Thursday, December 28, 2017

"Singin' in the Rain" Entertainer Debbie Reynolds 2016 Forest Lawn Hollywood Hills Cemetery

Mary Frances "Debbie" Reynolds (April 1, 1932 – December 28, 2016) was an American actress, singer, businesswoman, film historian, humanitarian, and mother of the actress and writer Carrie Fisher. She was nominated for the Golden Globe Award for Most Promising Newcomer for her portrayal of Helen Kane in the 1950 film Three Little Words, and her breakout role was her first leading role, as Kathy Selden in Singin' in the Rain (1952). Other successes include The Affairs of Dobie Gillis (1953), Susan Slept Here (1954), Bundle of Joy (1956 Golden Globe nomination), The Catered Affair (1956 National Board of Review Best Supporting Actress Winner), and Tammy and the Bachelor (1957), in which her performance of the song "Tammy" became the first song by a female solo artist to reach number one on the Billboard music charts.[1] In 1959, she released her first pop music album, titled Debbie.[2]

She starred in How the West Was Won (1963), and The Unsinkable Molly Brown (1964), a biographical film about the famously boisterous Molly Brown.[1] Her performance as Brown earned her a nomination for the Academy Award for Best Actress. Her other films include The Singing Nun (1966), Divorce American Style (1967), What's the Matter with Helen? (1971), Charlotte's Web (1973), Mother (1996) (Golden Globe nomination), and In and Out (1997). Reynolds was also a cabaret performer. In 1979, she founded the Debbie Reynolds Dance Studio in North Hollywood, which still operates today.[3]

In 1969, she starred on television in The Debbie Reynolds Show, for which she received a Golden Globe nomination. In 1973, Reynolds starred in a Broadway revival of the musical Irene and was nominated for the Tony Award for Best Lead Actress in a Musical. She was also nominated for a Daytime Emmy Award for her performance in A Gift of Love (1999) and an Emmy Award for playing Grace's mother Bobbi on Will and Grace. At the turn of the millennium, Reynolds reached a new younger generation with her role as Aggie Cromwell in Disney's Halloweentown series. In 1988, she released her autobiography titled, Debbie: My Life. In 2013, she released a second autobiography, Unsinkable: A Memoir.[4]

Reynolds also had several business ventures, including ownership of a dance studio and a Las Vegas hotel and casino, and she was an avid collector of film memorabilia, beginning with items purchased at the landmark 1970 MGM auction. She served as president of The Thalians, an organization dedicated to mental health causes.[1] Reynolds continued to perform successfully on stage, television, and film into her eighties. In January 2015, Reynolds received the Screen Actors Guild Life Achievement Award.[1] In 2016, she received the Academy Awards Jean Hersholt Humanitarian Award.[5] In the same year, a documentary about her life was released titled Bright Lights: Starring Carrie Fisher and Debbie Reynolds, which turned out to be her final film appearance; the film premiered on HBO on January 7, 2017.[6][7]

On December 28, 2016, Reynolds was hospitalized at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center following a medical emergency, which her son Todd Fisher later described as a "severe stroke."[8] She died from the stroke that afternoon, one day after the death of her daughter Carrie Fisher.[9][10]

Early life

Reynolds was born on April 1, 1932, in El Paso, Texas, to Maxene "Minnie" (née Harman) and Raymond Francis "Ray" Reynolds, a carpenter who worked for the Southern Pacific Railroad.[11] She was of Scottish-Irish and English ancestry[12] and was raised in a strict Nazarene church. She had a brother two years her senior.[13] Reynolds was a Girl Scout, once saying that she wanted to die as the world's oldest living Girl Scout.[14] Reynolds was also a member of The International Order of Job's Daughters, now called Job's Daughters International.

Her mother took in laundry for income, while they lived in a shack on Magnolia Street in El Paso.[13] "We may have been poor," she said in a 1963 interview, "but we always had something to eat, even if Dad had to go out on the desert and shoot jackrabbits."
"One of the advantages of having been poor is that you learn to appreciate good fortune and the value of a dollar, and poverty holds no fear for you because you know you've gone through it and you can do it again...But we were always a happy family and a religious one. And I'm trying to inculcate in my children the same sense of values, the same tone that my mother gave to me."[13]
Her family moved to Burbank, California in 1939.[15] When Reynolds was a sixteen-year-old student at Burbank High School in 1948, she won the Miss Burbank beauty contest.[15] Soon after, she had a contract with Warner Bros[15] and acquired the nickname "Debbie" via Jack L. Warner.[16]

One of her closest high school friends said that she rarely dated during her teenage years in Burbank.

"They never found her attractive in school. She was cute, but sort of tomboyish, and her family never had any money to speak of. She never dressed well or drove a car. And, I think, during all the years in school, she was invited to only one dance."[13]
Reynolds agreed, saying that "when I started, I didn't even know how to dress. I wore dungarees and a shirt. I had no money, no taste and no training."[17] Her friend adds:
"I say this in all sincerity. Debbie can serve as an inspiration to all young American womanhood. She came up the hard way, and she has a realistic sense of values based on faith, love, work and money. Life has been kind to her because she has been kind to life. She's a young woman with a conscience, which is something rare in Hollywood actresses. She also has a refreshing sense of honesty."[13]


Film and television

Reynolds was first discovered by talent scouts from Warner Bros. and MGM who were at the 1948 Miss Burbank contest. Both companies wanted her to sign up with their studio and had to flip a coin to see which one got her. Warner won the coin toss, and she was with the studio for two years.[18] When Warner Brothers stopped producing musicals, she moved to MGM.

With MGM, Reynolds regularly appeared in movie musicals during the 1950s and had several hit records during the period. Her song "Aba Daba Honeymoon" (featured in the film Two Weeks with Love (1950) and sung as a duet with co-star Carleton Carpenter) was the first soundtrack recording to become a top-of-the-chart gold record, reaching number three on the Billboard charts.[19]

Her performance in the film greatly impressed the studio, which then gave her a co-starring role in what would become her highest-profile film, Singin' in the Rain (1952), a satire on movie making in Hollywood during the transition from silent to sound pictures.[18] It co-starred Gene Kelly, whom she called a "great dancer and cinematic genius," adding, "He made me a star. I was 18 and he taught me how to dance and how to work hard and be dedicated."[20] In 1956, she appeared in Bundle of Joy with her then-husband, Eddie Fisher.[21]

Her starring role in The Unsinkable Molly Brown (1964) led to a nomination for the Academy Award for Best Actress.[22] Reynolds noted, however, that she initially had issues with its director, Charles Walters. "He didn't want me," she said. "He wanted Shirley MacLaine," who at the time was unable to take the role. "He said 'You are totally wrong for the part." But six weeks into production, he reversed his opinion. "He came to me and said, "I have to admit that I was wrong. You are playing the role really well. I'm pleased."[23] 

Reynolds also played in Goodbye Charlie, a 1964 comedy film about a callous womanizer who gets his just reward. It was adapted from George Axelrod's play Goodbye, Charlie and also starred Tony Curtis and Pat Boone.

She next portrayed Jeanine Deckers in The Singing Nun (1966). 

In what Reynolds once called the "stupidest mistake of my entire career,"[24] she made headlines in 1970 after instigating a fight with the NBC television network over cigarette advertising on her weekly television show. Although she was television's highest paid female performer at the time, she quit the show for breaking its contract:[24]
"I was shocked to discover that the initial commercial aired during the premiere of my new series was devoted to a nationally advertised brand of cigarette (Pall Mall). I fully outlined my personal feelings concerning cigarette advertising ... that I will not be a party to such commercials which I consider directly opposed to health and well-being." [25]
When NBC explained to Reynolds that banning cigarette commercials from her show would be impossible, she kept her resolve. The show drew mixed reviews, but according to NBC, it captured about 42 percent of the nation's viewing audience. She said later she was especially concerned about the commercials because of the number of children watching the show.[26] She did quit doing the show after about a year, which she said had cost her about $2 million of lost income: "Maybe I was a fool to quit the show, but at least I was an honest fool. I'm not a phony or pretender. With me it wasn't a question of money but integrity. I'm the one who has to live with myself."[27] The dispute would have been rendered moot and in Reynolds' favor anyway had she not resigned; by 1971, the Public Health Cigarette Smoking Act (which had been passed into law before she left the show) would ban all radio and television advertising for tobacco products.

Reynolds played the title role in the Hanna-Barbera animated musical, Charlotte's Web in which she originated the song "Mother Earth and Father Time."[28] Reynolds continued to make other appearances in film and television. She played Helen Chappel Hackett's mother, Deedee Chappel, on an episode of Wings titled, "If It's Not One Thing, It's Your Mother," which originally aired on November 22, 1994.[29]

From 1999 to 2006, she played Grace Adler's theatrical mother, Bobbi Adler, on the NBC sitcom Will and Grace[30], which earned Reynolds her only Emmy Award nomination for Outstanding Guest Actress in a Comedy Series in 2000.[31] 

She played a recurring role in the Disney Channel Original Movie Halloweentown film series as Aggie Cromwell. Reynolds made a guest appearance as a presenter at the 69th Academy Awards in 1997.[32]

In 2000, Reynolds took up a recurring voice role on the children's television program Rugrats, playing the grandmother of two of the characters. 

