There’s a lot that goes on in the world of Hollywood, and it’s hard to keep track of it all from where we sit. While some things are kept private, we gather a decent amount of information from magazine covers and Snapchat news. Somebody’s getting married; what’s-her-face got caught cheating; someone else is pregnant (but who’s the baby daddy?); another celebrity got busted for drugs; and a tragic car accident killed the dad from our favorite sitcom.
With all this in mind, it’s likely that we all just realized that we’re missing out on some important information. Sometimes we just can’t catch up on the madness. Then, we awkwardly find out from a friend who never lets us live it down that we’re out of the loop — or, completely wrong. It’s bound to happen eventually, if it hasn’t already.
Luckily, we wouldn’t necessarily forget that Prince or Robin Williams passed away — and if we did, we would probably deserve the onslaught of shock and laughter from our friends. The biggest names generally get the most publicity, regardless of what they’re receiving publicity for in the first place. So, in the case of death, we aren’t going to be out of the loop on the most popular celebrities’ demises. But there are some deaths that we may have missed and others who we didn’t realize were still alive. Whoops! Let’s take a look at celebrity deaths-- there’s no way to make this sound any less morbid.
18 Died: Natasha Richardson - When Accidents Strike
Actress Natasha Richardson — who we all know as the mom in the 1998 edition of Parent Trap — starred in over 20 different films. Some of the most popular ones include Maid in Manhattan, Nell, The White Countess, Waking Up in Reno, and The Handmaid’s Tale. Her final role was the voice of Ruth Mallory in The Wildest Dream, which was released in 2010. She also had a background in theatre for much of her grown-up life.
She married Liam Neeson on July 3, 1994, and they had two sons together, Micheál and Daniel. Her acting career was brought to an abrupt stop when Richardson suffered from a head injury while skiing on March 16, 2009. She died just two days later as a result of an epidural hematoma, at the young age of 45.
17 Alive: Bob Barker - Priceless
So, just how old is Bob Barker? It seems like he’s been around for forever. Well, he was born in 1923. So, he will be 94-years old this December 12th. He’s best known for his position as the host of The Price Is Right — which happens to be the longest-running daytime game show. The show aired from 1972 until 2015 while Barker was the host. He was also the executive producer of the show from 1988 through 2007.
Throughout his life, he has been on various talk shows, such as The Late Show with David Letterman, Ellen: The Ellen DeGeneres Show, and The Early Show. Most recently, he has played himself on Entertainment Tonight, and he still holds that position now. We’re curious to see where this beloved game show host ends up next.
16 Alive: Connie Sawyer - Soaring To New Heights
Nearing the age of 105, it comes as a shock to some of us that Connie Sawyer is still alive and well. This American actress was born on November 27, 1912, and she played important roles in a handful of different films. Sawyer is best known for her roles in Dumb and Dumber — where she acted as “Old Lady” — and Pineapple Express, in where she played Faye Belogus.
She has also starred in numerous TV shows — playing smaller and shorter-term roles. We may recognize her from The Office, in which she acted as Nana in one episode in 2009. She has also been on New Girl, NCIS: Los Angeles, 2 Broke Girls, Up All Night, and How I Met Your Mother. She has had lots of single-episode gigs over time, and her most recent role was in the TV show Lovesick in 2014. We don’t know what she’s working on right now, but we do know she’s alive and kickin’ it.
15 Died: Lisa Robin Kelly - A Tale of Torment
We all know and love the amazing Lisa Robin Kelly — best as Laurie Forman from That ‘70s Show, which aired from 1998-2003. But let’s take a look at who she was before and after the hit series. She was born on March 5, 1970 and died on August 15, 2013. Her death at 43 was caused by drug intoxication in her sleep while she was staying at a rehabilitation facility.
She had several smaller television gigs, including a couple episodes of Married with Children. Her acting debut began in 1994 when she was 21-years old, and continued through the late’ 90s when she was cast for That ‘70s Show. Kelly also played in some movies and TV movies in the ‘90s, including Pistol Pete, Performance Anxiety, and The Survivor.
14 Alive: Dick Van Dyke - Dying For More Laughs
This 91-year-old actor, comedian and producer is well known for his roles in Bye Bye Birdie, Mary Poppins and Chitty Chitty Bang Bang. He also had his own series — appropriately titled The Dick Van Dyke Show and The New Dick Van Dyke Show. His most recent movie role was in Night at the Museum: Secret of the Tomb in 2014.
He has a background in singing and music, too. From rapping a track on Rhythm Train to recording a Christmas song to be released for Christmas 2017, he’s got a lot of variety in his talents.
Because of his age and decreasing prominence in the headlines, some may start to think he’s passed away by now. But we’re glad this old guy’s still around and thriving. Van Dyke has brought us lots of laughs and entertainment over the years, and we’d like him to stay a while longer!
