Filmmaker & Comedian Penny Marshall Dead at 75

Filmmaker & Comedian Penny Marshall Dead at 75

Marshall died Monday night at her Los Angeles home from complications of diabetes, a family publicist Michelle Bega tells NPR. On behalf of 411, I'd like to extend my condolences to the family, friends, and fans of Penny Marshall.

Marshall went on to direct such flicks as "Big", "Awakenings" and "A League of Their Own". Her brother Garry Marshall, who died in 2016, was also one of Hollywood's top comedy directors. However, it was her next big, recurring gig that would spawn the role for which Marshall was most closely associated with.

Marshall is survived by her older sister, Ronny; daughter, actress Tracy Reiner; and three grandchildren.

Laverne was not a television character who was out burning bras or beating her chest in the name of feminism. The show was a spinoff of "Happy Days". Laverne & Shirley ended in 1983, or one season longer than Shirley lasted. "I'll try anything. What are they gonna do, kick me out of show business?"

Numerous tributes focused on Marshall´s unpretentiousness and easy humor, while others highlighted her iconic status among women aspiring to make their way in an industry geared toward men. Elizabeth Perkins would later state that she and Hanks were convinced the film would be forgotten. Her second directorial feature, Big, became a massive critical and commercial success, helping to launch Tom Hanks into superstardom and cementing Marshall as the first woman director in Hollywood history to direct a movie that grossed more than $100 million. At the Oscars, the film lost out to Dances With Wolves for Best Picture. Marshall would later Wednesday the director Rob Reiner, a marriage that lasted from 1971 to 1981.

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The cast is filled with people like Tom Hanks, Geena Davis, Lori Petty, Madonna, Rosie O'Donnell, and more. Marshall also went on to direct 1994's Renaissance Man, 1996's The Preacher's Wife, and 2001's Riding in Cars with Boys.

True to self-deprecating form, Marshall never stopped seeing her success as some sort of accident. Talented! I made the deal along with her agent Dan Strone, for her memoir My Mother Was Nuts, which accurately and aptly told the wonderful and amusing story of her life.

Marshall was married twice. The two split in 1979.

Mark Walberg shared a tribute to Marshall on Twitter. In 2009, she was diagnosed with lung cancer that spread to her brain. Her mother's caustic wit - a major source of inspiration for Marshall's memoir - was formative. Her first real name recognition came with a recurring part as a put upon secretary "nobody" ever called attractive on "The Odd Couple".

Penny Marshall (right) with her former co-star Cindy Williams.

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