Marcia Strassman

Marcia Ann Strassman (April 28, 1948 – October 24, 2014) was an American actress and singer, best known for her roles as Nurse Margie Cutler on M*A*S*H, as Julie Kotter on Welcome Back, Kotter, and as Diane Szalinski in the film Honey, I Shrunk the Kids (1989).

Marcia Strassman
Marcia Strassman in 1975
Marcia Ann Strassman

(1948-04-28)April 28, 1948
DiedOctober 24, 2014(2014-10-24) (aged 66)
OccupationActress, singer, television personality
Years active1963–2014
Known forWelcome Back, Kotter
Honey, I Shrunk the Kids
Robert Collector
(m. 1984; div. 1989)

Life and career

Strassman was born in New York City and raised in Passaic, New Jersey. Among her earliest acting credits was an appearance in an episode of The Patty Duke Show. In 1963, at age 15, she succeeded Liza Minnelli in the role of Ethel Hofflinger in the Off-Broadway musical Best Foot Forward.[1]

In 1967, she became a recording artist for Uni Records. Her debut single, "The Flower Children", was a top-40 hit in many West Coast U.S. markets, hitting #4 in San Diego and #2 in San Francisco; the track also hit #3 in Vancouver, British Columbia (both at CKLG 730 AM and CFUN 1410 AM in July 1967).[2] However, the single failed to break out nationally in either country; the record stalled at #105 in the United States, and just sneaked into RPM's Top 100 for Canada, peaking at #95.[3]

Her follow-up release, "The Groovy World of Jack and Jill", charted in Denver, Colorado, but virtually nowhere else.[4] A third single, "Star Gazer" (1968) (produced by Kim Fowley), failed to chart anywhere and brought Strassman's brief recording career to a close. Returning to acting after a gap of a few years, she landed the recurring role of Nurse Margie Cutler in six early episodes of M*A*S*H.

She landed her best-known role as Julie Kotter, the wife of title character high school teacher Gabe Kotter (Gabriel "Gabe" Kaplan) on the ABC comedy series Welcome Back, Kotter in 1975. The series lasted four years. Strassman was told that co-star Kaplan wanted her off the series and she stated in an interview that working on the series made her "miserable".[5] Kaplan read the interview and realized series producer James Komack was separately telling the two actors they didn't like each other, and Kaplan informed Strassman that he actually wanted more balance between Kotter's work and home environments, which would afford Strassman the chance to do more on the series. Kaplan, a guest host on The Tonight Show that week, had Strassman on to tell the story as an interview guest; she recalled the incident decades later on a Biography Channel special about the history of Kotter.[6]

In the 1970s, Strassman appeared as a guest star on Time Express, The Rockford Files, The Love Boat and other primetime dramas. In 1980, she starred as Lenina Crowne in a television production of Aldous Huxley's Brave New World. She co-starred in the short-lived sitcom Good Time Harry that year. She guest-starred once on Magnum, P.I., first introduced in the episode "Heal Thyself", where she played Dr. Karen Harmon, a former nurse with whom the title character served in Vietnam. In 1982, she played Maria Giannin in the romantic comedy Soup for One.[7]

In 1989–90, she had a co-starring role on the 21 Jump Street spin-off, Booker, which starred Richard Grieco in the title role. She guest starred on the detective series Murder, She Wrote in 1996. Strassman had movie roles as the wife of Rick Moranis' scientist character in Honey, I Shrunk the Kids (1989) and Honey, I Blew Up the Kid (1992). In 1994, she reprised her role from those movies in the 3-D film spin-off Honey, I Shrunk the Audience!. She later went on to play Nancy Sterngood on the television series Tremors (2003).


In March 2007, Strassman was diagnosed with advanced breast cancer that had spread to her bones. Her memoir, in which she discussed her life, career and illness, was published in 2008.[8] Strassman died of the disease at her home in Sherman Oaks, California, on October 24, 2014. She was 66 years old. She had a daughter, Elizabeth Collector (from her 1984 to 1989 marriage to Robert Collector).[9][7][10]



Year Title Role Notes
1969 Changes Kristine
1982 Soup for One Maria
1985 The Aviator Rose Stiller
1989 Honey, I Shrunk the Kids Diane Szalinski
1991 Fast Getaway Lorraine
1991 And You Thought Your Parents Were Weird Sarah Carson
1992 Honey, I Blew Up the Kid Diane Szalinski Nominated — Saturn Award for Best Supporting Actress
1993 Another Stakeout Pam O'Hara
1994 Honey, I Shrunk the Audience! Diane Szalinski Short film
1995 Cops n Roberts
1996 Earth Minus Zero Debbie Heller
2002 Gale Force Kim Nelson
2003 The Movie Hero Blake's Mom
2003 Power Play Susan Breecher
2005 Reeker Rose Tuckey


