Leachman spent nearly 8 decades performing, starting with radio plays in her home state of Iowa when she was a child.
She won an Academy Award in 1971 for her role in "The Last Picture Show," a drama set in north Texas.
Leachman also had strong character parts, and good comedic timing. She did three movies under director Mel Brooks: "Young Frakenstein," "High Anxiety," and "History of the World: Part I."
"Always such a pleasure to have on set. Every time I hear a horse whinny I will forever think of Cloris’ unforgettable Frau Blücher. She is irreplaceable, and will be greatly missed," Brooks tweeted Wednesday.
Such sad news—Cloris was insanely talented. She could make you laugh or cry at the drop of a hat. Always such a pleasure to have on set. Every time I hear a horse whinny I will forever think of Cloris’ unforgettable Frau Blücher. She is irreplaceable, and will be greatly missed.— Mel Brooks (@MelBrooks) January 27, 2021
She also had memorable roles on the small screen, like the landlady Phyllis Lindstrom on "The Mary Tyler Moore Show."
“There was no one like Cloris. With a single look she had the ability to break your heart or make you laugh ’till the tears ran down your face. You never knew what Cloris was going to say or do and that unpredictable quality was part of her unparalleled magic," Leachman's manager, Juliet Green said in a statement to Variety.
In 2008, she became the oldest contestant on "Dancing with the Stars," at age 82.
Leachman died Tuesday in Encinitas, California of natural causes.