Jean Elizabeth Smart is a famous American actress. After starting her career in regional theater in the Pacific Northwest, she went to Broadway in 1981 as Marlene Dietrich in the biographical play Piaf. Smart was later cast as the main character Charlene Frazier Stillfield on the CBS sitcom Designing Women, in which she starred from 1986 to 1991.
Smart has been married to the actor Richard Gilliland, whom she met on the set of Designing Women. They have two boys, Connor Douglas, who was born in 1989, and Forrest was adopted from China in May 2009. Gilliland played Captain Stan Cotter on the TV show 24, and Smart later played First Lady Martha Logan on the same show.
Richard Gilliland, Jean Smart’s husband, died suddenly of a heart condition on March 18, 2021, when he was 71 years old. Read on to know everything in detail.
Jean Smart’s Life Has Changed Since Richard Gilliland’s Death
Jean Smart says her life has changed in every way since her husband Richard Gilliland died suddenly.
Jean Smart was in the middle of filming “Hacks” for HBO Max when tragedy struck that her husband has passed away, forcing her to keep going through the pain to finish filming. In an interview with the New Yorker, she talked about what happened and how she felt at the time.
The actress said of her late husband, “He was a great dad, and he made me laugh every day.” “No one ever even thought about him dying. And it has changed every moment of my everyday life; I feel like it has changed every part of my being.”
Smart said Gilliland, whom she met on the set of Designing Women and married in 1987, was a major part of her professional success. Gilliland had his own career, and he worked on shows like 24, Party of Five, Thirty-Something, and Matlock. But when she had to go to work, he was able to be the hands-on parent. Following the death of her husband, Jean talked about him in an interview. Keep reading to know more.
Jean Smart Said Her Husband, Richard Made Her Career Better
In an interview with Variety last September, Smart talked about her late husband. She said, “I just want people to know how much he sacrificed for me to be where I am and to get the opportunities I’ve gotten. He kind of put his career on hold to help take care of our home and kids.”
“I hate that he didn’t get the chances I did because he was so talented. I was very fortunate to meet him, “she kept talking. After Smart and Gilliland had Forrest in 2009, things got even harder because the actress had to be away from home for months at a time to work on projects like Fargo season two, which was shot on location in Canada.
“My husband was home to take care of the youngest, and the older one, Connor, was a teenager, but I took it very seriously and flew home almost twice a week, every week. I had to. I wouldn’t have been able to sleep if I hadn’t done that, “Smart said.