Yvette Mimieux, a prolific actress known for her work in The Time Machine, The Most Deadly Game, and Toys in the Attic, has passed away at the age of 80. The news was confirmed by a representative for her family, who revealed that she died in her sleep on Tuesday, January 18th, due to natural causes. Mimieux had just turned 80 years old the week before. A memorial service for the actress, who was private in her personal life, will not be held.
Born on January 8, 1942 in Los Angeles County, California, Mimieux became an actress at the suggestion of talent agent Jim Byron. She made her first onscreen appearance in an uncredited role in 1958's A Certain Smile. Just two years later, Mimieux would appear in one of her most iconic roles as Weena in 1960's The Time Machine, the adaptation of H.G. Wells' novel of the same name. MGM would soon put her under a long-term contract, which would spawn films such as Where The Boys Are, Platinum High School, Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse, and Light in the Piazza, as well as an acclaimed role in two episodes of Dr. Kildare.
Outside of MGM, Mimieux's work would include the adaptation of Toys in the Attic, The Reward, Monkeys, Go Home, The Picasso Summer, and The Delta Factor. She would find another hit in the form of the short-lived The Most Deadly Game, which aired from 1970 to 1971. Mimieux replaced actress Inger Stevens, who had committed suicide a month before production began. In the 1970s, Mimieux also began to speak publicly about the representation of female characters in film and television, and attempted to combat those stereotypes by writing and starring in the ABC television film Hit Lady.
"The women they write are all one dimensional," Mimieux said in a 1974 interview with the Los Angeles Times. "They have no complexity in their lives. It's all surface. There's nothing to play. They're either sex objects or vanilla pudding."
Mimieux would continue acting up until her retirement in 1992, and also co-wrote and co-produced the 1984 television film Obsessive Love.
"There are few enough films going these days, and there are three or four women who are offered all the good parts," Mimieux said at the time. "Of course I could play a lot of awful parts that are too depressing to contemplate.... [Television] is not the love affair I have with film, but television can be a playground for interesting ideas. I love wild, baroque, slightly excessive theatrical ideas, and because television needs so much material, there's a chance to get some of those odd ideas done."
Mimieux also had a storied career outside of the realm of acting, which included traveling, studying archaeology, selling real estate, and establishing a business that sells Haitan products. Mimieux was married three times, most recently to Howard F. Ruby, chairman emeritus and founder of Oakwood Worldwide.
Our thoughts are with Mimieux's family, friends, and fans at this time.