'Moonstruck' actress Olympia Dukakis dies at 89

Video Credit: Reuters - Politics
Published on May 2, 2021 - Duration: 01:16s

'Moonstruck' actress Olympia Dukakis dies at 89

A master of deadpan humor, the Oscar-winning Dukakis was also nominated for Emmy awards for TV roles in the 90's, and continued working into her 80's.

This report produced by Jonah Green.


'Moonstruck' actress Olympia Dukakis dies at 89

Oscar-winning actress Olympia Dukakis, who first won acclaim with her performance in the 1987 romantic comedy "Moonstruck," died on Saturday at age 89.

The Massachusetts-born daughter of Greek immigrants, Dukakis worked for decades as a stage, TV and film actor before rocketing to fame at age 56 playing the mother of Cher's character in "Moonstruck." Speaking to CBS in 1989, Dukakis discussed what it was like to go from relative obscurity to becoming an Academy Award winning movie star.

"Give me a mortgage.

You don't have to send your kids to college with credit cards.

So now you can pay your bills.

And well, I've been reminded the Jackie Gleason thing, how sweet is.

It is very sweet.

So it feels good.

Oh, it feels great.

My husband refers to me as his liberator.

My wife the liberator." Dukakis built on that with roles in films including "Look Who's Talking" and "Steel Magnolias" (1989).

A master of deadpan humor, Dukakis was nominated for Emmy awards for TV roles in the 90's, and continued working into her 80's.

And yes, she was also the cousin of the 1988 Democratic U.S. presidential nominee Michael Dukakis.

She passed away in her New York City home on Saturday morning, her agent said, after months of failing health.

Her daughter was by her side.

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