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Holliday made her Broadway debut, following the end of her run in the role of "Flo" (on both Alice (1976) and Flo (1980)), in a revival of the black comedy "Arsenic and Old Lace", alongside Jean Stapleton (who was also trying to get some distance and re-establish herself after many years of playing Edith Bunker on All in the Family (1971) and Archie Bunker's Place (1979)).
Before "Arsenic" landed on Broadway, Stapleton had appeared in the national tour with Marion Ross, playing the role Holliday would wind up playing when Ross was unavailable to continue in the role.
In 1973, Holliday headed for New York, where she was cast in Murray Schisgal's Broadway play All Over Town; her director was Dustin Hoffman.
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The show barely lasted one season despite another Emmy-nomination for her.
Polly lost major clout after the show's cancellation and, to avoid typecasting, she stayed out of the television limelight while appearing in regional theater.
She won renewed respect and critical notice for her Amanda Wingfield in The Glass Menagerie, her Tony-nominated turn as Big Mama in Cat on a Hot Tin Roof, and for her part as the lonely small-town schoolteacher in Picnic in 1994.
From time to time she has taken on flashy roles in both comic and dramatic films, such as the old crank who meets a freakish end in Gremlins (1984), and on TV wherein she briefly replaced Eileen Brennan in the series Private Benjamin (1981) after Ms. Though Polly never recaptured the dazzling success of her Alice (1976) years, she has continued at a healthy pace -- primarily in guest spots where she plays wise and opinionated mothers and grandmothers.