May 25, 2015

Anne Meara Dies: Actress, Ben Stiller’s Mother and Jerry Stiller's Wife Was 85


Anne Meara, a veteran TV and comedy film actress and mother of Ben Stiller and wife of Jerry Stiller, has died at age 85.

Meara, who was also a comedienne, had recurring roles on shows such as The King of Queens and Sex and the City and often appeared with her family on screen. She passed away on Saturday, Ben's rep told E! News. No more details were provided. In addition to Jerry and Ben, she is survived by daughter Amy and several grandchildren.

"The Stiller family is deeply saddened to share the beloved Anne Meara passed away last night at the age of 85," Ben's rep said in a statement on Sunday. "She is survived by her husband and partner in life Jerry Stiller. The two were married for 61 years and worked together almost as long."


Meara began her TV and movie acting career in the '50s. She and Jerry were part of the comedy duo Stiller and Meara and often appeared together on The Ed Sullivan Show. They also both appeared on the same episodes of The Love Boat and The King of Queens.

Meara and her husband co-starred with their son in several movies, including Heavy Weights, Highway to Hell, The Independent, which also featured Amy, and Zoolander, the latter of which Ben helmed. He also directed Meara in the cult 1994 movie Reality Bites, in which she played a newspaper editor who tells Winona Ryder's main character LeLaina to "define irony." Meara and Ben also co-starred in the 2006 movie Night at the Museum.


The actress had several memorable recurring TV roles. She played Sally on Rhoda and Peggy Moody on the soap All My Children. She also portrayed Mary Brady, Miranda's ailing mother-in-law, on Sex and the City. Her most recent major acting role was a guest part on Law & Order: Special Victims unit in 2012.

"Anne's memory lives on in the hearts of daughter Amy, son Ben, her grandchildren, her extended family and friends, and the millions she entertained as an actress, writer and comedienne," Ben's rep said.

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