Died when: 73 years 262 days
Star Sign: Virgo
Anna Maria Louisa Italiano (September 17, 1931 – June 6, 2005), known professionally as Anne Bancroft, was an American actress, director, screenwriter and singer. Respected for her acting prowess and versatility, Bancroft was the recipient of an Academy Award, three BAFTA Awards, two Golden Globe Awards, two Tony Awards, and two Primetime Emmy Awards. She is one of only 24 thespians to achieve the Triple Crown of Acting. Associated with the method acting technique, having studied under Lee Strasberg at the Actors Studio, Bancroft made her film debut in the noir thriller Don't Bother to Knock (1952). Following a string of repetitive and glamorous supporting roles, her film career took a toll with executives reluctant to cast her in prestige roles. In 1958, Bancroft made her Broadway debut with the play Two for the Seesaw, winning the Tony Award for Best Featured Actress in a Play. The following year she portrayed Anne Sullivan in the original Broadway production of The Miracle Worker, winning the Tony Award for Best Actress in a Play. Following her continued success on stage, Bancroft's film career was revived when she was cast in the acclaimed film adaptation of The Miracle Worker (1962), winning the Academy Award for Best Actress. Her film career further progressed with Oscar nominated performances in The Pumpkin Eater (1964), The Graduate (1967), The Turning Point (1977), and Agnes of God (1985). Bancroft continued to act in the later half of her life, with prominent roles in The Elephant Man (1980), Garbo Talks (1984), To Be or Not to Be (1983), 84 Charing Cross Road (1987), Home for the Holidays (1995), Dracula: Dead and Loving It (1995), G.I. Jane (1997), and Great Expectations (1998). She received multiple Primetime Emmy Award nominations, including for the television films Broadway Bound (1992), Deep in My Heart (1999), for which she won, and The Roman Spring of Mrs. Stone (2003). Bancroft died on June 6, 2005, at the age of 73, following her battle with uterine cancer. She was married to actor and comedian Mel Brooks, with whom she had a son named Max.