Sally Kellerman, the original ‘M*A*S*H’ Hot Lips, has died at the age of 84.
Sally Kellerman, who was nominated for an Academy Award for her role as US Army Maj. Margaret “Hot Lips” Houlihan in “MAS*H,” has died.
Kellerman died in California on Thursday morning at the age of 84, following a struggle with dementia, according to her son, Jack Krane.
The whiskey-voiced beauty starred alongside Rodney Dangerfield in Robert Altman’s “MAS*H” and the 1986 comedy “Back to School.” “The Outer Limits,” “12 O’Clock High,” “Ben Casey,” “That Girl,” and “Mannix” were among the TV series in which she appeared. She most recently portrayed comedian Marc Maron’s mother on IFC’s “Maron.”
She stated she gradually accepted being known for her award-winning “MAS*H” part.
In a 2010 interview with The Washington Post, she said, “There were times in my life when I felt I had to go out and establish that I’m not simply Hot Lips.” “However, at this point, call me anything you want!”
Kellerman was born in 1937 in Long Beach, California, to an oil executive father and a piano teacher mother. He grew up in the shadow of Hollywood.
She worked as a waiter in Hollywood in the late 1950s, she told the Los Angeles Times in 2013.
“In my whole career, I waited on more stars than I worked with,” she added.
Before auditioning for her iconic part, she dabbled in jazz and theatre musicals.
Working with Altman was “like summer camp,” she claimed, adding that he often counselled her to “just grin and give in.”
Kellerman claimed in a 2012 interview that when she initially met with Altman, she dressed suitably for the “Hot Lips” part. “I had a meeting that day and wore lipstick.” I generally kept my lips hidden because I didn’t want others to see them, but as I left the meeting, Bob said, ‘I’ll give you the greatest portion in the photo.’
Kellerman told an audience in 2018 during a celebration of her 81st birthday, “I’ve had such a lucky, amazing career as an actor and singer.” “I’ve had the most incredible existence.”
Kellerman honoured Robert Altman at the same ceremony. “He was an outspoken anti-establishment figure. Constantly causing havoc “It improved you and made it more enjoyable,” she explained. “It’s fantastic to be able to perform something you love and have it be enjoyable for others.”
She and Altman worked together again on “Brewster McCloud” in 1970, “The Player” in 1992, and “Pret-a-Porter” in 1994, as well as an episode of “Gun” in 1997.
Kellerman has a long connection with “Star Trek.” Her performance as a psychotherapist in the third episode, “Where No Man Has Gone Before,” will be remembered by fans of the original series, which was initially filmed as one of two pilots for the sci-fi series.
“The Boston Strangler,” from 1986, was one of his other roles. “The April Fools” was released in 1969. “Slither,” released in 1973, is a film about a snake. “Welcome to L.A.” was released in 1976. “That’s Life!” from 1986 and “Boynton Beach Club” from 2005.
She also appeared in “The Young and the Restless,” a daytime drama.
Kellerman, in addition to her lengthy list of cinema and television performances, dabbled with music in the 1970s, publishing an album and singing live, notably at New York’s Metropolitan Room in 2010.
Kellerman told The Washington Post that year, “I wanted to be the genuine deal.” “Who knew it would take another 30 years for me to reach this point of liberation?”
In fact, she never let the music take a backseat in her life. In 2015, she commented, “My music has just been a love that wouldn’t die.” “And I’ve never been able to have one without the other.” But I wanted soul, therefore I wanted to be the genuine deal –– a true singer, not simply a singer who acts.
Kellerman used to believe she wasn’t made out for the entertainment industry.
In 1980, she told film critic Roger Ebert, “All I ever wanted to be was an actor.” “However, I was overweight.” I used to read about diets where you could eat one ounce of protein every 17 days whether you needed it or not.”
“I’ll go somewhere and hear a truck driver yell, ‘Hey, Hot Lips!'” she remarked of her most famous performance, “no matter how long the series was on or how long it’s been gone.” “I’ve done roughly 50 films –– a lot of decent ones and a couple of hummers along the line [laughs].” But it refuses to go away.”