Year Title Role Notes
1964–1965 The Patty Duke Show Adeline / Gladys / Model 3 episodes
1967 Ironside Samantha Dain Episode: "The Man Who Believed"
1972 Wednesday Night Out Television movie
1972–1973 M*A*S*H Nurse Margie Cutler 6 episodes
1973 Love Story Episode: "Mirabelle's Summer"
1974 Police Story Jacqueline Episode: "The Ripper"
1974 Marcus Welby, M.D. Episode: "The Latch-Key Child"
1975 Journey from Darkness Nancy Television movie
1975–1979 Welcome Back, Kotter Julie Kotter 94 episodes
1976 City of Angels Episode: "The Losers"
1976 Brenda Starr Kentucky Smith Television movie
1977 The Love Boat II Pat McFarland Television movie
1978 The Love Boat Stephanie Lewis Episode: "Last of the Stubings/Million Dollar Man/The Sisters"
1978 Fantasy Island Kay Penny / Katherine Patrino Episode: "The Funny Girl/Butch and Sundance"
1979 Time Express Sara Mason Episode: "Rodeo/Cop"
1979 The Rockford Files Whitney Cox 2-part episode
1980 Once Upon a Family Pam Ferguson Television movie
1980 Brave New World Lenina Disney Television movie
1980 Good Time Harry Carol Younger 7 episodes
1981 Likely Stories, Vol. 1 Television movie
1982 Magnum, P.I. Dr. Karen Harmon Episode: "Heal Thyself"
1983 At Ease Olivia Taylor Episode: "Love Sick"
1984 E/R Dr. Eve Sheridan 2 episodes
1985 Shadow Chasers Stella Pence Episode: "Shadow Chasers: Part 1"
1987 Stingray Councilwoman Sondra Decker Episode: "Gemini"
1987 Amazing Stories Nel Lewise Episode: "Such Interesting Neighbors"
1987 Haunted by Her Past Rita Kamen Television movie
1987 I Married Dora Nina Episode: "A Matter of Moulding"
1988 ABC Afterschool Specials Mary Watson Episode: "Daddy Can't Read"
1988 CBS Summer Playhouse Elaine Episode: "Tickets, Please"
1989 TV 101 Mrs. Myers 3 episodes
1989 Miss Teen USA 1989 Co-host
1989–1990 Booker Alicia Rudd 22 episodes
1992 Mastergate Merry Chase Television movie
1992 Civil Wars Marcia Kellogg Episode: "A Bus Named Desire"
1994 Phenom Catherine Episode: "Men Are Dogs"
1995 Family Reunion: A Relative Nightmare Margaret McKenna Television movie
1995 Touched by an Angel Lisa Patcherik Episode: "Interview with an Angel"
1995 Charlie Grace Andrea Farrell Episode: "Bring Me the Head of Darnell Sims"
1995–1997 Aaahh!!! Real Monsters Hairyette / Harryette / Weatherperson 5 episodes
1996 Murder, She Wrote Terri Garman Holbert Episode: "The Dark Side of the Door"
1996 The Rockford Files: Friends and Foul Play Dr. Trish George Television movie
1996 Highlander Betsy Fields Episode: "Glory Days"
1997 L.A. Heat Martha Episode: Rap Sheet"
1997 Tracey Takes On... Mallory Blair Episode: "Politics"
1997 Rugrats Miss Appleby Episode: "Dust Bunnies/Educating Angelica"
1997 Baywatch Rena Jaffe, Jordan's Mother Episode: "Out of the Blue"
1999 Odd Man Out Wendy Flemming Episode: "Batman Forever"
2000 Noah Knows Best Martine Beznick 13 episodes
2001–2002 Providence Meredith 8 episodes
2003 Tremors Nancy Sterngood 13 episodes
2004 Third Watch Sergeant Laura Wynn 4 episodes
2006 Twenty Good Years Mackenzie Episode: "The Crying Game"
2014 Looking for Mr. Right Opal Television movie


  • "The Flower Children" / "Out of the Picture" (1967)
  • "The Groovy World of Jack & Jill" / "The Flower Shop" (1967)
  • "Self-Analysis" / "Star Gazer" (1968)



  • Strassman, Marcia & Penny Marshall (Foreword) (2008). Life with a Side Order of Cancer. Richmond, VA: Palari Publishing.


  1. Best Foot Forward Archived 2015-02-09 at the Wayback Machine at the Internet Off-Broadway Database.
  2. "From the Music Capitals of the World". Billboard: 7. July 15, 1967. ISSN 0006-2510.
  3. Whitburn, Joel (2008). Joel Whitburn Presents: Across The Charts The 1960s. Record Research. p. 371. ISBN 978-0898201758.
  4. Marcia Strassman profile,; accessed October 26, 2014.
  5. Windeler, Robert (November 6, 1978). "A Set Becomes a Set-to as Mrs. Kotter Takes on Gabe, and the Sweathogs Take Sides". People. 10 (19). ISSN 0093-7673.
  6. "Welcome Back Kotter/The Facts of Life/Roseanne". Biography. Episode 1–06. 22 April 2008. A&E.
  7. "Marcia Strassman dies at 66; actress starred in 'Welcome Back, Kotter'". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved October 27, 2014.
  8. Strassman, Marcia (2008). Life with a Side Order of Cancer. Palari Publishing. p. 1-220. ISBN 978-1928662150.
  9. III, Harris M. Lentz (May 7, 2015). "Obituaries in the Performing Arts, 2014". McFarland. Retrieved February 1, 2018 via Google Books.
  10. "Marcia Strassman, Wife on 'Welcome Back, Kotter', Dies at 66". The New York Times. Associated Press. October 27, 2014.
This article is issued from Wikipedia. The text is licensed under Creative Commons - Attribution - Sharealike. Additional terms may apply for the media files.