Dyan Cannon

Dyan Cannon (born Samille Diane Friesen; January 4, 1937) is an American actress, director, screenwriter, producer, and editor. She has been nominated for three Academy Awards.

Dyan Cannon
Cannon in the 1950s
Samille Diane Friesen

(1937-01-04) January 4, 1937
OccupationActress, director, screenwriter, producer, editor
Years active1958–present
Cary Grant
(m. 1965; div. 1968)

Stanley Finberg
(m. 1985; div. 1991)
ChildrenJennifer Grant
RelativesDavid Friesen (brother)

Early life

Cannon was born Samille Diane Friesen in Tacoma, Washington on January 4, 1937, the daughter of housewife Claire (née Portnoy) and life insurance salesman Ben Friesen.[1] She was raised in the Jewish faith of her Ashkenazi mother, who was a Russian immigrant, though her father was Baptist.[2] She attended West Seattle High School[3] and spent two-and-a-half years at the University of Washington.[4] Her younger brother is jazz musician David Friesen.[5]


Cannon made her film debut in 1960 in The Rise and Fall of Legs Diamond; she had appeared on television since the late 1950s, including a guest appearance on Bat Masterson as Mary Lowery in the 1959 episode entitled "Lady Luck" and again as Diane Jansen in "The Price of Paradise". She made another guest appearance in 1959 on CBS' Wanted: Dead or Alive starring Steve McQueen in episode 52 "Vanishing Act" as Nicole McCready. About this time, she also appeared on another CBS' western series, Johnny Ringo, starring Don Durant, and on Jack Lord's western adventure drama Stoney Burke on ABC. She also appeared on an episode of Hawaiian Eye, using her name Diane Cannon, in 1961, opposite Tracey Steele, Robert Conrad, and Connie Stevens.[6]

In 1963, Cannon joined the national touring production of the Broadway musical How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying, in which she played Rosemary.

She portrayed Mona Elliott in the episode "The Man Behind the Man" of the 1964 CBS' drama series The Reporter. She also made guest appearances on 77 Sunset Strip, The Untouchables, the perennial western series Gunsmoke, the 1960 episode "Sheriff of the Town" of the first-run syndicated western series Two Faces West with Walter Coy as Cauter and the 1962 Ripcord episode "The Helicopter Race" as Ripcord Inc.'s secretary and receptionist Marion Hines.

Cannon's first major film role came in 1969's Bob & Carol & Ted & Alice, which earned her Academy Award and Golden Globe nominations. In 1971 she starred in five films: The Love Machine, Doctors' Wives, The Anderson Tapes with Sean Connery, The Burglars, and Such Good Friends, for which she received a Golden Globe nomination for Best Actress. Cannon co-starred opposite Burt Reynolds in Shamus (1973), in the mystery The Last of Sheila, and gave a critically acclaimed performance in Child Under a Leaf in 1974. She starred in the TV movie Virginia Hill with Harvey Keitel. Following this she took a four-year absence from acting.[7]

She became the first Oscar-nominated actress to be nominated in the Best Short Film, Live Action Category for Number One (1976), a project which Cannon produced, directed, wrote and edited. It was a story about adolescent sexual curiosity.[8] In 1978, Cannon co-starred in Revenge of the Pink Panther. That same year, she appeared in Heaven Can Wait, for which she received another Oscar nomination and won a Golden Globe Award for Best Supporting Actress.

In 1976, she hosted Saturday Night Live during its first season and she guest starred in the fourth season of The Muppet Show in 1979.[9]

In the 1980s, Cannon, who is also a singer/songwriter, appeared in Honeysuckle Rose (1980) with Willie Nelson, Author! Author! with Al Pacino, Deathtrap (1982) with Christopher Reeve and Michael Caine, Caddyshack II (1988), as well as several made-for-TV movies.

For her contributions to the film industry, Cannon was inducted into the Hollywood Walk of Fame in 1983 with a motion pictures star located at 6608 Hollywood Boulevard.[10]

Cannon wrote, directed, and starred in the semi-autobiographical film The End of Innocence, and had roles in Jailbirds and Christmas in Connecticut.[11]

In the 1990s, she appeared on the popular television shows Diagnosis: Murder and The Practice, as well as being a semi-regular on Ally McBeal. She made appearances in the films That Darn Cat (1997), 8 Heads in a Duffel Bag (1997), and Out to Sea (1997) with Walter Matthau and Jack Lemmon. In 2005, she appeared in Boynton Beach Club, a movie about aging Floridians who have just lost their spouses.

Personal life

On July 22, 1965, Cannon married actor Cary Grant, who was 33 years her senior. They had one daughter, Jennifer (born February 26, 1966), who also is an actress. They were divorced on March 21, 1968. She married real estate investor Stanley Fimberg in 1985. They divorced in 1991.