In 2001, she co-starred with Elizabeth Taylor and Shirley MacLaine in These Old Broads, a television movie written for her by her daughter, Carrie Fisher.[33] She had a cameo role as herself in the 2004 film Connie and Carla. In 2013, she appeared in Behind the Candelabra, as the mother of Liberace.[34]

The actress appears with her daughter in Bright Lights: Starring Carrie Fisher and Debbie Reynolds, a 2016 documentary about the very close relationship between the two.[35] It premiered at the 2016 Cannes Film Festival. The television premiere was January 7, 2017, on HBO.[7] According to USA Today the film is "an intimate portrait of Hollywood royalty ... [it] loosely chronicles their lives through interviews, photos, footage and vintage home movies... It culminates in a moving scene, just as Reynolds is preparing to receive the 2015 Screen Actors Guild Life Achievement Award, which Fisher presented to her mom."[36]

Music career and cabaret

Her recording of the song "Tammy" (1957; from Tammy and the Bachelor), earned her a gold record,[37] and was the best-selling single by a female vocalist in 1957. It was number one for five weeks on the Billboard pop charts. In the movie (the first of the Tammy film series), she co-starred with Leslie Nielsen.[38]

Reynolds also scored two other top-25 Billboard hits with "A Very Special Love" (#20 in January 1958) and "Am I That Easy to Forget" (#25 in March 1960)—a pop-music version of a country-music hit made famous by Carl Belew (in 1959), Skeeter Davis (in 1960), and several years later by singer Engelbert Humperdinck.[39]

In 1991, she released an album titled The Best of Debbie Reynolds.[40]

For ten years, she headlined for about three months a year in Las Vegas's Riviera Hotel. She enjoyed live shows even though that type of performing "was extremely strenuous," she said.

"With a performing schedule of two shows a night, seven nights a week, it's probably the toughest kind of show business. But in my opinion, the most rewarding. I like the feeling of being able to change stage bits and business when I want. You can't do that in motion pictures or TV."[41]

As part of her nightclub act, Reynolds was noted for doing impressions of celebrities such as Eva and Zsa Zsa Gabor, Mae West, Barbra Streisand, Phyllis Diller, and Bette Davis. Her impersonation of Davis was inspired following their co-starring roles in the 1956 film, The Catered Affair.[27] Reynolds had started doing stage impersonations as a teenager; her impersonation of Betty Hutton was performed as a singing number during the Miss Burbank contest in 1948.[27]

Reynolds' last album was a Christmas record with Donald O'Connor entitled Chrissy the Christmas Mouse.[42]

Stage work

With limited film and television opportunities coming her way, Reynolds accepted an opportunity to make her Broadway debut.[43] She starred in the 1973 revival of Irene, a musical first produced 60 years before.[43] When asked why she waited so long to appear in a Broadway play, she explained:

Primarily because I had two children growing up. I could make movies and recordings and play in nearby Las Vegas and handle a television series without being away from them. Now, they are well on the way to being adults. Also, there was the matter of being offered a show that I felt might be right for me ... I felt that Irene was it and now was the time.[44]

Reynolds and her daughter Carrie both made their Broadway debut in the play.[44] The production broke records for the highest weekly gross of any musical.[43] For that production, she received a Tony nomination. Reynolds also starred in a self-titled Broadway revue, Debbie, in 1976.[45] She toured with Harve Presnell in Annie Get Your Gun,[46] then wrapped up the Broadway run of Woman of the Year in 1983.[47] In the late 1980s Reynolds repeated her role as Molly Brown in the stage version of The Unsinkable Molly Brown, first opposite Presnell (repeating his original Broadway and movie role)[46] and later with Ron Raines.[48]

Best Foot Forward (1953) (Dallas State Fair)[49]
Irene (1973) (Broadway and US national tour)[50]
Debbie (1976) (Broadway)[50]
Annie Get Your Gun (1977) (San Francisco and Los Angeles)
Woman of the Year (1982) (Broadway) (replacement for Lauren Bacall)[50]
The Unsinkable Molly Brown (1989) (US national tour)
Irene (2008) Perth Western Australia
In 2010, she appeared in her own West End show Debbie Reynolds: Alive and Fabulous.[51]

Film history preservation

Reynolds amassed a large collection of movie memorabilia, beginning with items from the landmark 1970 Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer auction, and she displayed them, first in a museum at her Las Vegas hotel and casino during the 1990s[52] and later in a museum close to the Kodak Theater in Los Angeles. On several occasions, she auctioned off items from the collection.

The museum was to relocate to be the centerpiece of the Belle Island Village tourist attraction in the resort city of Pigeon Forge, Tennessee, but the developer went bankrupt.[53][54] The museum filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy[55] in June 2009. The most valuable asset of the museum was Reynolds' collection.[53] Todd Fisher, Reynolds' son, announced that his mother was "heartbroken" to have to auction off the collection.[53] It was valued at $10.79 million in the bankruptcy filing.[54] The Los Angeles auction firm Profiles in History was given the responsibility of conducting a series of auctions.[56] Among the "more than 3500 costumes, 20,000 photographs, and thousands of movie posters, costume sketches, and props" included in the sales were Charlie Chaplin's bowler hat and Marilyn Monroe's white "subway dress," whose skirt is lifted up by the breeze from a passing subway train in the film The Seven Year Itch (1955).[56] The dress sold for $4.6 million in 2011;[57] the final auction was held in May 2014.[58]

Business ventures

In 1979, Reynolds opened her own dance studio in North Hollywood. In 1983 she released an exercise video, Do It Debbie's Way! [59] She purchased the Clarion Hotel and Casino, a hotel and casino in Las Vegas, in 1992. She renamed it the Debbie Reynolds Hollywood Hotel. It was not a success. In 1997, Reynolds was forced to declare bankruptcy.[60] In June 2010, she replaced Ivana Trump answering reader queries for the weekly paper Globe.[61]

Marriages and later life

Marriage to Eddie Fisher in 1955

Reynolds was married three times. Her first marriage was to singer Eddie Fisher in 1955.[62] They became the parents of Carrie (1956–2016) and Todd Fisher (1958). The couple divorced in 1959 when Fisher had an affair with Elizabeth Taylor shortly after the death of Taylor's husband Mike Todd; Taylor and Reynolds were good friends at the time. The Eddie Fisher – Elizabeth Taylor affair was a great public scandal, which led to the cancellation of Eddie Fisher's television show.[63]

In 2011, Reynolds was on The Oprah Winfrey Show just weeks before Elizabeth Taylor's death. She explained that she and Taylor happened to be traveling at the same time on the ocean liner Queen Elizabeth some time in the late 1960s or early 1970s when they reconciled.[64] Reynolds sent a note to Taylor's room, and Taylor sent a note in reply asking to have dinner with Reynolds and end their feud. As Reynolds described it, "we had a wonderful evening with a lot of laughs."[65] In 1972, she noted the bright side of the divorce and her remarriage:

"Now in retrospect, though it was not my will, I think it probably was the best thing that ever happened to me. He did give me two great children and for that I will ever be grateful. Our door is always open to him. I believe in peaceful coexistence and being friends with the father of your children."[27]

Reynolds' second marriage, to millionaire businessman Harry Karl, lasted from 1960 to 1973.[64] For a period during the 1960s, she stopped working at the studio on Friday afternoons to attend Girl Scout meetings, since she was the leader of the Girl Scout Troop of which her 13-year-old daughter Carrie and her stepdaughter Tina Karl, also 13, were members.[66] Reynolds later found herself in financial difficulty because of Karl's gambling and bad investments.[1] Reynolds' third marriage was to real estate developer Richard Hamlett from 1984 to 1996.

In 2011, Reynolds stepped down after 56 years of involvement in The Thalians,[67] a charitable organization devoted to children and adults with mental health issues.

