Phyllis Thaxter

 

Phyllis Thaxter, 92, an actress who had an active film career in the 1940s and ’50s and capped it with her portrayal of Clark Kent’s mother in the 1978 version of “Superman,” died Tuesday at her home in Orlando, Fla., said her daughter, actress Skye Aubrey. She hadAlzheimer’s disease.

After watching her screen test, MGM executives chose Thaxter, a stage actress, to play opposite Van Johnson in the World War II drama “Thirty Seconds Over Tokyo” (1944).

A string of roles as the wife or romantic partner followed, as Thaxter appeared with Burt Lancaster in “Jim Thorpe — All American” (1951), James Cagney and Gig Young in “Come Fill the Cup” (1951), Ronald Reagan in “She’s Working Her Way Through College” (1952) and Gary Cooper in “Springfield Rifle” (1952).

Thaxter also received good notices for her film work in the 1945 thriller”Bewitched”and the 1950 film noir “The Breaking Point” with John Garfield.

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