Thursday, June 1, 2023

Marlene Clark Passes On

Marlene Clark, who played Lamont's girlfriend Janet on Sanford and Son and starred in the movie Ganja & Hess (1973), died on May 18 2023 at the age 85.

Marlene Clark was born in Harlem on December 19 1937. Growing up, she spent many summers in Virginia, where her mother was born. She attended Morristown Junior College in Tennessee an then City College in New York before working as a model.

Marlene Clark made her film debut in For Love of Ivy in 1968. In the late Sixties she also appeared in the movies Midnight Cowboy (1969), Putney Swope (1969), Stop! (1970), and The Landlord (1970). She made her television debut on The Bill Cosby Show in 1970. That same year she guest starred on The Governor & J.J., Marcus Welby M.D., and The Immortal.

It was in 1976 that she first appeared as Janet Lawson, Lamont's girlfriend and later fiancee, on Sanford and Son. She appeared in six episodes total. She also guest starred on the TV shows Bonanza, The Mod Squad, McCloud, The Rookies, The Richard Pryor Show, What's Happening!!, and Barnaby Jones. She appeared in the movies Clay Pigeon (1971), Night of the Cobra Woman (1972), Beware! The Blob (1972), Slaughter (1972), Ganja & Hess (1973), Enter the Dragon (1973), The Beast Must Die (1974), Newman's Law (1974), Black Mamba (1974), Lord Shango (1975), Swtichblade Sisters (1975), and The Baron (1977).

In the Eighties she guest starred on the shows Flamingo Road, Highway to Heaven, and Head of the Class. In the Eighties she opened her own clothing store on Melrose Avenue in Los Angeles. She later managed Hal’s Bar and Grill in Venice Beach.

Marlene Clark was very talented and she played a wide variety of roles. Janet Lawson on Sanford and Son  was a divorcee with a young son. In Ganja & Hess she played one of the title characters, both of who become vampires. In Night of the Cobra Woman, she played the title character. She played a government agent Slaughter. While Marlene Clark's career was not long, she played  a wide array of roles and she always gave good performances..

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