Los Angeles, July 5 (IANS) Noel Neill, the first actress to play Superman’s girlfriend Lois Lane on screen, is dead. She was 95.
The actress died on July 3 in Tucson, Arizona after prolonged illness. Her manager and biographer Larry Ward shared a statement on Facebook, saying that she “maintained that bright, perky and engaging personality up until her death”, reports variety.com.
Her first appearance as Lois Lane was in the 1948 movie serial “Superman”, which showed her talent for humour. She then appeared in the sequel “Atom Man vs Superman”. The 1950s’ TV series “Adventures of Superman,” starring George Reeves, gave her a longtime role as the intrepid reporter, and she said later in interviews that she simply played herself.
She returned several times to appear in “Superman” films – essaying Lois Lane’s mother in the 1978 “Superman”, appearing in the “Superboy” series and in the Brandon Routh-starrer 2006 “Superman Returns”.
Born in Minneapolis, she originally thought of becoming a journalist like her newspaper editor father before playing one on screen. She modeled and sang while in her teens, then wrote for Women’s Wear Daily before moving into acting and singing.
Soon after moving here, she was hired by Bing Crosby to sing at the racetrack in Del Mar, California. and then signed a contract with Paramount.
She appeared in films including “Mad Youth” and “Are These Our Parents” and then appeared in “Music Man” and in a series of film and TV Westerns with directors including Vincent Minnelli, Cecil B. DeMille and Hal Roach.
Neill received a Golden Boot award. A statue of her as Lois Lane was dedicated in Metropolis, Illinois in 2010.