Shared from the 2017-05-24 Chattanooga eEdition

Dina Merrill, heiress, actress dead at 93

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Dina Merrill

NEW YORK — Dina Merrill, the rebellious heiress who defied her superrich parents to become a movie star, often portraying stylish wives or “the other woman,” has died at age 93.

Merrill, raised in part on the Mar-a-Lago estate in Florida now owned by President Donald Trump, died Monday, according to family spokeswoman Selena Albanese. Merrill died of heart failure at her home in East Hampton, Albanese said.

Starting in the 1950s, Merrill appeared in more than 100 films and television programs, her break coming after Katharine Hepburn recommended her for the 1957 Spencer Tracy-Hepburn comedy “The Desk Set.” Merrill, who had the poised, aristocratic beauty of fellow blonde Grace Kelly, co-starred with Cary Grant and Tony Curtis in “Operation Petticoat,” Robert Mitchum and Deborah Kerr in “The Sundowners” and Oscar winner Elizabeth Taylor in “Butterfield 8.” More recently, she was part of Robert Altman’s ensemble cast for the Hollywood satire “The Player” and in television programs such as “Murder, She Wrote” and “The Nanny.”

She made her Broadway debut in 1945 with “The Mermaids Singing” and followed with “George Washington Slept Here.”

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