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Backlot: 80 Years of The Hollywood Reporter

Jill Clayburgh and Al Pacino
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At The Start: Escorted to the 1972 premiere of The Godfather by longtime boyfriend Al Pacino, Jill Clayburgh (age 27 here) had completed only her second feature, Portnoy’s Complaint. (Her daughter, Lily Rabe, currently stars on Broadway alongside Pacino in Merchant of Venice.)

The most glamorous and memorable moments from a storied history

"A cross between Carole Lombard and Jean Arthur with just a pinch of Mary Martin.” In 1979, Hollywood Reporter reviewer Arthur Knight used those words to describe Jill Clayburgh for her Oscar-nominated role in Starting Over; the year before, she was nominated for her turn as a feminist everywoman in An Unmarried Woman. The actress, who died Nov. 5, leaves behind her husband, writer David Rabe, and three children. This month, she’ll appear as Jake Gyllenhaal’s mother in Love and Other Drugs. Says director Ed Zwick: “Her work was both real, comic and true. It’s the kind of acting I most admire.” Her most dramatic role may have been in Bertolucci’s controversial La Luna (1979); THR reviewer Charles Ryweck said she portrayed a woman “totally immersed in her career and still full of the juices of life and living.” The same was true offscreen, as well.


“If they don’t give me good parts in movies, I’m just not going to do them.” - Jill Clayburgh in 1978

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