||This biographical article needs additional citations for verification. (October 2013)|
Farrow in 1980
|Born||María de Lourdes Villiers Farrow
February 9, 1945
Los Angeles, California, U.S.
|Spouse(s)||Frank Sinatra (1966–68; divorced)
André Previn (1970–79; divorced)
|Partner(s)||Woody Allen (1980-92)|
|Children||15 (4 biological, 11 adopted)|
Mia Farrow (born Maria de Lourdes Villiers Farrow; February 9, 1945) is an American actress, humanitarian, and former fashion model.
Farrow first gained wide acclaim for her role as Allison MacKenzie in the television soap opera Peyton Place and gained further recognition for her subsequent short-lived marriage to Frank Sinatra. An early film role, as Rosemary in Roman Polanski's Rosemary's Baby (1968), saw her nominated for a BAFTA and a Golden Globe for Best Actress. She went on to appear in films such as John and Mary (1969), Follow Me! (1972), The Great Gatsby (1974) and Death on the Nile (1978).
Farrow dated actor-director Woody Allen from 1980 to 1992 and appeared in twelve of his thirteen films over that period, most notably Zelig (1983), Broadway Danny Rose (1984), The Purple Rose of Cairo (1985), Hannah and Her Sisters (1986), Radio Days (1987), Crimes and Misdemeanors (1989), Alice (1990) and Husbands and Wives (1992). Her more recent film roles include Widows' Peak (1994), The Omen (2006), Be Kind Rewind (2008), Dark Horse (2011) and Luc Besson's Arthur series (2006–2010).
Farrow has appeared in more than 50 films and won numerous awards, including a Golden Globe award, received seven additional Golden Globe nominations, three BAFTA nominations and a best actress award at the San Sebastian International Film Festival. Farrow is also known for her extensive humanitarian work as a UNICEF Goodwill Ambassador. She is involved in humanitarian activities in Darfur, Chad, and the Central African Republic. In 2008, Time magazine named her one of the most influential people in the world.
Farrow was born in Los Angeles, California, the fourth child and eldest daughter of Australian film director John Farrow and Irish actress Maureen O'Sullivan. One of seven children: older brothers Michael Namien (1939–1958), Patrick Joseph (1942–2009), John Charles (born 1946); and younger sisters Prudence and actresses Stephanie and Tisa. Eldest brother Michael died in a plane crash in 1958, at age 19. Patrick Farrow, a sculptor, committed suicide in 2009.
Farrow grew up in Beverly Hills, California, where she occasionally put on performances with "toy daggers and fake blood" for passing celebrity tour buses. Aged two, she made her film debut in a short documentary Unusual Occupations: Film Tot Holiday (1947).
She was raised Roman Catholic and "had 13 years of convent education with nuns". When she was nine, she caught polio during an outbreak in Los Angeles reportedly affecting five hundred persons. She was placed in an isolation ward for three weeks and later said the experience "marked the end of my childhood".
Farrow screen-tested for the role of Liesl von Trapp in The Sound of Music, but did not get the part. The footage has been preserved, and appears on the fortieth Anniversary Edition DVD of The Sound of Music. Farrow began her acting career by appearing in supporting roles in several 1960s films. She achieved stardom on the popular primetime soap opera Peyton Place as naive, waif-like Allison MacKenzie, a role she later abandoned at the urging of first husband Frank Sinatra. Along with her acting career, Farrow worked as a fashion model for many years.
Farrow's first leading film role was in Rosemary's Baby (1968), which was a critical and commercial success at the time and continues to be widely regarded as a classic of the horror genre. Her performance garnered numerous awards, including the Golden Globe Award for New Star Of The Year - Actress, and established her as a leading actress. Film critic and author Stephen Farber described her performance as having an "electrifying impact… one of the rare instances of actor and character achieving a miraculous, almost mythical match. If Ira Levin's story shrewdly taps into every pregnant woman's fears about the stranger growing inside her, Mia Farrow gives those fears an achingly real and human force".[dead link] Film critic Roger Ebert noted that "the brilliance of the film comes more from Polanski's direction, and from a series of genuinely inspired performances… The characters emerge as human beings actually doing these things. A great deal of the credit for this achievement must go to Mia Farrow, as Rosemary".
