Gloria Stuart, a successful 1930′s era actress who returned to film very late in her life to portray the older version of Kate Winslet’s character Rose in Titanic, has died at the age of 100.
Stuart’s long lull in acting between her “heyday” in the 1930s and her performance in the mega-blockbuster in 1997 interestingly came down to her frustration in trying to become an A-list star. She worked a bit in film and television in the 70s and 80s, but was finally nominated for an Academy Award for Titanic as she approached the 90-year mark. The Washington Post quoted a review of Stuart’s performance in the film:
“Her ease is poetic,” reviewer Elvis Mitchell wrote of Ms. Stuart in 1997. “This actress in her 80s holds the picture together, and the irony is, we come to look forward more to her scenes than we do those featuring the colossal scale of the rebuilt Titanic and its expertly milling passengers.”
Stuart’s daughter Sylvia Thompson confirmed that the actress had fought a long bout with lung cancer before her passing.