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Canadian actress and activist Shirley Douglas dead at 86

Douglas spent her acting career between Canada and Hollywood, where she worked with big-name directors such as Stanley Kubrick and David Cronenberg.

By: AFP | Toronto |
April 6, 2020 11:11:35 am
Canadian actress and activist Shirley Douglas dead at 86 Shirley Douglas, the impassioned Canadian activist and veteran actress who was mother to actor Kiefer Sutherland and daughter of medicare founder Tommy Douglas, has died at age 86. Sutherland announced his mother’s death on Twitter Sunday, April 5, 2020, saying she succumbed to complications surrounding pneumonia. (Galit RodanThe Canadian Press via AP, File)

Canadian actress and civil rights activist Shirley Douglas died Sunday at the age of 86, her son actor Kiefer Sutherland said. Douglas died following a bout of pneumonia, Sutherland wrote on Twitter, specifying that it was not related to the novel coronavirus pandemic.

“My mother was an extraordinary woman who led an extraordinary life,” wrote Sutherland, best known as agent Jack Bauer in the TV thriller “24.” “Sadly she had been battling for her health for quite some time and we, as a family, knew this day was coming,” he wrote.

Douglas spent her acting career between Canada and Hollywood, where she worked with big-name directors such as Stanley Kubrick and David Cronenberg.

She is also known for campaigning for several progressive causes, including the civil rights movement and the Black Panthers in the 1960s and later defending Canada’s public health care system.

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Douglas had three children, two of them — including Kiefer — with Canadian-born Hollywood actor Donald Sutherland. She was the daughter of Tommy Douglas, the founder of Canada’s medicare system and a one-time prime minister of the western Canadian province of Saskatchewan.

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