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Karen Rose Montgomery

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November 28, 1949 - December 4, 2015 KAREN ROSE MONTGOMERY died at her Mid-Wilshire home on Friday, December 4th after an almost decade long struggle with breast cancer. Born in Chicago, she was brought up in Southern California and graduated from Berkeley. A pre-Med, she changed courses, notably studying with the radical philosopher, Paul Feyerabend, whom she credited as a great friend and mentor. Immediately after Berkeley she started acting, subsidizing her career very successfully with modeling in San Francisco, Los Angeles and New York. In front of the camera her most notable role was as Princess Beata, leader of a planet in Star Trek The Next Generation's 'Angel One' episode. She loved actors and acting but decided that she would rather be behind the camera, developing and producing. Her first job was as assistant to writer Waldo Salt, director Hal Ashby and producer Bruce Gilbert on 'COMING HOME.' Through the film she became lifelong friends with D.P. Haskell Wexler, with whom she later worked on two projects, the first an ABC documentary 'BLOOD & MONEY -Violence In The Movies.' After 'COMING HOME' she was hired by Bruce Gilbert at American Filmworks where she was the supervising exec on the Sydney Lumet film 'THE MORNING AFTER' starring Jane Fonda, Jeff Bridges and Raul Julia. She worked in development at a number of Indie companies and was involved in bringing several features to the screen including TIL THERE WAS YOU; ROW YOUR BOAT; and DIARY OF A HIT MAN, directed by her former acting coach and close friend Roy London. After Roy London's death she teamed with her husband, director Christopher Monger, to make a documentary SPECIAL THANKS TO ROY LONDON. It premiered at the Tribeca Festival in 2005 to great critical acclaim. She also produced A SENSE OF WONDER, a re-imagining of Kaiulani Lee's stage play about Rachel Carson. She was Women's Division District leader of her Nichiren Buddhist Chapter and a mentor to many young women. She is survived by her husband, Christopher Monger; her mother Susan Nelson; brother Carl Montgomery; and beloved nieces Madison and Paulina. No flowers please but donations can be made to Medicins Sans Frontieres (Doctors Without Borders); Save The Children and NKLA. There will be a memorial in 2016.
Published in the Los Angeles Times on Dec. 9, 2015
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