Doctor Who Actress Elisabeth Sladen Passes Away

Logan Westbrook

Transform, Roll Out, Etc
Feb 21, 2008
17,672
0
0
Doctor Who Actress Elisabeth Sladen Passes Away

Sladen's passing has prompted heartfelt messages of sympathy and affection from those who knew her.

Elisabeth Sladen, best known for her role as investigative journalist Sarah Jane Smith in the long running sci-fi series, Doctor Who, has died of cancer, aged 63. Sladen played the role of Smith opposite five separate Doctors, as well as in the spinoff show Sarah Jane Adventures.

Sladen's friends and co-workers have paid their respects to the actress, who joined the Doctor Who cast in 1973. Russell T. Davies, who helmed the Doctor Who revival in 2005, said that Sladen was "simply wonderful" and that the world was lucky to have her. Steven Moffat, who took over from Davies as Doctor Who's head writer in 2009, called her a "ferociously talented actress." Damian Kavanagh - controller of the BBC's "CBBC" children's brand, which aired Sarah Jane Adventures - said that Sladen "brought joy, excitement and a sense of wonder to her many fans in her role as Sarah Jane Smith." He said that she would be missed, both by the audience, and by him.

Tom Baker, who played the fourth Doctor alongside Sladen for two years, wrote a particularly heartfelt tribute to her on his official website [http://www.tom-baker.co.uk/pages/content/index.asp?PageID=159]. Baker said that pretty much everyone who came into contact with Sladen adored her, from directors and producers, to stuntmen and actors. He recalled his anxiety in working with Sladen for the first time in 1974 when he took over as Doctor from John Pertwee, saying that she was "already a star" when he joined the cast. He said that he very quickly came to adore her as well, and added that his fond memories of Sladen provided him with a great deal of comfort.

"Those sweet memories of happy days with Lis Sladen, the lovely, witty, kind and so talented Lis Sladen," he wrote. "I am consoled by the memories. I was there, I knew her, she was good to me and I shall always be grateful, and I shall miss her."

Source: via BBC [http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/entertainment-arts-13137674]


Permalink
 

Hungry Donner

Henchman
Mar 19, 2009
1,369
0
0
Between Nicholas Courtney (Brigadier Lethbridge-Stewart) passing away and now Elisabeth Sladen it's been a crummy few months for Who fans. :(

I hadn't read Tom Baker's post on the matter, thanks for linking to that :)
 
Feb 13, 2008
19,430
0
0
Didn't like Sarah Jane.

Now that I've said that, and earned the hatred of all Whovians everywhere (again), I have to say it's sad to see such a talented actress pass away.
 

Formica Archonis

Anonymous Source
Nov 13, 2009
2,312
0
0
Oh, my. I'd heard this and it shook me up (lost a beloved family member at a similar age to cancer) but Tom Baker's tribute just pushed me over the edge. With so many obituaries that are little more than filmographies going by, seeing something like that where someone's telling stream-of-conciousness stories about an old friend is just rough on me.

Think I'll go take a little walk.:/
 

Sabrestar

New member
Apr 13, 2010
432
0
0
Worth noting that she's not only the sole companion to get her own spin-off TV series, she actually got two. Well, one was a pilot that didn't get produced, but still. (And if you really want to hear the pinnacle of wacky 70s theme music, go find K-9 and Company on Youtube.)

Though not my favourite companion as a character, Lis Sladen was simply a tremendously talented actress who made the role come alive. Her final parting sequence from the Doctor is one of the show's best scenes. There's a reason she came back for the modern series - she was just that damned good.

Rest in peace, Lis Sladen. And thanks for everything.
 

Colinmac93

New member
Mar 20, 2011
142
0
0
That sucks big time. I liked her in Doctor Who and Sarah Jane Adventures. Such a shame to see such a great actress go so suddenly.
My condolences to her family.
 

Alyssacubi

New member
Oct 18, 2010
26
0
0
Rest in peace Lis Sladen, you entertained many as Sarah Jane Smith and will be remembered always.

Wonderful actress in a wonderful series, so sad to see her go. :(
 

Ben Simon

New member
Aug 23, 2010
103
0
0
First off: this is a tragic event, and the world has lost a truly great actress. But one thing annoys me.

