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Casting Director Barbara Claman Dies at 89

Barbara Claman, a casting director known for her role in helping discover stars like, George Clooney, Laura Dern and Charlie Sheen, has died. She was 89.

Claman died in her sleep on Jan. 17, according to her son, Eric Claman Sr.

Claman was an accomplished casting director in New York City and Hollywood. She began a career in show business in Manhattan, then moved to Hollywood to cast talent for television and film. She overcame gender bias in the 1970s entertainment industry and made a name for herself as a top casting director. Her innate skill for identifying stars from memory also helped her succeeded greatly before computers were used.

Before retiring in 2004, Claman was credited for casting more than 75 shows and movies, including “Lost in America,” “Days of Heaven,” “Santa Barbara,” “Zorro” and “The Changeling.”

She also volunteered at the Braille Institute of Los Angeles following her retirement and directed a play with a cast of only blind actors.

A Barbara Claman Theatrical Scholarship will also be created at two high schools. Donations can be mailed to 89 Honey Hill Rd., New Hartford, CT 06057.

She is survived by her son, daughter-in-law and four grandchildren.

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