It is with a heavy heart that we pay respects to Noel Neill, who at the age of 95, passed away Sunday night after a long battle with an unknown illness.
It was announced on Facebook by her manager Larry Ward that the actress died sometime on Sunday in Tucson, Arizona.
Neill is most known for being cast as the first ever Lois Lane in the Superman universe. In 1948, Neill played Lois Lane in a 15 part, black and white film serial and took on the role again in the 1950 film Atom vs Superman. After starring as Superman’s love interest in film, Neill moved to the television world and joined The Adventures Of Superman.
Eventually retiring from the role of Lane, Neill returned to the comic based world in 1978 as Lois’ mother Ella. In 2006, Neill once again retuned to the franchise in Superman Returns as Gertrude Vanderworth, Lex Luther’s wife.
In his Facebook announcement, Larry Ward said Neill was, “Arguably the most prolific actor in the Superman science fiction genre, Noel would also go on to work with Christopher Reeve in the 1978 film Superman, in the 1980s in the Superboy series with Gerard Christopher, the 2004 Jerry Seinfeld webisode Hindsight is 20/20; and finally, in Brandon Routh’s 2006 feature film Superman Returns.
Ward continued, saying,
“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. Her stamina was legendary as she happily made personal appearances and attended book signings well into her 90th year. She was kind, selfless, hardworking, funny with a quick wit, and assertive – all the same qualities that embodied the character of Lois Lane. Noel truly was Lois Lane, and for many of us, she was the first working woman seen on television. Few of her fans actually knew her real name, almost always simply calling her “Lois” to which she would unfailing answer with a bright smile and a kind word. It was more than a role to her. “Lois” was someone she believed in and a character she happily and warmly embraced.
Noel Neill maintained that bright, perky and engaging personality up until her death.”
Funeral services are expected to be a private affair among family and friends however a public memorial is planned for later in the year.
Our thoughts are with Noel Neill and those she left behind.