Sci-fi fans know Nancy Allen as Officer Anne Lewis from RoboCop (1987) and its two sequels, as well as time travel adventure The Philadelphia Experiment (1984) and 1950s homage Strange Invaders (1983).

Brian De Palma devotees love her as the bitchy Chris Hargensen, who dumped pig’s blood on the prom queen in Carrie (1976); the stock market-savvy call girl turned amateur sleuth in Dressed to Kill (1980); and the young woman drawn into a mystery alongside John Travolta’s sound technician in Blow Out (1981).

She also played Carol Anne’s aunt in Poltergeist III (1988), and following a supporting role in Steven Soderbergh’s Out of Sight (1998) and the indignity of Children of the Corn 666: Isaac’s Revenge (1999), Nancy Allen vanished from the screen, aside from the odd TV appearance and a role in the little seen indie film My Apocalypse (2008).

These days she devotes her life to breast cancer awareness and is an executive director of the weSPARK Cancer Support Centre.

“I haven’t quit but I’m not going to do anything unless something comes along and I get excited about it,” Allen has said of her ten-year hiatus from acting. “I hope it does. I miss acting. I love acting. I was recently at Universal, doing a fundraiser, and it reminded me of the first time walking onto a soundstage, going, ‘Oh! This is where I belong.'”