Olympia Dukakis has sadly passed away at 89.
Dukakis is probably best known for her role as Cher’s mother, Rose Castorini, in the 1987 romantic comedy, Moonstruck. Ch-ch-check it out (below):
The producer opened up in the 2013 documentary Olympia Dukakis: Undefined about how the Norman Jewison film impacted her life as an actress, saying:
“My daughter was going to college on credit cards. I was doing every TV movie I could get my hands on. My husband had been in a terrible accident and for five years he didn’t work. I was hustling. It was not a pretty picture.”
After landing Moonstruck, the director predicted she would win an Academy Award for the role. But Dukakis said she wasn’t fazed by the sentiment, saying:
“Only out of respect, I didn’t say, ‘You’re an idiot.’ Win an Academy Award for playing Rose? I don’t think so.”
It turned out he was right as she won an Oscar for Best Supporting Actress in 1998. Dukakis’ long career included appearances in several other films, including Steel Magnolias and Mr. Holland’s Opus. Beyond the big screen, Dukakis also starred in more than 130 stage productions and 50 TV shows, including Law & Order, The Simpsons, and Man Equals Man.
“Olympia Dukakis has departed our company. We were Moonstruck by her, as she told us great Tales of the City. A true Steel Magnolia within a more common forest. Ah, what a life force, her later years her best. Rest now among the heavens, Olympia.”
Comedian Titus commented:
“Some movies you watch because of an actor in it. You don’t need to know what it’s about, what genre, you just know, because that actor is in it, it’s going to be good. Olympia Dukakis was one of those actors, RIP.”
Co-star and icon Cher tweeted:
“Olympia Dukakis Was an Amazing, Academy Award Winning Actress. Olympia Played My Mom In Moonstruck, & Even Though Her Part was That Of a Suffering Wife, We ALL The Time. She Would Tell Me How MUCH She Loved Louis, Her ‘Handsome Talented, Husband’, I Talked To Her 3Wks Ago. Rip Dear One”
The Academy shared:
“Olympia Dukakis brought warmth, humor and wit to the stage and screen for almost 60 years, including a stellar run of unforgettable roles in ‘Steel Magnolias’ ‘Tales of the City’ and ‘Moonstruck,’ for which she won a Best Supporting Actress Oscar. She will be missed.”
Ch-ch-check out some more heartfelt tributes (below):
RIP Olympia Dukakis…the consummate actor. You made all around you step up their game. A joy to work with. Rest well. “May flights of angels sing thee to thy rest”.????????????https://t.co/9uC2Ld4rTU
— Viola Davis (@violadavis) May 1, 2021
— Michael McKean (@MJMcKean) May 1, 2021
RIP Olympia Dukakis, one of the all-time greats. ???? pic.twitter.com/nkl8Oh9ZAT
— S.E. Cupp (@secupp) May 1, 2021
— Betty Buckley (@BettyBuckley) May 1, 2021
“Well, you know what they say: if you don’t have anything nice to say about anybody, come sit by me” An icon. RIP Olympia Dukakis pic.twitter.com/pv9NMZlzUm
— James Longman (@JamesAALongman) May 1, 2021
Steel Magnolias is one of my favorite films because my mom is a hairdresser, Dolly Parton is in it, & Olympia Dukakis delivers one of the most hilarious, grief-cutting scenes ever here. Rest In Peace, Olympia. ???????? https://t.co/txika7p3js
— MAREN MORRIS (@MarenMorris) May 1, 2021
Oh my.. Olympia Dukakis has passed away.. She will forever be young in my mind and be my loving movie mother. When will I learn that people do not live forever & the time to engage is NOW?.. RIP pic.twitter.com/TNWwcjFfu0
— Kirstie Alley (@kirstiealley) May 1, 2021
Rest in peace, Olympia!
[Image via Dan Jackman/WENN]
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