Name:
Patricia Clarkson
Birth Date:
December 29, 1959
Birth Place:
New Orleans, Louisiana, USA
Height:
5' 5
Nationality:
American
Famous for:
Her role as drug-addicted German actress in 'High Art' (1998)
Profession:
actress
Education:
Fordham University's College at Lincoln Center (studied drama and graduated in 1982)
BIOGRAPHY
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Pieces of April

Background:

"I could never play somebody's lover or wife and hate them off-screen, I'm not little miss method, but I'm very organic." Patricia Clarkson.

Academy Award-nominee and two-time Emmy winner Patricia Clarkson garnered critical praise while playing Joy Burns, the dying, estranged mother of a wild, troubled 21-year-old young woman (played by Katie Holmes) in writer-director Peter Hedges' low-budget independent film Pieces of April (2003), and portraying Sarah O'Connor (2002-2005), the artistic younger sister of Ruth Fisher (played by Frances Conroy) on the HBO acclaimed drama comedy series "Six Feet Under." Debuting on the big screen as the wife of FBI agent Elliot Ness (played by Kevin Costner) whose obsessive goal to bring down the notorious gangster Al Capone (played by Robert De Niro) in Brian De Palma's mob drama The Untouchables (1987), Clarkson has appeared in such films as High Art (1998), Playing by Heart (1998), The Green Mile (1999), Welcome to Collinwood (2002), Far from Heaven (2002), The Station Agent (2003), Dogville (2003), Miracle (2004), Good Night, and Good Luck. (2005) and All the King's Men (2006). The 5' 5" tall, strawberry blonde, deep-voiced actress will star in the upcoming films No Reservations, Married Life, Lars and the Real Girl, Hurricane Mary, and Blind Date.

On a more personal note, Patricia Clarkson, daughter of New Orleans district councilwoman Jackie Clarkson, has been romantically linked to actor, director, producer and voice artist Campbell Scott (born July 19, 1961), son of the late actors George C. Scott and Colleen Dewhurst. They reportedly began dating after working together in the romantic drama indie The Dying Gaul (2005).


Patricia Davies

Childhood and Family:

In New Orleans, Louisiana, Patricia Davies Clarkson was born on December 29, 1959. Her mother is prominent local New Orleans politician Jackie Clarkson, New Orleans district councilwoman, and her father, Arthur Clarkson, worked at Department of Medicine of Louisiana State University. She is also the youngest of five sisters.

Patricia graduated from Fordham University's College at Lincoln Center with summa cum laude in 1982. She later earned her MFA at the Yale School of Drama.


Six Feet Under

Career:

After working in theater productions on the East coast, Patricia Clarkson made her small screen debut with a guest role in an October 1985 episode of ABC drama "Spenser: For Hire." She then debuted on Broadway in revival of John Guare's "House of Blue Leaves" (1986) before landing on her first feature film appearance as the wife of FBI agent Elliot Ness (played by Kevin Costner) whose obsessive goal to bring down the notorious gangster Al Capone (played by Robert De Niro) in Brian De Palma's mob drama The Untouchables (1987), adapted from the 1959 ABC television series which was based on Eliot Ness's autobiographical account.

Clarkson subsequently co-starred with Anthony Quinn and Gary Cole in the TV-movie version of Ernest Hemingway's acclaimed novel, The Old Man and the Sea (1990; NBC). She also had regular roles on ABC short-lived comedy series "Davis Rules" (1991) and on ABC crime drama series "Murder One," as Annie Hoffman (1995-1996), the long-suffering wife of a prominent defense attorney in a prestigious Los Angeles law firm (played by Daniel Benzali).

On the big screen, Clarkson could be seen in Joe Johnston's take on Chris Van Allsburg's 1982 children's book, Jumanji (1995), as Carol Anne Parrish, mother of Robin Williams' Alan Parrish, and in writer-director Willard Carroll's ensemble dramedy film Playing by Heart (1998), as the woman whom Dennis Quaid's character met in bar and told his tragic life story to. She also garnered intense notice for portraying Ally Sheedy's lesbian, once glamorous, heroin-addicted German girlfriend Greta in Lisa Cholodenko's independent movie High Art (1998) and for playing Melinda Moores, the prison warden's wife in Frank Darabont's Academy Award-nominated drama film adapted from Stephen King's thriller novel, The Green Mile (1999), which won her Best Supporting Actress award from the Academy of Science Fiction, Fantasy & Horror Films.

2001 saw Clarkson co-starring with Jack Nicholson in Sean Penn's dramatic psychological thriller inspired by a novel by Swiss author Friedrich Dürrenmatt, The Pledge, as the distraught mother of a murder victim, and playing Jake Weber's wife in Larry Fessenden's Sundance-screened suspense horror/thriller film, Wendigo. The next year, she returned to television to play the recurring role of Sarah O'Connor (2002-2005), the artistic younger sister of Ruth Fisher (played by Frances Conroy) who runs an artists' colony in Topanga Canyon, on the HBO acclaimed drama comedy series "Six Feet Under." Her brilliant performance later won her two Emmy awards in 2002 and 2006.

