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Dame Angela Lansbury has opened up about her marriage to Richard Cromwell.

The Murder She Wrote actress was married to Cromwell for a year when she was 19 and he 35. Despite their eventual split, he remained friends with Lansbury and her second husband Peter Shaw until his death in 1960.

In an interview with Radio Times this week, Lansbury revealed that she was shocked when the marriage came to an end, because at the time, she had no idea Cromwell was secretly hiding his sexuality from her.

“I had no idea that I was marrying a gay man. I found him such an attractive individual,” she said.

“He wanted to marry, he was fascinated with me, but only because of what he had seen on the screen, really.”

Lansbury, who also voiced Mrs. Potts in Disney’s animated Beauty And The Beast, continued: “It didn’t injure or damage me in any way, because he maintained a friendship with me and my future husband.”

She added: “But it was a shock to me when it ended, I wasn’t prepared for that. It was just a terrible error I made as a very young woman. But I don’t regret it.”

The star came under fire this week after claiming that women should take the blame for sexual harassment and abuse in the Radio Times interview.

She said: “There are two sides to this coin. We have to own up to the fact that women, since time immemorial, have gone out of their way to make themselves attractive.”

“And unfortunately it has backfired on us – and this is where we are today.”

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