Dame Angela Brigid Lansbury DBE (born 16 October 1925) is a British-American actress who has played many film, theatre and television roles. Her career has spanned almost eight decades, much of it in the United States. Her work has received much international attention and she is recognised as the earliest surviving Academy Award nominee and one of the last surviving stars from the Golden Age of Hollywood cinema. Lansbury was born to an upper-middle-class family in central London, the daughter of Irish actress Moyna Macgill and English politician Edgar Lansbury. To escape the Blitz, in 1940 she moved to the United States, there studying acting in New York City. Proceeding to Hollywood in 1942, she signed to MGM and obtained her first film roles, in Gaslight (1944) and The Picture of Dorian Gray (1945), earning her two Oscar nominations and a Golden Globe Award. She appeared in 11 further MGM films, mostly in minor roles, and after her contract ended in 1952 she began supplementing her cinematic work with theatrical appearances. Although largely seen as a B-list star during this period, her appearance in the film The Manchurian Candidate (1962) received widespread acclaim and is cited as being one of her finer performances. Moving into musical theatre, Lansbury first worked with Stephen Sondheim in Anyone Can Whistle (1964), before Lansbury finally gained stardom for playing the leading role in Jerry Herman’s Broadway musical Mame (1966), which earned her her first Tony Award and established her as a gay icon. Amid difficulties in her personal life, Lansbury moved from California to County Cork, Ireland in 1970, and continued with a variety of theatrical and cinematic appearances throughout that decade. These included leading roles in the stage musicals Gypsy, Sweeney Todd, and The King and I, as well as in the hit Disney film Bedknobs and Broomsticks (1971). Moving into television in 1984, she achieved worldwide fame as fictional writer and sleuth Jessica Fletcher in the American whodunit series Murder, She Wrote, which ran for 12 seasons until 1996, becoming one of the longest-running and most popular detective drama series in television history. Through Corymore Productions, a company that she co-owned with her husband Peter Shaw, Lansbury assumed ownership of the series and was its executive producer for the final four seasons. She also moved into voice work, thereby contributing to animated films like Disney’s Beauty and the Beast (1991) and Don Bluth’s Anastasia (1997). Since then, she has toured in a variety of international productions and continued to make occasional film appearances. Lansbury has received an Honorary Academy Award and a Lifetime Achievement Award from the BAFTA and has won five Tony Awards, six Golden Globes, and an Olivier Award. She has also been nominated for numerous other industry awards, including the Academy Award for Best Supporting Actress on three occasions, and various Primetime Emmy Awards on 18 occasions, and a Grammy Award. In 2014, Lansbury was made a Dame Commander of the Order of the British Empire by Queen Elizabeth II. She has been the subject of three biographies.