Jul. 28th, 1947
Portland, Oregon, USA
Sally Struthers' Main TV Roles
Main Movie Roles
Guest TV Roles[none found]
Cute as a button and with a petite, porcelain prettiness and vulnerability that endeared her to the American public, Sally Struthers nabbed a series role in the early 1970s and became a solid part of TV history as a member of a dysfunctional family quartet in the milestone sitcom All in the Family (1971).
Born Sally Ann Struthers (July 28, 1947), in Portland, Oregon and raised there, pursuing an acting career following high school. Relocating to Los Angeles, she trained at the Pasadena Playhouse College of Theatre Arts and earned a scholarship as its "most promising student". She performed briefly in regional stock plays until finding her break as both a commercial actress and dancer on TV.
She appeared as a regular on such variety shows as "The Smothers Brothers Comedy Hour" (1967) and "The Tim Conway Comedy Hour" (1970) and showed starlet promise in films as well offering ditsy support in the 'Jack Nicholson' starrer "Five Easy Pieces" (1970) and the chase film "The Getaway" (1972) top-lining 'Steve McQueen' and 'Ali MacGraw'.
And then came "All in the Family" (1971). Also starring 'Carroll O'Connor', 'Jean Stapleton' and 'Rob Reiner', Struthers went on to win two supporting Emmy Awards as Kewpie-doll "Gloria Bunker Stivic". She and 'Rob Reiner' left the show after seven seasons, both eager to grow. While 'Rob Reiner' became a noted director, Sally made her Broadway debut in "Wally's Cafe" in (1981), and returned four years later with a gender-bending version of "The Odd Couple" as neat-freak "Florence" opposite 'Rita Moreno' slovenly "Olive". In addition she found work in topical mini-series drama with "Aloha Means Goodbye" (1974), "Hey, I'm Alive!" (1975), "My Husband Is Missing" (1978), "And Your Name Is Jonah" (1979), "A Gun in the House" (1981), to name a few. But without a hit show as collateral, offers started drying up.
Sally returned to the TV series fold in the early 1980s spinning off her "Gloria" character with the self-titled sitcom "Gloria" (1982), but the ensemble formula that worked so well for her before was missing here and the show died in its freshman year.
To compensate, however, Sally's baby-doll voice worked extremely well for her in cartoons. She remained active off-camera providing little girl voices for Saturday morning entertainment, notably her teenage "Pebbles Flintstone" character. Other voice-over work included "TaleSpin" (1990), as "Rebecca 'Becky' Cunningham", and puppeteer 'Jim Henson' creative prehistoric sitcom "Dinosaurs" (1991) playing dino-daughter "Charlene Sinclair".
Struthers' significant weight gain in later years moved her quickly into broad character shtick. She showed that she had lost none of the fun for which she was known by providing broad and hearty comedy relief on both daytime soaps and prime-time episodics including "General Hospital" (1963) and "Gilmore Girls" (2000).
She also filled her time with frequent roles on the musical stage. Over the years she has practically put a patent on the by-the-book principal "Miss Lynch" with her many "Grease" tours, and as the hissable orphanage operator Miss Hannigan in a number of road productions of "Annie".
Most recently she copped a 2002 Los Angeles "Ovation" award for her delightfully over-the-top "Agnes Gooch" in "Mame" starring 'Carol Lawrence'.
Divorced, Sally is the mother of one daughter who has made a career for herself as a clinical psychologist. For years Sally was a prime spokesperson for the Christian Children's Fund on TV, fervently (and often tearfully) appealing for viewer's monetary assistance in finding an end to starvation in under-developed countries.
- Measurements: 34C-25-34 (Source: Celebrity Sleuth magazine)
- Best remembered by the public for her role as "Gloria" on _"All in the Family" (1971)_ (qv).
- Made her TV debut as a dancer on a 'Herb Alpert' (qv) special.
- Shares a birthday with the late 'Jacqueline Kennedy (I)' (qv) Onassis, 'Tom Pelphrey' (qv), 'Laquayva' (qv), 'Elizabeth Berkley' (qv), 'Lori Loughlin' (qv), and 'Leonor Watling' (qv).
- Was long-time TV spokesperson for the Christian Children's Fund, appearing in several extended public service spots for them through the 1980s.
- She played Miss Hannigan in the 20th Anniversary revival of "Annie" from January to June of 1998.
- She played Miss Lynch for three years in the touring company of "Grease".
- Daughter, Samantha Rader, graduated from Vassar College in June 2001 with a degree in Cognitive Science.
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