award for Best Original Song, Golden Globe Award for Best Original Song and Grammy Award for Best Song Written for a Motion Picture, Television or Other Visual Media.

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In 2021, Angela Lansbury made a surprise appearance referencing her role as Mrs Potts on the audio guide of "Inspiring Walt Disney: The Animation of French Decorative Arts", The Metropolitan Museum of Art's first ever exhibition about Walt Disney and his Studios.

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Angela Lansbury starred in the film Nanny McPhee as Aunt Adelaide, later informing an interviewer that working on Nanny McPhee "pulled me out of the abyss" after the loss of her husband.

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Angela Lansbury's then appeared in the film Mr Popper's Penguins, opposite Jim Carrey.

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In 2012, it was announced that Angela Lansbury was set to star in Wes Anderson's The Grand Budapest Hotel; however, she had to back out of the project due to prior scheduling conflicts with the Australian production of Driving Miss Daisy, in which she co-starred alongside James Earl Jones.

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Angela Lansbury appeared in a supporting role in Mary Poppins Returns, a sequel to the 1964 original film, set 20 years later in Depression-era London which features Emily Blunt as the title character.

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In January 2019, Angela Lansbury was invited to the American Film Institute's luncheon to give the annual benediction where she talked about her experiences at MGM, the craft of acting and the importance of a film community.

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Angela Lansbury concluded her remarks by giving advice to the possible Oscar, and Golden Globe contenders about the awards season stating "As you leave here today and are invited to endure a seemingly endless parade of programs that label you a 'winner' or a 'loser' – I've been there, I've done that, remember this room, when we are all together as one.

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Angela Lansbury played Helen, the boorish, verbally abusive, otherwise absentee mother of Josephine, remarking that she gained "a great deal of satisfaction" from the role.

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Angela Lansbury's appeared in The Greatest Story Ever Told, a cinematic biopic of Jesus, but was cut almost entirely from the final edit.

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Angela Lansbury's followed this with an appearance as Mama Jean Bello in Harlow, as Lady Blystone in The Amorous Adventures of Moll Flanders, and as Gloria in Mister Buddwing (1966).

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Angela Lansbury had begun work for television, appearing in a television film with Bette Davis titled Little Gloria.

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Angela Lansbury's followed this with an appearance in The Gift of Love: A Christmas Story, later describing it as "the most unsophisticated thing you can imagine".

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Two further miniseries featuring Angela Lansbury appeared in 1984: Lace and The First Olympics: Athens 1896.

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In 1966, Angela Lansbury took on the title role of Mame Dennis in the musical Mame, Jerry Herman's musical adaptation of the novel Auntie Mame.

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Angela Lansbury actively sought the role in the hope that it would mark a change in her career.

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When she was chosen, it came as a surprise to theatre critics, who believed that it would go to a better-known actress; Angela Lansbury was forty-one years old, and it was her first starring role.

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Mame Dennis was a glamorous character, with over twenty costume changes throughout the play, and Angela Lansbury's role involved ten songs and dance routines which she trained extensively for.

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Stardom achieved through Mame allowed Angela Lansbury to make further appearances on television, such as on Perry Como's Thanksgiving special in November 1966.

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Angela Lansbury's was invited to star in a musical performance for the 1968 Academy Awards ceremony, and co-hosted that year's Tony Awards with former brother-in-law Peter Ustinov.

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Angela Lansbury considered this to be "one of my bitterest disappointments".

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Angela Lansbury followed the success of Mame with a performance as Countess Aurelia, the 75-year-old Parisian eccentric in Dear World, a musical adaptation of Jean Giraudoux's The Madwoman of Chaillot.

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Angela Lansbury later described the play as "a complete and utter fiasco", admitting that in her opinion, her "performance was awful".

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Angela Lansbury enrolled in the Webber-Douglas School, his mother's alma mater, and became a professional actor, then moved into television directing.

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In 1972, Angela Lansbury returned to London's West End to perform in the Royal Shakespeare Company's theatrical production of Edward Albee's All Over at the Aldwych Theatre.

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Angela Lansbury's portrayed the mistress of a dying New England millionaire, and although the play's reviews were mixed, Lansbury's acting was widely praised.

