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Marni Nixon (1930 - 2016)

Getty / David LeFranc

Marni Nixon (1930 - 2016)

Marni Nixon, a singer who ghost sang for leading actresses in films including "The King and I" and "West Side Story," died July 24, 2016, according to multiple news sources. She was 86. The cause was breast cancer, according to Randy Banner, a friend of Nixon.

Nixon, who was born Margaret Nixon McEathron Feb. 22, 1930, in Altadena, California, also acted in films and on TV and Broadway. Her film credits include "The Sound of Music" and "I Think I Do." She also appeared on TV's "Law and Order."

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Her greatest fame, however, came after she dubbed the singing voices for Deborah Kerr in the Rodgers and Hammerstein film adaptation of "The King and I," for Natalie Wood in "West Side Story," and Audrey Hepburn in "My Fair Lady." Many years would pass before Nixon could talk about her unsung film roles, as she explained in an interview.

"You always had to sign a contract that nothing would be revealed," Nixon said in an interview on the ABC's "Nightline" news program in 2007. "Twentieth Century Fox, when I did 'The King and I,' threatened me.

"They said, if anybody ever knows that you did any part of the dubbing for Deborah Kerr, we'll see to it that you don't work in town again."

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