Canadian actress Molly Parker offered a breathtaking performance as Sandra Larson, a woman obsessed with corpses, in Kissed (1996). Before long, Parker brought home a Genie Award and a Málaga International Week of Fantastic Cinema Award.
Initially capturing audiences’ attention as Peg Kennedy in the TV film Paris or Somewhere (1994), the actress later won a second Genie Award for her impressive portrayal of architect Sarah in the dark comedy Last Wedding (2001). She was also seen in The War Bride (2001), the offbeat comedy Men with Brooms (2002, as Amy Foley), as well as the drama Marion Bridge (2002, played Agnes). Parker, who was applauded for her part in the ensemble dramatic movie Nine Lives (2005), was also seen in the recent release Hollywoodland (2006) and The Wicker Man (2006).
Parker is a former ballerina. She is expected to give birth to a baby in October 2006, from her relationship with filmmaker Matt Bissonnette.
Childhood and Family:
Molly Parker was born on July 17, 1972, in Maple Ridge, a town just outside Vancouver. She grew up on a farm in Pitt Meadows, British Columbia.
At first, little Molly displayed a flair for dancing. She began learning ballet at age three and later attended the Royal Winnipeg Ballet of Canada in Winnipeg, Manitoba. Molly’s interest eventually switched to acting, triggering her decision to enroll in Vancouver’s Gastown Actors’ Studio. She then began acting professionally on screen in her late teens.
The actress is now expecting a child, due in October 2006. The father of the child is her companion, Canadian filmmaker Matt Bissonnette.
When she was 19, Molly Parker appeared in the CBS drama My Son Johnny (1991), as Lori Spoda. She then continued with a turn in the short drama movie Hate Mail (1992, starred as Maggie) and an episode of the teen series “Madison” (1993, played Karen).
Parker immediately gained critics’ notice with her fine turn as Peg Kennedy in the Canadian TV film Paris or Somewhere (1994), where she received a Gemini nomination. After working with skilled actors like Meredith Baxter and Chris Cooper in the TV film One More Mountain (1994), she accepted the role of Lynette in the fact-based TV movie Serving in Silence: The Margarethe Cammermeyer Story (1995), starring Glenn Close. The newcomer also took part in several other movies, including the compelling sex abuse-themed drama Good Things Too (1996) and the sequel series “Lonesome Dove: The Outlaw Years” (1996, guest performed as Frances Phillips).
Being cast by director Lynne Stopkewich, Parker had her breakthrough screen role as Sandra Larson, a young woman fascinated with the dead, in the independent feature Kissed (1996), where she soon took home a Genie award and a Málaga International Week of Fantastic Cinema award for Best Actress. The rising actress next tried a hand as an associate producer in the short movie The Chain (1996, also starred as Mathilde) before appearing in American movies like the romantic drama Bliss (1997, had a minor role) and the adaptation of Henry James’ novel, Under Heaven (1998, starred as Cynthia).
Following The Five Senses (1999), Parker established her status as an accomplished actress with the leading role of sultry motel receptionist Leila Murray in Suspicious River (2000, earned a Leo award nomination). Gaining even more acclaim, the performer won a Genie award and received a Canadian Comedy award nomination for her impressive portrayal of architect Sarah in the dark comedy Last Wedding (2001). Parker was also nominated for an Independent Spirit award after playing stripper Florence in the drama The Center of the World (2001).
In addition, the actress became a Genie nominee for three consecutive years (2002, 2003 and 2004) thanks to her beautiful performance as a woman crippled by polio in The War Bride (2001), Amy Foley in the offbeat comedy Men with Brooms (2002), as well as estranged sister Agnes in the drama Marion Bridge (2002). The executive producer of Looking for Leonard (2002, directed by partner Matt Bissonnette) tested the waters of the drama thriller genre in The Good Shepherd (2004), in which she was cast as journalist Madeline Finney, opposite Christian Slater.
Once more drawing attention, Parker was handed a Bronze Leopard for Best Actress from the Locarno International Film Festival after portraying Lisa in the ensemble drama movie Nine Lives (2005, also earned a Gotham’s Best Ensemble nomination). Other actors involved in the acclaimed film included Glenn Close, Dakota Fanning, Lisa Gay Hamilton, Aidan Quinn and Sissy Spacek.
Parker, who currently stars in the western series “Deadwood” (show began in 2004, plays Alma Garret), recently took on the part of Laurie Simo in the historical thriller Hollywoodland (2006). She was also seen in Neil LaBute’s remake of the 70s horror film, The Wicker Man (2006), as Sister Rose/Sister Thorn.
The performer will rejoin her partner, Matt Bissonnette, in his upcoming drama about a young man’s return after a mysterious five-year disappearance in Who Loves the Sun (2006). Parker is set to costar as Maggie Claire, alongside Lukas Haas and Adam Scott.