Kirstie Alley, Emmy Award-winning Cheers star, dies aged 71 after battle with cancer

Kirstie Alley, the actress who died of cancer at the age of 71, is best known for playing the wily Rebecca Howe, the erotic bar manager she played for six years on the hit American sitcom Cheers. although she later became known more for her role. fight with her weight.

During 11 years of operation Congratulationsa comedy about a group of patrons who meet to chat and drink in a Boston bar (although never showing any signs of being drunk); has achieved worldwide success, airing to 35 million regular audiences in the US and 6 million in the UK, and won numerous awards as one of the best-written, witty comedies on either side of the Atlantic.

Kirstie Alley joined the show in 1987 at the height of her popularity after Sam Malone (Ted Danson), the lewd bartender owner, ran out of money and had to sell the bar, and her character, the sharp Rebecca like a razor, is inserted. managed by the new owner, replacing Shelley Long.

She starred on the show until it aired in 1993, often outperforming Sam in their verbal duels and delivering some of the show’s fastest dialogue with the times. perfect comic. Her performance earned her a Golden Globe and an Emmy Award for Best Actress in a Comedy Series in 1991.

She capitalized on her success with Look who’s talking comedy series in which she plays Mollie, a New Yorker who becomes pregnant after having an affair with a married man and falls in love with a taxi driver (Kirstie Alley’s friend and fellow Scientist). career, John Travolta), who took her to the hospital and witnessed the birth.

She went on to star in films including Woody Allen’s . Deconstruction Harry (1997), as Joan, Harry’s ex-wife, and television shows, including starring in and producing the hit sitcom Veronica’s Wardrobe (1997-2000), in which she plays the insecure owner of a lingerie company and self-help empire struggling with her shabby appearance and trying to hide the fact that her husband is a bully. hopeless moonshine.

Even at the peak of the game, Kirstie Alley struggled with her weight and was repeatedly given an ultimatum by the networks to lose weight. But she continued to eat and by the early 2000s without a job, her weight had skyrocketed to 16 stone.

She found herself the subject of unflattering photographs by the paparazzi showing her eating fries or stepping out from fast food restaurants, and was called out mercilessly by the US press. the “giant heifer”.

Unyielding to Hollywood’s strict requirements for thinness, in 2004 she walked into the offices of Showtime, the American premium television network, with the gift of 24 dozen Krispy Kreme donuts – the gift of ” heart attack with a hole in the middle” of America. – with an introduction to an obscene TV series that follows the adventures of a semi-fictional character Kirstie Alley, a former sex symbol whose amazing body once blossomed into middle age .

She called the program fat actor. Aired in 2005 and with virtually no script, despite all the difficulties and expectations, it became a hit in the US, was shown in the UK on FX and led to a rebirth of the industry. show business.

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One of three children, Kirstie Louise Alley was born in Wichita, Kansas, on January 12, 1951, to Robert Alley, who owned a lumber company, and his wife Lillian.​

Kirstie dropped out of college and spent a while as a cyclist before moving to Los Angeles and trying to become an interior designer. That career didn’t last long as she developed a serious cocaine addiction. “I snorted most of my hard-earned money,” she recalls.

She claims that it was the Church of Scientology that cured her of the habit of drinking coke. She joined in 1979 and underwent Narconon, a drug treatment program affiliated with Science. She has become a believer and will consult with the church before taking on the role. She is reported to have rejected parts in Congratulations spin-off Frasier for religious reasons.

Kirstie Alley got her big break when she was cast as Lieutenant Vulcan Saavik in Star Trek II: Khan’s Wrath (1982), and she continued wearing the Playboy bunny costume in the 1985 film The Story of a Rabbitbefore replacing Shelley Long in Congratulations.

Kirstie Alley has been married twice, first to her high school sweetheart, Bob Alley (who has the same last name but no relation), and second, in 1983, to Parker Stevenson.​

After that marriage ended, she fell in love with actor James Wilder, eight years her junior, claiming she was “100% sure” that she had found the right man. But the relationship ended after three years in 1999 and by 2005 she was said to be sharing a home with 30 pets, birds, cats and dogs, including four Welsh corgis.

In later life, she regularly appeared on reality TV shows, including a runner-up in the British series C in 2018.Celebrity Big Brother. But in 2021, she complained in an interview with Fox News that she was blackmailed by Hollywood after announcing that she would vote for Donald Trump in the 2020 presidential election.

She is survived by her daughter and son.

Kirstie Alley, born January 12, 1951, died December 5, 2022.

Telegraph Communication Company Limited [2022] Kirstie Alley, Emmy Award-winning Cheers star, dies aged 71 after battle with cancer

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