Debbie Reynolds dies grieving for daughter Carrie Fisher
Debbie Reynolds, who starred opposite Gene Kelly in the 1952 musical Singin' in the Rain, has died a day after the death of her daughter, Carrie Fisher. The US actress, 84, had been rushed to hospital with a suspected stroke.
Her son, Todd Fisher, said the stress of his sister's death had been too much for her and in her last words, she had said she wanted to be with Carrie. Celebrity news site TMZ reported that Reynolds cracked while discussing plans for Carrie's funeral with her son.
US actress Bette Midler said Reynolds was "devoted to her craft" and that her death was "too hard to comprehend". For Star Trek actor William Shatner, Reynolds was one of the last of the Hollywood royalty.
Reynolds had been at her son's house in Beverly Hills - apparently discussing the arrangements for Carrie Fisher's funeral - when she was taken ill. She was admitted to Cedars-Sinai Medical Centre suffering from breathing difficulties and her death was confirmed a few hours later. It is thought she suffered a stroke.
Reynolds was leading lady in a succession of major Hollywood musicals and comedies in the 1950s and 60s. She rose to stardom with Singin' in the Rain, at the age of only 19. She received a best actress Academy Award nomination for the 1964 musical The Unsinkable Molly Brown.
Her other films included 1973 animated film Charlotte's Web, in which she provided the voice for the eponymous spider.
In 2015 she was given a lifetime achievement award by the Screen Actors Guild. The award was presented to her by her daughter.
Reynolds married singer Eddie Fisher in 1955 and had two children, Carrie and Todd. The couple divorced in 1959 after news emerged of his affair with movie star Elizabeth Taylor. Reynolds married twice more.
The actress has a sometimes strained relationship with her actress daughter, who wrote about it in her semi-autobiographical novel Postcards from the Edge. The pair stopped speaking to each other for many years but became closer later in life. In an interview last month with US radio network NPR, Fisher said her mother was "an immensely powerful woman" whom she admired "very much".
As people gathered to pay their respects to the actress at Hollywood's Walk of Fame, one couple, Jose and Daniela Barrera, appeared to speak for many after a year marked by celebrity deaths. —BBC