RIP Julie Harris
August 25, 2013 9:10 AM   Subscribe

Actress Julie Harris, best known for roles in the film East of Eden and on television's Knots Landing, has died at the age of 87.

Harris won 3 Emmy Awards and 6 Tony Awards, including this one for The Last of Mrs. Lincoln in 1973.
posted by DRoll (16 comments total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
She was amazing in The Haunting.


Still one of the scariest movies I've ever seen.
posted by The Underpants Monster at 9:48 AM on August 25, 2013 [4 favorites]

posted by scody at 9:50 AM on August 25, 2013

posted by mdrosen at 9:51 AM on August 25, 2013

Having seen Ken Burns' Civil War more times than I can count, it's nice to finally discover the voice of Mary Chestnut. RIP
posted by AlonzoMosleyFBI at 9:58 AM on August 25, 2013 [2 favorites]

East of Eden is a favorite film of mine. It's the first film I'd seen where I actually sat back and marveled at how great a performance can be, and that great performances are worth experiencing (as opposed to just being entertained).
posted by Brocktoon at 10:38 AM on August 25, 2013

posted by Thorzdad at 10:43 AM on August 25, 2013

posted by Cash4Lead at 10:51 AM on August 25, 2013

I'll second The Haunting.

posted by jim in austin at 10:53 AM on August 25, 2013 [1 favorite]

I always think of her in association with "The Belle of Amherst", a one woman show about Emily Dickinson for which she one a Tony.
posted by hwestiii at 11:00 AM on August 25, 2013 [2 favorites]

I agree, she was amazing in the Haunting, which is one of my favorites.

posted by crush-onastick at 1:26 PM on August 25, 2013

She did a handful of live recordings for us at L.A. Theatre Works back in the day: All My Sons, The Road to Mecca, The Autumn Garden, The Fiery Furnace, Mrs. Klein. I always hoped that we'd have her back so I could see her in action, but I knew with the strokes it'd never be possible. So sad to lose her for good. :-(

posted by mykescipark at 1:27 PM on August 25, 2013 [1 favorite]

I love East of Eden. Love it!

posted by Hop123 at 2:52 PM on August 25, 2013

posted by Lynsey at 3:11 PM on August 25, 2013

When she retired to Cape Cod she was a great friend to the theatre community there, particularly the Wellfleet Harbor Actor's Theatre.
posted by rmd1023 at 4:26 PM on August 25, 2013 [1 favorite]

What made her Haunting performance so... uh... haunting was not just the gutteral fear she so effortlessly portrayed - but the biting anger, the desire and longing for belonging that finally seduces her into believable madness. It's my favorite horror moive bar none because of her acting skill.
posted by helmutdog at 5:05 AM on August 26, 2013 [1 favorite]

Saw her with Charles Durning (whom I also loved) in a revival of The Gin Game on Broadway. Lovely.

Also (because it's my habit to crack fond jokes at funerals, apparently) I thought instantly of a classmate back when I was in drama school; her name actually was also Julie Harris. And on our first day, the first teacher noted that, and gently warned her that "you know, you're going to have to change that...." because, he explained, the Actors' Equity union doesn't allow two people to have the same name. (That's why you see so many actors use middle names or initials, actually - there probably was already an Actors' Equity member named "Anthony Hall", and another already named "Michael Fox".)

For the next two years, every time we all went on to a new class and the teacher was taking first roll call, they'd always do a take when they got to Julie's name and tell her that "you know...." and Julie would always sigh and say "yeah, I know." Then when we got to our last semester, the first time someone did a take when he was asking for "Julie Harris," Julie spoke up and said, "I'm using JuliA Harris now."

Last I heard JuliA Harris is happily at work in producing now instead of acting, but I can't help hoping she's mourning her namesake a tiny bit anyway.
posted by EmpressCallipygos at 7:05 AM on August 26, 2013 [1 favorite]

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