Dialect coach Lilene Mansell died April 4 after a long illness stemming from a malignant brain tumor. She was 59.
Born in Beaver Falls, Penn., she graduated with a drama degree from Carnegie-Mellon U. She worked for several years as an actress on New York and regional stages but eventually moved into coaching full time.
Among her credits as a dialect coach on Broadway are the original productions of “The Producers,” “Master Class,” “The Sisters Rosensweig,” the American cast of “Stones in His Pocket,” as well as recent revivals of “The Iceman Cometh” and “Wait Until Dark.”
Her most recent work in film include the HBO production of “Angels in America,” “Maid in Manhattan,” “Divine Secrets of the Ya-Ya Sisterhood” and “Sweet Home Alabama.” At the time of her hospitalization in October 2002, she had just completed work on Audrey Tautou’s first American movie, “No Where to Go But Up.”
Other credits include “Frequency,” “The Sixth Sense,” “Celebrity,” “The Thin Red Line,” “Romeo + Juliet,” “Mighty Aphrodite” and “Fried Green Tomatoes.”
Mansell’s regular clients included Jim Caviezel, Al Pacino, Kenneth Branagh, Famke Janssen, Sonia Braga, Sam Rockwell, Marisa Tomei and Angelina Jolie. She worked with directors including Woody Allen, Sydney Pollack, M. Night Shyamalan, Mira Nair and Kevin Reynolds.
She co-authored the revised edition of her teacher Edith Skinner’s speech textbook “Speak With Distinction.”
Mansell is survived by a brother.