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 Estelle Getty

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Estelle Getty

Actress. Best known for her role as sassy Italian octogenarian "Sophia Petrillo", on the hit sitcom "The Golden Girls." Estelle was born in New York to Polish immigrants. In 1947, she married Arthur Gettleman. The couple had two sons together. Estelle Gettleman began her acting career under the stage name Estelle Getty in 1978 playing a teacher in the film "Team Mates." She had small walk on roles in the Films "Tootsie" in 1982 and "Mask" in 1985. It was in 1985 that Estelle joined Bea Arthur, Betty White, and Rue McClanahan, on "The Golden Girls." Playing Bea Arthur's, a woman who in actuality is older than her, mother. This role made her a household name and brought her much acclaim and an Emmy award in 1988. During work on her hit television series, Estelle worked in films including "Mannequin" in 1987. In 1992, Estelle got her first Starring role in the Sylvester Stallone Comedy "Stop! Or My Mom Will Shoot," which unfortunately garnered her a Razzie award for worst actress. 1992, was also the year Bea Arthur wanted out of "The Golden Girls." The show ended, but Estelle, Betty White, and Rue McClanahan reprised their roles on the short-lived spin off "Golden Palace." The cancellation of "Golden Palace" was not the end of the character of Sophia Petrillo; she once again slipped on a gray wig and glasses and joined the cast of "Empty Nest" for its final season. In the years following Estelle made two made for television movies, "A Match Made in Heaven," in 1997, and "The Sissy Duckling," in 1999. In 1999 she returned to film Playing Grandma Estelle in "Stuart Little." Her final Role came in the 2000 movie "The Million Dollar Kid." Estelle Getty retired from show business in 2000 after revealing she had Lewy Bodies Dementia.

Bio by: The Perplexed Historian


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  • Maintained by: Find A Grave
  • Originally Created by: The Perplexed Historian
  • Added: 22 Jul 2008
  • Find A Grave Memorial 28454705
  • Find A Grave, database and images ( : accessed ), memorial page for Estelle Getty (25 Jul 1923–22 Jul 2008), Find A Grave Memorial no. 28454705, citing Hollywood Forever Cemetery, Hollywood, Los Angeles County, California, USA ; Maintained by Find A Grave .