Brett Butler (actress)

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For other persons named Brett Butler, see Brett Butler (disambiguation).
Brett Butler
Brett Butler at the 1994 Emmy Awards
Born Brett Anderson
(1958-01-30) January 30, 1958 (age 59)
Montgomery, Alabama, U.S.
Occupation Actress/Comedian
Years active 1988–present
Spouse(s) Charles Michael Wilson (1978–1981)
Ken Zieger (1987–1999)

Brett Butler (born January 30, 1958) is an American actress, writer, and stand-up comedian, best known for playing the title role in the comedy series Grace Under Fire.[1][2]

Early life[edit]

Butler was born Brett Anderson in Montgomery, Alabama, the eldest of five sisters. Before experiencing success as a stand-up comic, she worked as a cocktail waitress.[2][3]


One of the first notable appearances for Butler was on Dolly Parton's ill-fated 1987 variety series, Dolly. Parton subsequently hired Butler as a writer for the remainder of the show's season, but the series was subsequently cancelled after one season of lackluster ratings. [4]

She was the star of the ABC television show Grace Under Fire from 1993 to 1998. During the show, she battled a recurring drug addiction and spent time in rehab.[5]

Butler published her memoirs, entitled Knee Deep in Paradise, in 1996. The book was started before attaining her celebrity status, and candidly addresses much of this time frame, ending the autobiography before Grace Under Fire's television debut.[6][7]

In February 1998, due to her erratic behavior stemming from substance abuse, she was dismissed from the show and ABC canceled the series.[8][9][10]

After Grace was cancelled in 1998, Butler moved out of Los Angeles and onto a farm in Georgia where she lived with 15 pets. In 2008, Butler headlined at an arts fundraiser and spoke freely with a reporter about her depression, past drug addiction, television work, and current life on a farm. She also expressed interest in writing another book.[11]

In October 2011, Butler appeared on The Rosie Show and reported being sober since 1998.[12] A 2011 Hollywood Reporter article said that when the money ran out, she turned to a homeless shelter for cover.[13] By this time Butler was attempting to make a career comeback, and was working on developing a reality TV show about her self-professed psychic abilities and performing at the Downtown Comedy Club in Los Angeles.[14]

Beginning in June 2012, Butler appeared in a recurring role on the CBS soap The Young and the Restless playing ex-psychiatrist Tim Reid's girlfriend.

Butler also had a recurring role as the bartender at the restaurant that Charlie Goodson frequents in the FX show Anger Management starring Charlie Sheen.



Year Title Role Notes
1993 The Child Ain't Right Herself Showtime Stand-Up Comedy special
2000 Bruno Sister Della Rosa
2000 Militia Bobbi
2005 Mrs. Harris Tarnowner Ex #1 Television film
2005 Vampire Bats Shelly Beaudraux Television film
2006 Moochers Host Television film
2014 Beach Cougar Gigolo Melinda Maxwell Pre-production
2014 Anchor Baby Ruth Chu Pre-production


Year Title Role Notes
1988 Dolly Rhonda Episode: "1.15"
1993–1998 Grace Under Fire Grace Kelly 112 episodes
People's Choice Award for Favorite Female Performer in a New TV Series
Viewers for Quality Television Award for Best Actress in a Quality Comedy Series
Nominated—Golden Globe Award for Best Actress – Television Series Musical or Comedy (1995, 1997)
Nominated—Viewers for Quality Television Award for Best Actress in a Quality Comedy Series (1994, 1996–97)
1995 Women of the House Brett Butler Episode: "Women in Film"
1995 The Larry Sanders Show Brett Butler Episode: "I Was a Teenage Lesbian"
1997 The Drew Carey Show Grace Kelly Episode: "Drew Gets Married"
1997 Ellen Grace Kelly Episode: "Secrets & Ellen"
1997 Coach Grace Kelly Episode: "Viva Las Ratings"
2005 My Name Is Earl Connie Darville Episode: "White Lie Christmas"
2012 Archer Trish Episode: "Space Race - Part 2"
2012 The Young and the Restless Beth Hortense 9 episodes
2012–2014 Anger Management Brett 38 episodes
2015 The Leftovers Sandy Episode: "No Room at the Inn"
2016 How To Get Away With Murder[15] Michaela's adoptive Mom Trishelle [16] Episode 35: "It's About Frank"
Episode 36: "Is Someone Really Dead?"
Episode 39: "Who's Dead?"[17]


  1. ^ Baldwin, Kristen (1996-11-22). "Butler Did It". Entertainment Weekly. 
  2. ^ a b Schwarzbaum, Lisa (1994-10-07). "Brett Butler: More Power To Her". Entertainment Weekly. 
  3. ^ Schwarzbaum, Lisa (1994-12-30). "Entertainer 11: Brett Butler". Entertainment Weekly. 
  4. ^ "Turkeys! 50 Remarkable Pop-Culture Flops". 
  5. ^ Flint, Joe (1997-09-12). "Sad Fall From 'Grace'". Retrieved 2013-09-04. 
  6. ^ "Knee Deep in Paradise". 2003. Retrieved 2015-11-06. 
  7. ^ Lisa Schwarzbaum (1996). "Knee Deep in Paradise". Retrieved 2015-11-06.  External link in |work= (help)
  8. ^ Miller, D. Patrick (2003). "Fame, Fire and Surrender". Retrieved 2010-04-13. 
  9. ^ Lanzendorfer, Joy (2004-08-18). "Funny Lady". North Bay Bohemian. Retrieved 2010-04-13. 
  10. ^ "Brett Butler's Problems Halt `Grace Under Fire'". Orlando Sentinel. Retrieved November 9, 2011. 
  11. ^ "Spitfire: Comic Brett Butler set to take the stage in Santa Fe" October 23, 2008
  12. ^ O'Donnell, Rosie (host) (2011-10-26). "Brett Butler and Frank DeCaro". The Rosie Show. Season 1. Episode 13. OWN: The Oprah Winfrey Network. 
  13. ^ "Former 'Grace Under Fire' Star Brett Butler Reveals: I'm Homeless (Video)". 2011-11-17. Retrieved 2015-11-06. 
  14. ^ "9 Famous People Who Became Homeless". 
  15. ^ "How To Get Away With Murder: Guest Stars". TV Guide. 
  16. ^ "How to Get Away with Murder's Aja Naomi King on That "Fishy" House Fire Reveal". TV Guide. 
  17. ^ "Brett Butler Credits". TV Guide. 

External links[edit]