Following Rosemary's Baby, Farrow was to be cast as Mattie in True Grit and was keen on the role. However, prior to filming she made Secret Ceremony in England with Elizabeth Taylor and Robert Mitchum. While filming, Mitchum told her about True Grit director Henry Hathaway having a reputation for being rude to actresses. Farrow asked producer Hal Wallis to replace Hathaway. Wallis refused and Farrow quit the role which was then given to Kim Darby. Secret Ceremony divided critics, but has gone on to develop a devoted following. Farrow's other late '60s films include John and Mary, opposite Dustin Hoffman.
In the 1970s, Farrow appeared in several films, including the thriller See No Evil (1971), French director Claude Chabrol's Docteur Popaul (1972) and The Great Gatsby (1974), in which Farrow played Daisy Buchanan. She appeared in director Robert Altman's cult classic A Wedding (1978). In 1977, she played the title role in The Haunting of Julia. Farrow appeared in several made-for-television films in the 1970s, most notably portraying the title role in a musical version of Peter Pan (1976). Farrow became the first American actress to join the Royal Shakespeare Company and in 1979, appeared on Broadway opposite Anthony Perkins in the play Romantic Comedy by Bernard Slade.
In the 1980s and early '90s, Farrow's relationship with director Woody Allen resulted in numerous film collaborations. She appeared in nearly all of Allen's films during this period, including leading roles in Zelig, Broadway Danny Rose, The Purple Rose of Cairo, Hannah and Her Sisters, Radio Days and Alice (1990). Farrow played Alura, mother of Kara (Helen Slater), in Supergirl (1984) and voiced the title role in the animated film The Last Unicorn (1982). She narrated several of the animated Stories to Remember.
Citing the need to devote herself to raising her young children, Farrow worked less frequently during the 1990s. Nonetheless, she appeared in leading roles in several films, including the Irish film Widows' Peak (1994), Miami Rhapsody (1995) and Reckless (also 1995). She appeared in several independent features and made-for-television films throughout the late 1990s and early 2000s and wrote an autobiography, What Falls Away, in 1997.
Farrow appeared as Mrs. Baylock, the Satanic nanny, in the remake of The Omen (2006). Although the film itself received a lukewarm critical reception, Farrow's performance was widely praised, with the Associated Press declaring "thank heaven for Mia Farrow" and calling her performance "a rare instance of the new Omen improving on the old one."[dead link] Filmcritic.com added "it is Farrow who steals the show", and the Seattle Post-Intelligencer described her performance as "a truly delicious comeback role for Rosemary herself, Mia Farrow, who is chillingly believable as a sweet-talking nanny from hell."
Farrow worked on several films released in 2007, including the romantic comedy The Ex and the first part of director Luc Besson's trilogy of fantasy films, Arthur and the Invisibles. In 2008, in director Michel Gondry's Be Kind Rewind, she appeared opposite Jack Black, Mos Def and Danny Glover. In 2011, Farrow appeared in the film Dark Horse, directed by Todd Solondz.
Activism and Africa
Farrow became a UNICEF Goodwill Ambassador in 2000 and is a high profile advocate for human rights in Africa, particularly for children's rights. She has worked to raise funds and awareness for children in conflict-affected regions and to draw attention to the fight to eradicate polio.
In 2007, Farrow co-founded the Olympic Dream for Darfur campaign, which drew attention to China's support for the government of Sudan. The campaign hoped to change China's policy by embarrassing it in the run-up to the 2008 Summer Olympics held in Beijing. In March 2007, China said it would urge Sudan to engage with the international community. The campaign persuaded Steven Spielberg to withdraw as an artistic adviser to the opening ceremony. During the Olympics, Farrow televised via the internet from a Sudanese refugee camp to highlight China's involvement in the region.
She has traveled to Darfur several times. Her third trip was in 2007, with a film crew engaged in making the documentary "Darfur: On Our Watch". Later in 2007, Farrow offered to "trade her freedom" for the freedom of a humanitarian worker for the Sudan Liberation Army who was being treated in a UN hospital while under threat of arrest. She wanted to be taken captive in exchange for his being allowed to leave the country.
Farrow has received several awards for her humanitarian work including the Leon Sullivan International Service award. She has set up a campaigning website, miafarrow.org. In 2008, Time magazine named her one of the most influential people in the world.