Reynolds was hospitalized in October 2012 at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center in Los Angeles due to an adverse reaction to medication. She canceled appearances and concert engagements for the next three months.[68]
Life is both faith and love. Without faith, love is only one dimensional and incomplete. Faith helps you to overlook other people's shortcomings, and love them as they are. If you ask too much of any relationship, you can't help but be disappointed. But if you ask nothing, you can't be hurt or disappointed.
-- Debbie Reynolds (1964)[17]

Death and legacy

On December 23, 2016, Reynolds's daughter—actress and writer Carrie Fisher—suffered a medical emergency on a transatlantic flight from London to Los Angeles, and died on December 27 at the age of 60.[69] The following day, December 28, Reynolds was taken by ambulance to Cedars-Sinai Medical Center in Los Angeles, after suffering a "severe stroke," according to her son, Todd Fisher.[70] Later that afternoon, Reynolds died in the hospital; she was 84 years old.[71][72][73] On January 9, 2017, her cause of death was determined to be intracerebral hemorrhage, with hypertension a contributing factor.[74]

Todd later said Reynolds had been seriously impacted by her daughter's death, and grief was partially responsible for her stroke, noting that his mother had stated "I want to be with Carrie" shortly before she died.[75][76][77] During an interview for the December 30, 2016 airing of the ABC-TV program 20/20, Todd elaborated on this, saying that his mother had joined his sister in death because Reynolds "didn't want to leave Carrie and did not want her to be alone."[78] He added, however, that "she didn't die of a broken heart" as some news reports had implied, but rather "just left to be with Carrie."[79]

Reynolds and Carrie Fisher were memorialized at a private event on January 5, 2017, and a larger joint memorial service was held on March 25. The two were buried together at Forest Lawn Memorial Park - Hollywood Hills in Los Angeles.[80][81]

Awards and honors

Reynolds was the 1955 Hasty Pudding Woman of the Year.[82] Her foot and handprints are preserved at Grauman's Chinese Theatre in Hollywood, California. She also has a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame, at 6654 Hollywood Boulevard, for live performance and a Golden Palm Star on the Palm Springs, California, Walk of Stars dedicated to her.[83] In keeping with the celebrity tradition of the Shenandoah Apple Blossom Festival of Winchester, Virginia, Reynolds was honored as the Grand Marshal of the 2011 ABF that took place from April 26 to May 1, 2011.[84]

On November 4, 2006, Reynolds received the Lifetime Achievement in the Arts Award from Chapman University (Orange, California).[85][86] On May 17, 2007, she was awarded an honorary degree of Doctor of Humane Letters from the University of Nevada, Reno, where she had contributed for many years to the film studies program.[87]

Awards and nominations

Year Association Category Nominated work Result Refs

1951 Golden Globe Awards New Star of the Year – Actress Three Little Words Nominated [88]
1956 National Board of Review Best Supporting Actress The Catered Affair Won [89]
1957 Golden Globe Awards Best Actress – Motion Picture Musical or Comedy Bundle of Joy Nominated [88]
1965 Academy Awards Best Actress The Unsinkable Molly Brown Nominated [90]
1965 Golden Globe Awards Best Actress – Motion Picture Musical or Comedy The Unsinkable Molly Brown Nominated [88]
1970 Golden Globe Awards Best Actress – Television Series Musical or Comedy The Debbie Reynolds Show Nominated [88]
1973 Tony Awards Best Actress in a Musical Irene Nominated [73]
1997 American Comedy Awards Lifetime Achievement Award in Comedy Herself Won [91][92]
1997 Golden Globe Awards Best Actress – Motion Picture Musical or Comedy Mother Nominated [88]
1997 Satellite Awards Best Supporting Actress – Motion Picture Mother Won [91]
1998 Blockbuster Entertainment Awards Favorite Supporting Actress – Comedy In and Out Nominated [93][94]
2000 Daytime Emmy Awards Outstanding Performer in a Children's Special A Gift of Love: The Daniel Huffman Story Nominated [91][95]
2000 Primetime Emmy Awards Outstanding Guest Actress in a Comedy Series Will and Grace Nominated [91][96]
2014 Screen Actors Guild Life Achievement Award Herself Won [91][97]
2015 Academy Awards Jean Hersholt Humanitarian Award Herself Won [98][90]


Year Title Role Notes Refs

1948 June Bride Boo's Girlfriend at Wedding Uncredited [99][100][101]
1950 The Daughter of Rosie O'Grady Maureen O'Grady [99][100][101]
Three Little Words Helen Kane [99][100][101]
Two Weeks with Love Melba Robinson [99][100][101]
1951 Mr. Imperium Gwen [99][100][101]
1952 Singin' in the Rain Kathy Selden [99][100][101]
Skirts Ahoy! Herself Uncredited [99][100][101]
1953 I Love Melvin Judy Schneider / Judy LeRoy [99][100][101]
The Affairs of Dobie Gillis Pansy Hammer [99][100][101]
Give a Girl a Break Suzy Doolittle [99][100][101]
1954 Susan Slept Here Susan Beauregard Landis [99][100][101]
Athena Minerva Mulvain [99][100][101]
1955 Hit the Deck Carol Pace [99][100][101]
The Tender Trap Julie Gillis [99][100][101]
1956 Meet Me in Las Vegas Herself Uncredited [99][100][101]
The Catered Affair Jane Hurley [99][100][101]
Bundle of Joy Polly Parish [99][100][101]
1957 Tammy and the Bachelor Tammy [99][100][101]
1958 This Happy Feeling Janet Blake [99][100][101]
1959 The Mating Game Mariette Larkin [99][100][101]
Say One for Me Holly LeMaise aka Conroy [99][100][101]
It Started with a Kiss Maggie Putnam [99][100][101]
The Gazebo Nell Nash [99][100][101]
1960 The Rat Race Peggy Brown [99][100][101]
Pepe Cameo [99][100][101]
1961 The Pleasure of His Company Jessica Anne Poole [99][100][101]
The Second Time Around Lucretia 'Lu' Rogers [99][100][101]
1962 How the West Was Won Lilith Prescott [99][100][101]
1963 My Six Loves Janice Courtney [99][100][101]
Mary, Mary Mary McKellaway [99][100][101]
1964 The Unsinkable Molly Brown Molly Brown [99][100][101]
Goodbye Charlie Charlie Sorel/Virginia Mason [99][100][101]
1966 The Singing Nun Sister Ann [99][100][101]
1967 Divorce American Style Barbara Harmon [99][100][101]
1968 How Sweet It Is! Jenny Henderson [99][100][101]
1971 What's the Matter with Helen? Adelle [99][100][101]
1973 Charlotte's Web Charlotte A. Cavatica Voice [99][100][101]
1974 Busby Berkeley Documentary
That's Entertainment! Compilation film [99][100][101]
1981 Aloha Paradise Sydney Chase TV series - 8 episodes
1987 Sadie and Son Sadie TV movie [99][100][101]
1989 Perry Mason: The Case of the Musical Murder Amanda Cody [99][100][101]
1991 The Golden Girls Truby 1 episode
1992 Battling for Baby Helen TV movie [99][100][101]
The Bodyguard Herself Cameo [99][100][101]
1993 Jack L. Warner: The Last Mogul Documentary [101]
Heaven and Earth Eugenia [99][100][101]
1994 Wings Dee Dee Chapel TV
That's Entertainment! III Compilation film [99][100][101]
1996 Mother Beatrice Henderson [99][100][101]
Wedding Bell Blues Herself [99][100][101]
1997 In and Out Berniece Brackett [99][100][101]
Roseanne Audrey Conner [102]
1998 Kiki's Delivery Service Madame Voice
(Disney English dub) [99][100][101]
Zack and Reba Beulah Blanton [99][100]
Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer: The Movie Mrs. Claus / Mitzi – Rudolph's Mother / Mrs. Prancer – School Teacher Voice [99][100][101]
Halloweentown Splendora Agatha "Aggie" Cromwell [99][100][101]
The Christmas Wish Ruth TV movie [99][100]
Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas Herself Voice only [99][100][101]
1999 A Gift of Love: The Daniel Huffman Story Shirlee Allison TV Movie [99][100][101]
Will and Grace Bobbi Adler 12 episodes [102]
Keepers of the Frame Documentary [99][100][101]
2000 Rugrats in Paris: The Movie Lulu Pickles Voice [99][100][101]
Virtual Mom Gwen TV movie
Rugrats: Acorn Nuts and Diapey Butts Lulu Johnson Voice
2001 These Old Broads Piper Grayson TV movie [99][100][101]
Halloweentown II: Kalabar's Revenge Splendora Agatha "Aggie" Cromwell TV movie [99][100][101]
2002 Cinerama Adventure Herself (interviewee) Documentary
Generation Gap TV movie
2003 Tracey Ullman in the Trailer Tales Herself TV
2004 Connie and Carla Herself [99][100][101]
Halloweentown High Splendora Agatha "Aggie" Cromwell TV movie [99][100][101]
2006 Return to Halloweentown Splendora Agatha "Aggie" Cromwell TV movie
Cameo appearance [99][100][101]
Lolo's Cafe Mrs. Atkins Voice
2007 Mr. Warmth: The Don Rickles Project Herself (Interviewee) Documentary [99][100][101]
2008 Light of Olympia Queen Voice
The Jill and Tony Curtis Story Herself Documentary [101]
Blaze of Glory Voice
The Brothers Warner Documentary [101]
Fay Wray: A Life Documentary
2010 The Penguins of Madagascar Granny Squirrel Voice
RuPaul's Drag Race Self Guest judge [101]
2012 One for the Money Grandma Mazur [99][100][101]
In the Picture Aunt Lilith Short
2013 Behind the Candelabra Frances Liberace [99][100][101]
2016 The 7D Queen Whimsical Voice
Bright Lights: Starring Carrie Fisher and Debbie Reynolds Herself Documentary [103]

Short subjects

A Visit with Debbie Reynolds (1959)[99]
The Story of a Dress (1964)[99]
In the Picture (2012)

