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http://www.cnn.com/2005/SHOWBIZ/Movies/06/07/bancroft.obit.ap/ [Broken]Actress Anne Bancroft Dies
'Mrs. Robinson' of 'The Graduate'
Wednesday, June 8, 2005 Posted: 7:52 AM EDT (1152 GMT)
NEW YORK (AP) -- Anne Bancroft, who won the 1962 best actress Oscar as the teacher of a young Helen Keller in "The Miracle Worker" but achieved greater fame as the seductive Mrs. Robinson in "The Graduate," has died. She was 73.
She died of uterine cancer on Monday at Mount Sinai Hospital, John Barlow, a spokesman for her husband, Mel Brooks, said Tuesday.
Bancroft was awarded the Tony for creating the role on Broadway of poor-sighted Annie Sullivan, the teacher of the deaf and blind Keller. She repeated her portrayal in the film version.
Yet despite her Academy Award and four other nominations, "The Graduate" overshadowed her other achievements.
Dustin Hoffman delivered the famous line when he realized his girlfriend's mother was coming on to him at her house: "Mrs. Robinson, you're trying to seduce me. Aren't you?"
Bancroft complained to a 2003 interviewer: "I am quite surprised that with all my work, and some of it is very, very good, that nobody talks about 'The Miracle Worker.' We're talking about Mrs. Robinson. I understand the world. ... I'm just a little dismayed that people aren't beyond it yet."
Mike Nichols, who directed her in "The Graduate," said she was a masterful actress.
"Her combination of brains, humor, frankness and sense were unlike any other artist," Nichols said in a statement released by a publicist. "Her beauty was constantly shifting with her roles, and because she was a consummate actress she changed radically for every part."
Washington Post (2 pages)Oscar-Winning Actress Anne Bancroft Dies at 73
By Matt Schudel
Washington Post Staff Writer
Wednesday, June 8, 2005; Page B06
Anne Bancroft, the versatile actress who won an Academy Award for portraying Helen Keller's teacher in "The Miracle Worker," but who may be best remembered as the sultry suburban housewife who seduced Dustin Hoffman in "The Graduate," died June 6 of uterine cancer at a New York hospital. She was 73.
In a career spanning more than 50 years, Ms. Bancroft won every major acting award -- the Oscar, Tony and Emmy -- and played such a range of roles that she defied typecasting. She performed opposite such stars as Anthony Hopkins, Sean Penn, Shirley MacLaine and two generations of Fondas, Henry and Jane, and was considered as formidable an acting talent as any of them.
"She was the most wonderfully rich, malleable, interesting, independent actress I ever worked with," Arthur Penn, who directed Ms. Bancroft in the stage and film versions of "The Miracle Worker," said several years ago. "She can play anything."
Besides her Academy Award for "The Miracle Worker" (1962), a role she originated on Broadway in 1959, Ms. Bancroft received Oscar nominations for "The Pumpkin Eater" (1964), "The Graduate" (1967), "The Turning Point" (1977) and "Agnes of God" (1985).
She received a Tony Award in 1958 for her first starring role on Broadway, playing opposite Henry Fonda in "Two for the Seesaw." The following year, she won her second Tony for the role of Annie Sullivan in "The Miracle Worker," in which she was the teacher working with the blind and deaf Helen Keller, played by 12-year-old Patty Duke.
"She and I spent a moment in time that can never be re-created," a tearful Duke said yesterday from her home in California. "By her example, she was a teacher to me. What she gave me in those times has taken me through my whole life."
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