Actress Angela Lansbury has done it all, from starring on Broadway to receiving an Oscar nod for her 1944 film Gaslight. While recalling her amazing Hollywood career, Angela, 94, said she doesn’t regret being a “character actor.”
“[It] gave me a much bigger career than I would have had if I had just been a glamour girl,” the actress said in the latest issue of Closer Weekly magazine, on newsstands now. However, her most famous role will always be Jessica Fletcher in Murder, She Wrote.
“She seems to be a universal woman that the world really likes, accepts and recognizes me for,” the Anastasia star told Parade in May 2018, adding it was the “closest” she ever came to playing herself. But after the show ended in 1966, Angela only did four Murder, She Wrote T.V movies until she decided to call it quits in 2003.
“I don’t see her as an older woman,” the six-time Golden Globe winner once explained about reprising the role. “I’d rather let her remain as she is. I don’t want to tarnish or alter that image.”
In Hollywood, Angela has worked with some of the best actresses in the business. She’s starred alongside Judy Garland in The Harvey Girls and Till the Clouds Roll By and Elizabeth Taylor in National Velvet and The Mirror Crack’d. In fact, she and Elizabeth quickly became friends after they met on the 1944 film National Velvet. However, it was hard for her to accept the actress’ life.
“I had to admire her even though I couldn’t imagine living the life that she did,” Angela has said. “Elizabeth was always a part of the gossip of the day, and that was never my style.”
In 1957, the Beauty and the Beast star left Hollywood to become a musical sensation on Broadway. She ended up winning her first Tony in 1966 for Mame, and by 1970, Angela cut back on work so she could spend more time with her husband, Peter Shaw, and their two kids — Anthony, 68, and Deidre, 67. Although she’s had a successful career, nothing compared to the feeling Angela got from being at home.
“I’m a housekeeper, a gardener. I do all those things. I have family around me, which is lovely,” the grandmother of three explained to Parade, adding her last wish is to always be remembered “as an OK gal.”
For more on Angela, pick up the latest issue of Closer Weekly, on newsstands now — and be sure to sign up for our newsletter!