Radio appearances

Year Program Episode/source

9/8/1952 Lux Radio Theatre Two Weeks With Love


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5. Reynolds to Receive Award. Retrieved August 27, 2015
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7. de Morales, Lisa (December 30, 2016). "HBO Moves 'Bright Lights' Debut In Wake of Carrie Fisher, Debbie Reynolds Deaths". Retrieved December 30, 2016.
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10. "Photo of Debbie Reynolds and Carrie Fisher". Los Angeles Times. December 28, 2016.
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13. "Debbie Reynolds: At 30, She's Got it Made", Independent Star-News (Pasadena, Calif.) Feb. 17, 1963
14. Wloszczyna, Susan (April 2, 2013). "'Unsinkable' Reynolds buoyed by new memoir, life at 81". USA Today.
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18. Leading Ladies, Chronicle Books (2006) p. 161
19. video: "Carleton Carpenter and Debbie Reynolds, "Abba Dabba Honeymoon" from Two Weeks with Love
20. "Rain will only bring smiles," The Sydney Morning Herald, February 4, 1996
21. Hautman, Nicholas (December 28, 2016). "Debbie Reynolds' Most Unforgettable Movie Roles: Singin' in the Rain, Halloweentown and More". Us Weekly. Retrieved December 29, 2016.
22. video: Debbie Reynolds singing "I Ain't Down Yet," in The Unsinkable Molly Brown
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24. Reynolds, Debbie (with Columbia, David Patrick) (1988). Debbie: My Life. William Morrow and Company, p. 309; ISBN 978-0-688-06633-8
25. "Debbie Reynolds Quits TV Series Over Cigarette Ad". Los Angeles Times. September 18, 1969. p. 2.
26. "Debbie Reynolds Changes Her Mind About Quitting". The San Bernardino County Sun. September 19, 1969.
27. "Debbie Reynolds Takes on Eva, Mae, Pearl, and 'The Kid'", Chicago Tribune, March 19, 1972
28. Siskel, Gene (April 25, 1973). "Charlotte's Web" Chicago Tribune Pg. 57.
29. "If It's Not One Thing, It's Your Mother". IMDb. Retrieved August 17, 2015.
30. Will and Grace -, retrieved 2017-09-19
31. "Debbie Reynolds | Television Academy". Retrieved August 17, 2015.
32. *Bona, Damien (2002). Inside Oscar 2. New York: Ballantine Books. p. 102. ISBN 0-345-44970-3.
33. "Scandal's History for 'These Old Broads'", Los Angeles Times, February 12, 2001
34. Schwartzel, Erich. "Actress Debbie Reynolds Dies at 84". The Wall Street Journal. Retrieved December 29, 2016.
35. "Carrie Fisher reflects on mother Debbie Reynolds' legacy in HBO doc Bright Lights". Entertainment Weekly. May 23, 2016. Retrieved June 11, 2016.
36. Ryan, Patrick (December 29, 2016). "What we know about Carrie Fisher and Debbie Reynolds' HBO documentary". USA Today. McLean, Virginia. Retrieved December 29, 2016.
37. Murrells, Joseph (1978). The Book of Golden Discs (2nd ed.). London, UK: Barrie & Jenkins. ISBN 0-214-20512-6.
38. Debbie (1959), Vinyl record, records
39. Trust, Gary (December 28, 2016). "Debbie Reynolds' History on the Billboard Charts". Billboard. Retrieved December 28, 2016.
40. "Debbie". May 24, 2010.
41. "Debbie Reynolds Still Unsinkable", Los Angeles Times, Dec. 17, 1966
42. Kaye, Ben (December 28, 2016). "R.I.P. Debbie Reynolds, Hollywood icon and mother of Carrie Fisher, has died at 84". Consequence of Sound. Retrieved December 28, 2016.
43. "Unsinkable Debbie Reynolds: at 42, She Salvages Her Career". People. November 25, 1974. Retrieved December 29, 2016.
44. "After half a century, Irene revisits ol' Broadway". The Times Standard. Eureka, California. March 11, 1973. p. 14.
45. "Actress Debbie Reynolds Has Died at 84". TheaterMania. December 28, 2016. Retrieved December 28, 2016.
46. Loynd, Ray (May 8, 1989). "STAGE REVIEW : 'Molly Brown' Is Unsinkable 25 Years After the Movie". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved December 28, 2016.
47. Gussow, Mel (February 28, 1983). "STAGE: DEBBIE REYNOLDS IN 'WOMAN OF THE YEAR'". The New York Times. Retrieved December 28, 2016.
48. "OCU Hall of Fame Names Linda Twine, Ron Raines". The Oklahoman. November 14, 1990. Retrieved December 28, 2016.
49. Kellow, Brian (November 26, 2004). The Bennetts: An Acting Family. University Press of Kentucky. ISBN 0813138183.
50. "Hollywood and Broadway Star Debbie Reynolds Dead at 84, One Day After Daughter Carrie Fisher",, December 28, 2016
51. "Debbie Reynolds Returns to West End in Alive and Fabulous". Retrieved August 27, 2015.
52. Schenden, Laurie K. (April 1, 1995). "Reynolds' Unsinkable Museum : Memorabilia: Debbie Reynolds' Hollywood museum opens in Las Vegas tonight, 25 years after the plucky performer salvaged MGM's discards". Los Angeles Times.
53. "Auction Set for Debbie Reynolds' Hollywood Memorabilia". Los Angeles Daily News. September 10, 2010.
54. Flory, Josh (September 9, 2010). "With No Buyer, Debbie Reynolds' Hollywood Memorabilia To Go To Auction". Knoxville News Sentinel. Archived from the original on September 13, 2010.
55. Palank, Jacqueline (September 10, 2010). "Reynolds to Auction Hollywood Memorabilia". The Wall Street Journal blogs. Retrieved January 18, 2011.
56. Stone, Jay (February 27, 2011). "Marilyn Monroe's Skirt Going Up – On Auction Block". The Vancouver Sun. Archived from the original on June 9, 2011.
57. Potempa, Philip (June 25, 2011). "OFFBEAT: Debbie's auction nets big profit, she's resting more easily without debt worry". The Times of Northwest Indiana.
58. Lewis, Andy (May 9, 2014). "Debbie Reynolds 'Hurt' by Academy for Refusing Her Memorabilia Collection". The Hollywood Reporter.
59. ""Do It Debbie's Way!" A Tribute to the Unsinkable Miss Reynolds and Her Superb Multimedia Exercise Program". Retrieved August 27, 2015.
60. Brozan, Nadine (July 9, 1997). "Chronicle". The New York Times. Retrieved September 23, 2010.
61. "Who Would You Rather Take Advice From? Ivana Trump or Debbie Reynolds?". Janet Charlton's Hollywood. June 3, 2010. Retrieved April 23, 2012.
62. Grimes, William (September 24, 2010). "Eddie Fisher, Singer and Actor, Dies at 82". The New York Times. ISSN 0362-4331. Retrieved December 29, 2016.
63. Foster, James F. (February 11, 2014). The Fabulous Fifties. Page Publishing Inc. ISBN 9781634172073.
64. "Debbie Reynolds on How Elizabeth Taylor Stole Her Husband". ABC News. January 21, 2015. Retrieved December 29, 2016.
65. "Debbie Reynolds Reveals How She Forgave Elizabeth Taylor". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved December 29, 2016.
66. "Where Does Debbie Reynolds Go Every Friday Afternoon?". The San Bernardino County Sun. November 23, 1969.
67. "There's No Business Like Show Business". The Thalians. Retrieved August 17, 2015.
68. "Debbie Reynolds hospitalized, cancels three months of shows". Fox News Channel. October 10, 2012. Retrieved October 10, 2012.
69. Itzkoff, Dave (December 27, 2016). "Carrie Fisher, Child of Hollywood and 'Star Wars' Royalty, Dies at 60". The New York Times. Retrieved December 27, 2016.
70. Wong, Julia (December 29, 2016). "Debbie Reynolds dies one day after daughter Carrie Fisher". The Guardian. London. Retrieved December 29, 2016.
71. "Actress Debbie Reynolds dead at 84". CBC News. Associated Press. December 28, 2016. Retrieved December 28, 2016.
72. Rubin, Joel (December 28, 2016). "Debbie Reynolds rushed to the hospital after falling ill; condition unknown". Los Angeles Times. Los Angeles. Retrieved December 28, 2016.
73. Dagan, Carmel (December 28, 2016). "Debbie Reynolds, 'Singin' in the Rain' Star and Carrie Fisher's Mother, Dies at 84". Variety. Retrieved December 28, 2016.
74. Emery, Debbie (January 9, 2017). "Debbie Reynolds Cause of Death Revealed". TheWrap. Retrieved January 9, 2017.
75. Chan, Melissa (December 29, 2016). "Did Debbie Reynolds Die of a Broken Heart?". Time. Retrieved December 29, 2016.
76. Nelson, Valerie J. (December 28, 2016). "Debbie Reynolds, who sang and danced to fame in 'Singin' in the Rain,' dies at 84". Los Angeles Times. Los Angeles. Retrieved December 28, 2016.
77. Gates, Anita (December 29, 2016). "Debbie Reynolds, Wholesome Ingénue in 1950s Films, Dies at 84". The New York Times. New York City. Retrieved December 29, 2016.
78. Effron, Lauren (December 30, 2016). "It Was Debbie Reynolds' 'Destiny' to Be With Carrie Fisher, Todd Fisher Says". ABC News.
79. "Carrie Fisher and mom Debbie Reynolds to be buried together". CBC News. Associated Press. December 30, 2016. Retrieved December 30, 2016.
80. Clough, Rick (January 5, 2016). "Carrie Fisher, Debbie Reynolds remembered at private family memorial service". New York Daily News. Retrieved January 5, 2016.
81. "Debbie Reynolds and Carrie Fisher to be buried together, Todd Fisher says". CBS News. Associated Press. December 30, 2016. Retrieved December 30, 2016.
82. "Past Men and Women of the Year". The Hasty Pudding – Institute of 1770, Inc. Retrieved December 29, 2016.
83. "Palm Springs Walk of Stars by date dedicated" (PDF). Archived from the original (PDF) on October 13, 2012. Retrieved August 17, 2015.
84. "Grand Marshal: Debbie Reynolds". Shenandoah Apple Blossom Festival. Archived from the original on September 28, 2011.
85. "Hollywood Legend Debbie Reynolds to be Honored at American Celebration Nov. 4" (Press release). Chapman University. October 11, 2006. Retrieved December 28, 2016.
86. "Debbie Reynolds - Orange, CA - Dedicated Trees". May 11, 2009. Retrieved January 9, 2017.
87. "University gives honorary degree to 'Unsinkable' Debbie Reynolds". University of Nevada, Reno. May 18, 2007. Retrieved December 28, 2007.
88. Celada, Luca (December 28, 2016). "In Memoriam: Debbie Reynolds, Hollywood Legend, 1932–2016". Golden Globe Awards. Hollywood Foreign Press Association. Retrieved December 29, 2016. See also the profile of Debbie Reynolds at
89. "1956 Award Winners". National Board of Review. Retrieved December 29, 2016.
90. Minutaglio, Rose (February 28, 2016). "Debbie Reynolds Honored with Jean Hersholt Humanitarian Award at 88th Annual Academy Awards". People. Retrieved December 29, 2016.
91. "Debbie Reynolds to be Honored with 2014 SAG Life Achievement Award". SAG-AFTRA (Press release). August 18, 2014. Retrieved December 29, 2016.
92. Macura, Rene (December 27, 2016). "Feb. 9, 1997". Napa Valley Register. Retrieved December 29, 2016.
93. "Blockbuster Entertainment Awards Nominees Announced" (Press release). Blockbuster LLC. PR Newswire. December 17, 1997. Retrieved December 29, 2016.
94. Riggs, Thomas, ed. (2000). Contemporary Theatre, Film and Television. 31. Gale. ISBN 978-0787646363. Retrieved December 29, 2016 – via Google Books.
95. Roberts, Jerry (2009). "John Korty". Encyclopedia of Television Film Directors. London: Scarecrow Press. p. 310. ISBN 9780810863781. Retrieved December 29, 2016 – via Google Books.
96. Lewis, Hilary (January 25, 2015). "SAG Awards: Debbie Reynolds Accepts Life Achievement Honor". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved December 29, 2016.
97. "51st Life Achievement Recipient, 2014: Debbie Reynolds". August 19, 2014. Retrieved December 29, 2016.
98. "Spike Lee, Debbie Reynolds And Gena Rowlands To Receive Academy's 2015 Governors Awards". Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences. August 27, 2015. Retrieved December 29, 2016.
99. "Filmography for Debbie Reynolds". Turner Classic Movies. Retrieved January 3, 2017.
100. "Debbie Reynolds - Credits". TV Guide. Retrieved February 19, 2017.
101. "Debbie Reynolds Filmography". Rotten Tomatoes. Retrieved February 19, 2017.
102. Elber, Lynn (December 28, 2016). "Actress Debbie Reynolds, the star of the 1952 classic "Singin' in the Rain," has died a day after her daughter, Carrie Fisher". Associated Press. Archived from the original on December 29, 2016.
103. "'Bright Lights: Starring Debbie Reynolds and Carrie Fisher': Cannes Review". The Hollywood Reporter. May 14, 2016. Retrieved June 11, 2016.

