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Long before 'Everybody Loves Raymond' Doris Roberts Tried to Find Fame in New York

Rebelander Basilan
Jun 21, 2020
05:30 P.M.

The legendary Doris Roberts was a prolific actress in film and television, even winning an Emmy Award for her character on the CBS series "Everybody Loves Raymond," Here's a look at her accomplished life and legacy that extends beyond her death.

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It was unfortunate that Doris Roberts passed away on April 17, 2016, after suffering from a stroke. She also battled pulmonary hypertension for years before her demise.

But at the age of 90, Roberts had accomplished much, including an outstanding career in both film and television. It is safe to say that she had a life well-lived.

 Doris Roberts as Marie Barone on "Everybody Loves Raymond." | Source: Getty Images

Doris Roberts as Marie Barone on "Everybody Loves Raymond." | Source: Getty Images

EARLY YEARS

Roberts, born in Missouri but raised in New York, grew up under the care of her mother, who ran a company that helped Broadway plays type scripts.

After her father left when she was ten, Roberts' stepfather became her father figure. She also took his last name that the world would later come to know. Roberts shared:

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"I think people who triumph over a tragic childhood survive because they found one adult who believed in them [...]."

Doris Roberts at Pasadena Playhouse on March 20, 2016 in Pasadena, California. | Photo: Getty Images

Doris Roberts at Pasadena Playhouse on March 20, 2016 in Pasadena, California. | Photo: Getty Images

She continued: "It seemed as though my arrival on earth was an imposition to a bunch of people who had other things they'd rather be doing than tending to a child."

Roberts' love for acting came at an early age. At five, she was given one line in a school play and was moved to be an actress. Eventually, she took up journalism at New York University but remained active on stage and screen.

Roberts is survived by her son, daughter-in-law, Jane, and grandchildren, Devon, Andrew, and Kelsey, leaving them with beautiful memories.

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Doris Roberts at The Beverly Hilton Hotel on November 1, 2015 in Beverly Hills, California. | Photo: Getty Images

Doris Roberts at The Beverly Hilton Hotel on November 1, 2015 in Beverly Hills, California. | Photo: Getty Images

Roberts became a veteran Broadway actress for 20 years before she started having regular appearances on television and in films.

As a versatile performer, Roberts portrayed several roles, from sympathetic mother-like roles to savvy and hard-boiled characters. The latter became her signature character in Hollywood.

Doris Roberts  at the premiere of "Seems Like Old Times," in 1980 | Photo: Wikimedia Commons Images, photo by Alan Light, CC BY 2.0

Doris Roberts at the premiere of "Seems Like Old Times," in 1980 | Photo: Wikimedia Commons Images, photo by Alan Light, CC BY 2.0

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CAREER HIGHLIGHTS

In the 70s, Roberts became a familiar face on television with regular appearances in the sitcoms "Mary Hartman, Mary Hartman" and "Angie." But it wasn't until years later that she took on the iconic role which was forever attached to her name.

Roberts' character in the 1996 sitcom "Everybody Loves Raymond" was her most memorable one. On the show, which ended in 2005, she played Marie Barone, a funny control freak with an aggressive flair. Roberts said in a previous interview:

"It's wonderful writing, but I also credit myself for what I did because she is a Virgo. If you play her that way as written, she is a control freak. She's a pain in the neck [...]."

She captivated the hearts of many viewers in "Everybody Loves Raymond," not because of her annoying nature, but because of her timeless humor.

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The production team behind "Everybody Loves Raymond" revealed some unknown facts behind the show, including Roberts, who almost gave up the role for Marie Barone.

Roberts thought she would not make the cut of the auditions as she was busy directing a play. But she pushed through with the audition and bested 100 other women for the part.

Doris Roberts at the 53rd Annual Primetime Emmy Awards. | Photo: Getty Images

Doris Roberts at the 53rd Annual Primetime Emmy Awards. | Photo: Getty Images

On why the show had ended, it was revealed that the program management had trouble producing a new script. "We ran out of ideas," said Phil Rosenthal, one of the show's writers.

After the show, Roberts kept herself busy. She enjoyed more career opportunities, which resulted in 14 movie appearances. The "Grandma's Boy" in 2006 and "Job's Daughter" in 2016 were among the more recent movies she was involved in.

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She also landed roles in six TV movies and made numerous TV show appearances, including episodes in "The Middle" and "Melissa & Joey."

By the end of her career, Roberts had over 150 television and film credits to her name. But aside from her life in the limelight, she also had a family to take care of.

Doris Roberts at a performance of "The Hot Chocolate Nutcracker" in December 2010. | Photo: Wikimedia Commons Images, By Angela George, CC BY-SA 3.0

Doris Roberts at a performance of "The Hot Chocolate Nutcracker" in December 2010. | Photo: Wikimedia Commons Images, By Angela George, CC BY-SA 3.0

LIFE BEHIND THE SCENES

Sadly, Roberts wasn't as fortunate with men. In a previous statement, she revealed that the people she was in a relationship with did not want her to be successful.

Her first husband, Michael Cannata, and the father of her firstborn, Michael Cannata Jr., soon became an ex. But in 1963, she tied the knot with author William Goyen and stayed together until his death in 1983.

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Roberts is survived by her son, daughter-in-law, Jane, and grandchildren, Devon, Andrew, and Kelsey, leaving them with beautiful memories.

Jack Betts and Doris Roberts on December 2, 2015 in Hollywood, California. | Photo: Getty Images

Jack Betts and Doris Roberts on December 2, 2015 in Hollywood, California. | Photo: Getty Images

In her personal life, Roberts advocated against age discrimination in Hollywood. She was also an animal rights advocate. As an author, she released her memoir-cookbook titled, "Are You Hungry, Dear?"

Roberts also left a legacy in Hollywood with many adoring fans and colleagues, who will always remember her in a positive light. Her "Everybody Loves Raymond" co-star, Ray Romano, shared of her:

"Doris Roberts had an energy and a spirit that amazed me. She never stopped. Whether working professionally or with her many charities, or just nurturing and mentoring a young, green comic [...]."

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According to Romano, the actress had nothing but kindness and love for people and life in general. "I will miss her dearly," he continued.

Since the show, Romano has also furthered his career and built a family. At present, he is a proud dad to four children and a husband to his lovely wife, Anna Romano.

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