Lee at the 1990 Emmy Awards
|Born||Sheryl Lynn Lee
April 22, 1967
Augsburg, West Germany
(now Augsburg, Germany) and raised in Boulder, Colorado, United States
|Other names||Sheryl Lee Diamond|
|Awards||Spirit of Sundance Award
1995 for her body of work
Sheryl Lee (born April 22, 1967) is an American actress. She came to international attention for her performances as Laura Palmer and Maddy Ferguson on the 1990 cult TV series Twin Peaks and in the 1992 film Twin Peaks: Fire Walk with Me. She is also known for portraying photographer Astrid Kirchherr in Backbeat (1994) and for her roles in Vampires (1998) and Winter's Bone (2010), as well as for her television series roles in LA Doctors, Kingpin, One Tree Hill and Dirty Sexy Money. She has also played on Broadway in a production of Oscar Wilde's Salome.
Early life 
Lee was born in Augsburg, Bavaria, West Germany, the daughter of an artist mother and architect father. She grew up in Boulder, Colorado, United States, where she was a graduate of Fairview High School (class of 1985). After graduating, Lee moved to Pasadena, California where she studied at the American Academy of Dramatic Arts, and later attended the North Carolina School of the Arts, the National Theatre Conservatory in Denver, and the University of Colorado. After several years of studying, Lee moved to Seattle, Washington where she acted in several stage plays.
Acting career 
Lee is remembered by legions of David Lynch fans for her appearance as the dead Laura Palmer in the cult television series Twin Peaks. Lynch asked Lee to audition for him after seeing a publicity photo of her in Seattle from one of the plays she was starring in at the time. When the series was picked up, Lee was also given the part of Laura's cousin Maddy Ferguson later in the series (a role which was reportedly written because Lynch, impressed with her abilities, wanted to give her a fuller role on the show). She also starred in the prequel Twin Peaks: Fire Walk with Me, which elaborated on events leading up to Laura Palmer's death.
Other roles have included playing the part of Astrid Kirchherr in the 1994 movie Backbeat, a bio-pic of the early career of The Beatles opposite Stephen Dorff, the part of Liza in Gary Walkow's 1995 adaptation of Fyodor Dostoyevsky's novella Notes from Underground opposite Henry Czerny, the role of Katrina in John Carpenter's 1998 film Vampires opposite James Woods and Daniel Baldwin, and the role of Marlene Cadena in the 2003 television series Kingpin opposite Yancey Arias and Bobby Cannavale. Sheryl Lee also starred alongside Craig Sheffer in Bliss (1997). Lee starred opposite Anthony Michael Hall as the sweet but vengeful housewife Eve Robbins in the 2001 USA Cable movie Hitched.
In 2004, Lee was the original choice for the role of Mary-Alice Young on Desperate Housewives. It would have been the second time she would have played a dead character on a series; however, the producers ultimately chose to replace her with Brenda Strong.
In 2005, she played the recurring part of Ellie Harp, the biological mother of Peyton Sawyer (played by Hilarie Burton), who battles breast cancer, on the third season of the WB Network series One Tree Hill.
In 2001, she presented the I Love 1990 segment of the BBC's popular I Love 1990s series.
On stage, Lee starred on Broadway in 1992 alongside Al Pacino in Oscar Wilde's Salome as the title role, in the Circle in the Square Theatre, under the direction of Robert Allan Ackerman. The play co-starred Suzanne Bertish, Esai Morales and Arnold Vosloo.
Lee, along with several other Twin Peaks cast members, guest starred in a special Twin Peaks themed episode of Psych, Dual Spires. Other cast members reunited with Lee included Sherilyn Fenn (Audrey Horne), Dana Ashbrook (Bobby Briggs), Ray Wise (Leland Palmer), Lenny Von Dohlen (Harold Smith), Robyn Lively (Lana Budding Milford), and Catherine E. Coulson (The Log Lady). This episode marked the first time several Twin Peaks cast members have been reunited on television in almost two decades.
In 2010 she appeared in a supporting role as April in Debra Granik's Winter's Bone (which won best picture at the Sundance Film Festival in 2010). The film is about a seventeen-year-old girl (Jennifer Lawrence) in the rural Ozarks, caring for her mentally-ill mother and her younger brother and sister, when she discovers that her father put their house and land up as a bond for a court appearance, at which he failed to appear. Lee won two Awards for Best Ensemble at Detroit Film Critics Society and Gotham Awards, shared with the cast.
Personal life 
Charitable work and and environmental activism 
On November 15, 2000, she attended the premiere of the public awareness campaign Why Are We Here?, to raise awareness for biodiversity protection.
On December 3, 2003, Lee attended the UNICEF Goodwill Gala: 50 Years of Celebrity Advocacy, to raise money for the Audrey Hepburn All Children in School Fund. On November 7, 2004, she hosted the fundraiser Get Your Grape On! for UNICEF, a wine testing evening benefiting UNICEF.
In September 2011, Lee attended along with environmental activist Alec Loorz, the Sustainable Living Association's 3rd Annual Blue & Green Ball fundraiser and the 12th Sustainable Living Fair in Fort Collins, Colorado.
