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'Freaky Friday' Mom Barbara Harris Dead at 83

'Freaky Friday' Mom Barbara Harris Dead at 83
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Barbara Harris, an accomplished Broadway actress who made her mark in a number of acclaimed movie hits, died this week at 83.

Harris passed away Wednesday after a long battle with lung cancer.

One of the co-founders of the Second City comedy troupe, Harris made her Broadway debut in 1961, winning a Tony for her performance in "The Apple Tree" (1966).

Choosy when it came to film roles, she frequently made a delightfully ditzy impression, as in "A Thousand Clowns" (1965), her Oscar-nominated turn in "Who Is Harry Kellerman and Why Is He Saying Those Terrible Things About Me?" (1971), in "Nashville" (1975), as Alfred Hitchcock's last leading lady in "Family Plot" (1976), and as the mother of Kathleen Turner's character in "Peggy Sue Got Married" (1986).

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Harris and Bruce Dern in "Family Plot." Harris called its director Alfred Hitchcock a "wonderful man."

Harris was perhaps best known for one of her popular Disney films, "Freaky Friday" (1976), in which she starred opposite a young Jodie Foster.

Her final filmed performance was in "Grosse Pointe Blank" (1997), after which she retired from the screen and moved to Scottsdale, Arizona, to teach acting, avoiding the spotlight. In a 2002 Phoenix New Times interview, the self-deprecating actress told an interviewer, "I don't usually mention that I have been in movies, because I'm afraid people will say, 'Well, I don't watch black-and-white films.' Most people don't know who I am."

Her "Family Plot" co-star, Bruce Dern, tweeted of her death, "With the passing of Barbara Harris today, our generation lost its true female comic genius and a girl for the ages. #RIPBarbaraHarris #familyplot."

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