Mary Tyler Moore, the trailblazing actress who starred in one of the greatest sitcoms ever, The Mary Tyler Moore Show, and whose influence was felt far beyond the show, has died at 80. Her representative told TMZ, “Today, beloved icon, Mary Tyler Moore, passed away at the age of 80 in the company of friends and her loving husband of over 33 years, Dr. S. Robert Levine. A groundbreaking actress, producer, and passionate advocate for the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation, Moore will be remembered as a fearless visionary who — to quote the theme — “turned the world on with her smile.”
The Brooklyn-born Moore — who’s best known for her role as Mary Richards, a happily independent (when that was uncommon for female characters) and spunky (Lou Grant hated spunk) television producer for WJM-TV in Minneapolis, and iconic housewife Laura Petrie on The Dick Van Dyke Show — was nominated for an Academy Award for her performance in 1980’s Ordinary People. Moore and her then-husband/NBC CEO Grant Tinker also formed MTM Enterprises, which produced such TV classics as Rhoda, Hill Street Blues, WKRP In Cincinnati, and, of course, The Mary Tyler Moore Show.