Shirley Knight, Two-Time Oscar-Nominated Actress, Dies at 83

Shirley Knight, a two-time Oscar nominee and Emmy-winning actress, died at her daughter’s home in Texas. She was 83.

Knight died of natural causes, her actress daughter Kaitlin Hopkins announced in a note mourning her mother she posted on Facebook. The Kansas native died on Wednesday.

“Early this morning April 22nd you passed away, and your sweet soul left us for a better place. I was at your side and you went peacefully. To me, you were ‘just mom”’ to some you were ‘Miss Knight’, ‘Miss Shirley’, ‘Mama Shirley’ (to my students), ‘Shirl the Girl’ (to your friends), and ‘Shirley Knight’ to your fans,” she started the note.

“I had the good sense over Easter weekend when you were still doing well use the opportunity to Facetime with your closest friends and family. You had a chance to visit with the people you needed to see, the people who loved you so much, and perhaps that was the closure you needed, I don’t know, I just know after that you were ready to let go, and we brought you home,” she continued.

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“In her honor, we have created the Shirley Knight Memorial Fund, linked below. This endowment will honor my mom’s legacy by providing young artists the opportunity to attend school and pursue their dreams. Rest In Peace, Shirley,” she added.

Knight earned popularity in the 1950s before starring in The Dark at the Top of the Stairs in 1960, for which she would earn her first Oscar nomination for Supporting Actress. She was nominated again just years later for 1962’s Sweet Bird of Youth.

She most recently starred in the 2018 film Periphery and The Missing Girl in 2015.

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The actress also won two Emmys in 1995, one for The McMartin Trial, in which she played the real-life owner of a daycare center who’s tried for child molestation, and for her guest stint on NYPD Blue. Knight also played Marcia Cross’s mother-in-law in Desperate Housewives.

Knight made her mark on the stage as well, winning a Tony Award in 1976 for playing an actress channeling Marilyn Monroe in Kennedy’s Children.

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