Making her TV debut in the ABC soap opera “The Edge of Night” (1979-1980), American versatile actress Margaret Colin first came to fame as Margot Montgomery Hughes on the CBS daytime drama “As the World Turns” (1981-1983). She also stared in the short-lived “Leg Work” (1987) and “Sibs” (1991) and had a recurring role on the hit “Chicago Hope” (1994) before taking home a Saturn Award for playing John Goodman's wife on another unsuccessful series, “Now and Again” (1999). More recently, she portrayed Eleanor Waldorf on the series “Gossip Girl” (2007-2010). Colin has also acted in a number of TV movies, including “The Return of Sherlock Holmes” (1987), “Warm Hearts, Cold Feet” (1987), “Goodnight, Sweet Wife: A Murder in Boston (1990), “In the Shadow of Evil” (1995), “The Wedding Dress” (2001) and “Remembering Charlie” (2003). On the silver screen, Colin is perhaps best remembered for her performances in such projects as “Something Wild” (1986), “Three Men and a Baby” (1987), “True Believer” (1989), “Independence Day” (1996), “The Devil's Own” (1997), “Unfaithful” (2002) and “First Daughter” (2004). She also appeared in “Deception” (2008), “The Missing Person” (2009) and “iMurders” (2009) and as a guest star in episodes of “Royal Pains” (2009), “Law & Order” (2010) and “Medium” (also 2010).
Colin has been married to actor Justin Deas since January 1988. She is the mother of two sons and the stepmother of Yvie, Deas' daughter from a previous relationship. Colin is an honorary co-chair of the Feminists for Life organization and a pro-life active supporter.
Childhood and Family:
The daughter of a New York City police officer, Margaret Colin was born on May 26, 1958, in Brooklyn, New York. She was raised on Long Island in a big Irish-Catholic household. After graduating from Baldwin High School in Baldwin, New York, in 1976, she was accepted to Hofstra University in Hempstead, New York, on a drama scholarship. She also trained at the Stella Adler Conservatory and Juilliard.
In January 1988, Margaret married actor Justin Deas, whom she met when they both acted in the series “As The World Turns.” She gave birth to her first child, son Sam Deas, in 1990 and her second son, Joseph Deas, was born three years later in 1993. Margaret also has a stepdaughter named Yvie from her husband's previous marriage. The family relocated to Upper Montclair, New Jersey, in the late 1990s.
New York native Margaret Colin hit the small screen when she joined the cast of ABC's soap opera “The Edge of Night” playing Paige Madison from 1979 to 1980. Her breakthrough role arrived shortly thereafter when she originated the role of Margot Montgomery Hughes on the CBS daytime drama “As the World Turns” (1981-1983). Her future husband, Justin Deas, also costarred in the series as her love interest Tom Hughes. Colin returned to series TV as a regular during 1985-1986 on the CBS sitcom “Foley Square.” In between, she debuted on stage in “Marathon '84” (1984) at New York City's Ensemble Studio Theatre.
Colin made her big screen debut as Molly Ringwald's English teacher in “Pretty in Pink” (1986), a teen comedy directed by Howard Deutch that was written by John Hughes. However, it was her appearance in the Jeff Daniels and Melanie Griffith vehicle “Something Wild” (also 1986), by director Jonathan Demme, that earned the actress true notice when she was cast as Irene, the wife of psycho Ray Sinclair (played by Ray Liotta). She next supported Dudley Moore and Kirk Cameron in the 1987 remake “Like Father Like Son.” Also in 1987, Colin revisited television with roles in the television movies “The Return of Sherlock Holmes” and “Warm Hearts, Cold Feet” and a lead role in the primetime series “Leg Work” (CBS, 1987), where she played Claire McCarron. The series, however, was canceled after 10 episodes.
Colin fared better on the silver screen. After playing the girlfriend of Tom Selleck in the well-liked comedy “Three Men and a Baby” (also 1987), she received praise for her portrayal of investigator Kitty Greer in the James Woods legal drama “True Believer” (1989), which also costarred Robert Downey Jr., Yuji Okumoto, Kurtwood Smith and Tom Bower. She closed out the decade teaming up with John Lithgow, Jonathan Silverman and John Glover in the made-for-TV film “Traveling Man” (1989).
After starring with Randy Quaid in “Martians Go Home” (1990) and playing Michelle Caruso in the well-received docudrama “Goodnight, Sweet Wife: A Murder in Boston (1990, TV), opposite Ken Olin, Colin portrayed Audie, Marsha Mason and Jamie Gertz's sister on the short-lived ABC series “Sibs” (1991). She also appeared in the films “The Butcher's Wife” (1991), an ill-received comedy starring Demi Moore, Nicolas Cage and Samuel L. Jackson, “Amos and Andy” (1993) and the Charlie Sheen and Nastassja Kinski thriller “Terminal Velocity” (1994). She also made appearances in the TV films “Related by Birth” (1994) and “In the Shadow of Evil” (1995, with Treat Williams and received the recurring role of Dr. Karen Antonovich on the CBS successful hospital drama “Chicago Hope” (1994). In 1996, she enjoyed blockbuster success thanks to the sci-fi hit “Independence Day,” where she was cast as Jeff Goldblum's former wife Constance Spano. Her subsequent films include “Milk & Money” (1996), the Alan J. Pakula directed political thriller “The Devil's Own” (1997, played Harrison Ford's wife), “Time to Say Goodbye” (1997), Tod Williams' “The Adventures of Sebastian Cole” (1998) and “Swing Vote” (1999, TV). She debuted on Broadway in the comedy “Jackie” (1997) and costarred as the spouse of John Goodman on the failed CBS series “Now and Again” (1999), from which she netted a 2000 Saturn for Best Genre TV Actress.
Entering the new millennium, Colin played Vonda Madigan on the pilot “Madigan Man” (2000) and then acted in the TV films “Private Lies,” “The Familiar Stranger” and “The Wedding Dress” (all 2001) before supporting David Strathairn and Agnes Bruckner in the Sundance-screened “Blue Car” (2002). She then appeared as Diane Lane's friend in Adrian Lyne's thriller “Unfaithful” (2002) and revisited the stage in 2001 to play a role in the off-Broadway production of “Speaking in Tongues,” by Australian playwright Andrew Bovell.
Colin played Mrs. Krug in a 2003 episode of “Law & Order: Special Victims Unit” and was cast as Dr. Eloise Barnes in a 2004 episode of “Law & Order: Criminal Intent.” In between, she portrayed Lori Aiken on the television film “Remembering Charlie” (2003). She next starred with Katie Holmes and Michael Keaton on “First Daughter” (2004), a comedy directed by Forest Whitaker, but did not make another film until 2006's “A Broken Sole,” which was a based-on-play short costarring Danny Aiello.
Colin currently costars as Eleanor Waldorf on the series “Gossip Girl” (2007-2010). She also recently played Beth in the short “Happenstance” (2008) and Ms. Pomerantz on “Deception” (2008), which starred Hugh Jackman, Ewan McGregor and Michelle Williams, Colin then played Lana Cobb in writer/director Noah Buschel's “The Missing Person” (2009) and Carol Uberoth in the thriller “iMurders” (2009). Colin also appeared as a guest in episodes of “Royal Pains” (2009), “Law & Order” (2010) and “Medium” (2010).
Academy of Science Fiction, Fantasy & Horror Films: Saturn, Best Genre TV Actress, “Now and Again,” 2000