In 2009, Farrow narrated a documentary, titled As We Forgive, relating the struggle of many of the survivors of the Rwandan Genocide to forgive those who murdered family and friends. To show "solidarity with the people of Darfur", Farrow began a water-only fast on April 27. Farrow's goal was to fast for three weeks, but she called a halt after 12 days on the advice of her doctor.
Farrow married singer Frank Sinatra on July 19, 1966. He served her with divorce papers on the set of Rosemary's Baby (1968) after she refused his demand that she quit the film to work on his movie The Detective. The divorce was finalized in 1968.
Also in 1968, Farrow traveled to India, where she spent part of the year at the ashram of Maharishi Mahesh Yogi in Rishikesh, Uttarakhand, studying Transcendental Meditation. Her visit received worldwide media attention because of the presence of all four members of The Beatles, Donovan, and Mike Love, as well as her sister Prudence Farrow, who inspired John Lennon to write the song "Dear Prudence".
In 1970, Farrow married the conductor/composer André Previn. His former wife, songwriter Dory Previn, wrote a scathing song, entitled "Beware of Young Girls", about the loss of her husband to Farrow. Farrow and Previn had three biological children (twins Matthew and Sascha, and Fletcher). In 1973 and 1976, respectively, they adopted Vietnamese infants Lark Song and Summer "Daisy" Song, followed by the adoption of Soon-Yi (born c. October 8, 1972) from Korea around 1978. Soon-Yi's precise age and birth date are not known, but a bone scan estimated her age as being between 5 and 7 years old at the time of her adoption. André and Mia divorced in 1979.
In 1980, Farrow began seeing film director Woody Allen. During their relationship, Farrow starred in many of Allen's films, and several of her relatives also made appearances. Together they adopted Moses "Misha" Farrow and Dylan "Eliza" Farrow. In 1987, Farrow gave birth to their son Satchel O'Sullivan Farrow, later known as Ronan Farrow. However, in a 2013 interview with Vanity Fair, Farrow stated that Ronan could "possibly" be the biological child of her first husband Frank Sinatra, with whom she claims to have "never really split up."
Farrow and Allen parted after Farrow discovered a sexual relationship between Allen and Soon-Yi. During the subsequent custody battle involving Farrow's and Allen's three children, Farrow filed charges that Allen had molested their daughter Dylan, then seven years old. Allen has adamantly denied the charges. A doctor concluded that Dylan "either invented the story under the stress of living in a volatile and unhealthy home or that it was planted in her mind by her mother" because of the inconsistent presentation of the story by Dylan. In September 1993, Connecticut State Attorney Frank Maco announced that, while he had "probable cause" to prosecute Allen on charges of sexual molestation of Dylan, he was dropping the case to spare her the trauma of appearing in court. Farrow has been estranged from Soon-Yi since Soon-Yi's 1997 marriage to Allen.
Between 1992 and 1995, Farrow adopted 6 more children: Tam Farrow (born 1979); Quincy Farrow, now known as Kaeli-Shea Farrow; Frankie-Minh (born 1991); Isaiah Justus (born 1992); Thaddeus Wilk Farrow (born 1988); and Gabriel Wilk Farrow, adopted in 1995 and named after Elliott Wilk, the judge who oversaw Farrow's 1993 legal battle with Allen. Her daughter Tam Farrow died of heart failure in 2000 at the age of 19 after a long illness. On Christmas Day 2008, her daughter Lark Previn died at the age of 35.
As of March 2012, Mia Farrow has thirteen living children (four biological, 9 adopted) and nine grandchildren.
- Mia Farrow - Awards
- Smith, Dinitia (8 May 1994). "Picking Up The Legos And The Pieces". The New York Times. Retrieved 12 October 2013.
- "Mia Farrow's Brother's Death: SUICIDE". The Huffington Post.
- Wood, Gaby (2006-01-29). "'I've always had a sense of the unworthiness of myself'". The Observer (London: The Guardian). Retrieved 2010-05-15. "This seems more than a little harsh, and I ask Farrow whether she thinks she would have felt less guilty about things if she had not been brought up a Catholic."
- Su Holmes; Diane Negra (17 March 2011). In the Limelight and Under the Microscope: Forms and Functions of Female Celebrity. Continuum. pp. 239–. ISBN 978-0-8264-3855-3. Retrieved 8 August 2013.
