If you only know Angela Lansbury as the sweet writer/detective Jessica Fletcher from “Murder, She Wrote”, I invite you to explore her film career and discover how versatile this London born actress can be. You’re in for a lot of entertainment.
Her first film role in Hollywood was that of the snippy young maid in Gaslight (1944).
She was stunningly beautiful in this and “The Picture of Dorian Gray” (1945).
The silly, ambitious mother of Elvis Presley (although she was only 10 years older than Elvis) in “Blue Hawaii” (1961).
Unspeakably evil as Laurence Harvey’s mother in “The Manchurian Candidate” (1962).
The vain, stupid and morally bankrupt mother in George Roy Hill’s “The World of Henry Orient” (1964). TWOHO is a fun, wonderful movie. You can watch the trailer here. Here is a clip on youtube. If you’ve never seen this film and you like The Trouble with Angels, then I highly recommend it. I think it’s Peter Sellers funniest performance. Go here for a review and excellent comment about it.
“Mrs. ‘Arris Goes to Paris” is probably my favorite Angela Lansbury film. It is a charming story of a 1950’s London char-lady who aspires to have a Dior dress. Here is a youtube clip to give you a sample taste. The clothes are gorgeous!
Her Broadway rendition of “We Need a Little Christmas” is wonderfully cheerful. You can listen to this recording from Mame here.
How about the wonderful “Be Our Guest” from “Beauty and the Beast”? Go here to hear Angela and Jerry Orbach. Lovely.
What a trooper! Her imdb page has 101 roles listed, and that only includes movies and television. She’s won 4 Tony awards for her work on Broadway, too.