She became a household name & global phenomenon  but her sudden death shocked us all

When Elizabeth Montgomery’s name is mentioned, the delightful twinkle accompanying her character’s nose twitch on Bewitched echoes in our minds.

This stunning actress rose to fame as a global phenomenon in the 1960s, leaving an indelible mark – sadly, her unexpected demise occurred in 1995.

At Newsner, amidst narratives of many beautiful and talented women, Ms. Montgomery captivated my youthful heart from the start!

While most movie and TV stars rely on makeup and hairstylists, Elizabeth was a natural beauty, and I reveled in watching her on Bewitched.

So, what unfolded in Elizabeth Montgomery’s life after her portrayal of Samantha Stephens in the 1960s sitcom?

In 2023, this gifted actress would have marked her 90th birthday. However, let’s journey back through her film and television career before her untimely departure in 1995.

Born in Los Angeles on April 15, 1933, to a Broadway actress and film star, Elizabeth Montgomery inherited the love for acting.

“Dad tells me I often climbed on his lap after dinner and remarked, ‘I’m going to be an actress when I grow up.’ I don’t know whether he encouraged me or not, but he told me he would humor me and would tell me to wait and see what happened when I grew up,” Elizabeth shared in a 1954 interview with the Los Angeles Times.

Her father, Robert Montgomery, was a renowned actor who significantly influenced her career.

”I’ll be real honest and say that Daddy did help me get a break in TV, and I’m really grateful for his assistance and guidance. He’s my most severe critic, but also a true friend as well as a loving father.”

After attending school in California, she moved to New York City, where she attended the Spence School. Post-graduation, she spent three years at the American Academy of Dramatic Arts.

Making her television debut as a teenager on her father’s show, Robert Montgomery Presents, she continued to make multiple appearances.

By 1953, Elizabeth made her Broadway debut in Late Love. Two years later, in 1955, she starred in her first film, The Court-Martial of Billy Mitchell. After another two years, she returned to Broadway.

While her career advanced, Elizabeth encountered love, but it was often short-lived. She married Frederick Gallatin Cammann in 1954, leading to divorce a year later. Her marriage to award-winning actor Gig Young in 1956 endured until their divorce in 1963.

During the filming of Johnny Cool, Elizabeth crossed paths with William Asher, a director and TV producer. Not only did he contribute to her career, but they also embarked on a romantic journey.

They married in 1963 and had three children together.

Starring in Bewitched While Elizabeth Montgomery appeared in various shows such as Alfred Hitchcock Presents, The Loretta Young Show, The Untouchables, and The Twilight Zone, her most iconic role was as Samantha Stephens, the nose-twitching witch on Bewitched.

This supernatural comedy, spanning eight seasons from 1964 to 1972, thrust Elizabeth into the limelight.

Suddenly, she became a household name, with everyone attempting to replicate Samantha’s famous nose twitch.

”I’d never thought much about a series because I liked the idea of picking a script I liked with a character I thought I could sustain for an hour. In a series, you live with one character day in and day out – and you only hope it will be one that will not drive you crazy,” Elizabeth told AP in 1965.

Post-Bewitched and the conclusion of her marriage to Asher, Elizabeth starred in numerous made-for-television movies, often diverging from her previous role.

She appeared in Mrs. Sundance (1973), A Case of Rape (1974), The Legend of Lizzie Borden (1975), Black Widow Murders (1993), The Corpse Had a Familiar Face (1994), and Deadline for Murder: From the Files of Edna Buchanan (1995).

During the filming of Mrs. Sundance, she met Robert Foxworth, and their companionship endured until Elizabeth’s demise in 1995. However, they didn’t tie the knot until 1993.

“Before Jane Seymour, before Lindsay Wagner and before Valerie Bertinelli, Elizabeth was the first Queen of the TV movies; she went from queen of the witches to queen of the TV movie, and it was no longer a struggle to break away from Bewitched,” noted Herbie J Pilato, author of two books on Elizabeth Montgomery.

Regrettably, her career was curtailed when, on May 18, 1995, after a prolonged battle with colon cancer.

As reported by the Los Angeles Times, her family stated she was 57 at her demise, though several places listed her birth year as 1933, making her 62. Despite battling the disease for years and believing she was cancer-free, she fell ill while filming Deadline for Murder: From the Files of Edna Buchanan.

By the time she sought medical attention in March 1995, it was too late; the cancer had spread to her liver.

Elizabeth passed away peacefully in her sleep at her Beverly Hills home, surrounded by her husband and three children. A memorial took place a month later at the Canon Theatre in Beverly Hills, featuring famous jazz musician Herbie Hancock and author Dominick Dunne, Elizabeth’s lifelong friend.

The Bewitched star’s body was cremated at Westwood Village Memorial Park Cemetery in Los Angeles.

Reflecting on playing diverse characters, Elizabeth expressed in a 1992 interview:

“They all have different kinds of ‘feels’ to them, and that’s probably one of the reasons why I’ve done them. I get letters from people saying one of the things they like best about what I’ve done since ‘Bewitched’ is that they never know what I’m going to do next.”

A naturally exquisite woman! It’s a tragedy that she left us too soon.