Mary-Louise Parker Parker in 2010Born (1964-08-02) August 2, 1964 (age 54)
Mary-Louise Parker (born August 2, 1964) is an American actress and writer. After making her stage debut as Rita in a Broadway production of Craig Lucas's Prelude to a Kiss in 1990 (for which she received a Tony Award nomination), Parker came to prominence for film roles in Grand Canyon (1991), Fried Green Tomatoes (1991), The Client (1994), Bullets over Broadway (1994), Boys on the Side (1995), The Portrait of a Lady (1996), and The Maker (1997). Among stage and independent film appearances thereafter, Parker received the Tony Award for Best Actress in a Play for her portrayal of Catherine Llewellyn in David Auburn's Proof in 2001, among other accolades. Between 2001 and 2006, she recurred as Amy Gardner on the NBC television series The West Wing, for which she was nominated for the Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Drama Series in 2002.
After receiving both Golden Globe and Primetime Emmy Awards for her portrayal of Harper Pitt on the acclaimed HBO television miniseries Angels in America in 2003, Parker went on to enjoy large success as Nancy Botwin, the lead role on the television series Weeds, which ran from 2005 to 2012 and for which she received three nominations for the Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Lead Actress in a Comedy Series between 2007 and 2009 and received the Golden Globe Award for Best Actress – Television Series Musical or Comedy in 2006.
Her later film appearances include roles in The Spiderwick Chronicles (2008), Red (2010), R.I.P.D. (2013), and Red 2 (2013). Since 2007, Parker has contributed articles to Esquire magazine and published her memoir, Dear Mr. You, in 2015. In 2017, she starred as Roma Guy on the ABC television miniseries When We Rise.Contents
Parker was born in Fort Jackson, South Carolina. The youngest of four children, she is the daughter of Caroline Louise (née Morell) and John Morgan Parker, a judge who served in the U.S. Army. Her ancestry includes Swedish (from her maternal grandfather), English, Scottish, Scots-Irish, German, and Dutch. Because of her father's career, Parker spent parts of her childhood in Tennessee and Texas, as well as in Thailand, Germany, and France. She described her childhood as "profoundly unhappy," further noting that, "My parents did everything they could; I had books, clothes, a home and a warm bed, but I was never happy." She graduated from Marcos de Niza High School in Tempe, Arizona. Parker majored in drama at the University of North Carolina School of the Arts and graduated in 1986.Acting career 1980s
Parker got her start in acting with a role on the soap opera Ryan's Hope. In the late 1980s, Parker moved to New York. After a few minor roles, she made her Broadway debut in a production of Craig Lucas' Prelude to a Kiss, playing the lead role of Rita, in 1990. She moved with the production when it transferred from its origin Off-Broadway. Parker won the Clarence Derwent Award for her performance and was nominated for a Tony Award (although she did not play the role when the film was made). In 1989 she was in the film Longtime Companion, a film starring Campbell Scott, Bruce Davison and Dermot Mulroney about the emergence and devastation of the AIDS epidemic.1990s
Parker starred with Kevin Kline in Grand Canyon (1991); with Kathy Bates, Mary Stuart Masterson, and Jessica Tandy in Fried Green Tomatoes (1991); with Susan Sarandon and Tommy Lee Jones in The Client (1994); with John Cusack in Bullets over Broadway (1994); and with Drew Barrymore and Whoopi Goldberg in Boys on the Side (1995), as a woman with AIDS. Parker's next role was in a movie adaptation of another Craig Lucas play, Reckless (1995), alongside Mia Farrow, followed by Jane Campion's The Portrait of a Lady (1996), which also starred Nicole Kidman, Viggo Mortensen, Christian Bale, John Malkovich and Barbara Hershey. In addition, she appeared alongside Matthew Modine in Tim Hunter's The Maker (1997).
Parker's theater career continued when she appeared in Paula Vogel's 1997 critical smash How I Learned to Drive, with David Morse. In the late 1990s, she appeared in several independent films, including Let the Devil Wear Black and The Five Senses. She starred alongside Sidney Poitier in the 1999 movie The Simple Life of Noah Dearborn.2001–2003
On December 7, 2003, HBO aired a six-and-a-half-hour adaptation of Tony Kushner's acclaimed Broadway play Angels in America, directed by Mike Nichols. Parker played Harper Pitt, the Mormon Valium-addicted wife of a closeted lawyer. For her performance, Parker received the Golden Globe Award and Primetime Emmy Award, both for Best Supporting Actress in a Miniseries or Television Film.2004–2006
In 2004, Parker appeared in the comedy Saved! and a television film called Miracle Run, based on the true story of a mother of two sons with autism, as well as appearing in the lead role in Craig Lucas' Reckless on Broadway. The production, directed by Mark Brokaw, earned Parker another nomination for a Tony Award for Best Actress in 2005.