Further reading

Reynolds, Debbie (with David Patrick Columbia) (1988). Debbie: My Life. William Morrow and Company. ISBN 978-0-688-06633-8.

Reynolds, Debbie (with Dorian Hannaway) (2013). Unsinkable: A Memoir. William Morrow and Company. ISBN 978-0-062-21365-5.

Reynolds, Debbie (with Dorian Hannaway) (2015). Make 'Em Laugh: Short-Term Memories of Longtime Friends. William Morrow and Company. ISBN 978-0-06-241663-6.

Wednesday, December 27, 2017

"Star Wars" Actress & Writer Carrie Fisher 2016 Forest Lawn Hollywood Hills Cemetery

Carrie Frances Fisher (October 21, 1956 – December 27, 2016) was an American actress, writer, and humorist.[2] Fisher was known for playing Princess Leia in the Star Wars films; a role for which she was nominated for three Saturn Awards. Her other film credits included Shampoo (1975), The Blues Brothers (1980), Hannah and Her Sisters (1986), The 'Burbs (1989), When Harry Met Sally... (1989), Soapdish (1991) and The Women (2008 film).[3] She was nominated twice for the Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Guest Actress in a Comedy Series for her performances on the television series 30 Rock and Catastrophe. She was posthumously made a Disney Legend in 2017.[4]

Fisher wrote several semi-autobiographical novels, including Postcards from the Edge and an autobiographical one-woman play, and its non-fiction book, Wishful Drinking, based on the play. She wrote the screenplay for the film version of Postcards From The Edge which garnered her a BAFTA Award for Best Adapted Screenplay nomination, and her one-woman stage show of Wishful Drinking was filmed for television and received a nomination for the Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Variety Special. She worked on other writers' screenplays as a script doctor; including tightening the scripts for Hook (1991), Sister Act (1992), The Wedding Singer (1998), and many of the films from the Star Wars franchise among others.[5] In later years, she earned praise for speaking publicly about her experiences with bipolar disorder and drug addiction.[6]

Fisher was the daughter of singer Eddie Fisher and actress Debbie Reynolds. She and her mother appear in Bright Lights: Starring Carrie Fisher and Debbie Reynolds, a documentary about their relationship. It premiered at the 2016 Cannes Film Festival. Fisher died of cardiac arrest on December 27, 2016, at age 60, four days after experiencing a medical emergency during a transatlantic flight from London to Los Angeles. Her final film, Star Wars: The Last Jedi, is scheduled to be released on December 15, 2017.[7]

Early life

Carrie Frances Fisher[8] was born on October 21, 1956, in Beverly Hills, California,[9] to actors and singers Eddie Fisher and Debbie Reynolds.[10] Fisher's paternal grandparents were Jewish Russian immigrants, while her mother, who was raised a Nazarene, was of Scots-Irish and English descent.[11][12][13][14]

Fisher was two years old when her parents divorced in 1959. Her father's third marriage, to actress Connie Stevens, resulted in the births of Fisher's two half-sisters, Joely Fisher and Tricia Leigh Fisher. In 1960, her mother married Harry Karl, owner of a chain of shoe stores. Reynolds and Karl divorced in 1973, when Fisher was 17 years old.[15]

Fisher "hid in books" as a child, becoming known in her family as "the bookworm."[16] She spent her earliest years reading classic literature, and writing poetry. She attended Beverly Hills High School until age 15, when she appeared as a debutante and singer in the hit Broadway revival Irene (1973), starring her mother.[17] Her time on Broadway interfered with her education, resulting in Fisher's dropping out of high school.[18] In 1973, Fisher enrolled at London's Central School of Speech and Drama, which she attended for 18 months.[16][19] Following her time there, Fisher applied to and was accepted at Sarah Lawrence College, where she planned to study the arts. She later left without graduating.[20][21][22]



She was extremely smart; a talented actress, writer and comedienne with a very colorful personality that everyone loved. In Star Wars she was our great and powerful princess—feisty, wise and full of hope in a role that was more difficult than most people might think. —director George Lucas[23]

Fisher made her film debut at age 18 as the precociously seductive character Lorna Karpf in the Columbia Pictures comedy Shampoo (1975). Lee Grant and Jack Warden play the role of her parents in the film. Warren Beatty, Julie Christie and Goldie Hawn also star in the film.[3

In 1977, Fisher starred as Princess Leia in George Lucas' science-fiction film Star Wars (later retitled Star Wars: Episode IV – A New Hope) opposite Mark Hamill and Harrison Ford.[24] At the time, she believed the script for Star Wars was fantastic, but did not expect many people to agree with her. Though her fellow actors were not close at the time, they bonded after the commercial success of the film.[25]

In April 1978, Fisher appeared as the love interest in Ringo Starr's 1978 TV special Ringo.[26] The next month, she starred alongside John Ritter (who had also appeared in Ringo) in the ABC-TV film Leave Yesterday Behind.[27] At this time, Fisher appeared with Laurence Olivier and Joanne Woodward in the anthology series Laurence Olivier Presents in a television version of the William Inge play Come Back, Little Sheba.[28] That November, she played Princess Leia in the 1978 TV production Star Wars Holiday Special, and sang in the last scene.[29]


Fisher appeared in the film The Blues Brothers as Jake's vengeful ex-lover; she is listed in the credits as "Mystery Woman."[30] While Fisher was in Chicago filming the movie, she choked on a Brussels sprout; Dan Aykroyd performed the Heimlich maneuver and "saved my life."[31] She appeared on Broadway in Censored Scenes from King Kong in 1980. 

