Saturday, November 6, 2010

Jill Clayburgh Dead at 66

Jill Clayburgh died Friday at her home in Lakeville, Conn. She was 66.

The actress, who last year played the matriach of ABC's Dirty Sexy Money, had been battling chronic lymphocytic leukemia for 21 years, her husband, playwright David Rabe, told the Associated Press.

Perhaps best-known for her Oscar-nominated role in the 1978 film An Unmarried Woman, Clayburgh forged a career portraying strong and confident women who were marked by certain flaws.

She dealt with the disease courageously, quietly and privately, Rabe said, and conducted herself with enormous grace "and made it into an opportunity for her children to grow and be human."

Clayburgh's early television roles included a run on Search for Tomorrow as Grace Bolton.

Previous to her role on Dirty Sexy Money, Clayburgh appeared on the hit Ally McBeal and received two Emmy nods -- for best actress in 1975 for portraying a tell-it-like-it-is prostitute in the ABC TV film Hustling, and for her guest turn in 2005 as a vengeful plastic surgery patient on FX's Nip/Tuck.

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