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Adrienne Shelly

Adrienne Shelly

Adrienne Levine (June 24, 1966 – November 1, 2006), better known by the stage name Adrienne Shelly (sometimes credited as Adrienne Shelley), was an American actress, film director and screenwriter. She became known for roles in independent films such as Hal Hartley's The Unbelievable Truth (1989) and Trust (1990). She wrote, co-starred in, and directed the 2007 posthumously-released film Waitress. On November 1, 2006, Shelly was found dead, hanging in the shower of her West Village work studio apartment. The initial examination of the scene did not reveal any suspicious circumstances, and police apparently believed it to be a suicide. Her husband insisted she would never have taken her own life, and brought about a re-examination of the bathroom that disclosed a suspect shoe print. Police arrested Diego Pillco, a 19-year-old construction worker from Ecuador, who confessed to killing Shelly and making it look as if she had committed suicide. Shelly's husband established the Adrienne Shelly Foundation, which awards scholarships, production grants, finishing funds, and living stipends to artists. In her honor, the Women Film Critics Circle gives an annual Adrienne Shelly Award to the film that it finds "most passionately opposes violence against women."
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