In September 2012, Lee signed environmental activist Tom Weis' open letter calling on President Barack Obama and Governor Mitt Romney to withdraw their support for the construction of the southern leg of Keystone XL, a pipeline that would transport tar sands from Montana to Texas. Other signatories included climate scientist James Hansen and actors Daryl Hannah, Mariel Hemingway, and Ed Begley, Jr..
On December 8, 2012, Lee performed poems written by herself as part of a collaborative performance along with artist Marina DeBris, dancer Maya Gabay, and musician Marla Leigh, for the U.S. National Committee for UN Women's First Annual Special Assembly: Women, Climate Change, and Human Rights.
|1990||Wild at Heart||The Good Witch|
|1992||Twin Peaks: Fire Walk with Me||Laura Palmer||Nominated — Saturn Award for Best Actress
Nominated — Independent Spirit Award for Best Female Lead
|1994||Don't Do It||Michelle|
|1995||Fall Time||Patty / Carol|
|1995||Notes from Underground||Liza|
|1996||Mother Night||Helga Noth / Resi Noth|
|1997||This World, Then the Fireworks||Lois Archer|
|1997||The Blood Oranges||Fiona|
|1998||Vampires||Katrina||Nominated — Saturn Award for Best Supporting Actress|
|1999||Kiss the Sky||Andy|
|1999||Angel's Dance||Angelica "Angel" Chaste|
|2002||Children on Their Birthdays||Elinore Murphy|
|2005||Paradise, Texas||Betsy Kinney|
|2010||Winter's Bone||April||Detroit Film Critics Society for Best Ensemble
Gotham Award for Best Ensemble
Nominated—Southeastern Film Critics Association Awards for Best Ensemble
|2011||Texas Killing Fields||Lucie Sliger|
|2013||White Bird in a Blizzard||May||post-production|
|2013||The Redeemer||Mrs. Harris||in production|
|1990||Twin Peaks||Laura Palmer / Maddy Ferguson||series regular, 1990–1991
Nominated — Soap Opera Digest Awards for Best Prime Time Death Scene
|1991||Love, Lies and Murder||Patti Bailey||NBC TV movie|
|1992||Red Shoe Diaries||Kate Lyons||episode 1.08 "Jake's Story"|
|1994||Guinevere||Guinevere||Lifetime TV movie|
|1994||Dr. Quinn, Medicine Woman||Catherine||episode 2.15 "Another Woman"|
|1994||Aaahh!!! Real Monsters||episode 1.03 "Krumm Goes Hollywood" — voice role|
|1995||Follow the River||Mary Draper Ingles||ABC TV movie|
|1998||L.A. Doctors||Dr. Sarah Church||series regular, 1998–1999|
|2001||Hitched||Eve Robbins||USA TV movie|
|2001||I Love 1990s||Host||episode "I Love 1990" — BBC documentary series|
|2003||Kingpin||Marlene McDillon Cadena||series regular|
|2003||Without a Trace||Tina Hodges||episode 2.10 "Coming Home"|
|2004||Desperate Housewives||Mary Alice Young||original pilot|
|2005||One Tree Hill||Elizabeth "Ellie" Harp||recurring role, 2005–2006 (9 episodes)|
|2006||The Secrets of Comfort House||Wendy||Lifetime TV movie|
|2006||CSI: NY||Ellen Garner||3.09 "And Here's To You, Mrs Azrael"|
|2006||House M.D.||Stephanie Green||episode 3.02 "Cane and Able"|
|2007||Manchild||Mary||Showtime TV pilot — not ordered to series|
|2007||State of Mind||Leslie Petrovsky||episode 1.01 "Pilot"|
|2007||Dirty Sexy Money||Andrea Smithson||recurring role, 2007–2009 (12 episodes)|
|2010||Lie to Me||Janet Brooks||episode 2.17 "Bullet Bump"|
|2010||Psych||Dr. Donna Gooden||episode 5.12 "Dual Spires"|
|2012||Perception||Lacey Pinderhall||episode 1.03 "86'd"|
|1994||Murder Mystery 3: Who Killed Brett Penance?||Lucie Fairwell|
|1994||Murder Mystery 4: Who Killed Taylor French?||Lucie Fairwell|
|2010||BioShock 2||Additional voices|
Stage credits 
|1986||Crimes of the Heart||National Theatre Conservatory, Denver, CO|
|n/a||Electric River||Pioneer Square Theater, Seattle, WA|
|n/a||Emerald City||Empty Space Theatre, Seattle, WA|
|1991||Love Letters||Melissa Gardner||Canon Theater, Los Angeles, CA|
|1992||Salome||Salome||Circle in the Square Theatre, New York, NY||Broadway debut|
Awards and nominations 
|1992||Soap Opera Digest Awards||Best Prime Time Death Scene||Twin Peaks||Nominated|
|1993||Saturn Awards||Best Actress||Twin Peaks: Fire Walk with Me||Nominated|
|Independent Spirit Awards||Best Female Lead||Nominated|
|1995||Sundance Film Festival||Spirit of Sundance Award — for her body of work||Won|
|1999||Saturn Awards||Best Supporting Actress||Vampires||Nominated|
|2010||Gotham Awards||Best Ensemble||Winter's Bone||Won|
|Southeastern Film Critics Association Awards||Best Ensemble||Nominated|
|Detroit Film Critics Society||Best Ensemble||Won|
- Sheryl Lee biography
- "Biography: Sheryl Lee". Internet Movie Database. Retrieved 2011-03-06.
