So sad! Karen died on Aug. 8 at age 74, her husband announced on Facebook, just minutes after her passing.
Oscar-nominated actress Karen Black died after a long battle with cancer, according to Variety. Read on for more details about her life and death.
Karen Black Dies — ‘Five Easy Pieces’ Star Dead From Cancer At 74
Karen’s husband, Stephen Eckelberry, announced her death on Facebook, saying, “It is with great sadness that I have to report that my wife and best friend Karen Black has just passed away, only a few minutes ago. Thank you all for all your prayers and love, they meant so much to her as they did to me.”
Karen was nominated for an Academy Award for her performance in Five Easy Pieces. She also starred in popular films such as Nashville and Easy Rider, and she made a comeback in Come Back to the Five and Dime Jimmy Dean, Jimmy Dean.
In her decades-long career, Karen tried her hand at singing, songwriting and playwriting, and she was nominated for a Grammy for writing the songs “Memphis” and “Rolling Stone,” which she performed in director Robert Altman’s Nashville.
Her first major role was in Francis Ford Coppola’s 1966 You’re a Big Boy Now. She also guest starred in TV shows such as Adam 12, Mannix, Judd for the Defense, and in the TV movies Trilogy of Terror.
She also played Nancy Pryor, the stewardess who forced to fly the plane in Airport 1975; an actress in The Day of the Locust; Mabel in The Great Gatsby; and a kidnapper in Alfred Hitchcock’s final film, Family Plot.
Iconic Actress Of The 1970s, Karen Black, Dies
Karen starred in dozens of B-movies after the early 1980s, but the ’70s were her golden years, and she starred in many iconic films of the decade.
She opened up about the era recently in an interview with Paper magazine, saying, “We were just doing our thing. I happen to have an acting style that is very spontaneous and very un-self-conscious, and it went with the movies of the ’70s. It was a great time, it was a very beautiful time. There was a way of loving freedom — or loving spontaneity.”
Karen was married four times — to Charles Black, briefly to actor Robert Burton, to screenwriter L.M. Kit Carson, with whom she had a son, Hunter Carson. She finally married Stephen Eckelberry in 1987, and adopted a daughter, Celine, with him.
Our thoughts and prayers go out to Karen’s family during this difficult time.
WATCH: Karen Black ‘Easy Rider’ (USA 1969)
— Tierney McAfee