Jump to content

Cara Buono

Page semi-protected
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Cara Buono
Buono in 2017
Born (1971-03-01) March 1, 1971 (age 53)
New York City, U.S.
Alma materColumbia University
Years active1989–present
SpousePeter Thum

Cara Buono (born March 1, 1971)[1] is an American actress. Emmy-nominated for her role as Dr. Faye Miller in Mad Men, she has played Karen Wheeler in the horror sci-fi series Stranger Things since its premiere in 2016. She also portrayed Kelli Moltisanti in the sixth season of The Sopranos.

Early life and education

Buono was born and raised in the Bronx, a borough of New York City, in a blue-collar family of Italian descent. She has two brothers and a sister.[2][3][4]

She attended Fiorello H. LaGuardia High School[5] and graduated from Columbia University with a double major in English and political science, which she completed in three years.[6] She made her acting debut in Harvey Fierstein's play Spookhouse at the age of 12.[6]


Buono continued stage work both on Broadway and Off Broadway, and started her film career opposite Ethan Hawke and Jeremy Irons in Waterland (1992). Much of her work has been in indie films such as Chutney Popcorn (1999), Happy Accidents (2000), Next Stop Wonderland (1998) and Two Ninas (1999), which she co-produced. In 1999, she had a small role as a young Gerry Cummins in the TV movie, Deep in My Heart (1999).

She starred in the final season of the NBC drama Third Watch (1999) as paramedic Grace Foster, and Ang Lee's feature film of Marvel Comics' Hulk in 2003 as the mother of the title character's alter ego, Bruce Banner.

She also appeared as Kelli, the wife of Christopher Moltisanti (Michael Imperioli), in the two-part final season of the HBO drama series The Sopranos, which aired in 2006 and 2007. She appeared as Dr. Faye Miller in the fourth season of the AMC drama series Mad Men,[7] for which she received an Emmy nomination for Outstanding Guest Actress in a Drama Series in 2011.[8]

Personal life

Buono lives in New York City's Greenwich Village with her husband Peter Thum, founder of Ethos Water,[3] and their daughter.[9]



Year Title Role Notes
1992 Gladiator Dawn
Waterland Judy Dobson
1994 The Cowboy Way Teresa Salazar
1995 Killer: A Journal of Murder Esther Lesser
Kicking and Screaming Kate
1997 Made Men Toni-Ann Antonelli
1998 Next Stop Wonderland Julie
River Red Rachel
1999 Man of the Century Virginia Clemens
Two Ninas Nina Cohen
Chutney Popcorn Janis
2000 Happy Accidents Bette
Takedown Christina Painter
Attention Shoppers Claire Suarez
2003 Hulk Edith Banner
2004 From Other Worlds Joanne Schwartzbaum
2006 Artie Lange's Beer League Linda Salvo
2007 Cthulhu Dannie Marsh
2010 Betrayed Amy Waite Short film
Stuff Madeline Short film
Let Me In Owen's mother
2012 The Discoverers Nell
2014 A Good Marriage Betty Pike
2015 Paper Towns Connie Jacobsen
Emily & Tim Emily Hanratty Segment: "Betrayal"
2016 Half the Perfect World Sonia
2017 All Saints Aimee Spurlock
2018 Monsters and Men Stacey
2022 She Came from the Woods Heather McCalister
TBD Things Like This Margie Kitlin Post-production


