×
You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

Theater vet Ellen Brandt dies

Multi-hyphenate appeared on TV, in films

Broadway producer, theatre and opera critic and actress Ellen Brandt died September 19 in Los Angeles from a stroke. She was 86.

An emigre from Hitler’s Nazi Germany, born Ellen Ruth Friedsam, she obtained a double degree in math and chemistry and was offered a position on the Manhattan Project, but turned it down to accept a contract from Revlon before becoming the spokesmodel for the Ed Sullivan show. She shot over 650 national commercials and appeared opposite John Houseman on the “Paper Chase” TV series and in the feature film “Fast Times at Ridgemont High.”

In 1950 she married producer George Brandt (Brandt Theaters and Trans Lux) and was involved in the running of the Subway Circuit, the forerunner to Joe Papp’s American Theater.

Brandt produced “Brief Lives” for the Shubert Organization in 1975, starring Roy Dotrice. She was also a theater and opera critic for publications including Variety and the L.A. Times.

She is survived by a daughter, Dr. Jody Mosten; son Geoffrey Brandt, head of Course Management, and two grandchildren.

Donations may be made to the The Motion Picture & Television Fund.

More Scene

  • Marianne Rendon, Matt Smith, Ondi Timoner

    Robert Mapplethorpe Biopic Team Talks 'Fast and Furious' Filming

    Thursday night’s New York premiere of the Matt Smith-led biopic “Mapplethorpe” took place at Cinépolis Chelsea, just steps from the Chelsea Hotel where the late photographer Robert Mapplethorpe once lived — but director Ondi Timoner had no sense of that legacy when she first encountered him in a very different context. “When I was ten [...]

  • Producer Mel Jones poses at the

    'Dear White People' Producer Talks Hollywood's 'Black Tax'

    “Dear White People” and “Leimert Park” executive producer Mel Jones is extremely familiar with growing up and watching “white men in all types of roles and never [seeing] ourselves as a part of those narratives.” Now, there may be some more opportunities for writers of color to tell their own stories, but, she notes, there [...]

  • Rebel Wilson Isn't It Romantic

    Rebel Wilson on Twitter Gaffe: 'It Was Purely to Lift My Fellow Plus-Size Women Up'

    “I obviously misspoke in that situation,” Rebel Wilson told Variety at the premiere of her latest film “Isn’t It Romantic” Monday, acknowledging the gaffe in which she claimed to be the first-ever plus-sized woman to star in a romantic comedy during an October appearance on “Ellen.” Following the comment, Wilson was met with criticism from Twitter [...]

  • NORTH HOLLYWOOD, CALIFORNIA - FEBRUARY 11:

    How Lena Waithe Convinced Halle Berry to Team Up for 'Boomerang' TV Series

    Halle Berry wasn’t immediately sold on the idea of a “Boomerang” reboot. The 1992 romantic comedy, which starred Berry, Eddie Murphy, and Robin Givens, told the tale of cocky ad executive and insatiable ladies’ man Marcus (Murphy) who meets his match in his new boss Jacqueline (Givens) — an exec who treats him the same [...]

  • Rebel Wilson and Miley Cyrus'Isn't it

    Why Liam Hemsworth Wasn't at His 'Isn't It Romantic' Premiere, but Wife Miley Cyrus Was

    Liam Hemsworth had every intention of bringing his wife, Miley Cyrus, to Monday’s premiere of his new romantic comedy “Isn’t It Romantic.” However, the Aussie actor was forced to skip the evening because of some “health things.” That didn’t stop Cyrus from attended the red carpet shindig at the Theater at the Ace Hotel in downtown [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content