The Oscar and Emmy nominated actor Sally Kellerman passed away of heart failure in her Beverly Hills home. Kellerman was 84 and had dementia, her manager, and publicist Alan Eichler confirmed.
Despite numerous successes, Sally Kellerman has always been known as Margaret "Hot Lips" Houlihan from the 70s movie MASH directed by Robert Altman.
Her career spanned over six decades. She was equally successful in quirky, as in dramatic roles.
Kellerman appeared in one of the first Star Trek episodes, classic comedy, Back to School, The Player, Ready To Wear, and nearly 150 other titles.
Sally Kellerman's First Oscar Nomination
The role in MASH gave Sally worldwide recognition, and she also received a nomination for best-supporting actress.
Talking to LIFE magazine, Kellerman said:
"Everybody calls me Hot Lips. Nobody even knows my name."
The nickname comes from one memorable scene from the movie, where her character and surgeon Frank Burns (Robert Duvall) make love. The mischievous doctors sneaked in microphones, and over the PA system, Sally Kellerman's voice screams:
"Oh, Frank, my lips are hot. Kiss my hot lips!"
The movie became a TV series, where Loretta Swit took over the role played by Kellerman.
Ms. Kellerman was born in 1937 in Long Beach, California, in a reputable family. Her father was John "Jack" Helm Kellerman, a Shell Oil executive from St. Louis, Missouri, and her mother Edith Baine was a piano teacher.
After moving to Los Angeles, young Sally was invested in jazz singing and signed a contract with Verve Records at 18.
However, her music was put on hold as her acting gigs proved more challenging and profitable for the young, statuesque blonde.
She released her last album Sally in 2007.
In 1962, Sally got her first leading role in Cheyenne, followed by numerous guest appearances on famous TV shows, including Twilight Zone and Bonanza.
After MASH, Sally Kellerman mainly worked in movies, but she never forgot TV and theater.
Sally graced the big screen with Laurence Olivier Jodie Foster and was an SNL host on numerous occasions.
Sally In The XXI Century
In 2013, she released an autobiography, Read My Lips: Stories of a Hollywood Life.
In 2014, she received a final Emmy nomination for a recurring role on The Young and the Restless.
Throughout the 80 and the 90s, Sally's career stood steady. In the 2000s, she slowed down but kept working until 2017.
Sally's costar from Maron tweeted:
"Sally Kellerman was radiant and beautiful and fun and so great to work with. My real mom was very flattered and a bit jealous. I'm sad she's gone."
Sally Kellerman was survived by two children, son Jack, and daughter Claire.
She was married to TV producer Rick Edelstein from 1970 to 1972 and a movie producer Jonathan D. Krane from 1980 to 2016 when he passed away.
Her daughter Hannah passed away three months after Krane, at 27.