Comedy Actress Anne Meara, Mother of Ben Stiller, Dies at 85

Meara is survived by husband Jerry Stiller, and her two children

Photo: Bruce Glikas/FilmMagic

Actress and comedian Anne Meara, mother of Ben Stiller, died on Saturday, PEOPLE confirms. Meara was 85.

“The Stiller family is deeply saddened to share the beloved Anne Meara passed away last night at the age of 85,” the family said in a statement. “She is survived by her husband and partner in life, Jerry Stiller.

“The two were married for 61 years and worked together almost as long.”

Married in 1954, Meara and Stiller, 87, performed together as Stiller & Meara on sketch shows throughout the 1960s, most notably, The Ed Sullivan Show. While Stiller felt a resurgence in fame through recurring roles in Seinfeld and The King of Queens (on which his wife had a guest starring role), Meara enjoyed steady success through dozens of TV and movie appearances. She also had recurring roles on long-running soap All My Children and Alf.

Meara was nominated for five Emmy Awards throughout her career, twice for her role as Veronica Rooney on Archie Bunker’s Place. She won a Writers Guild Award in 1983 for co-writing TV movie The Other Woman, and was nominated for a Tony in 1993 for her role in play Anne Christie.

In recent years, Meara famously starred as the mother-in-law to Miranda (played by Cynthia Nixon) on the HBO series Sex and the City. She also appeared on-screen with her son Ben, 49, several times, including in 2006’s Night at the Museum, 2001’s Zoolander and 1995’s Heavy Weights.

“Anne’s memory lives on in the hearts of daughter Amy, son Ben, her grandchildren, her extended family and friends, and the millions she entertained as an actress, writer and comedienne,” the statement continues.

Actress And Comedian Anne Meara Dies At 85

In addition to Stiller and Ben, Meara is survived by her daughter, actress Amy Stiller, and several grandchildren.


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