Adams died Sunday in Los Angeles, according to her official website.
“The Shape of Water” director Guillermo del Toro paid tribute to the actress, writing, “I mourn Julie Adams passing. It hurts in a place deep in me, where monsters swim.”
During her storied career, Adams appeared in 50 films and even more television episodes. Along with “Creature From the Black Lagoon, which catapulted her film career, she starred alongside Elvis Presley in 1965’s “Tickle Me,” worked with Dennis Hopper in 1971’s “The Last Movie,” and appeared with Jimmy Stewart in “Bend in the River.” Her other movie roles include “Francis Joins the WACS,” “The Private War of Major Benson,” “Mississippi Gambler,” “Bright Victory,” and “Slaughter on Tenth Avenue.”
Born Betty May Adams on Oct. 17, 1926 in Waterloo, Iowa, Adams spent her formative years in Arkansas before moving to California. She took acting lessons while working as a secretary before landing her first film role, 1949’s “Red Hot and Blue” for Paramount, which she followed up with a number of Westerns. She changed her name to Julie by the early ’50s after signing with Universal in 1949.
Adams married actor-director Ray Danton, her co-star in the 1955 action film “The Looters.” They also appeared together in 1958’s “Tarawa Beachhead” and 1975’s horror flick “Psychic Killer” before divorcing in 1981. The couple had two children, Steve Danton and Mitchell Danton.
After her divorce, Adams had a long-term relationship with screenwriter Ronald M. Cohen, known for projects like “The Good Guys and the Bad Guys,” “Twilight’s Last Gleaming,” and “Last Stand at Saber River” starring Tom Selleck.
On the television front, Adams appeared in series such as “CSI: New York,” “Alfred Hitchcock Presents,” “The Andy Griffith Show,” “Too Close for Comfort,” “General Hospital,” “Beverly Hills, 90210,” “The Colgate Comedy Hour,” and “Melrose Place.” She also played a recurring role on CBS’s “Murder, She Wrote.”
She is survived by her two sons and four grandchildren.