The same year, she reprised her role as Princess Leia in The Empire Strikes Back, and appeared with her Star Wars co-stars on the cover of the July 12, 1980 issue of Rolling Stone to promote the film.[32] She also starred as Sister Agnes in the Broadway production of Agnes of God in 1982.[33]

In 1983, Fisher returned to the role of Princess Leia in Return of the Jedi, and posed in the character's metal bikini on the cover of the Summer 1983 issue of Rolling Stone to promote the film.[34][35] The costume later achieved a following of its own.[36] 

In 1986 she starred along with Barbara Hershey and Mia Farrow in Woody Allen's Hannah and Her Sisters.

In 1987, Fisher published her first novel, Postcards from the Edge. The book was semi-autobiographical in the sense that she fictionalized and satirized real-life events such as her drug addiction of the late 1970s and her relationship with her mother. It became a bestseller, and she received the Los Angeles Pen Award for Best First Novel. Also during 1987, she was in the Australian film The Time Guardian. 

In 1989 Fisher played a major supporting role in When Harry Met Sally..., and in the same year she appeared with Tom Hanks as his character's wife in The 'Burbs.[3]


In 1990, Columbia Pictures released a film version of Postcards from the Edge, adapted for the screen by Fisher and starring Meryl Streep, Shirley MacLaine and Dennis Quaid.[37] Fisher appeared in the fantasy comedy film Drop Dead Fred in 1991, and played a therapist in Austin Powers: International Man of Mystery (1997).[3] During the 1990s, 

Fisher also published the novels Surrender the Pink (1990) and Delusions of Grandma (1993). 

Fisher also did uncredited script work for movies such as Lethal Weapon 3 (where she wrote some of Rene Russo's dialogue), Outbreak (also starring Russo), The Wedding Singer[38] and Stop! Or My Mom Will Shoot.[39]


In the 2000 film Scream 3, Fisher played a former actress,[40] and in 2001 she played a nun in the Kevin Smith comedy Jay and Silent Bob Strike Back. She also co-wrote the TV comedy film These Old Broads (2001), of which she was also co-executive producer. It starred her mother Debbie Reynolds, as well as Elizabeth Taylor, Joan Collins and Shirley MacLaine.[41]

In addition acting and writing original works, Fisher was one of the top script doctors in Hollywood, working on the screenplays of other writers.[42][43] She did uncredited polishes on movies in a 15-year stretch from 1991 to 2005. She was hired by George Lucas to polish scripts for his 1992 TV series The Young Indiana Jones Chronicles and the dialogue for the Star Wars prequel scripts.[42] Her expertise in this area was the reason she was chosen as one of the interviewers for the screenwriting documentary Dreams on Spec in 2007. In an interview in 2004, Fisher said she no longer did much script doctoring.[43]

In 2005, Women in Film and Video – DC recognized Fisher with the Women of Vision Award.[44]

Fisher also voiced Peter Griffin's boss, Angela, on the animated sitcom Family Guy[45] and wrote the introduction for a book of photographs titled Hollywood Moms, which was published in 2001.[46] Fisher published a sequel to Postcards, The Best Awful, in 2004.

Fisher wrote and performed in her one-woman play Wishful Drinking at the Geffen Playhouse in Los Angeles from November 2006 to January 2007.[47] Her show then played throughout 2008 at the Berkeley Repertory Theater,[48] San Jose, the Hartford Stage,[49] the Arena Stage[50] and Boston.[51] Fisher published her autobiographical book, also titled Wishful Drinking, based on her successful play in December 2008 and embarked on a media tour. In 2009, Fisher returned to the stage with her play at the Seattle Repertory Theatre.[52] Wishful Drinking then opened on Broadway in New York at Studio 54 and played an extended run from October 2009 until January 2010.[53][54] In December 2009, Fisher's audiobook recording of Wishful Drinking earned her a nomination for a 2009 Grammy Award in the Best Spoken Word Album category.[55]

Fisher joined Turner Classic Movies host Robert Osborne on Saturday evenings in 2007 for The Essentials with informative and entertaining conversation on Hollywood's best films. She guest-starred in the episode titled "Sex and Another City" from season 3 of Sex and the City with Sarah Jessica Parker. On October 25, 2007, Fisher guest-starred as Rosemary Howard on the second-season episode of 30 Rock called "Rosemary's Baby," for which she received an Emmy Award nomination.[56] On April 28, 2008, she was a guest on Deal or No Deal.[57] In 2008, she also had a cameo as a doctor in the Star Wars-related comedy Fanboys.


In 2010, HBO aired a feature-length documentary based on a special live performance of Fisher's Wishful Drinking stage production.[58] At the time of her death, Fisher had been preparing a sequel to the one-woman play.[59]

Fisher appeared on the seventh season of Entourage in the summer of 2010.[58] She was among the featured performers at the Comedy Central Roast of Roseanne, which aired in August 2012. In her monologue, Fisher poked fun at her own mental illness,[60] and her fellow roasters' reliance on weight and menopause jokes.[61] Fisher joked that she had no idea why she was asked to roast Roseanne, until "they explained that we were actually good friends, and that apparently we have worked together."[62] Host Jane Lynch joked that Fisher was there to add perspective to Roseanne's struggles with weight and drugs. Fellow roaster Wayne Brady poked fun at Fisher's career, saying she was the only celebrity "whose action figure is worth more than you are."[63]

She was selected as a member of the main competition jury at the 2013 Venice Film Festival.[64] She filmed an appearance on the UK comedy panel show QI that was broadcast on December 25, 2014.[65] Fisher starred alongside Sharon Horgan and comedian Rob Delaney in the British comedy series Catastrophe, that was first broadcast on Channel 4 in the UK on January 19, 2015.[66][67] Her last appearance on Catastrophe, which aired in the UK on April 4, 2017, left many viewers in tears[68] and earned her a posthumous Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Guest Actress in a Comedy Series nomination.

Fisher's memoir, The Princess Diarist, was released in November 2016. The book is based on diaries she kept while filming the original Star Wars trilogy in the late 1970s and early 1980s.[69][70]

In a March 2013 interview following the announcement that a new trilogy of films would be produced, Fisher confirmed that she would reprise her role as Princess Leia in Episode VII of the Star Wars series. Fisher claimed that Leia was "Elderly. She's in an intergalactic old folks' home [laughs]. I just think she would be just like she was before, only slower and less inclined to be up for the big battle."[71] After other media outlets reported this on March 6, 2013, her representative said the same day that Fisher was joking and that nothing was announced.[72]

In a January 2014 interview, Fisher confirmed her involvement and the involvement of the original cast in the upcoming sequels by saying "as for the next Star Wars film, myself, Harrison Ford and Mark Hamill are expected to report to work in March or April. I'd like to wear my old cinnamon buns hairstyle again but with white hair. I think that would be funny."[73]

In March 2014, Fisher stated that she was moving to London for six months because that was where Star Wars Episode VII filming would take place.[74] On April 29, 2014, the cast for the new sequel was officially announced, and Fisher, along with Harrison Ford, Mark Hamill, Peter Mayhew, Anthony Daniels, and Kenny Baker, were all cast in their original roles for the film. Star Wars Episode VII, subtitled The Force Awakens, was released worldwide on December 18, 2015. Fisher was nominated for a 2016 Saturn Award for Best Supporting Actress for her portrayal.[75]

In Rogue One (2016), which predates the original trilogy, a young version of Leia and the character Grand Moff Tarkin appear, both through computer animation.[76][77] Fisher had completed filming her role as Leia in Star Wars: The Last Jedi (2017) shortly before her death.[78] Variety reported following her death that Fisher was slated to appear in Episode IX and that now Lucasfilm, Disney, and others involved with the film will need to find a way to address her death and what will become of her character.[79][80][81]

Fisher and her mother appear in Bright Lights: Starring Carrie Fisher and Debbie Reynolds,[82] a 2016 documentary about their close relationship featuring interviews, photographs and home movies. The documentary premiered at the 2016 Cannes Film Festival and broadcast on January 7, 2017.[83]

She will be featured in the film Wonderwell with Rita Ora, which was filmed in the summer of 2016 in Italy.[84]

