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Marcheline Bertrand (Marcia Lynne Bertrand)

Marcheline Bertrand

Born at St. Francis Hospital in Blue Island, Illinois, Bertrand was brought up in the nearby small town of Riverdale. Her parents were Lois June (née Gouwens; 1928–1973) and Rolland F. Bertrand (1923–1985). She had two younger siblings: a sister, Debbie, and a brother, Raleigh. In 1965, Bertrand’s family moved from the Chicago area to Beverly Hills, California, where she attended Beverly Hills High School from sophomore year through graduation. Bertrand’s father was of French Canadian descent, and her mother was of Dutch and German ancestry, with ancestors who had immigrated to the United States in the mid-19th century. Bertrand claimed to be of Iroquois ancestry through her father’s line, although her only known Native American ancestor is a Huron woman born in 1649 in present-day Quebec. According to her daughter, Bertrand was often wrongly identified as a French actress because of her name; she said, “My mom is as far from French Parisian as you can get. She grew up in a bowling alley that my grandparents owned.” During her early years as an actress, Bertrand studied with Lee Strasberg. In 1971, she played Connie in the episode “Love, Peace, Brotherhood and Murder” on the fourth season of the television show Ironside. A decade later, she appeared in a minor role in 1982’s Lookin’ to Get Out, a film co-written by and starring her former husband, Jon Voight. The following year, Bertrand played her final film role in the 1983 comedy The Man Who Loved Women, a remake of the 1977 French film of the same name. Bertrand then turned her attention toward producing. In 1983, she founded Woods Road Productions with her then-partner, Bill Day. In 2005, Bertrand was the executive producer of the documentary Trudell, which chronicles the life and work of her partner, John Trudell, a Santee Sioux musician and activist. Trudell was an official selection at the Sundance Film Festival and the Tribeca Film Festival, and it won the Special Jury Prize for Best Documentary at the Seattle International Film Festival.

Bertrand married actor Jon Voight on December 12, 1971. Following a miscarriage in 1972, they had two children, James Haven (born May 11, 1973) and Angelina Jolie (born June 4, 1975). Both children became actors; Jolie has credited her mother with getting her involved in acting. Bertrand and Voight separated in 1976 as a result of Voight’s adultery. She filed for divorce in 1978, which was finalized in 1980. Following her legal separation from Voight, Bertrand began a relationship with documentary-filmmaker Bill Day. They lived together for eleven years, but never married. During her later life, Bertrand was in a relationship with activist and musician John Trudell. At the time of her death, Bertrand had three grandchildren by her daughter. Another granddaughter, who was born the following year, was given the middle name Marcheline in her honor. Toward the end of her life, Bertrand preferred her privacy and did not grant interviews. She died at the age of 56 on January 27, 2007, at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center after a nearly eight-year battle with ovarian cancer and breast cancer. Her children were with her at the time of her death. Her daughter said that her mother’s side of the family tended not to be long-lived, stating, “My grandmother also died young so my mother always thought it could happen to her.” Bertrand’s mother died at the age of 45, and had been diagnosed with ovarian cancer.

Born

  • May, 09, 1950
  • USA
  • Blue Island, Illinois

Died

  • January, 27, 2007
  • USA
  • Los Angeles, California

Cause of Death

  • ovarian cancer

Other

  • Cremated

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