Edith Atwater, a stage actress who made her debut at age 18 and performed with dozens of Broadway and touring dramatic companies and later appeared in several films and television series, has died at age 74.
Miss Atwater, who created the role of Maggie Cutler in "The Man Who Came to Dinner," appearing opposite Monty Woolley on Broadway and with Alexander Woolcott on national tour, died Friday at Cedars Sinai Medical Center in Los Angeles. She had worked until last August when her cancer treatments began, said Judy Preminger, a friend and neighbor.
After training at the American Laboratory Theater, she appeared on Broadway in "Springtime for Henry" and "Brittle Heaven."
Over the years her other stage credits included "State of the Union," "Time Out for Ginger," "King Lear" and "Susan and God."
Her films included "The Sweet Smell of Success," "True Grit," "Strait Jacket," "The Love Machine" and "Family Plot."
On television she was seen regularly on "Love on a Rooftop," "Kaz" and "The Hardy Boy Mysteries" while making guest appearances on "Alfred Hitchcock Presents," "Dr. Kildare," "Peyton Place" and "Family Ties."
She was divorced from actor Hugh Marlowe and was the widow of actor Kent Smith, who died last year. In lieu of flowers, donations to the Actors Fund of America are suggested.