Dame Angela Lansbury, known for her roles on TV, stage and film, has died aged 96 just days before her birthday.

Her family broke the news in a statement on Tuesday.

“The children of Dame Angela Lansbury are sad to announce that their mother died peacefully in her sleep at home in Los Angeles at 1.30am today, Tuesday, October 11, 2022, just five days shy of her 97th birthday,” they said in a statement.

The Murder, She Wrote star was one of the most decorated actors in stage history, winning five Tony Awards for her performances on Broadway and a lifetime achievement award.

Lansbury scored one for her best-known work on Broadway, where she starred as the piemaker Nellie Lovett in Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street, winning the Tony for best musical actress in 1979.

Her other three Tony awards for best actress in a musical were for her roles in Mame (1966), Dear World (1969) and Gypsy (1975).

She earned Academy Award nominations for her work in film as a supporting actress in Gaslight (1945), The Picture of Dorian Gray (1946), and again in 1962 for The Manchurian Candidate.

The star displayed her singing talents off-Broadway when she voiced the character of Mrs Potts in the 1991 animated movie Beauty and the Beast.

For the film’s 25th anniversary in 2016, Lansbury took to the stage in New York and brought the house down with a rendition of the movie’s titular tune.

But her widespread fame came when she took on the role of a mystery writer and amateur sleuth in Murder, She Wrote.

Running for 12 seasons from 1984 to 1996, the series was loosely based on Agatha Christie’s Miss Marple stories and followed Jessica Fletcher, a widowed mystery writer living in the village of Cabot Cove, Maine.

Lansbury earned 12 Emmy award nominations for Murder, She Wrote, making her the record-holder for the most Emmy nominations for lead actress in a drama series.

While the show became a hit, Lansbury said she found the first season exhausting.

“I was shocked when I learned that had to work 12-15 hours a day, relentlessly, day in, day out,” she recalled.

“I had to lay down the law at one point and say, ‘Look, I can’t do these shows in seven days; it will have to be eight days.’”

But, she was pleased that her role as Fletcher had become an inspiration for older women.

“Women in motion pictures have always had a difficult time being role models for other women,” she observed.

“They’ve always been considered glamorous in their jobs.”

After the news broke of her passing, tributes have poured in across social media as fans and Hollywood stars remember the legendary actress.

“Angela Lansbury, who graced the stage for decades winning five Tony awards and brought the sleuthing Jessica Fletcher into our living rooms for a dozen years, has passed. A tale as old as time, our beloved Mrs Potts will sing lullabies to us now from the stars. Rest, great soul,” George Takei tweeted.

“Dame Angela Lansbury has fallen asleep and gone to the ‘theatre in the Sky’. She epitomised grace and exhibited a gifted natural talent. One of the world’s greatest actors. I had the privilege of meeting her,” Poirot star David Suchet wrote.

Even NASA paid tribute to Lansbury, offering a “cosmic rose” to the star.

Lansbury is survived by her two children, Diedre Angela Shaw, 69, and Anthony Pullen Shaw, 70.

Image: Getty Images

This article first appeared on OverSixty.