If you watch BBC's "tribute" to Elisabeth Sladen, they talk all about her role on Doctor Who and SJA. But what about her actual life? Her family? Her off screen personality? There must have been more to her as a person than "starred in a popular TV series." For shame, BBC.
 

Quellist

Migratory coconut
Oct 7, 2010
1,443
0
0
RIP Lis, i had such a crush on you as a kid and then you came back to Doctor Who and you were still beautiful inside and out.

Sleep well
 

Infernai

New member
Apr 14, 2009
2,605
0
0
*sigh* This really sucks....It's always sad when an awesome person dies, and Lis was definitely one of the awesome people. Rest in Peace Elisabeth Sladen, You will be missed by everyone.
 

Plinglebob

Team Stupid-Face
Nov 11, 2008
1,815
0
0
Ben Simon said:
First off: this is a tragic event, and the world has lost a truly great actress. But one thing annoys me.

If you watch BBC's "tribute" to Elisabeth Sladen, they talk all about her role on Doctor Who and SJA. But what about her actual life? Her family? Her off screen personality? There must have been more to her as a person than "starred in a popular TV series." For shame, BBC.
If you live in the UK, listen to a program called "Last Word" on Friday 4pm on Radio 4. Its an obituary program giving biographies of people who have died in the last week and that will almost certainly give more information like that. I admit its the sign of the times (and of people in general) that they arn't really interested in the personal life of people unless its entertaining.

OT: Its a pity she's gone. If anything, it was nice to see a woman of her age fronting a TV show. Hopefully her success will encourage producers to make more shows with older cast members.
 

The Rogue Wolf

Stealthy Carnivore
Legacy
Apr 3, 2020
13,173
3,630
118
Stalking the Digital Tundra
Gender
✅
Maybe it was the fact that I only first started seeing the series in the mid-80's (when U.S. television stations began airing the show), but Tom Baker has always been the definitive Doctor to me, and Elisabeth Sladen's Sarah Jane Smith has always been the definitive Companion. Though I lost track of the show when the local TV station stopped showing it (and eventually gave up on TV altogether), I had heard about the Sarah Jane Adventures and Ms. Sladen's return to the series, and I knew that her warm re-reception to the Dr. Who family was because of just how good a job she'd done as an actress.

Reading about her death is a sad reminder of mortality and the passage of time... but, y'know, if there's one thing I ever took away from the show, it's that there's so much out there in existence that we will never know of- and so I choose to believe that somewhere, somehow, Sarah Jane is off on another adventure.
 

BeanDelphiki

New member
Feb 1, 2011
86
0
0
Heard this yesterday; it was such a shock. I'd had no idea she was sick. And not just because I've been out of the Whovian loop, either; other friends I know more closely connected the fandom were shocked as well.

She really will be missed.
 

Reed Spacer

That guy with the thing.
Jan 11, 2011
841
0
0
Hungry Donner said:
Between Nicholas Courtney (Brigadier Lethbridge-Stewart) passing away and now Elisabeth Sladen it's been a crummy few months for Who fans.
Yeah, but Courtney was 81. Sladen was only three-quarters that.
 

TimeLord75

New member
Sep 3, 2009
96
0
0
I hadn't heard about the Brig, so another helping of bad news. Damnit.

I grew up with Doctor Who. It's the first television show I can remember seeing. Snippets of Sesame Street, tidbits of Mister Rogers' Neighborhood...and Doctor Who. Tom Baker and Elisabeth Sladen--The Doctor and the indomitable Sarah Jane Smith. This really hits at the heart of me. Here I am, a grown man...and when I heard the news first thing this morning, I cried. I never knew her, not personally, so it seems strange, even to me. But there it is. I had just finished watching the 4th season two-parter last night with my wife; she's always liked Sarah Jane because she wasn't a Generic Screaming Companion. If Sarah screamed (and she did), then damnit, there was a REASON.

All my best to her husband & son. She is missed.

...and is it wrong that I can't help thinking of that bit from "Pyramids of Mars"? You know--when Sarah tosses that box of sweaty gelignite down to the Doctor, who (I'm fairly certain) wet himself. "...like repairing a pocket watch with a hammer," the Doctor said later. "One wrong move and you'll never know the time again!" No idea why those two scenes from that one episode keep running through my head. That, and part of her last scene with Tom Baker: "I'm taking my goodies and I'M. GOING. HOME!"

Godspeed, Ms. Sladen.