Adrienne Shelley

Actress, writer and director

Actress, writer and director Adrienne Shelley, who starred in several Hal Hartley movies and went on to write and direct, died Nov. 1 in New York. A construction worker has been charged with her murder. She was 40.

The petite actress was born in Queens and became an important part of the New York independent film scene with her first screen appearances in Hartley’s “Trust” and “The Unbelievable Truth.” She also worked onstage with New York’s Workhouse Theater.

She went on to appear in studio and indie films including “Big Girls Don’t Cry…They Get Even,” “Sleeping with Strangers,” “Teresa’s Tattoo,” “Sleep with Me” and “Wrestling with Alligators.” On TV, she appeared in “Homicide: Life on the Street” and “Law and Order.” Her most recent appearance was in last year’s “Factotum,” based on a Charles Bukowski story, costarring with Matt Dillon and Lili Taylor.

Shelley made her feature writing and directing debut with comedy “Sudden Manhattan” in 1997, in which she also starred. That film was followed by romantic comedy “I’ll Take You There” with Ally Sheedy, which she wrote and directed.

She had recently finished writing and directing the feature “Waitress” with Keri Russell, Cheryl Hines and Jeremy Sisto.

She is survived by her husband Andrew Ostroy and a daughter.

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