Director and television star Penny Marshall died on December 17, 2018 at the age of 75. She didn’t exit without leaving her stamp of excellence on the entertainment industry. Prior to directing movies that would go onto to be favorites among fans for years to come, Marshall played the brewery worker Laverne DeFazio in the hit show “Laverne & Shirley.” Her star power and talent didn’t end with “Laverne & Shirley.” Marshall reinvented herself as one of the greatest directors of our time. Below are clips that celebrate her extraordinary work.
‘Laverne & Shirley’ – 1976-1983
“Laverne & Shirley” ran for eight seasons on ABC from January 27, 1976, to May 10, 1983. A spin-off of Happy Days, Laverne & Shirley followed the lives of Laverne DeFazio (Penny Marshall) and Shirley Feeney (Cindy Williams), two friends and roommates who work as bottle-cappers in the fictitious Shotz Brewery in late 1950s Milwaukee, Wisconsin. Noted for its use of physical comedy, “Laverne & Shirley” became the most-watched American television program by its third season, and was nominated for two Golden Globe Awards and a Primetime Emmy Award in 1979. Get the complete series on Amazon.com.
‘Jumpin Jack Flash’ – 1986
“Jumpin’ Jack Flash” starred the now legendary Whoopi Goldberg. The film was Penny Marshall’s theatrical film directorial debut and would eventually become a classic as well as an inspiration for aspiring female comedians. Grab the film from Walmart.com.
‘Big’ – 1988
Big stars Tom Hanks as Josh Baskin, a young boy who makes a wish “to be big” and is then aged to adulthood overnight. While it wasn’t her directorial debut, it definitely let Hollywood know that Penny Marshall was a force and one to watch. It became the first movie directed by a woman to gross more than $100 million. Watch it on Amazon Prime.
‘A League Of Their Own’ – 1992
A League of Their Own tells a fictionalized account of the real-life All-American Girls Professional Baseball League (AAGPBL). The comedy starred Geena Davis, Tom Hanks, Madonna, Rosie O’Donnell, and Lori Petty. In 2012, A League of Their Own was selected for preservation in the United States National Film Registry by the Library of Congress as being “culturally, historically, or aesthetically significant.” Watch it on Amazon Prime.
‘The Preacher’s Wife’ – 1996
The Preacher’s Wife is a 1996 American family film directed by Penny Marshall and starring Denzel Washington, Whitney Houston, and Courtney B. Vance. It is a remake of the 1947 film The Bishop’s Wife, which in turn was based on the novel of the same name by Robert Nathan. It was nominated for the Academy Award for Best Music, Original Musical or Comedy Score. The film was nominated for five Image Awards, including Outstanding Motion Picture, and won two—for Best Actress (Whitney Houston) and Best Supporting Actress (Loretta Devine). Pick up the movie today from Barnes & Noble.
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