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Dena Dietrich (1928–2020), played Mother Nature in Chiffon Margarine commercials

by Linnea Crowther

Dena Dietrich was an actress whose memorable roles include Mother Nature in a series of commercials for Chiffon Margarine.

Acting career

Dietrich’s Chiffon commercials ran from 1971 to 1981 and became iconic on the television landscape. After trying the margarine and believing it was butter, she uttered her catchphrase tagline, “It’s not nice to fool Mother Nature,” when she realized the truth. The popular commercials opened doors for Dietrich’s acting career, and she had roles in TV shows including “Adam’s Rib,” “The Ropers,” “The Practice” (1976), and “Karen.” She made notable appearances in other shows including “Santa Barbara;” “All My Children;” “Murphy Brown;” “Boy Meets World;” and “The Golden Girls,” playing the sister of Bea Arthur’s (1922 – 2009) Dorothy. Her movie appearances include Mel Brooks’ “History of the World: Part I.”

Notable quote

“My career up until Mother Nature had been in New York, doing Broadway, doing off-Broadway, doing stock. But the minute the Mother Nature commercials came out, all the phone calls started to come in from Hollywood. They were curious to see what that broad looks like, what was the story behind her.” —from a 2005 interview with Skip E. Lowe


Tributes to Dena Dietrich

Full obituary: The Hollywood Reporter

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