Emmy-Winning Director, Producer and Broadway Actress Nancy Malone Passes Away
Nancy began her career at age seven as a model for ads ranging from Kellogg's Cereal to Ford cars and Macy's. At ten she was chosen for the cover of Life Magazine's 10th Anniversary issue: "The Typical American Girl."
William Morris signed her and she began her acting career, in a show broadcast live on DuMont TV Network. She appeared in hundreds of guest starring roles on TV and theater (including the Broadway stage). She appeared in TV's first Soap Opera, "The First Hundred Years" and extensively on live radio. She joined the Actors Studio and studied with Stella Adler as well as David Craig, and Milton Katselas and studied ballet with Nora Kaye.
At fifteen she made her Broadway debut as 'Ginger,' co-starring Melvyn Douglas in Time Out for Ginger. After the Broadway run, she then toured the USA with the play for a year and received a nomination as Best Actress from the Sarah Siddons Society in Chicago. When she returned to New York, Charles Laughton chose her to play Jenny Hill in the "All Star" production of Shaw's Major Barbara, followed by "The Seven Year Itch," "A Place for Polly" (a pre-Broadway tryout); "Requiem for a Heavyweight," "The Chalk Garden" with Judith Anderson and "A Touch of the Poet" with Helen Hayes, and "The Trial of the Catonsville Nine."
Commenting on Malone's passing, fellow actress Tyne Daly said: "Nancy Malone was a very favorite colleague. She brought the most energetic and enthusiastic spirit to the set and managed to keep it through all of the long, long days. Plus she was one of the funniest known human beings. With her unfailing good taste and a heart of Irish gold, I loved working and playing with her. We worked on a favorite play of hers 'Big Maggie' in the hope of it's finding a place in Los Angeles theatre, which in and of itself was a knee-slapper for Nancy. She was a true believer but she was nobody's fool. I loved her. Many, many people loved her. And Linda loved her the most. If there is a heaven, Nancy has arrived by limousine and the first word out of her mouth was her personal favorite code word for the 'innkeeper'.... NURSE!!!!"
Along with her work in theater, she also starred in the ground breaking and award winning television series, Naked City, where she received an Emmy Award Nomination for Best Actress, followed by the role of Clara Varner in the TV series "The Long Hot Summer," "The Killing of Randy Webster "and "A Tree Grows in Brooklyn." Nancy continued her guest starring roles in "Bonanza," "The Fugitive," "The Partridge Family," "Big Valley," "The Rockford Files," "Outer Limits," "Run for Your Life," "Dr Kildare," "The Andy Griffith Show," "Hawaii Five-0," "The Twilight Zone," "Lou Grant" and other leading programs. In addition, she co-starred with Burt Reynolds in the movie, "The Man Who Loved Cat Dancing."
In 1971 Nancy Malone was invited to join Tomorrow Entertainment as a story analyst, which led to a position as Director of Motion Pictures. After leaving Tomorrow Entertainment, she produced her first TV Movie, "Winner Take All," starring Shirley Jones, for NBC, before joining the 20th Century Fox's TV department as Director of TV Development. Shortly thereafter she was appointed Vice President of Television, the first woman VP at a major studio. During her time at Fox, Nancy co-founded Women in Film. She served as Chair of the WIF Foundation and established the Crystal Award, the Dorothy Arzner Award, the Norma Zarky Award, and the Founders Award. The named the Nancy Malone Directors Award after her for her contributions to the Film Finishing Fund.
In 1975 she established Lilac Productions to produce television films. Her producing credits include: "Sherlock Holmes in New York" with Roger Moore and John Huston; "Like Mom," "Like Me," with Linda Lavin; "The Great Pretender," with Billy Dee Williams, "I Married a Monster" and The Violation of Sarah McDavid, with Patty Duke. She developed and produced a one-hour comedy for CBS - "Husbands, Wives and Lovers." "The Nurses" pilot followed, and a season of "The Bionic Woman." Nancy won an Emmy for co-producing, "Bob Hope: The First 90 Years."
"Nancy Malone was a delight to work with on 'The Bionic Woman'," Lindsay Wagner said. "She was funny and energetic and I had great admiration for her being one of the early women to be successful in the television industry."
During the 1980's Nancy Malone completed the American Film Institute's Directing Workshop for Women, and began her directing career. Her first full-length film, "There Were Times, Dear," starring Shirley Jones and Len Cariou, appeared on PBS and was the first film about Alzheimer's disease. It was accompanied by a NIMH outreach program and took the night in most PBS markets. This film was used as a fundraiser by various Alzheimer's chapters around the country to aid caregivers. The film won many awards, including The John Muir Film Festival, a Cine Golden Eagle and many more. It went on to raise close to three million dollars for Alzheimer's and Related Disorders.
As a DGA director, Nancy directed many top TV shows. Her first episodic directing assignment was Episode 100 of "Dynasty," after which she became a staff director at Aaron Spelling Productions. She directed multiples of: "Hotel," "Melrose Place," "Dynasty," and "Beverly Hills, 90210." She went on to direct "Knots Landing," "Sisters," "Cagney & Lacey," "Star Trek Voyager," "Touched by an Angel," "Dawson's Creek," "Judging Amy," "Starman," "The Guardian," "Resurrection Blvd," and a "Bob Hope Christmas Special."
Recently, she co-produced and directed a live event at Ellis Island honoring Bob Hope, and starring Michael Feinstein. The 2011, "The NY Pops Tribute to Bob Hope at Carnegie Hall" was co-produced and directed by Nancy Malone and starred: Angela Lansbury, Christine Ebersole, Kelli O'Hara, Michele Lee, Tom Wopat, Tyne Daly, Michael Feinstein, and many more. The event raised a record amount for the Pop's music outreach programs for the NY Public schools.
Her theater work includes directing: "All the Way Home," "Howie the Rookie," and "Big Maggie," starring Tyne Daly. For The LA Theatre Works she directed "Agnes of God," "Prelude to a Kiss," and "The Country Girl." For the Ford Theatre in Los Angeles she directed "Long Day's Journey into Night."
Additionally Nancy taught Acting, Directing, and conducted Master Classes at: UCLA, Piscator Institute of New York; Pasadena's Art Center College of Design; National University of Ireland, Galway - Nancy Malone: Directing for Actors; the Stella Adler Academy; San Jose State University; Women in Film; the American Film Institute, and Women in the Directors Chair, BANFF, Canada. In the spring of 2013, Nancy taught a master class at the Steinhardt School at NYU. In 2010, at the request of the Performing Arts Section UCLA Library: Special Collections, she organized and presented her papers and memorabilia to that facility for permanent research and record keeping.
Ms. Malone is survived by her colleague and longtime friend, Linda Hope. Services to be announced. In lieu of flowers, donations to Directing Workshop For Women at AFI (http://www.afi.com/dww/), City of Hope or to the Performing Animals Welfare Society http://www.pawsweb.org/.