Elizabeth Shepherd is a British-born actress with extensive theatrical and television experience, as well as feature film work to her credit. Shepherd has played starring and featured roles in pictures such as Michael Powell's The Queen's Guards (1962) and Roger Corman's The Tomb of Ligeia (1964). But perhaps her most well-known small-screen credit involves a role that she was never seen in by the public -- in 1964, following the departure of Honor Blackman from the cast of The Avengers television series, Shepherd was announced as her replacement in the role of Mrs. Emma Peel; and two episodes, "Town of No Return" and "The Murder Market," were filmed -- but then she was dropped from the role and replaced by Diana Rigg, who also appeared in re-shot versions of both of those episodes.
Shepherd (sometimes misspelled Shephard or Sheppard) was born in London, the daughter of a Methodist missionary. She attended Bristol University as a drama major and her theatrical career began not long after, and it has encompassed major roles in the works of Shakespeare, Shaw, and Ibsen. Her television credits include episodes of Dixon of Dock Green, with Jack Warner, and Danger Man (aka Secret Agent), with Patrick McGoohan; the matter of The Avengers was barely a hiccup in her work, to judge from her list of credits in those years. She has described herself as the "Queen of the BBC miniseries," though she has also had some memorable film roles -- in addition to her work with Powell, and her performance opposite Vincent Price in The Tomb of Ligeia, she was the doomed journalist in Don Taylor's Damien: Omen II. She has also worked in American soap operas, and in more recent years has added voice work in animated series such as The Silver Surfer and The Avengers -- as the voices of Infinity and Agatha Harkness, respectively -- to her long list of credits. Since the 1970s, she has resided principally in Canada and performed extensively on-stage in England and America. ~ Bruce Eder, Rovi