Look Back in Anger
Award-winning stage actress who has collected a number of television and film credits Lisa Banes offered an acclaimed performance on the play “Look Back in Anger,” opposite Malcolm McDowell, and reprised her stage role in the 1980 big screen version. She has since scored supporting roles in majors movies like “Hotel New Hampshire” (1984), “Cocktail,” “Young Guns” (both 1988), “Without Limits” (1998), “Pumpkin” (2002) and more recently, she acted in Amy Waddell's “Brothel” and the Hilary Swank vehicle “Freedom Writers” (both 2007). In the small screen since 1985, Banes has had regular roles in “The Trials of Rosie O'Neill” (1990-1992), “Son of the Beach” (2000-2002), “Girls Club” (2002), “One life to Live” (2004) and recurring roles in such series as “China Beach” (1989), “The King Queen” (2004) and “Six Feet Under” (2005). Besides, she has played roles in a number of TV films and guest starred such successful series as “Star Trek: Deep Space Nine,” “Murder, She Wrote,” “Frasier,”“Boston Legal” and “Desperate Housewives.”
Childhood and Family:
Lisa Banes was born on July 9, 1955, in Chagrin Falls, Ohio. She was trained at the famed Juilliard School and was a member of The Acting Company.
A graduate of The Juilliard, Lisa Banes was cast along side Malcolm McDowell in a solid theater production of “Look Back in Anger,” by John Osborne, and won a Theatre World Award for her performance. When the play was adapted into a film version in 1980, she was asked to reprise her award-winning role of McDowell's long suffering wife, Allison Potter. It was Banes' film debut. Four years later, she had a supporting role in the high-profile comedy/drama “Hotel New Hampshire,” which starred Rob Lowe, Jodie Foster, Paul McCrane and Beau Bridges, and followed it up with another modest part in 1985's “Marie,” starring Sissy Spacek and Jeff Daniels.
Still in 1985, Banes broke into the small screen in a guest role in the mystery/suspense series “Spencer: For Hire,” starring Robert Urich in the title role of a Boston private investigator. She made her TV miniseries debut as Anne Kane in the Emmy nominated “Kane & Abel,” opposite Peter Strauss, in that same year, and her TV-movie bow in “One Police Plaza” in 1986. In 1988, after playing Martha Gelhorn in the four-part biopic series “Hemingway,” she revisited the big screen with roles in the noted films “Cocktail,” a drama directed by Roger Donaldson and starring Tom Cruise, and the Christopher Cain-helmed “Young Guns,” opposite Emilio Estevez, Kiefer Sutherland and Charlie Sheen. She rounded out the decade with a recurring role on “China Beach,” as a photojournalist named Cat Von Seeger.
Banes' first series regular role arrived in 1990 when she was cast as Doreen Morrison on the drama series “The Trials of Rosie O'Neill,” which was remembered for bringing star Sharon Gless a Golden Globe Award and Emmy nominations. The show, however, was canceled after two seasons in 1992. In addition to this assignment, Banes could also be seen making several TV movies such as “A Killer Among Us” (1990), “Danger Island” (1992), “Revenge on the Highway” (1992), “A Family Torn Apart” (1993), “Cries from the Heart” (1994) and “The Avenging Angel” (1995) as well as guest appearances in the popular series like “L.A. Law” (1993), “Star Trek: Deep Space Nine,” “Roseanne” (both 1994) and “Murder, She Wrote” (1995). By this period, she had added two film projects under her belts, Sarah Jessica Parker's vehicle “Miami Rhapsody” and “ Lieberman in Love” (both 1995).
The Ohio-born beauty spent the rest of the 1990s working mostly in television. She appeared in three TV films in 1996, “Last Exit to Earth,” “My Son Is Innocent” and “Mother, May I Sleep with Danger?,” supported Lauren Bacall for the biopic telepic “Too Rich: The Secret Life of Doris Duke” (1999) and played Georgina Winters in the four episodes of the short-lived soap “Legacy” (1999). Other TV gigs include guest roles in “Murder One” and “Frasier.” Meanwhile, Banes only had one feature film, “Without Limits” (1998), a sport-themed directed by Robert Towne and starring Billy Crudup as Steve Prefontaine, a legendary runner in the 1970s. There, she was cast as Elfriede Prefontaine. Also in 1998, the regional stage actress portrayed the mother on the Broadway musical “High Society” (1998), adapted from the play “The Philadelphia Story.” Other Broadway credits include “Arcadia” and “Rumors.”
Entering the new millennium, Banes landed the regular role of Mayor Anita Massengil on the comedy series “Son of the Beach,” which she played from 2000 to 2002. While working on the show, she was cast as Christina Ricci's over protected mother in the Sundance-screened comedy/drama “Pumpkin” (2002) and appeared with Kevin Costner in the box-office dud “Dragonfly” (also 2002). After leaving the series, Banes took the starring role of Meredith Holt on the David E. Kelley-created courtroom drama “Girls Club” (2002), but the show only had a short life.
After a short hiatus, Banes resumed her career in 2004 by taking a supporting role as Mayor Walker in the made-for-TV film “Combustion” and a recurring role as Georgia Boone on “The King Queen.” She also had a regular role on the long-running soap opera “One life to Live” (2004), as Eve McBain. In the following year, she played Victoria in three episodes of “Six Feet Under,” shot a short film called “A Good Day for Ted Schmetterling” and guested in series like “Boston Legal,” “Out of Practice” and “Jake in Progress.” More recently, she guest starred in “Desperate Housewives” (2006, as Vera Keck) and “Psych” (2007, as Edna Crocker), and acted in the films “Brothel,” for writer/director Amy Waddell, and “Freedom Writers” (both 2007), a crime/drama with Hilary Swank and Patrick Dempsey starring in the roles of Erin Gruwell and Scott Casey, respectively.