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Ann Savage, born Bernice Maxine Lyon, was a motion picture actress for more than sixty years. Her publicist Kent Adamson issued a statement indicating that the actress died in a nursing home at age 87 on December 25, 2008 from complication following a series of strokes.

The actress was known for her cigarette-puffing femme fatale role in Detour, where she blackmailed a stranger. Savage and her Detour co-star Tom Neal made three other movies: Klondike Kate, Two Man Submarine and Unwritten Code. They also appeared together in a television show Gangbusters.

Savage appeared in 30 films and in later years attended numerous film festivals and earned the respect of several generations of independent film directors. Wim Wenders called her work in Detour “at least 15 years ahead of its time”. Ann more recently earned rave reviews for her stunning performance as Canadian director Guy Maddin‘s mother in his most acclaimed film My Winnipeg (2008).

Photo gallery below and video from Detour with commentary by the actress in later years detailing the shooting of the film. Also see independent film My Winnipeg 2008 trailer.