The Laverne & Shirley star died “peacefully at her Hollywood Hills home” Monday from complications of diabetes. The trailblazer, who had gone on to direct films such as Big and A League of Their Own, was 75.
Cindy Williams, who was Shirley to Marshall’s Laverne, released a statement, saying, “What an extraordinary loss. My good friend Penny Marshall is gone. One in a million. Utterly unique. A truly great talent. And, oh, what fun we had together. Can’t describe how I will miss her.”
“What an extraordinary loss.” Penny Marshall’s “Laverne & Shirley” co-star Cindy Williams releases a statement after the loss of her “good friend.” pic.twitter.com/o5flx3WTsh
— TODAY (@TODAYshow) December 19, 2018
A League of Their Own star Rosie O’Donnell is “heartbroken” about Marshall’s death.
— ROSIE (@Rosie) December 18, 2018
And O’Donnell’s co-star Geena Davis tweeted that she is “forever grateful” to have been a part of the film.
“I’m terribly sad to hear the news about Penny passing. My heart goes out to Tracy Reiner and her family. Penny brought so much joy to so many and will be sorely missed. I will be forever grateful to her for letting me be a part of A League of Their Own.” Geena Davis
— GeenaDavisInstitute (@GDIGM) December 18, 2018
Marshall’s Happy Days co-star Ron Howard also remembered her:
#RIPPennyMarshall She was funny & so smart. She made the transition from sitcom star to A List movie director with ease & had a major impact on both mediums. All that & always relaxed, funny & totally unpretentious. I was lucky to have known & worked with her. https://t.co/pf2kfIkCH4
— Ron Howard (@RealRonHoward) December 18, 2018
Many others from the TV and film community paid tribute to Marshall and her legacy.
Penny Marshall had me audition 6 times for a role and then I didn’t get it. She didn’t know that I would audition for her forever. It was a treat to be in the room. She was glorious. #RIPPennyMarshall
— jason alexander (@IJasonAlexander) December 18, 2018
Sad to hear of Penny Marshall’s passing. a great comedienne a terrific director and a dear friend.
— Billy Crystal (@BillyCrystal) December 18, 2018
So sad about Penny.
— Rob Reiner (@robreiner) December 18, 2018
Thank you, Penny Marshall. For the trails you blazed. The laughs you gave. The hearts you warmed. pic.twitter.com/7qPKJa6ApH
— Ava DuVernay (@ava) December 18, 2018
RIP Penny Marshall. You were a light in this world. Your movie A League of Their Own honored the women of the @aagpbl and inspired others to play baseball. You made a difference. Thank you. pic.twitter.com/jOxDBcSmzx
— Justine Siegal (@justinebaseball) December 18, 2018
Farewell to the lady I imitated as a kid before becoming her neighbor years later, legendary sitcom star and BIG director Penny Marshall. I got to tell Penny that LEAGUE OF THEIR OWN is one of my favorite films when we recorded 4 epic podasts at my house: https://t.co/h7HU9poX7D https://t.co/B7qorn7ZAj
— KevinSmith (@ThatKevinSmith) December 18, 2018
Oh Penny Marshall. 💔 Rest In Peace and thank you for everything.❤️
— Busy Philipps (@BusyPhilipps) December 18, 2018
Penny Marshall was a sweet woman. I was very fortunate to spend time with her. So many laughs. She had a heart of gold. Tough as nails. She could play round ball with the best of them. Always All love, D
— Danny DeVito (@DannyDeVito) December 18, 2018
The Marshall family grieves again as the great #PennyMarshall dies at age 75. What an extraordinary family they were and continue to be, and how much love and sympathy my family and I send their way. The end of an era.
— Bette Midler (@BetteMidler) December 18, 2018
At a time when men dominated, #pennymarshall broke barriers as a director, giving us hit after hit. A League of their Own, Awakenings, & Big aren’t simply great movies. They r classics made by a director who was simultaneously setting up shots while breaking down walls. RIP
— Josh Gad (@joshgad) December 18, 2018
I got to stay up late-after Happy Days-2 watch Laverne & Shirley. So sad 2 learn that Penny Marshall has passed. Sitting on a sit-com set 40 years later, thinking about milk & pepsi, rodeo-doh-doh-doh & so many of her brilliant moments. Love to her family, friends & our town… pic.twitter.com/imFiGVSw3T
— Sean Astin (@SeanAstin) December 18, 2018
Rest in peace, Penny. Such a wonderful, funny and talented lady. Without her support and encouragement, I would not be where I am today. She will be missed. 💔 #PennyMarshall pic.twitter.com/F9ksywXYuG
— Mark Wahlberg (@markwahlberg) December 18, 2018
I grew up wanting to be as funny as Penny Marshall, and had the pleasure of meeting her a few times. Watch some old Laverne and Shirley to see why her brother Garry insisted on casting her. Comedy gold, she was. ♥️ pic.twitter.com/DhP10j7m8s
— Mayim Bialik (@missmayim) December 18, 2018
Merriam-Webster paid homage with a throwback to the Laverne & Shirley opening.
‘Schlemiel’: an unlucky bungler
‘Schlimazel’: a consistently unlucky person
— Merriam-Webster (@MerriamWebster) December 18, 2018
Laverne & Shirley star Michael McKean was speechless at the news.
I don’t know what to say.
— Michael McKean (@MJMcKean) December 18, 2018
James L. Brooks, Marshall’s frequent collaborator, called her “extraordinary.”
God Bless Penny Marshall’s extraordinary soul.
Beyond doubt she was able to excel at anything she put her world class mind & heart to and, lucky us, she picked comedy and films which celebrated humans. To many of us lost ones she was, at the time, the world’s greatest den mother.
— james l. brooks (@canyonjim) December 18, 2018
Robert De Niro, who starred in Marshall’s film Awakenings, said, “Penny will be missed. May she Rest in Peace.”
This story was originally posted on Dec. 18 at 4 p.m. ET.
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