Laura Linney Biography
Laura Linney was born in New York City on February 5, 1964, into a theater family - her father is the prominent playwright Romulus Linney. Although she did not live in her father's house (her parents having divorced when she was an infant), Linney's world revolved, in part, around his profession from the earliest age. Linney graduated from Brown University in 1986 and studied acting at Julliard and the Arts Theater School in Moscow, and, thereafter, embarked on a career on the Broadway stage, receiving favorable notices for her work in such plays as "Hedda Gabler" and "Six Degrees of Separation".
Linney's film career began in the early 90s with small roles in Lorenzo's Oil (1992) and Dave (1993), and she landed the role of Mary Anne Singleton in the PBS film adaptations of Armistead Maupin's "Tales of the City" series, playing her in "Tales of the City" (1993) (mini), "More Tales of the City" (1998) (mini), and "Further Tales of the City" (2001) (mini). Linney's first substantial big-screen role was as the wife of the main character in Primal Fear (1996), and her superb performance brought her praise and a better selection of roles. Clint Eastwood chose Linney to play his daughter, another prominent role, in 1997's Absolute Power (1997), followed by another second billing in the following year's The Truman Show (1998).
Always a strong performer, Linney truly came into her own after 2000, starting the decade auspiciously with her widely-praised, arguably flawless performance in You Can Count on Me (2000). She found herself nominated for an Academy Award for this, her first lead role, for which her salary had been $10,000. Linney won numerous critics' awards for her role as Sammy, a single mother whose life is complicated by a new boss and the arrival in town of her aimless brother. On the heels of this success came her marvelous turn as Bertha Dorset in The House of Mirth (2000), clearly the best performance in a film of strong performances. Since then, Linney has frequently been offered challenging dramatic roles, and always rises to the occasion, such as in Mystic River (2003), in which she worked again with Eastwood, and Kinsey (2004), for which she received another Academy Award nomination.
Though not by any means typecast, Linney often plays a woman whose wholesome beauty is deceiving and whose character is ultimately more complex than it seems. Linney is divorced and lives in Connecticut. Although her career now focuses on movies, she continues to appear on the Broadway stage on occasion.
Spouse - David Adkins (September 1995 - 2000) (divorced)
More Interesting Information for Laura Linney
Her father is respected Off-Broadway playwright Romulus Linney.
Has a sister, Susan Linney.
Graduated from Brown University in 1986.
1990 graduate of the Juilliard School
Was nominated for Broadway's 2002 Tony Award as Best Actress (Play) for portraying Elizabeth Proctor in a revival of Arthur Miller's "The Crucible."
Graduated Northfield Mount Hermon School in 1982
Her mother is a nurse.
She says that she was the worst at reading and writing in her class.
Clint Eastwood picked her for the part of Kate Whitney in his new movie Absolute Power (1997) after he saw her performance in Primal Fear (1996).
Gained 30 pounds for her role in Kinsey (2004), mainly by eating Krispy Kreme glazed dough nuts.
Has a yellow Labrador dog that she named Eleonora Duse, after the actress.
Lives on a large estate in Connecticut near her friends Kevin Bacon and Michael J. Fox.
Laura Linney was given the script for The Squid and the Whale (2005) by Eric Stoltz, her boyfriend at that time, while they were filming The House of Mirth (2000) in 2000. She agreed to do the film immediately, but it took four years to raise the financing.
Won the 1994 Joe A. Callaway Award, for Best Performance in a Classic Drama, for her performance as Thea Elvsted in "Hedda Gabler."
Her step-brother is famed hip designer James Perse.
Personal quotes from Laura Linney
[talking about Jim Carrey]: "He has tremendous charm. He has an enormous heart, just a big big heart. I think that is the thing. I think if you look at his other work you can see that there, which is what makes his characters more then just mimicry. I think that is why his work has hit so hard. Because there is just more there. So with this one you see more of his humanity."
[about her character on The Truman Show (1998)]: "Well the thing that was interesting was that we sort of did these back stories about these characters, and where they were and what was going on with them. And when the movie picks up, Hanna Gill, who plays Meryl Burbank, is aware of the fact that she is losing her influence over Truman. He's not happy at home. He's beginning to get agitated. He's beginning to think of things outside the house, and she can feel that she is losing her power. So consequently the smile gets bigger and bigger, and the desperation, that is why there is that intense undertow to her. Because she knows she is losing it."
[about her character in The Truman Show (1998)]: "The concept of The Truman Show - it was so much fun. What gave us all an additional challenge was that those of us who were the cast of The Truman Show play the actors but playing a role. So we did all this elaborate backstory. So I made up my actress name Hanna Gill, who plays Meryl Burbank, who is married to Truman Burbank. So we did all this double layering of character work not really knowing what was going to come through. I'm glad that some of the people who have seen the movie can say that they can actually see it in all of us. All of us who play the characters surrounding Jim in the film, that they can see the double layer."
[about her father]: "My parents were divorced and I didn't grow up with him, but I spent a lot of time around him, and his influence on me has been profound."