In 1972, Cannon revealed that she engaged in primal therapy.[12] She is a fan of the Los Angeles Lakers and has attended Lakers games for over three decades. She is a born-again Christian.[2][13]


Year Title Role Notes
1960 The Rise and Fall of Legs Diamond Dixie
This Rebel Breed Wiggles (billed as Diane Cannon)
1969 Bob & Carol & Ted & Alice Alice Henderson National Society of Film Critics Award for Best Supporting Actress (3rd place)
New York Film Critics Circle Award for Best Supporting Actress
Nominated—Academy Award for Best Supporting Actress
Nominated—Golden Globe Award for Best Actress – Motion Picture Musical or Comedy
Nominated—Golden Globe Award for New Star of the Year – Actress
1971 Doctors' Wives Lorrie Dellman
The Anderson Tapes Ingrid
The Love Machine Judith Austin
The Burglars Lena
Such Good Friends Julie Messinger Nominated—Golden Globe Award for Best Actress – Motion Picture Drama
1973 Shamus Alexis Montaigne
The Last of Sheila Christine (Cannon's character is believed to have been based on Sue Mengers.)
1974 Child Under a Leaf Domino
Virginia Hill Virginia Hill (TV movie)
1976 Number One Matt's mother Writer, director, producer, film editor
Nominated—Academy Award for Best Live Action Short Film
1978 Heaven Can Wait Julia Farnsworth Golden Globe Award for Best Supporting Actress – Motion Picture
Saturn Award for Best Supporting Actress
Nominated—Academy Award for Best Supporting Actress
Revenge of the Pink Panther Simone Legree
Lady of the House Sally Stanford (TV movie)
1980 Honeysuckle Rose Viv Bonham Cannon also sings three songs on the soundtrack:
"Two Sides To Every Story," "Loving You Is Easier," and "Unclouded Day."
Coast to Coast Madie Levrington
1982 Deathtrap Myra Bruhl Nominated—Golden Raspberry Award for Worst Supporting Actress
Author! Author! Alice Detroit
1984 Master of the Game Kate McGregor-Blackwell (TV miniseries, based on the novel written by Sidney Sheldon)
1985 Jenny's War Jenny Baines (TV)
1988 Rock & Roll Mom Annie Hackett (TV)
Cannon also does her own singing here; at first, however, her character is kept almost anonymous.
She's Having a Baby Herself (uncredited)
Caddyshack II Elizabeth Pearce
1990 The End of Innocence Stephanie (also director and writer)
1991 Jailbirds Rosie LaCroix (TV)
1992 Christmas in Connecticut Elizabeth Blane (TV)
1993 The Pickle Ellen Stone
1996 The Rockford Files Jess Wilding (TV Movie) Produced 20 years after the original series
1997 Allie & Me Karen Schneider
That Darn Cat Mrs. Flint
8 Heads in a Duffel Bag Annette Bennett
Out to Sea Liz LaBreche
1997–2000 Ally McBeal The Honorable Judge Jennifer 'Whipper' Cone (17 episodes)
Nominated—Viewers for Quality Television Award for Best Recurring Player
1998 The Sender Gina Fairfax
Diamond Girl Abby Montana (TV)
1999 Kiss of a Stranger Leslie
2001 Three Sisters Honey Bernstein-Flynn TV series
2003 Kangaroo Jack Anna Carbone
2004 After the Sunset Herself at the Basketball Game (uncredited)
2005 Boynton Beach Club Lois
2008 A Kiss at Midnight Kay Flowers (TV)
2020 Thomas & Friends Molly (Film)

See also



    1. "Dyan Cannon". Filmreference.com.
    2. "Dyan Cannon Discusses Her Faith". CNN.com. 2001-04-23. Retrieved 2006-12-13.
    3. Meyer, Kathie (August 17, 2010). "Actress Dyan Cannon revealed as the 11th annual Port Townsend Film Festival special guest". The Leader. Port Townsend, Washington. Archived from the original on September 4, 2019. Retrieved September 4, 2019.
    4. "Looking Out for 'Number One' Gets Dyan Cannon a New Role and a New Life". People. 7 (9). March 7, 1977. Archived from the original on September 4, 2019. Retrieved September 4, 2019.
    5. Feather, Leonard (March 31, 1988). "Jazz Reviews : David Friesen Trio at Catalina's: State of the Art". Los Angeles Times. Archived from the original on September 4, 2019. Retrieved September 4, 2019. Playing for a small but select audience that included his sister, Dyan Cannon, Friesen performed during most of the set on a French acoustic bass, made in 1795.
    6. Hawaaian Eye Episode #11, Best of Hawaiian Eye, 1961, Warner Brothers archives.
    7. Dyan Cannon; HER BEST IS YET TO BE Sweeney, Louise. The Christian Science Monitor11 June 1981.
    8. Dyan Cannon Eschews Limits: DYAN CANNON Saunders, Dick. Los Angeles Times 7 Jan 1977: f18.
    9. "The Muppet Show - Ending with Dyan Cannon" on YouTube
    10. "Hollywood Walk of Fame - Dyan Cannon". walkoffame.com. Hollywood Chamber of Commerce. Archived from the original on April 3, 2016. Retrieved February 11, 2018.
    11. Lunch With a Loose Cannon;Daffy Dyan Does Duke's, Gets Kissed, Sheds Innocence' Sherrill, Martha. The Washington Post 8 Feb 1991: b01.
    12. "$3 Million Wedding Gift for Jennifer" Joyce Haber Los Angeles Times; Jul 5, 1972; pg. H19
    13. "Actress Dyan Cannon Ministers at 'God's Party'", Christianity.com May 1, 2001
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