Margot Kidder dies at age 69

LOS ANGELES (AP) — Margot Kidder, the Canadian actress who starred as a salty and cynical Lois Lane opposite Christopher Reeve in the “Superman” film franchise of the 1970s and 1980s, has died.

Kidder died Sunday at her home in Livingston, Montana, according to a notice on the website of Franzen-Davis Funeral Home. She was 69.

Kidder’s manager Camilla Fluxman Pines said she died peacefully in her sleep.

No cause or other details were given.

“Superman,” directed by Richard Donner and released in 1978, was a superhero blockbuster two decades before comic book movies became the norm at the top of the box office. It’s cited as an essential inspiration by makers of today’s Marvel and D.C. films.

Kidder, as ace reporter Lane, was a salty, sexually savvy adult who played off of the boyish, farm-raised charm of Reeve’s Clark Kent and Superman, though her dogged journalism constantly got her into dangerous scrapes that required old-fashioned rescues.

Kidder had many of the movies’ most memorable lines, including “You’ve got me?! Who’s got you?!” when she first encountered the costumed hero as she and a helicopter plunged from the top of a Metropolis building.

Marvel Studios President Kevin Feige called the moment “the best cinematic superhero save in the history of film” at an Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences event honoring Donner last year.

Kidder and Reeve were relative unknowns when they got their leading parts in the first of the films in 1978, which also included big names Gene Hackman and Marlon Brando.

Kidder and Reeve went on to star in three more “Superman” movies, the fourth and last in 1987.

She said she and Reeve, who died in 2004, were like brother and sister, both in their affection and animosity for each other.

“We quarreled all the time,” Kidder said May 9 in an interview on radio station WWJ in Detroit, where she had been scheduled to appear at Motor City Comic Con later this month. “The crew would be embarrassed. They would look away. Then we’d play chess or something because we were also really good friends.”

Both would remain known almost entirely for their “Superman” roles, and struggled to find other major parts.

Kidder also had a small part in 1975’s “The Great Waldo Pepper” with Robert Redford, and starred as conjoined twins in Brian De Palma’s 1973 “Sisters,” and as the mother of a terrorized family opposite James Brolin in 1979’s “The Amityville Horror.”

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