American actress Catherine Coulson, best known for playing the Log Lady on David Lynch’s cult drama Twin Peaks, has died at the age of 71.
Coulson first collaborated with Lynch in 1977, before Twin Peaks began, working as assistant director on his debut feature film Eraserhead, where they began discussing the idea of a mysterious character who carried around a log.
As the Log Lady, otherwise known as Margaret Lanterman, Coulson played a woman who had a clairvoyant connection with a pine log which she carried around with her at all times.
Throughout the show, which ran for just two series from 1990 until 1991, the humorous yet unsettling character relayed messages from the log to the people who lived in the town of Twin Peaks, including hints about who might have committed the murder at the centre of the story.
Coulson was due to star in the new series of the drama, which is to be revived in 2017 on US network Showtime. She said last year that she was “very excited” about appearing in the re-make, saying that Lynch had revealed small hints of what was in store for her character. She also joked that “the log should have a love scene,” and that she would suggest this to the director.
Lynch paid tribute to the actress in a statement: “Today I lost one of my dearest friends, Catherine Coulson. Catherine was solid gold. She was always there for her friends – she was filled with love for all people – for her family – for her work. She was a tireless worker. She had a great sense of humour – she loved to laugh and make people laugh. She was a spiritual person – a longtime TM [transcendental meditation] meditator. She was the Log Lady.”