Brunette leading lady Marsha Mason made her Broadway debut in "Cactus Flower" (1965) and soon after landed in her first feature film, the low-budget actioner "Hot Rod Hullabaloo" (1966). For the next several years, she appeared in stage productions on and off Broadway as well as played a recurring role on the daytime drama "Love of Life" (CBS). The early 1970s found her at San Francisco's American Conservatory Theatre, where she acted in such classics as "The Merchant of Venice," "Cyrano de Bergerac" and "A Doll's House" (all 1972) before coming into her own as a film actress in 1973. That watershed year saw her first as one of George Segal's girlfriends in "Blume in Love" and then opposite James Caan as a hooker with an illegitimate black son in the earthy but touching "Cinderella Liberty," for which she earned her first Best Actress Oscar nomination. She also returned to Broadway that year in Neil Simon's "The Good Doctor." Although the show was not successful, Mason won the playwright's heart and they married.