13 Died: Sawyer Sweeten - Gone Too Soon
Sawyer Sweeten — born on May 12, 1995 — was a child star from the age of just one-year old. He was best known for his role on Everybody Loves Raymond, which kicked off his acting career. Other roles included starring in Frank McKlusky, C.I. and Even Stevens.
He played Geoffrey Barone in Everybody Loves Raymond from 1996 until 2005, which totaled up to about 140 episodes. In Frank McKlusky, C.I., Sweeten played the role of Young Frank in 2002. He starred as Milton in one episode of Even Stevens in 2000. He also acted as himself in a few shows and documentaries throughout his life.
Unfortunately, his career was short-lived, because he committed suicide in 2015 at the age of 19. Autopsy results show that he had marijuana in his bloodstream right before his tragic death. Who knows what would have become of this young actor?
12 Alive: Julie Andrews - Still Singin'
Julie Andrews was born on October 1, 1935. So, she recently turned 82-years old. Most of us Disney Channel fans will remember her as Queen Clarisse Renaldi in The Princess Diaries and The Princess Diaries 2. She has also gained a lot of fame from the classics The Sound of Music and Mary Poppins.
Julie played the voice of the Queen in the Shrek movies and Gru’s mom in two of the Despicable Me films. Andrews has acted in many other movies and shows as well — most recently in Julie’s Greenroom (a TV show) and Despicable Me 3. These were both released in 2017.
This talented lady is still around and doing what she does best –entertaining us just like she did when we were young and singing along to A Spoonful of Sugar for the very first time.
11 Alive: Cloris Leachmen - Good Golly, Granny
Cloris Leachman — born on April 30, 1926 — is currently 91-years old. You probably recognize her name, since she was the oldest contestant on Dancing with The Stars in 2005 — when she was 82-years old.
Over time, she has had many roles in both movies and TV shows. Her most recent acting experience was in 2017 when she played as Granny Goodness in Justice League Action — a TV series. She has also been in three new films or shows, which are set to release in 2017-2018. Leachman also played the hilarious role of Maw Maw — or Norma June — in Raising Hope, which aired from 2010 to 2014.
If her famous presence — even to this day — and her Dancing with the Stars experience have anything to say about her, she’s probably doing pretty well at 91!
10 Died: Nicole DeHuff - Unforeseen Illness
American Actress Nicole DeHuff was born on January 6, 1975. She was married to Ari Palitz, a director. One of Dehuff’s most popular role, by far, was Deborah Bynes in Meet the Parents. This film — where she acted alongside Robert De Niro and Ben Stiller — came out in 2000. She also starred in Unbeatable Harold, See Arnold Run, and Suspect Zero. She had a variety of TV roles as well, including The Court, Monk, CSI: Miami, and The Practice.
Any chances at other future roles were diminished when she died on February 16, 2005 — when she was just 30 years old — due to a staph infection and cardiac arrest. These were both caused by a bad case of pneumonia. At that time, she had recently finished filming the movie Unbeatable Harold, which was released a year after her death.
9 Alive: Bob Newhart - Still Slayin' It
Born on September 5, 1929, this actor, stand-up comedian and writer has recently reached the age of 88. He began his acting career in 1962 with Hell is for Heroes, in which he played the role of Pvt. Driscoll.
Two of his most popular roles have been Dr. Bob Hartley on The Bob Newhart Show — which aired from 1972 until 1978 — and Papa Elf in Elf, which was released in 2003. His portrayal of Papa Elf will always be one of our favorite roles of his.
Some of Newhart’s TV roles include Professor Proton from Young Sheldon, Judson from The Librarians, and Arthur Jeffries from The Big Bang Theory. He also starred in Desperate Housewives for a few episodes in 2005. We wonder what he will be doing next!
8 Died: Michelle Thomas - Soap Star to Sloan Kettering
This young actress and comedian was born on September 23, 1968 and died on December 22, 1998, just barely 30-years old. She lost a battle to a rare form of stomach cancer at the Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center in New York City.
Michelle was best known for her role on the ‘90s TV show, Family Matters, where she played Myra Monkhouse — Steve Urkel’s girlfriend. She also acted as Justine Phillips from 1988 until 1990 on The Cosby Show, starring in a total of eight episodes.
Michelle played Sally Palmer in Dream Date, which came out in 1989. In addition to a few other smaller roles, she also played Callie Rogers in The Young and the Restless during the Spring of 1998. Her role as Callie took place shortly after having a tumor removed from her stomach.
7 Alive: Mel Brooks - 91 And Counting
Mel Brooks was born on June 28, 1926. So, he is now 91-years old. He is an actor, producer, comedian, composer, and a writer. This gives him a lot of different roles to play — both on and off the screen.
He’s known for his movies, such as The Prod ucers, Blazing Saddles, Young Frankenstein, and Spaceballs. He got his start in 1954 with his sketches in the filmed performance titled New Faces. He has also been the man behind the voices in some guest stars on children’s TV shows, like The Mad Hatter on Dora the Explorer and Grandpa Mel on Special Agent Oso.
