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Won an Oscar as Nurse Ratchet in “The Cuckoo’s Nest”

Louise Fletcher won an Oscar for Best Actress for her role. Jack Nicholson‘s cruel screen nemesis Nurse Ratchet Inn “Over the Cuckoo’s Nest,” Died. she was 88 years old.

Fletcher died in her sleep surrounded by her family at her home in Monduraus, France, her agent David Scholl told the Associated Press on Friday. She was not given a cause of death.

The classic 1975 film The Cuckoo’s Nest follows the patients and staff of a mental hospital in Oregon.of Milos FormanThe director’s films won five Oscars in 1976, including Best Actress, Best Picture and Best Director. Jack Nicholson won the Best Actor Oscar for his unforgettable performance as Randall P. McMurphy, a patient who defies Nurse Ratchet’s domineering control on the ward.

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Born in Alabama to deaf parents, Fletcher gave one of the most moving acceptance speeches in Oscar history after winning.

Clutching his Oscar at the 1976 awards ceremony, Fletcher told the audience with a smile. I loved being hated by you ”

She then tearfully addressed her deaf parents in Birmingham, Alabama, using sign language to say:

After a moment of silence, there was thunderous applause.

After putting his career on hold for years to raise his children, Fletcher was in his early 40s and largely unknown when he was cast for the role in “The Cuckoo’s Nest” by Foreman. At the time, she didn’t know that many other high-profile stars had turned it down, including Anne Bancroft, Ellen Burstyn, and Angela Lansbury.

Louise Fletcher won an Academy Award for her performance as the domineering Nurse Ratched, who controls psychiatric patients with an iron fist and drives them to suicide.

“I was the last person cast,” she recalled in a 2004 Associated Press interview. I realized it was done.”

The character was so memorable that 45 years later it was the basis for Ryan Murphy’s Netflix series Ratchet, starring Sarah Paulson as Nurse Mildred Ratchet.

Fletcher also starred as a psychiatrist in The Exorcist II: Heretic (1977). On television, he played Bajoran religious leader Kai Win Adami in “Star Trek: Deep Space Nine” from 1993 to 1999.

“Her contribution to the Star Trek universe will never be forgotten,” tweeted the official “Star Trek” Twitter page. Friday.

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