Sharon Acker, ‘Point Blank’ and ‘Happy Birthday to Me’ Actor, Dies at 87

Sharon Acker, a Canadian film, television and theater actor best known for her roles in “Point Blank,” “The New Perry Mason” and “Happy Birthday to Me,” has died. She was 87.

Acker’s death was confirmed by her cousin, David Glover, in a tribute to his family member on Facebook: “My wife Judy and I were very close with Sharon and we spoke regularly even after she moved back to Toronto to be close to with daughters and family. I can never forget Sharon’s million dollar smile. She made everyone she came in contact with feel so much better.”

According to reports, Acker died March 16 at her retirement home in Toronto.

Across an acting career spanning four decades, Acker found one of her most enduring roles in the 1967 neo-noir “Point Blank,” helmed by John Boorman. Acker played the wife to Lee Marvin’s lead, who betrays her conman husband after a robbery on Alcatraz.

Acker also has a credit among cult horror circles for her turn in the 1981 slasher “Happy Birthday to Me,” which marked her final performance in a feature. The actor is only seen in flashbacks, playing the mother to protagonist Ginny Wainwright (Melissa Sue Anderson). The troubled guardian meets an untimely end in a heightened series of drawbridge mishaps.

“Star Trek” fans known Acker as Odona, an enduring one-episode role from a 1969 episode of the original series. The actor also played Barbara Hale, the secretary to Monte Markham’s eponymous gumshoe on the short-lived reboot “The New Perry Mason” in 1973.

Acker was born in Toronto on April 2, 1935. Adopted at the age of nine, she studied art and graduated in 1953. Her acting career began with a series of turns on stage, joining the Stratford Shakespeare Festival company and traveling to Europe. Her feature debut came in 1957 with “Lucky Jim.”

Her final TV credit came in 1992 with an appearance on “The Young and the Restless.” Acker returned to Canada in 1994 with her second husband, Peter Elkington, to live in Ontario and follow her passion for painting and sculpting. Elkington died in 2001.

Acker is survived by her children, Kim and Gillian; granddaughter, Alexis; great-granddaughter, Berkeley; and stepchildren Kim and Caitlin.

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