In November 2005, Parker was the subject of a career exhibition at Boston University, where memorabilia from her career were donated to the University's library. In 2006, Parker received the Golden Globe Award for Best Actress – Television Series Musical or Comedy, given by the Hollywood Foreign Press Association, for her lead role in Weeds. In that category, she defeated the four leads of Desperate Housewives. She dedicated the award to the late John Spencer, known for his work as Leo McGarry on The West Wing. After receiving the award, Parker stated: "I'm really in favor of legalizing marijuana. I don't think it's that controversial."2007 onwards
In March 2007, Parker played the lead role in the television film The Robber Bride. She then portrayed Zerelda Mimms in the Andrew Dominik film The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford, which opened in cinemas in September 2007. Parker appeared alongside Brad Pitt, Casey Affleck, Sam Rockwell, and Garret Dillahunt. In August 2007, Parker continued her role in the third season of Weeds.
Parker appeared in 2008's The Spiderwick Chronicles and in Off-Broadway's Playwrights Horizons production in the New York premiere of Dead Man's Cell Phone, a new play by Sarah Ruhl, alongside Drama Desk Award winner Kathleen Chalfant.
She filmed the Donna Vermeer film Les Passages alongside Julie Delpy. Following this, she returned to work on the fifth season of Weeds. Parker took the lead role in the Roundabout Theatre Broadway revival of the play Hedda Gabler, running from January through March 29, 2009. The play garnered a series of negative reviews.
Parker starred opposite Bruce Willis in the film Red, an adaptation of the comic book miniseries of the same name. The film was released on October 15, 2010. In 2011, Parker became the host for the tenth season of the PBS documentary series Independent Lens. In 2013 she played roles in both Red 2 and R.I.P.D. She appeared in the Broadway Manhattan Theatre Club production of the play The Snow Geese by Sharr White at the Samuel J. Friedman Theatre from October 24 through December 15, 2013. The play was directed by Daniel J. Sullivan and also starred Danny Burstein and Victoria Clark.
Parker starred in the new play by Simon Stephens, Heisenberg, produced Off-Broadway by the Manhattan Theatre Club. The play, directed by Mark Brokaw, opened on June 2, 2015. The play extended its run, closing on July 11, 2015. The play transferred to Broadway at the Samuel J. Friedman Theatre, with previews starting on September 20, 2016, officially opening on October 13, with Parker and Denis Arndt reprising their roles.Writing career
Since 2007, Mary-Louise Parker has contributed articles to Esquire magazine. In November 2015, Scribner Books, an imprint of Simon & Schuster, published Parker's memoir in letters titled Dear Mr. You.Personal life
From 1996 to November 2003, Parker dated actor Billy Crudup, but the relationship ended when she was seven months pregnant with their son, William Atticus Parker, born in 2004. William's godmother is actress Susan Sarandon.
In December 2006, Parker began dating actor Jeffrey Dean Morgan, whom she met on the set of Weeds. On February 12, 2008, Parker and Morgan announced their engagement, only to break up the following April.
Parker also dated musician Charlie Mars.
In September 2007, Parker adopted a baby girl, Caroline Aberash Parker, from Ethiopia.
In 2013, Parker was honored for her work with Hope North, an organization that works in the educating and healing of young victims in Uganda's civil war. The actress began her involvement with the organization after meeting a former victim of Uganda's civil war.Filmography Film Year Title Role Notes 1989 Signs of Life Charlotte 1989 Longtime Companion Lisa 1991 Fried Green Tomatoes Ruth Jamison 1991 Grand Canyon Dee 1993 Mr. Wonderful Rita 1993 Naked in New York Joanne White 1994 Bullets over Broadway Ellen 1994 The Client Dianne Sway 1995 Reckless Pooty 1995 Boys on the Side Robin Nickerson 1996 The Portrait of a Lady Henrietta Stackpole 1997 Murder in Mind Caroline Walker 1997 The Maker Officer Emily Peck 1998 Goodbye Lover Peggy Blane 1999 Let the Devil Wear Black Julia Hirsch 1999 The Five Senses Rona 2002 Red Dragon Molly Graham 2002 The Quality of Mercy Sarah Richardson 2002 Pipe Dream Toni Edelman 2004 Saved! Lillian Cummings 2004 The Best Thief in the World Sue Zaidman 2006 Romance & Cigarettes Constance Murder 2007 The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford Zee James 2008 The Spiderwick Chronicles Helen Grace 2009 Solitary Man Jordan Karsch 