Personal life

Fisher met musician Paul Simon while filming Star Wars, and the pair dated from 1977 until 1983.[85] In 1980, she was briefly engaged to Canadian actor and comedian Dan Aykroyd, who proposed to her on the set of their film The Blues Brothers. She said: "We had rings, we got blood tests, the whole shot. But then I got back together with Paul Simon."[86] Fisher was married to Simon from August 1983 to July 1984, and they dated again for a time after their divorce. During their marriage, she appeared in Simon's music video for the song "Rene and Georgette Magritte with Their Dog after the War." Simon's song "Hearts and Bones" is about their romance.[87][88]

She subsequently had a relationship with Creative Artists Agency principal and talent agent Bryan Lourd. They had one child together, Billie Lourd (b. 1992). Eddie Fisher stated in his autobiography (Been There Done That) that his granddaughter's name is Catherine Fisher Lourd and her nickname is "Billy." The couple's relationship ended when Lourd left to be in a homosexual relationship. In interviews, Fisher described Lourd as her second husband, but a 2004 profile of the actress and writer revealed that she and Lourd were never legally married.[89]

In her 2016 autobiography The Princess Diarist, Fisher wrote that she and Harrison Ford had a three-month affair during the filming of Star Wars in 1976.[90]

Fisher also had a close relationship with singer James Blunt. While working on his album Back to Bedlam in 2003, Blunt spent much of his time at Fisher's residence. When Vanity Fair's George Wayne asked Fisher if their relationship was sexual, she replied: "Absolutely not, but I did become his therapist. He was a soldier. This boy has seen awful stuff. Every time James hears fireworks or anything like that, his heart beats faster, and he gets 'fight or flight.' You know, he comes from a long line of soldiers dating back to the 10th century. He would tell me these horrible stories. He was a captain, a reconnaissance soldier. I became James' therapist. So it would have been unethical to sleep with my patient."[24]

On February 26, 2005, R. Gregory "Greg" Stevens, a lobbyist, was found dead in Fisher's California home. The final autopsy report listed the cause of death as "cocaine and oxycodone use" but added chronic, and apparently previously undiagnosed, heart disease as contributing factors. Media coverage of an initial autopsy report used the word "overdose," but that wording is not in the final report.[91] In an interview, Fisher claimed that Stevens' ghost haunted her mansion, which unsettled her: "I was a nut for a year," she explained, "and in that year I took drugs again."[24]

Fisher described herself as an "enthusiastic agnostic who would be happy to be shown that there is a God."[92] She was raised Protestant,[93] but often attended Jewish services (her father's faith) with Orthodox friends.[94]

In 2016, Harvard College gave Fisher its Annual Outstanding Lifetime Achievement Award in Cultural Humanism, noting that "her forthright activism and outspokenness about addiction, mental illness, and agnosticism have advanced public discourse on these issues with creativity and empathy."[6]

Fisher was a supporter and advocate for several causes, including women's advocacy,[95] animal rights,[96] and LGBT causes.[97] She was open about her experiences caring for friends who suffered from AIDS, contributing financially to various AIDS and HIV organizations, including hosting a benefit for amfAR, The Foundation for AIDS Research.[98] She also served as an honorary board member for the International Bipolar Foundation,[99] and, in 2014, received the Golden Heart Award for her work with The Midnight Mission.[100]

She was a spokesperson for Jenny Craig weight loss television ads that aired in January 2011.[101]

Bipolar disorder and drug use

During appearances on 20/20 and The Secret Life of the Manic Depressive with Stephen Fry, Fisher publicly discussed her diagnosis of bipolar disorder and her addictions to cocaine and prescription medication.[102] She said her drug use was a form of self-medication; she used pain medication such as Percodan to "dial down" the manic aspect of her bipolar disorder.[103] She gave nicknames to her bipolar moods: Roy ("the wild ride of a mood") and Pam ("who stands on the shore and sobs").[104] "Drugs made me feel more normal," she explained to Psychology Today in 2001. "They contained me."[103] She discussed her 2008 memoir Wishful Drinking and various topics in it with Matt Lauer on NBC's Today that same year, and also revealed that she would have turned down the role of Princess Leia had she realized it would give her the celebrity status that made her parents' lives difficult.[105] This interview was followed by a similar appearance on The Late Late Show with Craig Ferguson on December 12, 2008, where she discussed her electroconvulsive therapy (ECT) treatments.[106] At one point, she received ECT every six weeks to "blow apart the cement" in her brain.[107] In 2014, she said she was no longer receiving the treatment.[108]

In another interview, Fisher revealed that she used cocaine during the filming of The Empire Strikes Back. "Slowly, I realized I was doing a bit more drugs than other people and losing my choice in the matter," she noted.[109][110] In 1985, after months of sobriety, she accidentally overdosed on a combination of prescription medication and sleeping pills.[111] She was rushed to the hospital, creating the turn of events that led to much of the material in her novel and screenplay, Postcards from the Edge. Asked why she did not take on the role of her story's protagonist, named Suzanne, in the film version, Fisher remarked, "I've already played Suzanne."[112]

In her later years, Fisher had an emotional support animal, a French Bulldog named Gary, whom she brought to numerous appearances and interviews.[113] Following her death, reports indicated that Fisher's daughter Billie Lourd would take care of Gary.[114]


After finishing the European leg of her book tour, Fisher was on a commercial flight on December 23, 2016 from London to Los Angeles when she suffered a medical emergency around fifteen minutes before the aircraft landed.[115][a] A passenger seated near Fisher reported that she had stopped breathing;[118] another passenger performed CPR on Fisher until paramedics arrived at the scene. Emergency services in Los Angeles were contacted when the flight crew reported a passenger in distress prior to landing. Fisher was taken by ambulance to the Ronald Reagan UCLA Medical Center, where she was placed on a ventilator.[119][120]

Following four days in intensive care at UCLA Medical Center, Fisher died on December 27, 2016, at 8:55 a.m. (PST); she was 60 years old.[121] Fisher's daughter, Billie Lourd, confirmed her mother's death in a statement to the press.[119] Many of her co-stars and directors from Star Wars and other works also shared their thoughts on her death.[122]

On January 9, 2017, the Los Angeles County Department of Public Health issued a death certificate that stated "cardiac arrest/deferred" as the cause of death. More tests were expected.[123] In a June 16, 2017 news release, the Los Angeles County coroner's office said that the exact cause of death could not be determined, but sleep apnea and the buildup of fatty tissue on the walls of arteries were among the contributing factors.[124] A full report from June 19, 2017, stated that Fisher had cocaine in her system, as well as traces of heroin, other opiates, and MDMA. The report also stated that the investigation was unable to determine when she had taken the drugs, and whether they contributed to her death.[125] Her daughter Billie Lourd stated that Fisher "battled drug addiction and mental illness her entire life [and] ultimately died of it. She was purposefully open in all of her work about the social stigmas surrounding these diseases...I know my Mom, she’d want her death to encourage people to be open about their struggles."[126]

The day after Fisher's death, her mother Debbie Reynolds suffered a stroke at the home of son Todd, where the family was planning Fisher's burial arrangements.[127] She was taken to a hospital, where she died later that afternoon.[128][129] According to Todd Fisher, Reynolds had said, "I really want to be with Carrie" immediately prior to suffering the stroke.[130][131][b] On January 5, 2017, a joint private memorial was held for Fisher and Reynolds. A portion of Fisher's ashes were laid to rest beside Reynolds in a crypt at Forest Lawn Memorial Park in Hollywood Hills.[133] The remainder of her ashes are held in a giant, novelty Prozac pill.[134]

In her 2008 book, Wishful Drinking, Fisher wrote about what she hoped would eventually be her obituary: "I want it reported that I drowned in moonlight, strangled by my own bra." Several obituaries and retrospectives featured the quote.[135] In the absence of a star for Fisher on the Hollywood Walk of Fame, fans created their own memorial using a blank star. Along with flowers and candles, words put on the blank star read, "Carrie Fisher may the force be with you always."[2] In the video game Star Wars: The Old Republic, thousands of fans paid tribute to Fisher by gathering at House Organa on the planet Alderaan where Fisher's character in Star Wars resided.[136][137] Lightsaber vigils and similar events in Fisher's honor were held at various Alamo Drafthouse Cinemas theaters and other sites.[138][139][140] On January 6, 2017, the lights on Broadway in Manhattan were darkened for one minute in honor of Fisher and her mother.[141] Fisher and Reynolds were also both featured in the 89th Academy Awards In Memoriam segment.[142] On March 25, 2017, a public memorial for mother and daughter was held at the Hall of Liberty theater in Forest Lawn Memorial Park. The event was streamed live on Reynolds' website. On April 14, a special tribute to Fisher was held by Mark Hamill during the Star Wars Celebration in Orlando.[143]



Year Title Role Notes Refs

1975 Shampoo Lorna Karpf [131]
1977 Star Wars Princess Leia Organa [131]
1980 The Empire Strikes Back Princess Leia Organa [131]
The Blues Brothers Mystery Woman [131]

