Filmmaker & comedian Penny Marshall dead at 75
TMZ is reporting that actress, comedian, and director Penny Marshall passed away Monday night at her Hollywood Hills home at the age of 75. The cause of death appears to be complications from diabetes.
Penny’s family said: “Our family is heartbroken over the passing of Penny Marshall. Penny was a tomboy who loved sports, doing puzzles of any kind, drinking milk and Pepsi together and being with her family.”
Marshall was born Carole Penny Marshall in the Bronx, New York, on October 15, 1943. She was a three-time Golden Globe Award nominee for Best Actress for her role as Laverne DeFazio in the comedy series Laverne & Shirley (1976-1983). Marshall and Cindy Williams starred in spinoff sitcom after appearing in Happy Days.
The actress appeared in the recurring role as Myrna Turner on The Odd Couple, directed by her brother, co-creator Garry Marshall, who died in July 2016. Her television credits also include Mary Tyler Moore, Murder Police, and Paul Sand in Friends and Lovers, including guest appearances on The Bob Newhart Show, Mork & Mindy, The Simpsons, Fraiser, Bones, and Entourage.
Marshall became the first woman in history to direct a film that grossed more than $100 million at the box office after directing Big in 1988, starring Tom Hanks. She also directed a few episodes of Laverne & Shirley and a handful of films including Jumpin’ Jack Flash, Awakenings, A League of Their Own (which featured her daughter Tracy Reiner), Renaissance Man, The Preacher’s Wife, and Riding in Cars with Boys. At the time of her death, Marshall was wrapping up production on the documentary Rodman, focusing on the story of NBA Hall of Famer Dennis Rodman.
Marshall was close friends with Carrie Fisher, who died on December 27, 2016. Marshall was the godmother to Billie Lourd, Fisher’s daughter and the two shared joint birthdays.
(Photo Credit: Getty Images)