2010 Howl Gail Potter 2010 Red Sarah Ross 2013 R.I.P.D. Mildred Proctor 2013 Red 2 Sarah Ross 2013 Christmas in Conway Suzy Mayor 2014 Behaving Badly Lucy Stevens 2014 Jamesy Boy Tracy Burns 2016 Chronically Metropolitan Annabel 2017 Golden Exits Gwendolyn 2018 Red Sparrow Stephanie Boucher Television Year Show Role Notes 1988 Too Young the Hero Pearl Spencer Television film 1994 A Place for Annie Linda Marsten Television film 1995 Sugartime Phyllis McGuire Television film 1998 Saint Maybe Lucy Dean Bedloe Television film 1998 Legalese Rica Martin Television film 1999 The Simple Life of Noah Dearborn Dr. Valerie Crane Television film 2000 Cupid & Cate Cate DeAngelo Television film 2001–06 The West Wing Amy Gardner 23 episodes 2002 Master Spy: The Robert Hanssen Story Bonnie Hanssen Television film 2003 Angels in America Harper Pitt 6 episodes 2004 Miracle Run Corrine Morgan-Thomas Television film 2005 Vinegar Hill Ellen Grier Television film 2005–12 Weeds Nancy Botwin 102 episodes 2007 The Robber Bride Zenia Arden Television film 2014 The Blacklist Naomi Hyland 4 episodes 2017 When We Rise Roma Guy 7 episodes 2017 Billions George Minchak 2 episodes 2017 Mr. Mercedes Janey Patterson 6 episodes Stage Year Play Role Notes 1989–90 The Art of Success Jane Hogarth 1990–91 Prelude to a Kiss Rita Boyle 1993 Four Dogs and a Bone Brenda 1996 Bus Stop Cherie 1997 How I Learned to Drive Li'l Bit 2000–03 Proof Catherine Llewellyn 2004 Reckless Rachel Fitzsimons 2008 Dead Man's Cell Phone Jean 2009 Hedda Gabler Hedda Tesman 2013 The Snow Geese Elizabeth Gaesling 2015–16 Heisenberg Georgie Burns Awards and nominations Year Association Category Nominated work Result 1990 Drama Desk Awards Outstanding Actress in a Play Prelude to a Kiss Nominated Tony Awards Best Actress in a Play Nominated Theatre World Awards N/A Won 2000 Genie Awards Best Performance by an Actress in a Leading Role The Five Senses Nominated 2001 Drama Desk Awards Outstanding Actress in a Play Proof Won Drama League Awards Distinguished Performance Won Outer Critics Circle Awards Outstanding Actress in a Play Won Tony Awards Best Actress in a Play Won 2002 Primetime Emmy Awards Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Drama Series The West Wing Nominated 2003 Screen Actors Guild Awards Outstanding Performance by an Ensemble in a Drama Series Nominated 2004 Golden Globe Awards Best Supporting Actress – Series, Miniseries or Television Film Angels in America Won Primetime Emmy Awards Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Miniseries or Movie Won Satellite Awards Best Supporting Actress – Series, Miniseries or Television Film Nominated Screen Actors Guild Awards Outstanding Performance by a Female Actor in a Miniseries or Television Movie Nominated 2005 Satellite Awards Best Actress – Television Series Musical or Comedy Weeds Won Tony Awards Best Actress in a Play Reckless Nominated 2006 Golden Globe Awards Best Actress – Television Series Musical or Comedy Weeds Won Satellite Awards Best Actress – Television Series Musical or Comedy Nominated Screen Actors Guild Awards Outstanding Performance by a Female Actor in a Comedy Series Nominated 2007 Golden Globe Awards Best Actress – Television Series Musical or Comedy Nominated Monte-Carlo Television Festival Outstanding Actress – Comedy Series Nominated Primetime Emmy Awards Outstanding Lead Actress in a Comedy Series Nominated Outstanding Lead Actress in a Miniseries or Movie The Robber Bride Nominated Screen Actors Guild Awards Outstanding Performance by a Female Actor in a Comedy Series Weeds Nominated Outstanding Performance by an Ensemble in a Comedy Series Nominated 2008 Golden Globe Awards Best Actress – Television Series Musical or Comedy Nominated Primetime Emmy Awards Outstanding Lead Actress in a Comedy Series Nominated Satellite Awards Best Actress – Television Series Musical or Comedy Nominated Screen Actors Guild Awards Outstanding Performance by a Female Actor in a Comedy Series Nominated 2009 Golden Globe Awards Best Actress – Television Series Musical or Comedy Nominated People's Choice Awards Choice TV Drama Diva Nominated Primetime Emmy Awards Outstanding Lead Actress in a Comedy Series Nominated Satellite Awards Best Actress – Television Series Musical or Comedy Nominated Screen Actors Guild Awards Outstanding Performance by a Female Actor in a Comedy Series Nominated Outstanding Performance by an Ensemble in a Comedy Series Nominated 2010 Satellite Awards Best Actress – Motion Picture Musical or Comedy Red Nominated Best Actress – Television Series Musical or Comedy Weeds Nominated References