Conchata Ferrell in Krampus
More info i
Credit: Universal Pictures; photo by Steve Unwin

Conchata Ferrell, actor in Krampus and Edward Scissorhands, dies at 77

Contributed by
Oct 13, 2020, 8:26 PM EDT (Updated)

Deadline reports that character actor Conchata Ferrell passed away on Oct. 12 in Sherman Oaks, California due to “complications following from a cardiac arrest.” While Ferrell was likely best known as the housekeeper Berta on the sitcom Two and a Half Men, she also had prominent roles in genre films Krampus and Edward Scissorhands.

Krampus director Mike Dougherty was one of many who went to Twitter to express his condolences. “From Network to True Romance to Edward Scissorhands, Conchata Ferrell was an underappreciated acting legend who could bring a smile to your face just by walking into the room,” he wrote. “Rest in peace, Aunt Dorothy.”

In Krampus, Ferrell played Aunt Dorothy, an irascible character who enjoyed peppermint Schnapps and inevitably became one of Krampus’ victims. Ferrell also played Helen in Edward Scissorhands, the red-headed neighbor who couldn’t help poking her nose into other people’s business.

She also appeared in several other noteworthy films, including Frankenweenie, K-PaxErin Brockovich, Mystic Pizza, and True Romance.

But Ferrell was perhaps more prevalent on the small screen. In addition to recurring roles on Two and a Half Men and Netflix’s The Ranch, the prolific actor guest starred on many a series, including Sabrina the Teenage Witch, Buffy the Vampire Slayer, and Teen Angel

Ferrell was nominated for an Emmy three times in her career, twice for playing Berta on Two and a Half Men and once in 1992 for her role of Susan Bloom on L.A. Law

While the characters she played were varied, the joy she brought to those she worked with was apparently a constant. “She was a beautiful human,” Jon Cryer, who worked with her on Two and a Half Men, said on Twitter. “Berta’s gruff exterior was an invention of the writers. Chatty’s warmth and vulnerability were her real strengths. I’m crying for the woman I’ll miss, and the joy she brought to so many.”

Ferrell is survived by her husband, Arnie Anderson, and her daughter, Samantha. The family requests donations to TheLovelandFoundation.org and ASPCA.org in lieu of flowers. 

Make Your Inbox Important

Like Comic-Con. Except every week in your inbox.

Sign-up breaker