- Gliatto, Tom (1991). "With Laura Palmer Wrapped, Sheryl Lee Plays A Role Based on a Nightmare Darker Than Twin Peaks Could Ever Be". Details. 
- "Sheryl Lee Takes a Swipe at Animal Acts". People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals. Retrieved 10 September 2011.
- "November 15 Premiere of 'Why Are We Here?' to Feature Bevy of Environmentally-Concerned Celebrities". TheFreeLibrary.com. November 13, 2000. Retrieved 17 October 2011.
- Maynard, Mike. ""Get Your Grape On!" for UNICEF". Los Angeles Splash Magazine. Retrieved 18 October 2011.
- "Munchkin, Inc. - maker of award-winning infant and toddler products is once again reminding women everywhere "Don't Duck a Breast Exam" with the return of its successful Project Pink breast cancer awareness campaign.". October 2008. Retrieved 10 September 2011.
- "Sheryl Lee supports breast cancer research". October 2008. Retrieved 10 September 2011.
- "Munchkin, Inc. Reminds Women Everywhere "Don't Duck a Breast Exam" with Third Annual Project Pink Charity Campaign". FindArticles. Open Publishing. August 5, 2008. Retrieved 10 September 2011.
- Roberts, Michael (May 16, 2011). "Darryl Hannah, Sheryl "Laura Palmer" Lee add star power to climate change march". Westword. Village Voice Media. Retrieved 10 September 2011.
- "Ride Friends". Ride for Renewables. Retrieved 29 September 2011.
- Falbo, Kellie (September 1, 2011). "Sustainable Living Fair announces 3rd Annual Blue & Green Ball with Special Guests". Fort Collins Area Chamber of Commerce. Retrieved 13 September 2011.
- Falbo, Kellie (September 6, 2011). "Sustainable Living Fair celebrates power of community". Fort Collins Coloradoan. Gannett Company. Retrieved 10 September 2011.
- "Actress Sheryl Lee Advocates For Wolves". WildEarth Guardians. December 2011. Retrieved 02 January 2011.
- "Open Letter to President Obama and Governor Romney: Defend America Against Keystone XL Economic, Public Health & National Security Threat". Ride for Renewables. September 26, 2012. Retrieved 22 April 2013.
- "Women, Climate Change and Human Rights: UN Women-USNC Greater Los Angeles Chapter First Annual Special Assembly". GenerationGreen.TV. 17 December 2012. Retrieved 23 April 2013.
Further reading 
- "Woman of the Year: Laura Palmer". Esquire. Volume 114. Issue 2. August 1990. p. 118-119.
- "Twin Peaks' Sheryl Lee Goes from Dead Role to Dead Ringer", by Laurie Grassi. TV Guide (Canada). Volume 14: Issue 45. November 10, 1990.
- "Sheryl's Peril", by James Wolcott. Vanity Fair. February 1992. p. 106-107.
- "Sur la Croisette: Arrêts sur Images sur Quarante-Cinq Acteurs", by Michel Rebichon. Studio (France). Issue 62: Spécial Cannes 1992. May 1992. p. 138.
- "5 July 1992 Sheryl Lee Interview", by Robert Getz. Wrapped In Plastic. Issue 16. April 1995.
- "Sheryl Lee", by Silvia Bizio. Max (Italy). September 1992. p. 128-133.
- "Laura Palmer Lives!", by Jeff Dawson. Empire. December 1992. p. 54-55.
- "A New Peak for Sheryl Lee", by Graham Fuller. Interview. March 1994.
- "Sheryl Lee Interview", by Craig Miller & John Thorne. Wrapped In Plastic. Issue 16. April 1995. p. 5-10.
- "The Bliss of Being Sheryl Lee", by Edward Guthman. San Francisco Chronicle. June 8, 1997.
- "There's No Killing Laura Palmer: The Unstoppable Twin Peaks Ingenues", by Troy Patterson. Entertainment Weekly. February 13, 1998.
- "Three Women, One Peek: Sheryl Lee, Sherilyn Fenn and Lara Flynn Boyle Finally Leave David Lynch's World. Almost", by Ted Allen. Esquire. October 1998.
- "Sheryl Lee on Vampires", by John Thonen. Femme Fatales. Volume 7: Issue 6. November 1998. p. 16-17.
- "Sheryl Lee Takes a Swipe at Animal Acts". PETA's Animal Times. Summer 1999.
- "Welcome to the TP Time Warp. Where Are They Now? Fire Walk with the Cast of Twin Peaks", by Paige Wiser. Chicago Sun-Times. April 15, 2007.