Ramsey at the 1988 Academy Awards
March 27, 1929
Omaha, Nebraska, U.S.
|Died||August 11, 1988
Hollywood, California, U.S.
|Cause of death||Esophageal cancer|
Anne Ramsey (March 27, 1929 – August 11, 1988) was an American stage, television, and film actress. She is probably most famous for her roles as Mama Fratelli in The Goonies and as Mrs. Lift, Danny DeVito's mother, in Throw Momma from the Train.
Early life 
Anne Ramsey was born Anne Mobley in Omaha, Nebraska, the daughter of Eleanor (née Smith), the former national treasurer of the Girl Scouts of the USA, and Nathan Mobley, an insurance executive. Her mother was a descendant of the Pilgrims (William Brewster), and a sister of U.S. Ambassador David S. Smith. Ramsey was raised in Great Neck, New York and Greenwich, Connecticut. She attended Bennington College where she became interested in theatre. She performed in several Broadway productions in the 1950s and married actor Logan Ramsey in 1954. They moved to Philadelphia where they formed the Theatre of the Living Arts.
In the 1970s, Anne Ramsey began a successful Hollywood career in character roles and appeared in such television programs as Little House on the Prairie, Wonder Woman and Ironside. She appeared with her husband in seven films, including her first, The Sporting Club (1971), and her last, Meet the Hollowheads (1989).
In 1988, for her performance in Throw Momma from the Train (1987) with Billy Crystal and Danny DeVito, Ramsey was nominated for the Academy Award for Best Supporting Actress and the Golden Globe Award for Best Supporting Actress – Motion Picture. She won her second Saturn Award for Best Supporting Actress, the first being for The Goonies.
In February 1988, she guest-starred on an episode of ALF that aired six months before her death. She also appeared in six films released in the two years after her death.
Ramsey's somewhat slurred speech, a trademark of her later performances, was caused in part from having had some of her tongue and her jaw removed during surgery for esophageal cancer in 1984. In 1988, Ramsey's cancer returned. She died in August at the Motion Picture & Television Country House and Hospital in Woodland Hills, California.
- Meet the Hollowheads (1989)
- Homer and Eddie (1989)
- Another Chance (1989)
- Scrooged (1988)
- Good Old Boy: A Delta Boyhood (1988)
- Dr. Hackenstein (1988)
- Throw Momma from the Train - Momma (1987)
- Weeds (1987)
- Love at Stake (1987)
- Deadly Friend (1986)
- Say Yes (1986)
- The Goonies (1985)
- The Murder of Sherlock Holmes (1984)
- Getting Physical (1984)
- The Seduction of Gina (1984)
- The Killers (1984)
- Herndon (1983)
- I Want to Live! (1983)
- National Lampoon's Class Reunion - Mrs Tabazooski (1982)
- Marian Rose White (1982)
- A Small Killing (1981)
- Any Which Way You Can (1980)
- White Mama (1980)
- The Black Marble (1980)
- When You Comin' Back, Red Ryder? (1979)
- The Gift of Love (1978)
- Goin' South (1978)
- Fun with Dick and Jane (1977)
- Wonder Woman episode (1977)
- The Boy in the Plastic Bubble (1976)
- Dawn: Portrait of a Teenage Runaway (1976)
- From Noon till Three (1976)
- The Law (1974)
- For Pete's Sake (1974)
- Rhinoceros (1974)
- The Third Girl from the Left (1973)
- Up the Sandbox (1972)
- The New Centurions (Uncredited, 1972)
- The Sporting Club (1971)
- "Dr. Hackenstein (1988)". Turner Classic Movies (TCM). Retrieved February 6, 2010.
- Folkart, Burt A. (13 August 1988). "Obituaries: Oscar Nominee Anne Ramsey; Praised for `Momma' Role". Los Angeles Times. p. 28. Retrieved 25 March 2013.
- "Dr. Hackenstein". Troma Entertainment. Retrieved February 6, 2010.
- Anne Ramsey at the Internet Movie Database
- Anne Ramsey at the TCM Movie Database
- Anne Ramsey at AllRovi
- Anne Ramsey at Find a Grave