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Angela Lansbury's initially turned down the role, not wishing to be in the shadow of Ethel Merman, who had portrayed the character in the original Broadway production, but eventually accepted it; when the show started in May 1973, she earned a standing ovation and rave reviews.

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Angela Lansbury's obtained the role of Gertrude in the National Theatre Company's production of Hamlet, staged at the Old Vic.

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In March 1979, Angela Lansbury first appeared as Nellie Lovett in Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street, a Stephen Sondheim musical directed by Harold Prince.

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Angela Lansbury's remained in the role for fourteen months before being replaced by Dorothy Loudon; the musical received mixed critical reviews, although it earned Lansbury her fourth Tony Award and After Dark magazine's Ruby Award for Broadway Performer of the Year.

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Angela Lansbury's returned to the role in October 1980 for a ten-month tour of six U S cities, with George Hearn playing the title character; the production was filmed and broadcast on the Entertainment Channel.

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That year, Angela Lansbury was inducted into the American Theatre Hall of Fame, and the following year appeared in a Mame revival at Broadway's Gershwin Theatre.

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Angela Lansbury felt that after this event she would not take on any more major acting roles, and that instead might make a few cameos but nothing more.

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Angela Lansbury returned to Broadway after a 23-year absence in Deuce, a play by Terrence McNally that opened at the Music Box Theatre in May 2007 for a limited run of eighteen weeks.

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Angela Lansbury received a Tony Award nomination for Best Leading Actress in a Play for her role.

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From December 2009 to June 2010, Angela Lansbury then starred as Madame Armfeldt alongside Catherine Zeta-Jones in the first Broadway revival of A Little Night Music, held at the Walter Kerr Theatre.

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From April to July 2012, Angela Lansbury starred as women's rights advocate Sue-Ellen Gamadge in the Broadway revival of Gore Vidal's The Best Man at the Gerald Schoenfeld Theatre.

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From February to June 2013, Angela Lansbury starred alongside James Earl Jones in an Australian tour of Driving Miss Daisy.

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From March to June 2014, Angela Lansbury reprised her performance as Madame Arcati in Blithe Spirit at the Gielgud Theatre in London's West End, her first London stage appearance in nearly 40 years.

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However, in an interview published on September 20, 2016, Angela Lansbury stated that she will not be performing in The Chalk Garden, saying: "At my time of life, I've decided that I want to be with family more and being alone in New York doing a play requires an extraordinary amount of time left alone.

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On November 18, 2019, Angela Lansbury made her final return to Broadway portraying Lady Bracknell in a one-night benefit staging of Oscar Wilde's The Importance of Being Earnest for Roundabout Theatre Company's American Airlines Theatre.

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In October 2020, Variety magazine considered her career to "defy all logic" and continued "Though powerful women were sometimes maligned, it was thought you needed to be heartless to survive in showbiz, Angela Lansbury has created a 77-year career and nobody has a bad word to say about her.

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In 1983, Angela Lansbury was offered two main television roles, one in a Norman Lear sitcom opposite Charles Durning and the other in a detective series by co-creators William Link and Richard Levinson of Columbo fame.

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Angela Lansbury was protective of Jessica Fletcher, having creative input over the character's costumes, makeup and hair and rejecting pressure from network executives to put her in a relationship, believing that the character should remain a strong single female.

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Angela Lansbury's saw Jessica as a role model for older female viewers, praising her "enormous, universal appeal – that was an accomplishment I never expected in my entire life.

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Angela Lansbury herself noted that "I think it's the first time a show has really been aimed at the middle aged audience, " and although it was most popular among senior citizens, it gradually gained a younger audience.

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Angela Lansbury was angry at the move, believing that it ignored the show's core audience.

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Angela Lansbury initially had plans for a Murder, She Wrote television film that would be a musical with a score composed by Jerry Herman.

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In December 2017, Angela Lansbury performed in her final television role as Aunt March in the BBC miniseries Little Women.

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Angela Lansbury has been married twice, first to the actor Richard Cromwell, when she was 19 and Cromwell was 35.

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Cromwell and Angela Lansbury eloped and were married in a small civil ceremony on September 27, 1945.

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Angela Lansbury's acquired a step-son, David, from Shaw's first marriage.

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Angela Lansbury's brought up her children to be Episcopalian, although they were not members of a congregation.

