Page last updated at 10:36 GMT, Thursday, 17 April 2008 11:36 UK

Horror actress Court dies aged 82

Hazel Court
The actress had recently finished writing her autobiography

British actress Hazel Court, best known for starring in horror movies such as The Raven, has died aged 82.

Her daughter Sally Walsh said she passed away after a heart attack at her home near Lake Tahoe, California.

Court, known for her fearsome shrieks and gruesome on-screen deaths, also starred in The Premature Burial and The Masque of the Red Death.

"She'd probably get over 100 pieces of fan mail a month and she would reply to every single one," Walsh said.

Successful TV career

"She was one of the great beauties of all time," Walsh said.

"She was a redhead with really green eyes and almost the perfect face. She was on the cover of almost every magazine."

Born in 1926 in Sutton Coldfield, Birmingham, she began appearing in stage productions as a teenager.

Hazel Court
Court was a commissioned sculptor and painter

She was spotted and signed by the J Arthur Rank Organisation, an agency which owned movie studios and theatres.

At 18, Court landed her first movie bit part in Champagne Charlie and a year later starred in Dreaming.

Court also had a successful TV career, co-starring with Patrick O'Neal in the 1957 British comedy series Dick and the Duchess as well as Alfred Hitchcock Presents for US TV.

Besides acting, she was a commissioned sculptor and painter whose works appeared in public galleries.

She married twice, tying the knot to Dermot Walsh first in 1949, and divorcing 14 years later. She wed American actor and director Don Taylor in 1964, and the couple stayed together until his death in 1998.




SEE ALSO
Govan zombies taste film success
16 Apr 08 |  Glasgow, Lanarkshire and West
Prom horror remake is top US film
14 Apr 08 |  Entertainment
Hammer horror films set to return
10 May 07 |  Entertainment
Cult horror films released uncut
15 Jun 01 |  Entertainment


FEATURES, VIEWS, ANALYSIS
Has China's housing bubble burst?
How the world's oldest clove tree defied an empire
Why Royal Ballet principal Sergei Polunin quit

BBC navigation

BBC © 2014 The BBC is not responsible for the content of external sites. Read more.

This page is best viewed in an up-to-date web browser with style sheets (CSS) enabled. While you will be able to view the content of this page in your current browser, you will not be able to get the full visual experience. Please consider upgrading your browser software or enabling style sheets (CSS) if you are able to do so.

Americas Africa Europe Middle East South Asia Asia Pacific