Frances Sternhagen, the Tony award-winning actress known for her roles in Cheers and Sexy And The City, has died at her home in New York at the age of 93.
Her son, John Carlin, confirmed her death on Instagram, writing: “Frannie. Mom. Frances Sternhagen. On Monday night, Nov 27, she died peacefully at her home, a month and a half shy of her 94th birthday… Fly on, Frannie. The curtain goes down on a life so richly, passionately, humbly and generously lived.”
Sternhagen won two Tonys. The first was for the role of Aunt Lavinia in the 1995 Broadway revival of The Heiress, based on the novel Washington Square by Henry James, and the second was for playing multiple roles in The Good Doctor, Neil Simon’s series of 1973 plays, which were based on short stories and other works from Anton Chekhov.
Over the course of her career, she received numerous Tony nominations, including for On Golden Pond, Equus and Angel, and revivals of Morning’s At Seven and The Sign In Sidney Brustein’s Window. She was awarded a lifetime achievement Obie award in 2013.
Sternhagen was best-known, however, for a number of memorable screen roles, including Cliff Clavin’s mother in Cheers, Dr John Carter’s aristocratic grandmother on ER, and Trey MacDougal’s mother on Sex And The City.
She receieved three Emmy nominations for her screen work: two for Cheers and one for Sex And The City.
More recently, Sternhagen appeared as Kyra Sedgwick’s mother on the police procedural The Closer.
She also appeared in more than two dozen films, including Misery, Bright Lights, Big City, Julie & Julia, The Hospital and 1983’s Independence Day.
Sternhagen was married to Thomas Carlin, a fellow actor, from 1956 until his death in 1991. She is survived by the couple’s six children: sons Tony, Paul, Peter and John; daughters Amanda Carlin Sanders and Sarah Carlin; nine grandchildren and two great-grandchildren.