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|Also Known As:||Elizabeth Ann Wedgeworth||Died:|
|Born:||January 21, 1935||Cause of Death:|
|Birth Place:||Abilene, Texas, USA||Profession:||Cast ... actor|
A likable character player and occasional lead, primarily on stage and TV, Wedgeworth has a number of feature film roles to her credit. With her whispery voice, mature sensuality, and striking china-blue eyes, she has most typically played semi-comic vamps, best friends and "dumb brunettes".
The Texas native (a school chum of Jayne Mansfield) moved to New York in the 1950s to study acting and spent the next decade working steadily, making her stage debut in "The Crucible" in 1958. Finding steady employment in daytime soaps, Wedgeworth appeared on "The Edge of Night" (CBS) and the NBC dramas "Another World" and its spin-off "Somerset".
Wedgeworth made her film bow in the drama "Andy" (1965) but did not make another film until 1973. She never progressed beyond supporting parts in her more than twenty films, although she always made a good impression. Wedgeworth essayed roles in "Scarecrow" and "Bang the Drum Slowly" (both 1973), appeared as one of the wives of a bigamist truck driver in the CB comedy "Citizens Band/Handle With Care" (1977), played the mother of singer Patsy Cline (Jessica Lange) in "Sweet Dreams" (1985), was featured as the pageant director in "Miss Firecracker" (1989) and was Aunt Fern in "Steel Magnolias" (1989). She also played the ailing mother of author Robert E Howard (Vincent D'Onofrio) in the biopic "Whole Wide World" (1996). Onstage, she won a Tony Award for her supporting role in the Neil Simon's comedy-romance "Chapter Two" (1978).
But Wedgeworth has achieved her widest exposure on TV. She starred as Lahoma Vane Lucas first on "Another World" and later its spin-off "Somerset" (NBC, 1970-76). In primetime, Wedgeworth has had regular berths on "Three's Company" (ABC, 1979-80), "Filthy Rich" (CBS, 1982-83) and "Evening Shade" (CBS, 1990-94). She was especially amusing in the latter as the clueless Merleen Elldridge. She has also appeared in a number of TV movies, including "The War Between the Tates" (her first, NBC, 1977), "Elvis and the Beauty Queen" (NBC, 1981), "Cooperstown" (TNT, 1993), and "Fight for Justice: The Nancy Conn Story" (NBC, 1995).
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