Marge Champion, actress, dancer and 'Snow White' model, dead at 101, reports say

Sara M Moniuszko, USA TODAY
·2 min read
Actress Marge Champion attends the 2013 TCM Classic Film Festival Opening Night Gala screening of "Funny Girl" on April 25, 2013 in Hollywood, Calif.
Actress Marge Champion attends the 2013 TCM Classic Film Festival Opening Night Gala screening of "Funny Girl" on April 25, 2013 in Hollywood, Calif.

Marge Champion, the famed actress, dancer and model, has died at 101, according to The Hollywood Reporter and The New York Times.

Champion died Wednesday in Los Angeles, dance instructor Pierre Dulaine told The Hollywood Reporter and her son Gregg Champion told the Times.

Marge Champion was best known for being the real-life model for "Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs." She also gave life to other Disney classics, including the Blue Fairy in 1940's "Pinocchio" and Hyacinth Hippo in the "Dance of the Hours" segment of 1940's "Fantasia."

Champion began dance training at an early age and was celebrated for her choreography talents. She won an Emmy Award for choreographing 1975's "Queen of the Stardust Ballroom."

But she also achieved fame for her on-screen work. While she was married to Gower Champion, the pair starred in several musical films including 1951's "Show Boat," 1952's "Lovely to Look At," 1953's "Give a Girl a Break" and 1955's "Jupiter’s Darling." Their union, her longest marriage, lasted from 1947 to 1973, and he died in 1980.

Prior to and following their divorce, Marge Champion starred solo in 1968's "The Party" and her most recent credit, 1982's television series "Fame."

Before marrying Gower, she was married to Art Babbitt, a top animator at Disney, from 1937 to 1940. Her third marriage was to American-Ukrainian director Boris Sagal, from 1977 until his death in 1981.

Gregg Champion told The New York Times she had been living with him in California for the last six months due to the coronavirus pandemic. In addition to her son, she is survived by her three stepdaughters, a daughter-in-law and three grandchildren, according to the outlets.

This article originally appeared on USA TODAY: Marge Champion, actress, dancer and 'Snow White' model, dead at 101