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Noel Neill, TV’s Lois Lane, Dies

Actress Noel Neill died on July 3 at her home in Tucson, Arizona, according to her biographer and manager Larry Ward. Best known for portraying Lois Lane on 1950s television series Adventures of Superman, Neill passed away after a long illness. She was 95.

Neill was born in Minneapolis, Minnesota in 1920, the daughter of a newspaper editor and a vaudeville performer. After moving to Los Angeles at the age of 18, Neill made an immediate splash in Hollywood co-starring in films with such stars as Bing Crosby and Bob Hope. But Neill reached iconic status when she starred as Lois Lane in the 1948 Columbia movie serial Superman and its 1950 sequel, Atom Man vs. Superman.

Photo Credit: Jim Nolt/Larry Ward

In 1953, Neill would reprise the role of Lois Lane in the second season of Adventures of Superman, replacing Phyllis Coates. Neill was a natural as Lois, leaning on her journalistic background and plucky personality to bring the character to life. In fact, Neill’s association with the character was so strong that she would appear in other Superman projects throughout the years, including the 1978 film starring Christopher Reeve and the 2006 film starring Brandon Routh.

In a Facebook post, Ward commemorated the life and career of his friend and client.

“As Noel’s close friend, companion and biographer, I found Noel to be generous with her time and the same person off the screen as she appeared to be on the screen,” Ward wrote. “Noel Neill maintained that bright, perky and engaging personality up until her death.”

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