Natasha Richardson dies of head injury after skiing accident

jueves, 19 de marzo de 2009 |

Actress Natasha Richardson died Wednesday in a New York hospital from head injuries incurred in what had seemed to be a minor skiing fall, her family announced.

The family had gathered at her bedside Wednesday for a final, tragic vigil after the British born actress, 45, was critically injured Monday in the skiing accident in Canada's Quebec province.

"Liam Neeson, his sons, and the entire family are shocked and devastated by the tragic death of their beloved Natasha," said a statement released by publicist Alan Nierob. "They are profoundly grateful for the support, love and prayers of everyone, and ask for privacy during this very difficult time."

The statement late Wednesday came after numerous reports had said that Richardson was brain dead and that her family members were facing the agonizing decision to take her off life support. People magazine had earlier quoted a family friend as saying that Richardson had "no chance."

Richardson was born into a theatrical family on May 11, 1963, in London. Her father, Tony Richardson, was a director who won an Oscar for Tom Jones, while her mother, Vanessa Redgrave, won the supporting-actress Academy Award for 1977's Julia.

She made her own impact on the film world in the Ken Russell movie Gothic in 1986. Richardson also starred in the 1988 movie Patty Hearst, The Handmaid's Tale in 1990 and Nell in 1994, when she appeared with Neeson, whom she married later that year. The couple have two sons, Micheal Richard Antonio, 13, and Daniel Jack, 12, who were reportedly skiing with her when the accident happened.

Later films included the 1998 remake of The Parent Trap and Wild Child in 2008. She was an accomplished stage actress, winning a Tony for her performance as Sally Bowles in the 1998 Broadway revival of Cabaret.

Just before the skiing accident, Richardson was considering a Broadway revival with her mother of Stephen Sondheim's A Little Night Music, following a highly praised one-night January staging at New York's Studio 54.

Richardson was injured Monday afternoon in a seemingly harmless fall while skiing on a bunny slope at the Mont Tremblant resort, 125 kilometres north-west of Montreal.

According to a spokesperson for the ski resort, Richardson fell during a private lesson on a beginner slope while not wearing a helmet. She managed to walk back to her room and was laughing and joking but was taken to hospital an hour later when she started having headaches.

After her condition turned gravely worse, she was flown on Tuesday back to New York on a private jet.


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