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Angela Lansbury's has stated that "I believe that God is within all of us, that we are perfect, precious beings, and that we have to put our faith and trust in that.

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Angela Lansbury is a cousin of the Postgate family, including the animator, writer and social activist Oliver Postgate.

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Angela Lansbury's is a cousin of the academic and novelist Coral Lansbury, whose son is former Prime Minister of Australia Malcolm Turnbull.

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Angela Lansbury's preferred spending quiet evenings inside with friends to the Hollywood night life.

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Angela Lansbury's has cited F Scott Fitzgerald as her favorite author, and cited Roseanne and Seinfeld as being among her favorite television shows.

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Angela Lansbury was an avid letter writer who wrote letters by hand and made copies of all of them.

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At Howard Gotlieb's request, Angela Lansbury's papers are housed at the Howard Gotlieb Archival Research Center at Boston University.

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Angela Lansbury is a supporter of the United States Democratic Party and the British Labour Party.

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Angela Lansbury underwent hip replacement surgery in May 1994 and knee replacement surgery in 2005.

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Angela Lansbury has had a prolific career in film, theatre and television.

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Angela Lansbury's is one of the last film stars of the golden age of Hollywood, having been a contract player with Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer in the 1940s.

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Angela Lansbury's acted alongside actors such as Ingrid Bergman, Katharine Hepburn, Judy Garland, Elizabeth Taylor, Frank Sinatra, Paul Newman, Orson Welles, Bette Davis and Maggie Smith in such classic films as Gaslight, National Velvet, The Picture of Dorian Gray (1945), The Harvey Girls (1946), State of the Union (1948), The Court Jester (1956), The Long, Hot Summer (1958), The Manchurian Candidate (1962) and Death on the Nile (1978).

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Angela Lansbury's is known for her roles in classic children's films as Bedknobs and Broomsticks, The Last Unicorn (1982), Beauty and the Beast (1991), Anastasia (1997), Fantasia 2000 (2000), Nanny McPhee (2005), The Grinch (2018) and Mary Poppins Returns (2018).

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Angela Lansbury's starred in Jerry Herman's Mame, and Rodgers and Hammerstein's The King and I (1978).

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Angela Lansbury's is known for her performances in plays such as the Terrence McNally play Deuce, the Noel Coward comedy Blithe Spirit (2014), the Gore Vidal political drama The Best Man (2012).

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Angela Lansbury's gained international fame for her role as mystery writer turned sleuth Jessica Fletcher in the CBS crime series Murder, Angela Lansbury's Wrote.

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Angela Lansbury's is currently the Narrator for the UK tour of Beauty and the Beast.

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Angela Lansbury described herself as an actress who could sing, with Sondheim stating that she had a strong voice, albeit with a limited range.

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Angela Lansbury's authorised biographer Martin Gottfried described her as "an American icon", with a "practically saintly" public image.

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Angela Lansbury's is a gay icon, and has asserted that she is "very proud of the fact", attributing her popularity among the LGBT community to her performance in Mame, while Murder, Angela Lansbury's Wrote broadened that appeal.

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Angela Lansbury's has been recognized for her achievements in Britain on multiple occasions.

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Angela Lansbury was appointed a Commander of the Order of the British Empire in the 1994 Birthday Honours, and promoted to a Dame Commander of the Order of the British Empire (DBE) in the 2014 New Year Honours for services to drama, charitable work, and philanthropy.

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On being made a dame by Queen Elizabeth II at Windsor Castle, Angela Lansbury stated: "I'm joining a marvellous group of women I greatly admire like Judi Dench and Maggie Smith.

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Angela Lansbury has never won an Emmy Award despite 18 nominations for which she was nominated over a 33-year period.

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Angela Lansbury's has been nominated three times for the Academy Award for Best Supporting Actress but has never won; reflecting on this in 2007, she stated that she was at first "terribly disappointed, but subsequently very glad that [she] did not win" because she believes that she would have otherwise had a less successful career.

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Emma Thompson and Geoffrey Rush offered tributes at the Governors Awards where the ceremony was held, and Robert Osborne of Turner Classic Movies presented her with the Oscar saying in part "Angela Lansbury has been adding class, talent, beauty, and intelligence to the movies ever since" her film debut in 1944.

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