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Oscar Winner Celeste Holm Dies at 95

Date July 15, 2012

Celeste Holm

Celeste Holm, who rose to fame in Broadway's Oklahoma! and won an Oscar for 1947's Gentleman's Agreement, has died, according to The Hollywood Reporter. She was 95.

Holm was hospitalized approximately two weeks ago with dehydration after a fire broke out in actor Robert De Niro's apartment. (Holm lived in the same Manhattan building.) She spent her final days at home with her husband, Frank Basile, and other relatives and close friends by her side, her great-niece, Amy Phillips, told the Reporter. According to Phillips, she died at about 3:30 a.m.

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Holm was best known for playing boy crazy Ado Annie in the 1943 Broadway production of Oklahoma! and Bette Davis' best friend in All About Eve. Her other well-known films included The Tender Trap and High Society. She was nominated for three Academy Awards and won in 1947 for best supporting actress for Gentleman's Agreement, in which she played a fashion editor who falls for a journalist played by Gregory Peck.

She also guest-starred on television shows including Fantasy Island and starred in the short-lived Touched By an Angel spin-off, Promised Land. Her most recent role was playing Brendan Fraser's grandmother in 1997's Still Breathing.

Throughout her career, Holm was also known for her charity work. She was a board member emeritus of the National Mental Health Association and was once president of the Creative Arts Rehabilitation Center. In 1982, President Ronald Reagan appointed her to a six-year term on the National Council of the Arts.

See all of Holms film and TV credits

Holm was married five times — most recently to Basile, who was more than 45 years her junior, in 2004. She is survived by two sons and three grandchildren. However, Holm had not spoken to her sons in recent years when they became engaged in a bitter legal battle with Basile over investments and inheritance. Holm lost much of her savings in the in the court fight, according to THR, and had been sued for overdue maintenance and legal fees on her Manhattan apartment.

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