Joanne Linville, Star Trek Romulan commander and Twilight Zone actress, dead at 93
Joanne Linville, who made a memorable “Star Trek” appearance as a Romulan commander in the original TV series, died Sunday in Los Angeles. She was 93.
In a statement to USA TODAY, her family said Linville “lived a full life.”
“One whose spirit, passion for art and life was an inspiration to all who had the pleasure of knowing her,” the statement continued. “A loving mother and proud grandmother.”
The actress, born Beverly Joanne Linville on Jan. 15, 1928, in Bakersfield, California, stood out in an acclaimed 1961 episode of “The Twilight Zone.” She played a Southern belle in the final days of the Civil War who learns the cost of war and hatred in one of the classic series’ famous twists.
Joanne Linville, right, who played a Romulan commander who gets involved with Mr. Spock (Leonard Nimoy) in a memorable 1968 "Star Trek" episode, died June 20 at the age of 93. She appeared in more than 100 TV shows and films during a long acting career. (Photo: CBS via Getty Images)
Linville, who studied acting with Stella Adler, was a frequent TV guest star and film actor from the 1950s through the 1980s, with roles in more than 100 shows and movies.
She appeared on classic series including “Alfred Hitchcock Presents,” “Gunsmoke,” “Dr. Kildare,” “Ben Casey,” “Route 66,” “I Spy,” “Bonanza,” “The Fugitive,” “Hawaii Five-O,” “Kojak,” “The Streets of San Francisco,” “Charlie’s Angels,” “Dynasty” and “L.A. Law.”
In the late ‘80s, Linville and Adler started an acting conservatory under Adler’s name. Linville also wrote a book “Seven Steps to an Acting Craft,” published September 2011.
Joanne Linville as Romulan Commander in the STAR TREK episode, "The Enterprise Incident." (Photo: CBS via Getty Images)
“Trek” fans remember Linville for 1968’s “The Enterprise Incident” episode, a fan-favorite from the original TV show’s final season in which she portrayed the commander of a Romulan vessel.
Her character falls for Spock (Leonard Nimoy) while he and Captain James Kirk (William Shatner), enemies from the Federation, are in custody on her ship.
Joanne Linville enjoyed a long acting career that included roles in "Star Trek," "The Twilight Zone" and many other TV shows and movies. She also wrote "Seven Steps to an Acting Craft." (Photo: Joanne Linville's family)
Linville’s movie credits include “The Goddess” (1958), “Scorpio” (1973), “Gable and Lombard” (1976), “A Star Is Born” (1976) and “The Seduction” (1982). She played gossip columnist Hedda Hopper in “James Dean,” a 2001 TV movie starring James Franco and directed by her ex-husband, Mark Rydell.
Besides Rydell, Linville is survived by their two children, Christopher Rydell and Amy Rydell; grandchildren Austen, Ruby and Ginger; and great-grandson Kingston Fisher Lourd Rydell, the son of Carrie Fisher’s daughter Billie Lourd and Linville’s grandson Austen Rydell.
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