Franzen-Davis Funeral Home in Livingston, Montana published a notice on its website, informing the public that Kidder had passed away on Sunday in her sleep at her home.
Born in Yellowknife, Northwest Territories, Kidder began her acting career in the late 1960s and achieved fame in 1978 through her iconic role as Lois Lane in Superman: The Movie. She appeared alongside Reeve, who played Superman, and the two would reprise their role in the film’s three sequels. Reeve passed away in 2004 at the age of 52.
Kidder acted in dozens of films throughout her career, including a starring role as Kathy Lutz in the 1979 supernatural horror film, The Amityville Horror. She also featured in such films as Black Christmas (1974) and Heartaches (1981).
Despite her Hollywood success, Kidder battled mental illness and was briefly homeless in the 1990s. Following a highly publicized breakdown in 1996, she revealed to People magazine she had been diagnosed with manic depression eight years prior but refused to take the recommended prescription of lithium.
Kidder was an outspoken activist and a supporter of liberal and democratic causes. The Guardian reported she was an active member of the “peace movement” for several years. In 2011, she was arrested during a protest in Washington over an oil pipeline.
She officially became a United States citizen in 2005, claiming she did so to participate in the voting process and to continue her protests against U.S. intervention in Iraq without fear of facing deportation.
In the last years of her life, Kidder lived in Montana to be closer to her daughter and grandchildren. She continued acting right up to this year, appearing in small roles on television and in film. In 2015 she won an Emmy award for Outstanding Performer in Children’s Programming for her performance on an episode of R.L. Stine’s The Haunting Hour.
Funeral arrangements are pending. ~Caitlyn Clancey