Margot Kidder, the actress best known for portraying Louis Lane alongside Christopher Reeve's Superman has died at the age of 69.
"Margot passed away peacefully in her sleep on Sunday, May 13," a representative told the Los Angeles Times.
Born in Yellowknife, Northwest Territories, Canada, she decided to become an actress after her mom took her to a production of Bye Bye Birdie when she was 12.
Kidder was also a strong advocate for mental health, suffering from bipolarism. At the age of 14, she made her first suicide attempt, noting in her diary that she had extreme mood swings and that things would be bad one day, but fine the next.
She didn't let anything stop her from her dreams, beginning a career in acting in 1969, only to leave to go to New York for more training after a director told her she wasn't a very good actress.
Kidder returned to Hollywood stronger than before and became known for films like Black Christmas (1974), The Great Waldo Pepper (1975), 92 in the Shade (1975) and The Reincarnation of Peter Proud (1975).
After a brief stint as a stay-at-home-mom to daughter Maggie, she decided again to go back to making movies. This time it was for Superman.
It was exciting, but for a while being typecast as Lois made my vanity and narcissism scream. Hadn't people seen my other work? But now my grandkids watch it, and think I was Superman's friend, so that's a thrill.
After the second movie in the Superman series, Kidder became involved in politics, something she was passionate about the rest of her life. During the first Gulf War, she had some harsh words for the military actions in Kuwait. It was also the time when her battle with bipolarism flared up. She was a tremendous supporter of Bernie Sanders in the 2016 primaries.
In 1996 her battle became public after she went missing for days and was found in a disheveled state, convinced her ex-husband was going to kill her. She made this statement to the LA Times after the episode:
"After Superman came out, I found it very difficult and hard to deal with. There is a sense of having to put on this phony face when you go out in public. I wasn't very good at it, and it filled me with anxiety and panic. I had to hide the manic depression, for one thing. I just felt inadequate for the job."
Again, Kidder did not stop moving forward. After mending, she started a mental wellness campaign. She became the spokesperson for AlternativeMentalHealth.com, as well as a spokesperson for the International Society for Orthomolecular Medicine.
In addition, Kidder was given the Courage in Mental Health Award from the California Women's Mental Health Policy Council.
She moved to Montana to find peace and in 2007 shared she had not had another bipolar episode for 11 years.
We are all one human family and we really have to take care of each other.
David Axelrod expresses what Kidder meant to the world as an actress as well as an advocate in this tweet:
Margot Kidder should be remembered as much for courageously, candidly discussing her battles with mental illness as for any screen role.
There are no Supermen— or women. It is not a character deficiency to acknowledge such struggles and get the help and treatment you need!
— David Axelrod (@davidaxelrod) May 14, 2018
Kidder is survived by her daughter, Maggie McGuane and two grandchildren.