Mryna Colley-Lee is a recognized American theatre and film costume designer, and the estranged second wife of the veteran Hollywood actor, Morgan Freeman.
Age, Early Life, and Education Background
Myrna Colley-Lee was born in North Carolina, USA, in 1941, and is 80 years old as of early 2022. She hasn’t publicly shared her parents’ and any siblings’ names, and other childhood details.
Colley-Lee attended a local high school, and matriculated to the University of North Carolina, from which she graduated with a Fine Arts bachelor’s degree. She subsequently joined the New York-based Brooklyn College to learn scene painting and properties. She later enrolled at Temple University in Philadelphia, and received a Master’s Degree in Costume and Scenic Design.
Interests and Facts
Myrna grew up with a knack for art, which drove her to pursue her current career – she has filled her house with various unique art collections.
In 2015, disaster struck Freeman’s family when his granddaughter E’Dena Hines was tragically murdered by her boyfriend. Myrna stood with Morgan’s family throughout the tragic times.
Colley-Lee is a great chef, and enjoys cooking during her free time – she loves Italian cuisine.
She likes spending time outdoors, mostly traveling, and has toured many attractions across the globe – her favorite destination is London.
The Hamlet-born designer spends her spare time watching movies and TV shows – her favorite actor and actress are Eddie Redmayne and Megan Markle respectively.
The retired costume designer is a philanthropist, and has donated to various charities – she is also an active member of National Women Museum of the Arts.
Since the 1960’s, Colley-Lee has been known for her prowess in designing costumes – she was among the best designers in “Black Theatre Movement.” In 1985, she worked on the costume and arts section of the short film “Frederick Douglass: An American Life.” Although she’s not necessarily an actress, she made an appearance in the 2005 documentary “60 Minutes” as herself, and in the “Bridge to Gretna” episode of the series “60 Minutes,” which follows the story of Hurricane Katrina’s victims, who are denied entry through a bridge by armed police officers.
She is credited with designing costumes for multiple theatrical projects, such as “Wedding Band: A Love/Hate Story in Black and White,” “Forest City,” and “The Piano Lesson.”
Myrna has worked for various famous personalities, such as the American producer, actress and political activist Alfre Woodard, and actor Charles Dutton. Apart from costume designing, Colley-Lee also worked as a set designer and art director for many TV shows and films. Recently, she began working as a commercial interior designer, and has been contracted by various top-end companies.
On top of this, she is a Mississippi Arts Commission’s commissioner, and has played a significant role in organizing art galleries in Georgia for Columbus Museum – most of the art showcased correlates to Afro-American culture and population.
Myrna is fond of hosting major art shows through donations, and 2014 saw her hosting “A Theatre of Color: Costume Design for the Black Theatre” exhibition held at Charles Wright Museum in Detroit – the exhibition showcased more than 2000 unique costume designs and renderings. Some of her recent projects are “Two Trains Running” played at Geva Theatre Center, “Guess Who’s Coming to Dinner”, and “All My Sons” both played at St. Louis Repertory Theatre.
Colley-Lee financially supports several charity organizations such as Charleston Arts, Rock River Foundation, and Revitalization Effort Inc., which is a local civic art organization.
A mutual friend organized a date for Myrna and Freeman – at the time, Freeman had just ended his 12-year-long marriage with his first wife, Jeanette Adair, with whom he had welcomed a daughter, Morgana Freeman; on the other hand, Myrna was a successful career woman, who was fully focused on her profession. They tied the knot in a small wedding ceremony in June 1984 – they don’t have any child from their marriage, Myrna developed close relationships with Morgan’s children from his previous affairs.
During their years of togetherness, Morgan was reported to have been involved in multiple extramarital affairs – he was once rumored to be secretly dating Mary J. Hays, who was a school teacher. Things started falling apart after around two and a half decades, with Colley-Lee insisting that she wanted a divorce.
Colley-Lee and her husband Morgan finalized their divorce in 2010, ending their 26 years of togetherness in a Mississippi courtroom after separating in December 2007. In 2009, Morgan suffered a controversy that was related to his 2008 accident, which saw him and his passenger sustaining serious injuries. The victim, Damaris Mayer filed a lawsuit against the “Shawshank Redemption” star, claiming that he was driving negligently and that he was under the influence. However, the matter was resolved outside court, and so no charges were filed.
Shortly after the accident, Morgan’s business partner, lawyer, and friend Bill Luckett told the media about Myrna’s divorce with Morgan. Myrna, who suspected that Morgan was having a romantic relationship with a mysterious woman, accused Mayer of having an affair with her husband. According to sources, Mayer later came out publicly complaining that she was being ‘…accused of having caused the break-up of Mr. Freeman’s marriage,’ after the accident. Myrna settled in Northern Mississipi’s Tallahatchie County after her divorce, to avoid the ‘glitz and glam’ of Hollywood.
Height, Weight, and Physical Appearance
Colley-Lee is of Afro-American ethnicity and has medium dark skin complexion with black hair and a set of dark brown eyes. She is 5ft 5ins (1.63m) tall and weighs approximately 132lbs (60kg).
Moreover, her vital statistics are 35-27-34.
Colley-Lee has an impressive net worth of approximately $160 million according to sources, having earned her fortune from her successful career in showbiz. After parting ways with her now ex-husband, she received approximately $400 million in cash and real estate – she seemingly lives a luxurious life and has several mansions, in such as Central Park, New York and the British Virgin Island. Her ex-husband is worth approximately $270 million, and owns a 124-acre bee sanctuary among other assets.