1981 Under the Rainbow Annie Clark [41]

1983 Return of the Jedi Princess Leia Organa [144]

1984 Garbo Talks Lisa Rolfe [144]

1985 The Man with One Red Shoe Paula [131]
1986 Hannah and Her Sisters April [131]
Hollywood Vice Squad Betty Melton [41]
1987 Amazon Women on the Moon Mary Brown Segment: "Reckless Youth" [41]
The Time Guardian Petra [144]
1988 Appointment with Death Nadine Boynton [41]

1989 The 'Burbs Carol Peterson [41]

Loverboy Monica Delancy [41]
She's Back Beatrice [144]
When Harry Met Sally... Marie [131]
1990 Sweet Revenge Linda [41]
Sibling Rivalry Iris Turner-Hunter [144]
Postcards from the Edge N/A Writer
1991 Drop Dead Fred Janie [41]

1991 Soapdish Betsy Faye Sharon [41]

Hook Woman kissing on bridge Uncredited [145]
1992 This Is My Life Claudia Curtis [41]

1997 Austin Powers: International Man of Mystery Therapist Uncredited [144]

1998 The Emperor's New Clothes: An All-Star Illustrated Retelling of the Classic Fairy Tale The Imperial Lady-in-Waiting #1 Voice [146]
2000 Scream 3 Bianca [41]
Lisa Picard Is Famous Herself [147]
2001 Heartbreakers Ms. Surpin [144]
Jay and Silent Bob Strike Back Nun [41]
2002 A Midsummer Night's Rave Mia's Mom
2003 Charlie's Angels: Full Throttle Mother Superior [144]
Wonderland Sally Hansen [144]
2004 Stateside Mrs. Dubois
2005 Undiscovered Carrie
2007 Suffering Man's Charity Reporter Cameo role [148]
Cougar Club Glady Goodbey [149]
2008 The Women Bailey Smith [144]
2009 White Lightnin' Cilla [144]
Fanboys Doctor [144]

2009 Sorority Row Mrs. Crenshaw [144]

2010 Wishful Drinking Herself Documentary [150]
2014 Maps to the Stars Herself [151]
2015 Star Wars: The Force Awakens General Leia Organa [152]
2016 Bright Lights: Starring Carrie Fisher and Debbie Reynolds Herself Documentary
Rogue One: A Star Wars Story Princess Leia Organa Archival audio and likeness
2017 Star Wars: The Last Jedi General Leia Organa Awaiting release; Posthumous release
Wonderwell Hazel Post-production; Posthumous release [153]


Year Title Role Notes Refs

1969 Debbie Reynolds and the Sound of Children Girl Scout Television film [154]
1977 Come Back, Little Sheba Marie Television film
1978 Ringo Marquine Television film
1978 Leave Yesterday Behind Marnie Clarkson Television film [155]

1978 Saturday Night Live Herself (host) Episode: "Carrie Fisher/The Blues Brothers" [156]

1978 Star Wars Holiday Special Princess Leia Organa Television special [157]

1982 Laverne and Shirley Cathy Episode: "The Playboy Show" [156]

1984 Faerie Tale Theatre Thumbelina Episode: "Thumbelina" [156]

1984 Frankenstein Elizabeth Television film [158]

1985 From Here to Maternity Veronica Television short [159]
1985 George Burns Comedy Week Mitzi Episode: "The Couch"; pilot for the series Leo and Liz in Beverly Hills [160]
1985 Happily Ever After Alice Conway (voice) Television film
1986 Liberty Emma Lazarus Television film [161]
1986 Sunday Drive Franny Jessup Television film
1987 Amazing Stories Laurie McNamara Episode: "Gershwin's Trunk" [162]
1989 Two Daddies Alice Conway (voice) Television film [163]
1989 Trying Times Enid Episode: "Hunger Chic" [160]
1993 The Young Indiana Jones Chronicles N/A Co-wrote episode: "Paris, October 1916"
1995 Present Tense, Past Perfect Television short [164]
1995 Frasier Phyllis (voice) Episode: "She's the Boss" [165]
1995 Ellen Herself Episode: "The Movie Show" [156]
1997 Gun Nancy Episode: "The Hole"
1997 Roseanne N/A Wrote episode: "Arsenic and Old Mom"
1998 Dr. Katz, Professional Therapist Roz Katz (voice) Episode: "Thanksgiving" [166]
1999 "It's Like, You Know..." Carrie Fisher Episode: "Arthur 2: On the rocks"
2000 Sex and the City Herself Episode: "Sex and Another City" [145]
2001 These Old Broads Hooker Television film; also writer and co-executive producer [156]
2002 A Nero Wolfe Mystery Ellen Tenzer Episode: "Motherhunt"
2003 Good Morning, Miami Judy Silver Episode: "A Kiss Before Lying" [167]
2004 Jack and Bobby Madison Skutcher Episode: "The First Lady" [168]
2005 Smallville Pauline Kahn Episode: "Thirst" [156]
2005 Romancing the Bride Edwina Television film
2006 Friendly Fire Chanteuse Film made from music video clips 

2005–2017 Family Guy Angela (voice) 23 episodes [169]

2007 Odd Job Jack Dr. Finch Episode: "The Beauty Beast" [156]
2007 Weeds Celia's attorney Episode: "The Brick Dance" [156]
2007 On the Lot Herself Judge [170]
2007 Side Order of Life Dr. Gilbert Episode: "Funeral for a Phone" [156]
2007 30 Rock Rosemary Howard Episode: "Rosemary's Baby"
Nomination—Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Guest Actress in a Comedy Series (2008) [145]
2008 Robot Chicken: Star Wars Episode II Princess Leia Organa / Additional voices Television special [166]
2008 Bring Back ... Star Wars Herself Television documentary
2009 Celebrity Ghost Stories Herself [167]
2010 Wright vs. Wrong Joan Harrington Television film [167]
2010 Entourage Anna Fowler Episode: "Tequila and Coke" [171]
2011 A Child's Garden of Poetry Voice TV Movie
2012 Comedy Central Roast of Roseanne Herself (roaster) Comedy special
2012 It's Christmas, Carol! Eve Television film [156]

2014 The Big Bang Theory Herself Episode: "The Convention Conundrum" [156]

2014 Legit Angela McKinnon Episode: "Licked" [172]
2014–16 Girlfriends' Guide to Divorce Cat 2 episodes
2015–17 Catastrophe Mia Norris 5 episodes
Nomination—Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Guest Actress in a Comedy Series (2017) [144]
2016 8 Out of 10 Cats Herself Episode 19x07 [144]

Video games

Year Title Voice role Refs

2012 Dishonored Female Broadcaster [173]
2016 Lego Star Wars: The Force Awakens Princess Leia [173]



Postcards from the Edge, 1987, ISBN 0-7434-6651-9
Surrender the Pink, 1990, ISBN 0-671-66640-1
Delusions of Grandma, 1993, ISBN 0-684-85803-7
The Best Awful There Is, 2004, ISBN 0-7434-7857-6


Hollywood Moms, 2001 (introduction), ISBN 978-0810941571
Wishful Drinking, 2008, ISBN 1-4391-0225-2
Shockaholic, 2011, ISBN 978-0-7432-6482-2
The Princess Diarist, 2016, ISBN 978-0-399-17359-2


Postcards from the Edge, 1990
These Old Broads, 2001
E-Girl (2007)[174]
Doctored screenplays include Sister Act (1992),[42] Last Action Hero (1993)[175] and The Wedding Singer (1998)[42]


Wishful Drinking, 2006[176]
Wishful Drinking, 2008[177]
A Spy in the House of Me, 2008[178]


Year Association Category Work Result

1977 Saturn Awards Best Actress Star Wars Nominated
1983 Return of the Jedi Nominated
1990 President's Award Won
1991 BAFTA Awards Best Adapted Screenplay Postcards from the Edge Nominated
2008 Emmy Award Outstanding Guest Actress in a Comedy Series 30 Rock Nominated
2011 Outstanding Variety, Music or Comedy Special Wishful Drinking
(Shared with: Sheila Nevins Fenton Bailey Randy Barbato) Nominated
2016 Saturn Awards Best Supporting Actress Star Wars: The Force Awakens Nominated
2017 Emmy Award Outstanding Guest Actress in a Comedy Series Catastrophe Nominated
2018 Grammy Award Best Spoken Word Album The Princess Diarist Pending[179]



2017 Hugo Award for Best Related Work for The Princess Diarist (posthumously)


1. Radio transmissions and emergency calls included the phrases "cardiac episode" and "cardiac arrest"; witnesses believed they had seen Fisher having a heart attack.[116] Several news outlets called the episode a "massive heart attack".[117]
2. In an interview with ABC News, Fisher later said that his mother "didn't die of a broken heart. ... It wasn't that she was sitting around inconsolable—not at all. She simply said that she didn't get to see Carrie come back from London. She expressed how much she loved my sister. She then said she really wanted to be with Carrie—in those precise words—and within 15 minutes from that conversation, she faded out. Within 30 minutes, she technically was gone."[132]


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