Lisa Loring portrayed Wednesday on the original “The Addams Family”. She played the character for only two years but set the template for the movie portrayals of Wednesday and was recently praised as an inspiration for Jenna Ortega’s interpretation on the hit Netflix series “Wednesday”.
Lisa was born February 16, 1958, on Kwajalein Atoll, Marshall Islands, a United Nations Trust Territory at the time, which had been administered by the United States. Her parents both served in the United States Navy and divorced shortly after her birth. Her father was Caucasian while her mother, Judith Loring, was Polynesian. She grew up in Hawaii and later moved to Los Angeles with her mother. At the age of 3, she began modeling and appeared in an episode of Dr. Kildare as Cindy Norcross, which aired in 1964.
Very sorry to hear of my friend Lisa Loring’s passing. We were very close and worked together often. I know she was very weak. I was in her company just a few weeks ago. Godspeed my friend.Butch Patrick, Eddie Munster on the TV show “The Munsters”
Loring played Wednesday Addams, in all 64 episodes, from 1964 to 1966 in the first adaptation of Charles Addams’ New Yorker cartoons, taking on the role when she was just five years old. Her performance as the macabre Addams’ daughter, with her gothic streak and classic pigtails, has reverberated through film and TV, greatly influencing the following depictions of the character. In 1966 she was in an episode of “The Phyllis Diller Show as Susan “Suzy” Pruitt.
Later in 1966, she played Felicia in Season 1, Episode 5, ‘The Montori Device Affair’, on “The Girl From U.N.C.L.E”. Unfortunately, Lisa’s mother died from the effects of alcoholism in 1974 when Lisa was only 16 years old. After an eleven year hiatus she returned to the screen in the 1977 TV movie “Halloween with the New Addams Family”.
In 1978 Lisa played Sherry in the TV movie “Annie Flynn” and Maria in an episode of “Fantasy Island”. In 1978-1979 she appeared in 2 episodes with Buddy Ebson and Lee Meriwether on “Barnaby Jones”. In 1981, she was in the TV movie “Gabe and Walker”. From 1980-1983 Lisa was Cricket Montgomery in 7 episodes of the soap opera, “As The World Turns”.
In 1987, Lisa appeared in the horror movie “Blood Frenzy”, and with Frank Stallone in the movie “Savage Harbor”. In 1989 she played Jeanette in the horror movie “Iced”. In 1992, she played a hooker in the video “Layin’ Down the Law”.
She then took a 22 hiatus before appearing as Vera in the 2014 horror movie “Way Down to Chinatown” and Miss Rhonda in the 2015 movie “Doctor Spine”. She had been divorced four times. She was first married to her childhood sweetheart, at the very young age of 15, Farrell Foumberg. The couple got married on March 10, 1973, but divorced a year later in 1974. She had her first child with him, Vanessa Foumberg, who was born in 1974.
Later, Lisa married Doug Stevenson in 1981 whom she divorced a couple of years later in 1983. Doug is also an actor who is best known for playing the role of the young king in a hit movie in 1981, called “The Prowler”. They had a daughter named Marianne Stevenson. She then married Jerry Butler from 1987 to 1992. Her latest ex-husband is Graham Ritch whom she married in 2003. They divorced in 2014. Lisa would occasionally appear across the U.S. for ‘The Addams Family’ conventions and loved to sign autographs and meet fans.
She always considered American actor John Astin, who appeared as her reel-life father, ‘Gomez Addams,’ in ‘The Addams Family’ (1964 series), her favorite acting mentor and best friend. She was highly influenced by him. Lisa is one of the stars in the 2016 book “X Child Stars: Where Are They Now?” by Kathy Garver, and Fred Ascher.
She is embedded in the tapestry that is pop culture and in our hearts always as Wednesday Addams.Laurie Jacobson – Friend
Lisa Loring, died Saturday January 28, 2023 at Providence Saint Joseph Medical Center in Burbank, California at the age of 64. She had suffered a massive stroke brought on by smoking and high blood pressure, and had been on life support for three days before her family decided to remove it on the weekend. Loring is survived by her daughters, Marianne and Vanessa, as well as her grandchildren, Emiliana and Charles.
She went peacefully with both her daughters holding her handsVanessa Foumberg – Daughter
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