Deborah Kara Unger

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Deborah Kara Unger
Deborah Kara Unger in Sep 2009.jpg
Unger at the premiere of Cassandra's Dream, Toronto Film Festival 2007
Born (1964-05-12) 12 May 1964 (age 50)
Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada
Occupation Actress
Years active 1989–present

Deborah Kara Unger (born 12 May 1964)[1] is a Canadian actress. She is known for her roles in the films: Highlander III: The Sorcerer (1994), Crash (1996), The Game (1997), Payback (1999), The Hurricane (1999), White Noise (2005), Silent Hill (2006), 88 Minutes (2008), and The Way (2010).

Early life[edit]

Deborah Kara Unger was born in Vancouver, British Columbia, to a nuclear disposal specialist mother and a gynaecologist father.[1] She was the first Canadian to be accepted into Australia's National Institute of Dramatic Art.[2] Unger now lives in Los Angeles.[2]


Unger made her debut on the Australian television mini-series Bangkok Hilton with Nicole Kidman. A year later she made her film debut in the two Australian movies Till There Was You and Blood Oath.[3] In 1993 she starred in David Lynch's HBO mini-series Hotel Room. The following year she played the lead female role in the movie with a big budget Highlander III: The Sorcerer opposite Christopher Lambert.[4]

Unger appeared in her breakthrough role in the David Cronenberg's drama film Crash in 1996 about a group of people who take sexual pleasure from car accidents, a notable form of paraphilia. That year she also starred in the comedy-drama film Keys to Tulsa with Eric Stoltz and James Spader.[3] In 1997 Unger starred with Michael Douglas in the critically and financially successful psychological thriller film The Game directed by David Fincher.[5] The film debuted at No.1 at the box office.[6] In 1998 she played the role Ava Gardner in HBO film The Rat Pack. In 1999 she appeared in the films Payback with Mel Gibson, The Hurricane with Denzel Washington and award-winning ensemble cast historical movie Sunshine.[3]

Unger starred in many independent films in the early 2000s, such as Signs and Wonders, Ten Tiny Love Stories, Fear X, Thirteen, Stander, Hollywood North, Emile, Paranoia 1.0 and A Love Song for Bobby Long. She played a leading role opposite Sophia Loren and Mira Sorvino in the 2002 independent movie Between Strangers, about three women confront their pasts which changes their futures, for which she was nominated on Genie Award for Best Performance by an Actress in a Leading Role.[7] In 2005, she starred in the financially successful supernatural horror film White Noise with Michael Keaton.[8]

In 2006, Unger appeared in a supernatural horror Silent Hill feature based on the popular video game series.

From 2006 to 2010, she appeared in the movies The Alibi, Things That Hang from Trees, 88 Minutes, Walled In, Messages Deleted and The Way. In 2010 she won the award Action On Film International Film Festival for career achievements.[7][9] In 2011 she received her first starring role in TV series called Combat Hospital, which premieres in June on ABC.[9] In 2012, Unger reprise her role as Dahlia Gillespie in a sequel to Silent Hill, Silent Hill: Revelation 3D in 2012.[10]


Year Title Role Notes
1989 Bangkok Hilton Astra TV mini-series
1990 Till There Was You Anna Vivaldi
Breakaway Marion
Prisoners of the Sun Sister Littell
1992 Whispers in the Dark Eve Abergray
1993 Hotel Room Sasha TV mini-series, 1 episode, "Getting Rid of Robert"
1994 State of Emergency Sue Payton TV movie
Highlander III: The Sorcerer Alex Johnson/Sarah
1996 Crash Catherine Ballard
No Way Home Lorraine
Keys to Tulsa Vicky Michaels Stover
1997 The Game Christine
1998 Luminous Motion Mom
The Rat Pack Ava Gardner TV movie
1999 Payback Mrs. Lynn Porter
The Weekend Marian Kerr
Sunshine Maj. Carole Kovács
The Hurricane Lisa Peters
2000 Signs and Wonders Katherine
2002 Ten Tiny Love Stories Seven
The Salton Sea Colette
Leo Caroline
Between Strangers Catherine
2003 Thirteen Brooke LaLaine
Fear X Kate
Hollywood North Sandy Ryan
Stander Bekkie Stander
Emile Nadia
2004 Paranoia 1.0 Trish
A Love Song for Bobby Long Georgianna
2005 White Noise Sarah Tate
Jesus of Suburbia Saint Jimmy's mother music video by Green Day
2006 Things That Hang from Trees Connie Mae Wheeler
Silent Hill Dahlia Gillespie
The Alibi Dorothy
2007 Shake Hands with the Devil Emma
88 Minutes Carol Lynn Johnson
2009 Walled In Mary
Messages Deleted Det. Lavery
Angel and the Badman Temperance TV movie
2010 Transparency Danielle
The Way Sarah
Sophie Tina Bradshaw
2011 Combat Hospital Major Grace Pedersen 13 episodes, first role in TV series
Samuel Bleak Roselyn Ramirez
The Maiden Danced to Death Lynn Court
186 Dollars to Freedom Consul Powers
2012 Silent Hill: Revelation 3D Dahlia Gillespie
Fury Helena
A Dark Truth Morgan Swinton

Awards and nominations[edit]

Year Result Award Category Film
2000 Won Seattle International Film Festival Citation of Excellence for Ensemble Cast Performance The Weekend
Nominated Genie Awards Best Performance by an Actress in a Supporting Role Sunshine
2003 Nominated Best Performance by an Actress in a Leading Role Between Strangers
Won Dubrovnik International Film Festival Libertas Award
Nominated Sonoma Valley Film Festival Imagery Honors Award
2004 Won Method Fest Best Actress Emile
2005 Won Málaga International Week of Fantastic Cinema Best Actress One Point O
2010 Won Action on Film International Film Festival Half-Life Award


  1. ^ a b Hochman, David (3 October 1997). "Unger Strikes". Entertainment Weekly. 
  2. ^ a b Ojumu, Akin (13 February 2000). "Everyone's talking about... Deborah Kara Unger's big cover-up". The Guardian (London). Retrieved 2 June 2011. 
  3. ^ a b c "Deborah Kara Unger- Biography". Yahoo!. Retrieved 13 March 2011. 
  4. ^ "Deborah Kara Unger- Biography". AllRovi. Retrieved 13 March 2011. 
  5. ^ "The Game (1997)". Rotten Tomatoes. Retrieved 13 March 2011. 
  6. ^ "The Game". Box Office Mojo. Retrieved 13 March 2011. 
  7. ^ a b "Awards for Deborah Kara Unger". Internet Movie Database. Retrieved 13 March 2011. 
  8. ^ "White Noise (2005)". Box Office Mojo. Internet Movie Database. Retrieved 2 June 2011. 
  9. ^ a b "Combat Hospital". American Broadcasting Company. Retrieved 2 June 2011. 
  10. ^ Vejvoda, Jim (15 March 2011). "Mitchell & Bean Back for Silent Hill 2". IGN. Retrieved 16 March 2011. 

External links[edit]