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Actor Anthony Franciosa dead at 77

LOS ANGELES, Jan. 20 (UPI) -- Actor Anthony Franciosa, who starred in such movies as "A Hatful of Rain" and "A Face in the Crowd," died of a stroke in Los Angeles Friday at age 77.

Franciosa's wife of 35 years, Rita, and other family members were at his side when Franciosa died, The Hollywood Reporter said, citing the actor's publicist, Dick Guttman.

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Franciosa broke into Hollywood in 1957, appearing in short order in big productions with top directors, The Reporter said, but his stormy personality eventually hampered his career.

Franciosa was nominated for a best actor Oscar in 1958 for his performance in director Fred Zinneman's "A Hatful of Rain," in which he reprised his role from the Broadway play from which the film was adapted. He also appeared in Robert Wise's "This Could Be the Night" and Elia Kazan's "A Face in the Crowd."

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