Friday, May 9, 2014

Nancy Malone Dead at 78

Actress, TV director and Emmy-winning producer died Thursday at City of Hope hospital in Duarte, Calif., of pneumonia that arose from complications attributed to a recent battle with leukemia. She was 79.

Malone was born March 19, 1935, on Long Island. She began her career at age 7 as a model and appeared in ads for Kellogg’s cereal, Ford cars and Macy’s. At 10, Malone was chosen for the cover of Life magazine's 10th anniversary issue, “The Typical American Girl.”

She was in the cast of the very first CBS daytime soap opera, The First Hundred Years, playing Margy Martin.

At 15 she made her Broadway debut as the title character in "Time Out for Ginger."

Malone played Robin in The Guiding Light from 1961-63. She also starred as Libby Kingston, the girlfriend of young detective Adam Flint (Paul Burke), in 51 episodes of Naked City, the gritty docudrama that aired on ABC from 1958-63. She collected an Emmy Award nomination in 1963 for her work on the show.

The New York native won her Emmy (shared with Linda Hope and Don Mischer) in 1993 for producing the special Bob Hope: The First 90 Years. She also earned two other noms for directing for the series The Trials of Rosie O’Neill on CBS and Sisters on NBC.

In 1975, Malone produced her first telefilm, NBC's Winner Take All, then joined Fox as director of TV development. Soon, she was promoted to vice president of television, putting her at an unprecedented level at a major studio.

Around this time, Malone co-founded Women in Film, the nonprofit organization dedicated to helping women advance in the entertainment, communication and media industries. In 1977, she was awarded one of the first Crystal Awards by WIF.

Malone also appeared on such TV shows as Bonanza, The Fugitive, The Partridge Family, Big Valley, The Rockford Files, Outer Limits, Dr. Kildare, The Andy Griffith Show, Hawaii Five-0, The Twilight Zone and Lou Grant and worked opposite Burt Reynolds in the 1973 film The Man Who Loved Cat Dancing.

In 1975, Malone established Lilac Productions, which produced such telefilms as Sherlock Holmes in New York (1976), with Roger Moore, Patrick Macnee and John Huston; Like Mom, Like Me (1978) starring Linda Lavin; and The Violation of Sarah McDavid (1981), with Patty Duke.

In the 1980s, Malone completed the American Film Institute’s Directing Workshop for Women and then helmed the 1985 PBS telefilm There Were Times, Dear, starring Jones and Len Cariou. The first film about Alzheimer’s disease, it was used as a fundraiser by Alzheimer’s chapters around the country and raised nearly $3 million to combat the disease.

In 1985, Malone directed an episode of Dynasty, after which she became a staff director at Aaron Spelling Productions and helmed installments of Hotel, Melrose Place and Beverly Hills, 90210.

In addition to Sisters and Rosie O'Neill, she directed episodes of Knots Landing, Cagney & Lacey, Star Trek: Voyager, Touched by an Angel, Dawson’s Creek, Judging Amy, Starman and Resurrection Blvd.

Malone is survived by Linda Hope, her colleague and longtime friend who is the adoptive daughter of Bob Hope and his wife Dolores.

In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to the City of Hope, to the Directing Workshop for Women at AFI or to the Performing Animals Welfare Society.

1 comment:

  1. My thoughts are with her family, friends and many fans....I am so sorry for your loss. As for ms Malone may you rest in will be missed :(