Studio 60 Lady
Golden Globe-nominated actress Sarah Paulson recently garnered critical praise for her role as Harriet Hayes (2006-Present), Matt Albie's (played by Matthew Perry) effortlessly sexy ex-girlfriend, multi-talented performer and a devout Christian on the NBC dramedy "Studio 60 on the Sunset Strip." The lovely and talented actress who was a regular on CBS' supernatural drama "American Gothic" and The WB dramedy series "Jack & Jill" has also appeared in such films as Levitation (1997), The Other Sister (1999), Held Up (1999), Down with Love (2003), Serenity (2005) and The Notorious Bettie Page (2005).
On a more personal note, the 5' 6" actress is romantically linked with two-time Tony winner Broadway actress Cherry Jones (born on November 21, 1956).
Childhood and Family:
Born in Tampa, Florida on December 17, 1975 (some mentions 1974), Sarah Catharine Paulson spent a considerable amount of time growing up in New York City, especially Brooklyn, where she went to elementary school for a few years. She also spent some time living in Maine. Sarah has two sisters, one of whom is casting director Elizabeth Paulson. She attended both the LaGuardia High School for the Performing Arts and the American Academy of Dramatic Arts, New York, New York.
Making her professional debut at the age of 12 in an off-Broadway production of “Amerlia Again,” Sarah Paulson debuted on Broadway at age 19 in a revival of Wendy Wasserstein's “The Sisters Rosensweig.” She also acted off-Broadway in “Taking Pictures” and the Playwrights Horizons production of "Stalin's Daughter." She also made her debut on television, guest starring in an October 1994 episode of NBC police procedural and legal drama "Law & Order," followed with a regular role of Merlyn Temple (1995-1996), a dead woman who can communicate with her living brother Caleb (played by Lucas Black) on CBS' supernatural drama "American Gothic." During her "American Gothic" stint, Paulson also appeared in the TV movies Friends at Last (CBS), starring Kathleen Turner, and Shaughnessy (starring Matthew Settle), adapted from Louis L'Amour's novel.
Following “American Gothic”’s cancellation, Paulson made her first leading role in feature film as a pregnant teen searches for her biological mother with the help of a guardian angel in writer-director Scott D. Goldstein's low-budget fantasy thriller Levitation (1997). The next year, she returned to stage to support Scott Glenn and Amanda Plummer in the Off-Broadway production of "Killer Joe."
After portraying the sister to the mentally disabled lead character portrayed by Juliette Lewis in Garry Marshall's romantic drama comedy movie The Other Sister (1999; also starring Juliette Lewis, Diane Keaton, Tom Skerritt and Giovanni Ribisi), Paulson returned to series TV playing the regular role of Elisa Cronkite (1999-2001), the ex-girlfriend of Ivan Sergei’s Jill on The WB dramedy series starring Amanda Peet, "Jack & Jill." Meanwhile, she supported Jamie Foxx and Nia Long in Steve Rash's comedy film Held Up (1999) and played Mel Gibson's secretary in Nancy Meyers' romantic drama comedy What Women Want (2000; also starring Helen Hunt). She also guest starred in an October 2001 episode of CBS long-running drama/fantasy series "Touched by an Angel."
After "Jack & Jill" ended in 2001, Paulson was offered to star as the title role of the thirty-something single New York ad executive on NBC short-lived sitcom "Leap of Faith" (2002). She then delivered dramatic performance in the John Frankenheimer-helmed HBO movie set in the mid-1960s, Path to War (2002; starring Michael Gambon, Donald Sutherland and Alec Baldwin), and a lighter performance opposite Renee Zellwegger and Ewan MacGregor in Peyton Reed's romantic comedy movie Down with Love (2003), playing Zellweger's garrulous editor and publicist Vikki Hiller. She also appeared in two episodes of NBC's failed legal drama "The D.A." and an episode of FX's controversial plastic surgery drama "Nip/Tuck," as a woman seemingly affected with the mysterious stigmata.
In 2005, Paulson had a recurring role as Miss (Alice) Isringhausen on six episodes of HBO acclaimed western drama series "Deadwood." That same year, she was cast in writer-director Joss Whedon's big screen adaptation of the fan-boy favorite series, Serenity, and portrayed the famed photographer Bunny Yeager in Mary Harron's biopic of the pin-up sensation that shocked the nation during the 1950s, The Notorious Bettie Page (starring Gretchen Mol; premiered at the 2005 Toronto International Film Festival). She also continued acting on stage, playing the role Laura in Tennessee Williams' “The Glass Menagerie” on Broadway and as Varya in "The Cherry Orchard" at the Mark Taper forum at Los Angeles with Annette Bening, Alfred Molina, Francis Fischer, Rebecca Mozo and Jennifer Dundas.
2006 marked Paulson with her star-making role as Harriet Hayes, Matt Albie's (played by Matthew Perry) effortlessly sexy ex-girlfriend, multi-talented performer and a devout Christian on the NBC dramedy "Studio 60 on the Sunset Strip." The show, created by Aaron Sorkin and is produced by Thomas Schlamme and began airing on NBC on September 18, 2006, earned Paulson a Golden Globe nomination for Best Performance by an Actress in a Supporting Role in a Series, Mini-Series or Motion Picture Made for Television in 2007.
While working on "Studio 60 on the Sunset Strip," Paulson also appeared in the 2006 films Diggers (starring Lauren Ambrose) and Griffin & Phoenix (starring Dermot Mulroney and Amanda Peet in the title role). TV viewers could also catch her co-starring with Eric Mabius playing a couple in the romantic comedy telemovie A Christmas Wedding (2006).