Tanya Roberts Is Still Alive, Says Publicist Who Reported She Had Died


Hours after announcing the death of Tanya Roberts, the actress known for starring opposite Roger Moore in his final turn as James Bond and for her roles in “Charlie’s Angels” and “That ’70s Show,” her publicist said on Monday that he had done so in error.

The publicist, Mike Pingel, said in an interview on Monday night that Ms. Roberts, 65, was hospitalized at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center in Los Angeles and in grave condition for an unspecified illness.

The information contradicted earlier accounts that Mr. Pingel had given to several media outlets that had reported that Ms. Roberts had died.

Mr. Pingel said that he had relied on information from Lance O’Brien, Ms. Roberts’s longtime partner.

“It’s a human miscommunication, unfortunately,” Mr. Pingel said. “People have been writing beautiful amazing stories on her. It’s a shame this happened.”

Mr. O’Brien said in a separate interview on Monday night that Ms. Roberts had been hospitalized since Dec. 24 after feeling ill after a hike a few days earlier in their Hollywood Hills neighborhood. Ms. Roberts developed sepsis after an infection and her prognosis is bleak, he said.

Mr. O’Brien said he had been recounting visiting Ms. Roberts on Sunday at the hospital to Mr. Pingel and told the publicist that “I just said goodbye to her.” In what he called an “innocuous” miscommunication, he said that Mr. Pingel had been under the impression that Ms. Roberts had died.

“I was an emotional wreck,” Mr. O’Brien said.

Then, he said, he started to receive push notifications on his phone regarding Ms. Roberts’s death.

“My phone blew up,” he said.

Among the media organizations that had reported Ms. Roberts was dead based on information from her publicist were The Associated Press, USA Today, the website TMZ and The Hollywood Reporter. The Washington Post published an obituary of Ms. Roberts by The Associated Press on its website, which it later appended with a note saying that the report had relied on information provided by her publicist.

Ms. Roberts, who was born in the Bronx, scored her first big break as an actress in 1980 playing a detective on the final season of the television series “Charlie’s Angels.”

Her biggest success on the big screen came in 1985, when, despite being 28 years younger than the leading man of the Bond franchise, Ms. Roberts starred opposite Mr. Moore in “A View to a Kill.” She played Stacey Sutton, who teams with Bond to thwart a plot by the industrialist Max Zorin (Christopher Walken) to destroy Silicon Valley with a double earthquake.

It was the final appearance of Mr. Moore as the British spy, one that he later criticized for the age gap between himself and Ms. Roberts, who is known for her breathy voice.

From 1998 to 2004, Ms. Roberts introduced herself to a new generation of television viewers with her recurring role as Midge Pinciotti on “That ’70s Show.”

The reporting of Ms. Roberts’s death prompted a series of tributes on social media, including from fans of the Bond franchise.

Her name unexpectedly and erroneously joined those of recently lost stars associated with the franchise, including Sean Connery, the dashing Scot who first played Ian Fleming’s secret service agent, who died in October. The British actress Diana Rigg, who marries Bond in “On Her Majesty’s Secret Service” and is killed on their wedding day, died in September.



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