- Pringle, Gill (2006-06-02). "Mia Farrow: 'My faith helps me through hard times'". London: The Independent. Retrieved 2010-05-15. "If you're brought up a Catholic and you've had 13 years of convent education with nuns, there's no way you ever get out from under that. I've accepted that fact about myself so there are certain things - like my lost saint - that sometimes are not so lost."
- "Polio Strikes Los Angeles.". The West Australian (Perth, WA : 1879 - 1954) (Perth, WA: National Library of Australia). 14 August 1954. p. 4. Retrieved 3 March 2012.
- "PUBLIC LIVES; Older, Wiser and Still Reaching Out to Help". Retrieved 10 August 2013.
- "Beauty icon: Mia Farrow". Retrieved 15 August 2013.
- "Rosemary's Baby". Chicago Sun-Times.
- p.286 Davis, Ronald L. Duke: The Life and Image of John Wayne 2003 University of Oklahoma Press
- Paul R. Bartrop (30 July 2012). A Biographical Encyclopedia of Contemporary Genocide. ABC-CLIO. pp. 86–. ISBN 978-0-313-38678-7. Retrieved 10 August 2013.
- "Intimate Strangers". Retrieved 8 August 2013.
- The Omen (2006) Movie Review, DVD Release - Filmcritic.com
- Arnold, William (May 6, 2006). "Final warning: Don't see 'Omen'". Seattle Post-Intelligencer.
- "Changing the Rules of the Games". Retrieved 12 August 2013.
- "Mia Farrow's mission". CBC News. October 10, 2007.
- "Mia Farrow offers freedom to save Darfur rebel". Retrieved 11 August 2013.
- McCall-Pierpaoli "Humanitarian Award press release". Retrieved 13 August 2013.
- "Mia Farrow Goodwill Ambassador". Retrieved 13 August 2013.
- "UNICEF Ambassador Mia Farrow to meet war-affected children in Uganda". Retrieved 7 August 2013.
- "The 2008 Time 100 HEROES & PIONEERS Mia Farrow". Retrieved 15 August 2013.
- "Mia Farrow to start fast over Darfur". Retrieved 13 August 2013.
- "Mia Farrow ends fast after health concerns". Retrieved 13 August 2013.
- "Mia Farrow contradicts Naomi Campbell in Charles Taylor trial". Retrieved 7 August 2013.
- "Setting the Record (and the Hair) Straight". Retrieved 7 August 2013.
- Santopietro, Tom (2009). Sinatra in Hollywood. Macmillan. ISBN 978-0-312-36226-3.
- Nelson, Valerie J. (February 16, 2012). "Dory Previn dies at 86; Oscar-nominated songwriter". Los Angeles Times.
- Orth, Maureen (November 1992). "Mia’s Story". Vanity Fair. Retrieved 16 November 2012. "Nobody knows how old Soon-Yi really is. Without ever seeing her, Korean officials put her age down as seven on her passport. A bone scan Mia had done on her in the U.S. put her age at between five and seven. In the family, Soon-Yi is considered to have turned 20 this year, on October 8 ."
- "Profile: Mia Farrow". Retrieved 7 August 2013.
- "Woody and Mia: A New York Story". Retrieved 7 August 2013.
- "Exclusive: Mia Farrow and Eight of Her Children Speak Out on Their Lives, Frank Sinatra, and the Scandals They’ve Endured". Vanity Fair. October 2, 2013. Retrieved October 2, 2013.
- Perez-Pena R. (1993). Doctor Cites Inconsistencies In Dylan Farrow's Statement. New York Times.
- Woody Allen-Mia Farrow Custody Trial: 1993 - The Custody Trial Begins.
- "Elliott Wilk, Judge and Dry Wit, Dies at 60". Retrieved 7 August 2013.
- Mia Farrow Mourns Daughter NY Daily News, March 15, 2000
- "Mia Farrow's adopted daughter Lark Previn dies aged 35". Retrieved 8 August 2013.
- Mia Farrow grandchildren
- Official MiaFarrow.org website
- Mia Farrow at the Internet Movie Database
- Mia Farrow at the TCM Movie Database
- Mia Farrow at the Internet Broadway Database
- Mia Farrow at the Internet Off-Broadway Database
Interviews and articles
- Interview with Mia Farrow about Darfur on Guernica: a magazine of art and politics
- Interview with David Freudberg on public radio's Humankind describes her efforts to increase awareness about the ongoing slaughter in Darfur, her history of having adopted ten children, and her reflections on ego
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