Motherhood and Hollywood
"Plastic surgery is like the big elephant sitting in the Hollywood living room. Everyone does it and apparently, no one is supposed to talk about it." Patricia Heaton.
Irish-American actress Patricia Heaton is widely recognized for her Emmy-winning role as the title role’s wife, Debra Barone, in TV Series “Everybody Loves Raymond” (1996-2005). She had a recurring role on "thirtysomething" (1987) and was a regular in such sitcoms as ABC’s "Room for Two" (1992), NBC’s "Someone Like Me" (1994/I) and the CBS’ "Women of the House" (1995). Her credited films include Memoirs of an Invisible Man (1992), Beethoven (1992), The New Age (1994), Space Jam (1996), Miracle in the Woods (1997, CBS) and a remake of the classic, The Goodbye Girl (2004, TNT, nominated an SAG). Heaton is currently busy filming her upcoming films: the TV movies Untitled History Project and The Engagement Ring (TNT), as well as the big screen’s The Three Stooges.
Glossy auburn-haired, dark-eyed, 5' 2" tall Patricia Heaton also tried her hand in writing. An Emmy-winning actress and a mother of four, Heaton is the author of the New York Times best seller "Motherhood and Hollywood: How to Get a Job Like Mine." The memoir was published by Villard Books in 2002. She is also the spokesperson for the Albertsons grocery store chain and had appeared in advertisements for Pantene hair care products.
"My favorite body part? My feet. They're not pretty but they get me where I want to go." Patricia Heaton.
Childhood and Family:
The daughter of well-known Cleveland Plain Dealer sportswriter Chuck Heaton and a mother named Pat Heaton (died in 1970 of brain aneurysm), Patricia Heaton was born on March 4, 1958 in Bay Village, Ohio. She has two siblings: sister Alice Heaton and older brother Michael Heaton (journalist, also writes for the Cleveland Plain Dealer).
Patricia Heaton, nicknamed Patty, attended St. Raphael's Catholic Grade School in Bay Village, Ohio. She then studied at Bay High School (graduated in 1976), where she sang in the choir, performed in the Stage Band, and was a member of the Rockettes Drill Team with the Bay Rockets' Marching Band. Patricia, who often performed alongside sister Alice for the neighborhood kids, studied Theater at Ohio State University in Columbus, Ohio and graduated with a BA in 1980. A sister of the Delta Gamma sorority, Heaton later studied acting with William Esper in New York.
Heaton, who once married from 1984 to 1987, tied the knot with British businessman David Hunt on October 10, 1990. The have four sons: Daniel Patrick Hunt (born January 20th, 1999), Joseph Charles Hunt (born 1997), John Basil Hunt (born 1996) and Sam Hunt (born 1994). Heaton and her family divide their time between Los Angeles and England, where they own a country estate.
Off screen, Heaton is a pro-life activist and becomes the honorary chairperson of Feminists for Life, an organization that opposes domestic violence, child abuse, infanticide and abortion.
The Goodbye Girl
Previously touring with children's theatre troupe, Patricia Heaton teamed up with other cast members to form a theater group called Stage Three, an off-Broadway acting group. She made her Broadway debut in the gospel musical "Don't Get God Started".
While producing the play "The Johnstown Vindicator" in Los Angeles, Heaton's performance attracted the attention of a casting director for the ABC drama series “thirtysomething.” Heaton soon landed the recurring role of gynecologist Dr. Silverman from 1989 to 1991. In the critically acclaimed romantic drama series created by Marshall Herskovitz Heaton joined the show’s stars Ken Olin and Mel Harris.
During her stint in “thirtysomething” Heaton was spotted as a guest in an episode of the series "Alien Nation" (December 1989), "Matlock" (November 1990) and "DEA" (April 1991). She also made a TV movie debut, costarring with Lindsay Wagner and Michael Nouri in CBS’ true-story based Shattered Dreams (1990), directed by Robert Iscove based on Charlotte Fedders and Laura Elliott's book. ABC then gave her a regular role as Linda Lavin's daughter in their sitcom "Room For Two" (1992-1993).
1992 saw Heaton in two feature films, John Carpenter's adaptation of H.F. Saint's book, Memoirs of an Invisible Man (starring Chevy Chase and Daryl Hannah) and Brian Levant's kid flick Beethoven (starring Charles Grodin). Two years later, Heaton portrayed Gaby Hoffmann's mother on the NBC sitcom created by Rob Schiller, "Someone Like Me" (also starring Nikki Cox) and costarred with Delta Burke on CBS’ brief-running sitcom created by Harry Thomason, "Women of the House" in the next year.
Moviegoers saw Heaton appeared in writer-director Michael Tolkin's dark comedy The New Age (1994, with Peter Weller and Judy Davis) and Joe Pytka's animated basketball movie Space Jam (1996, starring Michael Jordan). She also played a reoccurring role in two episodes of Fox’s teen series "Party of Five" in early 1996.
Debra Barone, the fed-up wife of Ray Romano's title character, tossed Heaton name towards prominence. She played the role on CBS' long-running family comedy created by Philip Rosenthal, "Everybody Loves Raymond" alongside other cast members Doris Roberts, Peter Boyle, Brad Garrett and Monica Horan. The show received soaring ratings and Heaton continued to play her role from 1996 up to present. She was nominated an Emmy since 1999 and eventually took home the award’s Leading Actress in a Comedy Series in 2000 and 2001. It also won her the Q Award for Best Actress in a Quality Comedy Series (1999 and 2000) and nominated her SAG for Best Actress in a Comedy Series (2004).
"No one comes across as real as her." "Everybody Loves Raymond" executive producer Philip Rosenthal (on Patricia Heaton).
While working in "Everybody Loves Raymond," Heaton costarred with Meredith Baxter, playing two quarreled sisters, opposite Della Reese, in the CBS TV-movie Miracle in the Woods (1997, helmed by Arthur Allan Seidelman) and starred in the CBS holiday movie directed by Andy Wolk, A Town Without Christmas (2001, with Peter Falk and Isabella Fink). In 2004, Heaton played the female lead role of Paula McFadden, a divorcee and mother of Hallie Kate Eisenberg's character, in Neil Simon's updated version of his 1977 successful stage and screen romantic comedy, Richard Benjamin-directed The Goodbye Girl (opposite Jeff Daniels). Her role in the TNT movie gave her an SAG nomination.
In the subsequent years, Heaton will act opposite Alexandra Castillo in David L. Cunningham's miniseries that centers the US terrorist attacks on September 11, 2001, an Untitled History Project. She will also share the screen with David Hunt, Tony Lo Bianco and Vincent Spano in Steven Schachter's-directed romantic drama, TNT’s The Engagement Ring. On the wide screen, Heaton will star opposite Sara Rue and Molly Shannon in the Farrelly brothers' upcoming comedy, The Three Stooges.
Behind the screen, Heaton and husband David Hunt formed production company FourBoys Films, which co-produced the documentary film, The Bituminous Coal Queens of Pennsylvania (also directed by Hunt). Along with Walden Media, Heaton and Hunt are producing the feature film detailing the life of William Wilberforce entitled Amazing Grace (directed by Michael Apted).
"For once, they've given a sitcom wife failings and vulnerability and her own mental instability. A lot of sitcom wives are long-suffering and patronizing." Patricia Heaton.
Emmy: Outstanding Lead Actress in a Comedy Series, “Everybody Loves Raymond.” 2001
Emmy: Outstanding Lead Actress in a Comedy Series, “Everybody Loves Raymond,” 2000
Viewers for Quality Television: Best Actress in a Quality Comedy Series, “Everybody Loves Raymond,” 1999