Year Title Role Notes
1989 Dream Street Joann 2 episodes
1991 CBS Schoolbreak Special Abby Morris Episode: "Abby, My Love"
Nominated – Daytime Emmy Award for Outstanding Performer in a Children's Special
1992 I'll Fly Away Diane 3 episodes
1993 Tribeca Rose Polito Episode: "The Hopeless Romantic"
1993 Victim of Love: The Shannon Mohr Story Tracey Lien Television film
1995 The Single Guy Christie Episode: "Tennis"
1996 New York Undercover Connie Episode: "A Time to Kill"
1996 Law & Order Shelly Taggert Episode: "Girlfriends"
1998 Law & Order Alice Simonelli Episode: "Punk"
1999 Deep in My Heart Young Gerry Cummins Television film
2001 Family Law Carly Hanson Episode: "Intentions"
2002 Law & Order: Criminal Intent Charlotte Fielding Episode: "Phantom"
2002 CSI: Crime Scene Investigation Tracy Logan Episode: "Chasing the Bus"
2003 Miss Match Michelle Schiff Episode: "The Love Bandit"
2004 Six Months to Live Alice Episode: "1.1"
2004–05 Third Watch Grace Foster 22 episodes
2006–07 The Sopranos Kelli Moltisanti 7 episodes
2007 Law & Order Attorney Shannon Episode: "Melting Pot"
2007 Queens Supreme Bettina Martinelli Episode: "That Voodoo That You Do"
2007 The Dead Zone Sheriff Anna Turner 6 episodes
2008 Law & Order: Special Victims Unit Rachel Zelinsky Episode: "Unorthodox"
2008 The Unquiet Julie Bishop Television film
2009 ER Lisa Salamunovich Episode: "And in the End..."
2009 NCIS Navy Cdr. Sarah Resnik Episode: "Power Down"
2010 Mad Men Faye Miller 10 episodes
Nominated – Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Guest Actress in a Drama Series
Nominated – Screen Actors Guild Award for Outstanding Performance by an Ensemble in a Drama Series
2011 Brothers & Sisters Rose 3 episodes
2011 Hawaii Five-0 Agent Allison Marsh Episode: "Ho'opa'i"
2011 A Gifted Man Carol Gordan Episode: "In Case of Discomfort"
2012 Drew Peterson: Untouchable Kathleen Savio Television film
2013 Castle Siobhan O'Doul Episode: "The Wild Rover"
2013 The Good Wife Charlene Peterson Episode: "A More Perfect Union"
2014 The Carrie Diaries Penny Episode: "Hungry Like the Wolf"
2014 Elementary Sarah Cushing Episode: "Ears to You"
2014–15 Person of Interest Martine Rousseau 8 episodes
2015 The Mysteries of Laura Julia Davis Episode: "The Mystery of the Taken Boy"
2016–present Stranger Things Karen Wheeler Main role
Screen Actors Guild Award for Outstanding Performance by an Ensemble in a Drama Series (2016)
Nominated – Screen Actors Guild Award for Outstanding Performance by an Ensemble in a Drama Series (2017, 2019)
2017 The Blacklist: Redemption Anna Copeland Episode: "Leland Bray"
2017 Bull Amaya Andrews Episode: "The Illusion of Control"
2018 The Bad Seed Angela Grossman Television film
2018 The Romanoffs Debbie Newman Episode: "Bright and High Circle"
2019–21 Supergirl Gamemnae Recurring role[10]
2019 God Friended Me Karen Episode: "Return to Sender"
2022 The Girl from Plainville Gail Carter
2023 The Girl Who Escaped: The Kara Robinson Story Debra Robinson Television film

Video games

Year Title Voice role Notes
2002 Mafia Sarah Angelo


  1. ^ "Today's Birthdays". The Arizona Republic. The Associated Press. March 1, 2011. p. D6. Actress Cara Buono ('Mad Men') is 40.
  2. ^ Watkins, Gwynne (September 20, 2010). "Mad Men's Cara Buono on Her Character Faye's Affair With Don Draper". New York. Archived from the original on April 11, 2012. Retrieved April 8, 2012.
  3. ^ a b Freydkin, Donna (August 30, 2010). "Cara Buono shares cooking tips but no 'Mad Men' secrets". USA Today. Archived from the original on February 4, 2011.
  4. ^ "Cara Buono". Vogue Italy. Archived from the original on September 27, 2015. Retrieved July 30, 2015.
  5. ^ "LaGuardia Arts Alumni". Fiorello H. LaGuardia High School of Music & Arts and Performing Arts. Archived from the original on April 8, 2014.
  6. ^ a b "A NIGHT OUT WITH -- Cara Buono; Mrs. Wisguy". The New York Times. April 8, 2007.
  7. ^ Hochberg, Mina (September 27, 2010). Q&A with Cara Buono Archived September 29, 2010, at the Wayback Machine. AMCtv.com
  8. ^ 2011 Outstanding Guest Actress Nominees in a Drama Series Emmys.com
  9. ^ Cara Buono [@CaraBuono] (October 16, 2016). "My husband @peterthum made this with our 3 year old daughter. #boo" (Tweet) – via Twitter.
  10. ^ Boucher, Geoff (September 19, 2019). "'Supergirl': Mitch Pileggi And Cara Buono Join Season 5 Cast". Deadline.

External links