Meanwhile, Clarkson continued working on the big screen. She played the girlfriend of a petty thief (played by Luis Guzman) in writers-directors Anthony Russo and Joe Russo's 2002 remake of the 1958 Italian heist movie "I soliti ignoti" by Mario Monicelli, Welcome to Collinwood, and portrayed Julianne Moore's best friend Eleanor in Todd Hayne's romantic drama film set in suburban 1950s Connecticut, Far from Heaven (2002). She was also cast in Lars Von Trier's applauded 1930s period thriller starring Nicole Kidman, Dogville (2003).

2003 prove to be Clarkson’s breakout year when she was nominated Golden Globe, Independent Spirit Award, SAG and Academy Award for Best Actress in a Supporting Role, thanks to the role of Joy Burns, the dying, estranged mother of a wild, troubled 21-year-old young woman (played by Katie Holmes) in writer-director Peter Hedges' low-budget independent film, Pieces of April. That same year, she also earned another SAG nomination, this time for Best Actress, for her portrayal of Olivia Harris, a 40-year-old artist who has troubles with her failed marriage and is coping with the death of her young son in writer-director Thomas McCarthy's independent film The Station Agent (also starring Peter Dinklage).

More prominent roles rolled in. Clarkson went to play the wife of ice hockey coach Herb Brooks (played by Kurt Russell) who led the US team to victory over the seemingly invincible Russian squad in the 1980 Winter Olympics, in Gavin O'Connor's biographical sports film Miracle (2004), and portrayed Shirley Wershba, the wife and professional partner of Joseph Wershba (played by Robert Downey Jr.), a professional journalist who joined the CBS News team in 1944, in George Clooney-directed, Academy Award-nominated 2005 film biopic drama Good Night, and Good Luck. She also played the press secretary of the idealistic southern politician Willie Stark’s (played by Sean Penn) in Steven Zaillian's big-screen adaptation of the Robert Penn Warren’s 1946 Pulitzer Prize winning novel, All the King's Men (2006).

Next, Clarkson will star alongside Catherine Zeta-Jones, Aaron Eckhart and Abigail Breslin in Scott Hicks' romantic drama comedy No Reservations, with Pierce Brosnan and Chris Cooper in Ira Sachs' adaptation of John Bingham's novel, the 1940s-set romantic/crime drama Married Life, and opposite Ryan Gosling in Craig Gillespie's comedy movie Lars and the Real Girl. She is also scheduled to star in Arvin Brown's true story-based drama film Hurricane Mary, in which Clarkson will play the title role, and in Stanley Tucci's upcoming drama, Blind Date, alongside Tony Shalhoub.


Awards:

  • Emmy: Outstanding Guest Actress in a Drama Series, "Six Feet Under," 2006

  • National Society of Film Critics: Best Supporting Actress, The Station Agent, 2004

  • National Society of Film Critics: Best Supporting Actress, Pieces of April, 2004

  • Chicago Film Critics Association: Best Supporting Actress, Pieces of April, 2004

  • Florida Film Critics Circle: Best Supporting Actress, Pieces of April, 2004

  • Florida Film Critics Circle: Best Supporting Actress, The Station Agent, 2004

  • Kansas City Film Critics Circle: Best Supporting Actress, The Station Agent, 2004

  • Chlotrudis: Best Supporting Actress, The Station Agent, 2004

  • Satellite: Best Performance by an Actress in a Supporting Role, Comedy or Musical, Pieces of April, 2004

  • Vancouver Film Critics Circle: Best Supporting Actress, Pieces of April, 2004

  • Sundance Film Festival: Dramatic, The Station Agent, 2003

  • Sundance Film Festival: Outstanding Performance, Pieces of April, 2003

  • Sundance Film Festival: Outstanding Performance, All the Real Girls, 2003

  • National Society of Film Critics: Best Supporting Actress, Far from Heaven, 2003

  • National Board of Review: Best Supporting Actress, Pieces of April, 2003

  • National Board of Review: Best Supporting Actress, The Station Agent, 2003

  • Chlotrudis: Best Supporting Actress, Far from Heaven, 2003

  • Boston Society of Film Critics: Best Supporting Actress, Pieces of April, 2003

  • Boston Society of Film Critics: Best Supporting Actress, The Station Agent, 2003

  • San Diego Film Critics Society: Special Award, Body of Work, 2003

  • San Francisco Film Critics Circle: Best Supporting Actress, Pieces of April, 2003

  • New York Film Critics Circle: Best Supporting Actress, Far from Heaven, 2002

  • Deauville Film Festival: Best Female Performance, The Safety of Objects, 2002

  • Emmy: Outstanding Guest Actress in a Drama Series, "Six Feet Under," 2002

  • Academy of Science Fiction, Fantasy & Horror Films: Best Supporting Actress, The Green Mile, 2000

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