Oscar-nominated actress and singer Debbie Reynolds has died at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center in Los Angeles, just one day after the passing of her daughter, actress Carrie Fisher. Reynolds was 84 years old.
“She wanted to be with Carrie,” her son Todd Fisher told Variety. Reynolds was hospitalized Wednesday after suffering a suspected stroke at her son’s Beverly Hills home while planning her daughter’s funeral. Todd told the AP that Carrie’s death “was too much” for Reynolds to bear.
Reynolds was one of Hollywood’s brightest stars during the ‘50s and ‘60s, bursting onto the scene at just 18 years old with 1950’s Three Little Words, which earned her a Golden Globe nomination for Most Promising Newcomer. She is perhaps best known for her starring role in the 1952 classic Singin’ in the Rain. Reynolds was nominated for a best actress Oscar in recognition of her work in 1964’s The Unsinkable Molly Brown.
After a long and accomplished career comprising not only film, but also music, theatre and television, Reynolds received a Screen Actors Guild lifetime achievement award in January of 2015, and received an honorary Oscar, the Jean Hersholt Humanitarian Award, the following November. She was unable to accept the latter award in person due to illness. Her granddaughter, actress Billie Lourd, accepted it on her behalf.
“She’s an immensely powerful woman, and I just admire my mother very much,” Carrie Fisher said of her mother in a recent NPR interview. “There’s very few women from her generation who worked like that, who just kept a career going all her life, and raised children, and had horrible relationships, and lost all her money, and got it back again. I mean, she’s had an amazing life, and she’s someone to admire.”
Reynolds is survived by her son Todd and granddaughter Lourd.