Actress Zelda Rubinstein, who has been in the hospital for a few months, has died at the age of 76. Two months ago she had a heart attack; earlier this month she was taken off life support at the Los Angeles Cedar Sinai Hospital due to organ failures.
She was famous for her role as Tangina in the Poltergeist trilogy. She has also appeared in Under the Rainbow, Sixteen Candles, the TV drama Picket Fences, and the Spanish horror Anguish. More recently she has made appearances in Behind the Mask: The Rise of Leslie Vernon, Southland Tales, and as the narrator in “The Scariest Places on Earth“.
Rubinstein became active in the fight against AIDS/HIV in 1984, long before it became popular or acceptable for famous people to do so. She appeared in a series of advertisements promoting safe sex and AIDS awareness. She stood just 4 feet 3 inches due to a deficiency of the anterior pituitary gland. In 2002, Zelda commented:
Little People are societally handicapped. They have about two minutes to present themselves as equals, and if they don’t take advantage of that chance, then people fall back on the common assumption that ‘less’ is less.
Zelda Rubinstein, Rest in Peace.