(on her fame) "I don't consider myself a celebrity, and I don't consider myself a star."
(On making You Can Count on Me (2000)) "'Kenny Lonnergan' and I locked horns. It was about tiny things that would drive me crazy. He was very specific about his script being word perfect".
Laura Linney Filmography
Actress - filmography
(In Production) (2000s) (1990s)
The Savages (2007)
The Nanny Diaries (2007) .... Mrs. X
The Hottest State (2007) (attached) .... Jesse
Kevin Approaches (2006)
Breach (2007) .... Kate Burroughs
Man of the Year (2006) .... Eleanor
Jindabyne (2006) .... Claire
Driving Lessons (2006) .... Laura Marshall
The Exorcism of Emily Rose (2005) .... Erin Bruner
The Squid and the Whale (2005) .... Joan Berkman
Kinsey (2004) .... Clara McMillen
P.S. (2004) .... Louise Harrington
Love Actually (2003) .... Sarah
Mystic River (2003) .... Annabeth Markum
The Life of David Gale (2003) .... Constance Harraway
... aka Leben des David Gale, Das (Germany)
The Mothman Prophecies (2002) .... Connie Mills
The Laramie Project (2002) .... Sherry Johnson
Wild Iris (2001) (TV) .... Iris Bravard
"Further Tales of the City" (2001) (mini) TV Series .... Mary Ann Singleton
... aka Armistead Maupin's Further Tales of the City (USA: complete title)
Maze (2000) .... Callie
... aka Touched (USA)
Running Mates (2000) (TV) .... Lauren Hartman, Campaign Mgr.
The House of Mirth (2000) .... Bertha Dorset
... aka Chez les heureux du monde (France)
... aka Haus Bellomont (Germany)
You Can Count on Me (2000) .... Samantha 'Sammy' Prescott
Love Letters (1999) (TV) .... Melissa Gardner Cobb
Lush (1999) .... Rachel Van Dyke
"More Tales of the City" (1998) (mini) TV Series .... Mary Ann Singleton
... aka Armistead Maupin's More Tales of the City
The Truman Show (1998) .... Hanna Gill as Meryl Burbank
Absolute Power (1997) .... Kate Whitney
Primal Fear (1996) .... Janet Venable
Congo (1995) .... Dr. Karen Ross
A Simple Twist of Fate (1994) .... Nancy Lambert Newland
Searching for Bobby Fischer (1993) .... School Teacher
... aka Innocent Moves
"Tales of the City" (1993) (mini) TV Series .... Mary Ann Singleton
... aka Armistead Maupin's Tales of the City
Dave (1993) .... Randi
Blind Spot (1993/I) (TV) .... Phoebe
Class of '61 (1993) (TV) .... Lily Magraw
Lorenzo's Oil (1992) .... Young Teacher
Filmography as: Actress, Herself, Archive Footage, Notable TV Guest Appearances
Herself - filmography
The 59th Annual Tony Awards (2005) (TV) .... Nominee Best Performance by a Leading Actress in a Play for 'Sight Unseen'/Introduce 'Memorial Tribute'
The Kinsey Report: Sex on Film (2005) (V) .... Herself
Mary Pickford (2005) (TV) .... (narrator)
The 77th Annual Academy Awards (2005) (TV) .... Herself - Nominee: Best Supporting Actress/Presenter: Best Animated Short
The 20th IFP Independent Spirit Awards (2005) (TV) .... Herself (presenter: Best Male Lead)
The 62nd Annual Golden Globe Awards (2005) (TV) .... Herself - Nominee: Best Supporting Actress in a Motion Picture
A&E Biography: Richard Gere (2004) (TV) .... Herself
The 56th Annual Primetime Emmy Awards (2004) (TV) .... Herself - Winner: Outstanding Guest Actress in a Comedy Series/Co-presenter: Best Director [Comedy Series]
Mystic River: Beneath the Surface (2004) (V) .... Herself
Mystic River: From Page to Screen (2004) (TV) .... Herself
The 58th Annual Tony Awards (2004) (TV) .... Presenter for Best Revival of a Play
... aka The 2004 Tony Awards (USA)
Moving Image Salutes Richard Gere (2004) (TV)
The 2004 IFP/West Independent Spirit Awards (2004) (TV) .... Herself (presenter: Special Distinction Award)
Day by Day: A Director's Journey Part I (2003) (V) .... Herself
... aka Day by Day: A Director's Journey - The Road In (USA: DVD title)
Woodrow Wilson and the Birth of the American Century (2002) (TV) .... Nellie Wilson
... aka Woodrow Wilson (USA: short title)
The 73rd Annual Academy Awards (2001) (TV) .... Herself - Nominee: Best Actress in a Leading Role
The 2001 IFP/West Independent Spirit Awards (2001) (TV) (uncredited) .... Herself
7th Annual Screen Actors Guild Awards (2001) (TV) .... Herself - Nominee: Outstanding Performance by a Female Actor in a Leading Role/Co-presenter: Outstanding Performance by a Male Actor in a Supporting Role
You Can Count On Me: A Look Inside (2001) (V)