Tanya Roberts: why the That ‘70s Show actress was reported dead in premature announcement - and who is her husband?

Tanya Roberts stars as Stacey Sutton in the James Bond film A View To A Kill (Getty Images)Tanya Roberts stars as Stacey Sutton in the James Bond film A View To A Kill (Getty Images)
Tanya Roberts stars as Stacey Sutton in the James Bond film A View To A Kill (Getty Images)
The actress also starred in A View to a Kill

American actress Tanya Roberts is reported to have died on Monday 4 January, after she was mistakenly announced as dead the day before.

It has been reported that Roberts’ partner, Lance O’Brien, said he was told by hospital staff in Los Angeles that she had passed away.

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The actress, 65, was hospitalised on Christmas Eve, but the former Bond girl’s publicist, Mike Pingel, mistakenly announced that she had died on Sunday 3 January, leading to multiple news outlets reporting the news.

Afterwards, Pingel told the BBC that Roberts was still alive but in a serious condition in hospital.

Here’s everything you need to know about Tanya Roberts.

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Why was Tanya Roberts mistakenly reported dead?

Tanya Roberts, best known for her roles in That ‘70s Show and James Bond film A View to a Kill, collapsed while walking her dogs on 24 December and was admitted to the Los Angeles Cedars-Sinai Medical Centre.

On Sunday 3 January, a press release was sent out to news outlets saying Roberts had died in hospital.

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But the next day, TMZ reported that her husband Lance O’Brien had received a call from doctors saying the actress was still alive.

O’Brien told Page Six that the announcement had been a miscommunication, after he had spoken to her publicist on the phone.

He told Mike Pingel that he had “just said goodbye to Tanya” and started crying, believing that Roberts had died, which led to the false announcement.

Tributes poured in from Roberts’ fans and former colleagues who thought she had passed away.

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Roberts then died in hospital on Monday (4 January) evening, it has been reported.

Who was Tanya Roberts?

Born Victoria Leigh Blum in 1955, Tanya Roberts grew up in New York.

She worked as a model and appeared in television adverts before acting in the 1975 horror film Forced Entry.

Roberts then moved to Hollywood in 1977 to further her acting career.

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Her big break came when she starred in Charlie's Angels, joining Jaclyn Smith and Cheryl Ladd as “Angel” Julie.

After the show was cancelled, Roberts appeared in fantasy adventure films including The Beastmaster and Hearts and Armour.

Notably, she was nominated for a Golden Raspberry award for worst actress after playing comic book heroine Sheena in the 1984 film Sheena: Queen of the Jungle.

The actress became a household name after appearing alongside Sir Roger Moore in his final 1985 Bond film, A View to a Kill, as geologist Stacey Sutton.

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Roberts later admitted to feeling "a little cautious" about taking the role, but said it would have been "ridiculous" to have turned it down.

Following her stint as a Bond girl, she appeared in erotic thrillers including Night Eyes and Inner Sanctum.

But she went on to play Midge Pinciotti in more than 80 episodes of the popular That '70s Show, between 1998 and 2001.

Who was her first husband?

Before marrying Lance O’Brien, Tanya Roberts was married to screenwriter Barry Roberts.

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The couple met waiting in line to watch a film, while Barry was a psychology student and Roberts was an aspiring model.

It was Roberts that proposed to Barry, getting down on one knee at a subway station before the two were married in 1974 when she was only 19.

They lived in California before Barry sadly died in 2006, after battling with encephalitis - a condition caused by inflammation of the brain - for four and a half years.

Roberts left her role in That ‘70s Show in 2001 to care for Barry when he became severely ill.

Who is Lance O'Brien?

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Lance O’Brien is Roberts’ second husband and the pair lived together in Hollywood Hills.

Not much is known about O’Brien as he is very private, and it is not clear when the couple were married.

Roberts does not have any children with O’Brien, although the two do own dogs.

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