Most recently — in 2017 — he voiced Shogun in the film Blazing Samurai. This funny and talented jack-of-all-trades has lots of potential remaining, given that he is still actively participating in the film industry to this day.
6 Died: Suzanne Crough - A Broken Heart
Suzanne Crough may be better known as Tracy Partridge from the 1970’s comedy, The Partridge Family. She was born on March 6, 1963 and died on April 27, 2015 as a result of a heart ailment. She was married to William Condray from 1985 until her death in 2015, and they had two children together named Alexandra and Samantha.
Crough’s career began in 1973 with her role as Tracey Partridge in Goober and the Ghost Chasers. Next, she went on to play the role of the youngest family member in The Partridge Family — which was on TV from 1970 until 1974.
Crough’s character was just one of the important pieces that added to The Partridge Family’s prominence in television in the 1970’s. This actress also played Stevie Freedman in Mulligan’s Stew in 1977, and had a voice role in Fred Flintstone and Friends.
5 Alive: Betty White - Laughter Really Is The Secret To Life
Betty White currently holds the spot as the female with the longest television career. She started acting at the age of 30, when she starred in several episodes of Life with Elizabeth — which aired from 1952 until 1955. Since then, she has acted in around 175 different films and TV shows, and she shows little to no signs of slowing down. White played Ms. Wilson in the TV series Young & Hungry earlier this year and had many TV and movie roles leading up to it.
Everybody knows Betty White as a funny old lady, which is an accurate description of this 95-year old comedian. She may be best remembered for her role as Rose Nylund on The Golden Girls. We think she will keep sharing her talent with us and causing lots of laughter for the years to come!
4 Died: Windell Middlebrooks - The Last Laugh
Windell Middlebrooks was born on January 8, 1979 and died on March 9, 2015. He was disovered dead at home. Later, it was found that the sudden death was due to a pulmonary embolism when he was just 36-years old.
Disney Channel fans know him as Kirby Morris from The Suite Life on Deck, in which he was the security guard on the ship. He played a prominent role in this show, since Zach and Cody were always getting into trouble.
Prior to his role on Disney Channel — which was from 2008 until 2010 — he was in Scrubs and had smaller, one-time gigs on Hannah Montana, My Name is Earl and ER. He starred in a TV movie in 2009 called Ace in the Hole. From 2011 to 2013, he played Curtis Brumfield in Body of Proof.
3 Alive: Kirk Douglas - A Preemptive Obituary
At almost 101-years old, we may be a little surprised he’s still with us! Kirk Douglas — the star of over 45 movies — acted from 1946 until 2003. He has also directed and produced films throughout the years. When looking at the Golden Age of film, Douglas is one of the last few actors that are still alive.
Let’s take a walk back in time to see more about Douglas’s roles. Some of these movies are older, since he did begin acting 70 years ago, but we all can recognize a couple of the titles! In 1960, he starred in Spartacus, playing the lead title role. He was also in Paths of Glory, Lonely Are the Brave and The Bad and The Beautiful. Want to get into some older, classic movies? Kirk Douglas’s films are a great starting point, and there are obviously plenty to watch!
2 Died: Judith Barsi - A Childhood Tragedy
She voiced Ducky from The Land Before Time and Anne-Marie in All Dogs Go to Heaven. She played Jennifer Matthews in Eye of the Tiger and Bean in Slam Dance. But just one year after her role as Thea Brody in Jaws: The Revenge, she was horrifically murdered.
Judith Barsi was born on June 6, 1978 in Los Angeles, and she started her short acting career at the age of five. Barsi’s first role was in a miniseries called Fatal Vision. Shortly after, she began starring in commercials and was also a guest on many TV shows. She picked up roles in several movies at a fairly quick pace.
As her fame and fortune increased, her father — Jozsef Barsi — became an angry alcoholic. This led him to hurt and threaten to kill Barsi and her mother, Maria. Unfortunately, the abuse continued until he murdered Judith, Maria and himself on July 25, 1988.
1 Alive: Angela Lansbury - She Has More To Write
Angela Lansbury — born on October 16, 1925 — is an American-British-Irish actress and producer who has just reached the age of 92. Though it may seem shocking that she is still alive and well, it is also surprising that she is still acting. She just finished producing a movie — Mary Poppins Returns — and a miniseries titled Little Women. Both are set to air in 2018.
Her acting career began with a couple of films back in 1944 — when she was only 19-years old. She played the role of Nancy in Gaslight, and Edwina Brown in National Velvet. She is best known for her work in Murder, She Wrote and her voiced role as Mrs. Potts in Beauty and the Beast.
We think it’s pretty amazing that she’s been acting for over 70 years, and we can’t wait to see where she shows up in the future!