Home Celebrity UPDATE Beloved Actress Karen Black (Nashville, Five Easy Pieces) Dead at 74

UPDATE: Karen Black has died at age 74. She ran with a cool crowd when she burst onto the movie scene– Fonda, Nicholson, Hopper, DeNiro, Altman. She was a unique talent. God bless.

Earlier: This is a terrible story. But beloved actress Karen Black is dying of cancer. Her husband has posted a blog and a video updating her deteriorating condition.  http://karenblackactress.blogspot.com/2013/08/august-7th-update-from-stephen-karens.html?m=1 Black is living in a nursing facility and the situation sounds pretty dire. If you’re too young to know, Karen Black made a name for herself in the 70s in “Five Easy Pieces,” “Nashville,” “Easy Rider,” and other classics.

Here is Karen from “The Great Gatsby” (1974):

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Roger Friedman began his Showbiz411 column in April 2009 after 10 years with Fox News, where he created the Fox411 column. His movie reviews are carried by Rotten Tomatoes, and he is a member of both the movie and TV branches of the Critics Choice Awards. His articles have appeared in dozens of publications over the years including New York Magazine, where he wrote the Intelligencer column in the mid 90s and covered the OJ Simpson trial, and Fox News (when it wasn't so crazy) where he covered Michael Jackson. He is also the writer and co-producer of "Only the Strong Survive," a selection of the Cannes, Sundance, and Telluride Film festivals, directed by DA Pennebaker and Chris Hegedus.
8 replies to this post
  1. Back in the late nineties I moved to LA and and the only places I could afford to live were some of the scariest hovels in the valley, until I found a room for rent in Encino and who should open the door Karen Black. She was a very compassionate person to her friends, a bit eccentric even for Hollywood standards but very kind none the less. I still to this day tell the many stories I witnessed in that home, many involve lots and lots and lots of cats. I will always cherish my time with her family and will very much miss such a unique soul.


  2. She ran around with a bunch of leftist radical Hollywood elitist, she glorified the dope smoking hippie life style in her movies and she died an early painful death because of her indulgence in drugs and cigarettes. Oh well that is just the way it goes.

  3. I think I remember her in a film “Can She Bake A Cherry Pie?” from the early 80’s. My heart goes out to her and her loved ones.

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