Christina Pickles

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Christina Pickles
Christina Pickles.jpg
Pickles at the Governor's Ball held immediately after the 39th Annual Emmy Awards telecast, September 20, 1987
Born Christine Pickles[1]
(1935-02-17) February 17, 1935 (age 81)
Yorkshire, England, UK
Occupation Actress
Years active 1964–present
Spouse(s) Victor Lobl (1962–1985; divorced); 2 children
Ian Masters (2005–present)
Children Oliver

Christina Pickles (born Christine Pickles; February 17, 1935) is an English actress. She began her career performing on Broadway in the 1960s and early 1970s, and well as had starring roles on the daytime soap operas Guiding Light (1970–72), and Another World (1977–79).

Pickles is best known for her long-running role of Nurse Helen Rosenthal in the NBC medical drama St. Elsewhere (1982–1988), for which she received five Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Drama Series nominations. She also well known for her recurring role as Judy Geller on the NBC sitcom Friends, for which she also was nominated for a Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Guest Actress in a Comedy Series. Pickles also has appeared in films include Masters of the Universe (1987), Legends of the Fall (1994), Romeo + Juliet (1996) and The Wedding Singer (1998).

Early life[edit]

Christine Pickles was born in Yorkshire, England.[2] She is the daughter of Arthur Pickles, Liberal politician and Mayor of Halifax, and Gladys (née Crampton) Pickles. She is the niece of radio presenter Wilfred Pickles and the sister of judge James Pickles. Her niece, Carolyn Pickles, is also an actress. She graduated from the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art in London.[3]


In the 1960s Pickles moved to United States and began her acting career appearing in Broadway productions. Her credits include A Severed Head, Inadmissible Evidence, You Can't Take It with You, War and Peace, The Misanthrope, Hamlet, and Sherlock Holmes.[4]

At the same time, Pickles debuted on television, playing Linell Conway on Guiding Light (1970–72). She played Countess Elena dePoulignac on the NBC soap opera Another World (1977–79). She appeared in such feature films as Seizure (1974) and Rush It (1977). After moving from New York City to Los Angeles, Pickles was cast as Nurse Helen Rosenthal in the NBC medical drama St. Elsewhere. The series aired from 1982 to 1988. She remained on St. Elsewhere for its entire six-year run and was nominated for five Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Drama Series for her work on the series.[5][6]

She later was a regular on the short-lived CBS sitcom The People Next Door which aired in 1989. During the following years, she went to appear on Family Ties, Who's the Boss?, In the Heat of the Night, Matlock, The Nanny, Murder, She Wrote, and Touched by an Angel.[7]

From 1994 to 2003, Pickles played the recurring role of Judy Geller, the mother of Ross and Monica Geller (David Schwimmer and Courteney Cox), in the NBC sitcom Friends, making appearances throughout the ten-year run of the series. She received an Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Guest Actress in a Comedy Series nomination for this role in 1995.[5] Pickles played the mother of Harmon Rabb in the CBS drama series JAG from 1998 to 2000. From 1999 to 2000, she starred in the short-lived Fox comedy-drama series Get Real.[7]

Pickles has appeared in many films, including Masters of the Universe (1987), Revenge of the Nerds IV: Nerds in Love (1994), Legends of the Fall (1994) directed by Edward Zwick, Grace of My Heart (1996), Baz Luhrmann's Romeo + Juliet (1996), The Wedding Singer (1998), Sol Goode (2003), George of the Jungle 2 (2003), and Atlas Shrugged: Part I (2011). She has had roles in a number of made-for-television movies.[7]

In recent years, Pickles appeared on How I Met Your Mother as Lily Aldrin's grandmother and guest-starred on The Division, Medium, and Childrens Hospital. In 2016, she was cast in the ABC drama pilot The Death Of Eva Sofia Valdez, starring Gina Torres in a title role.[8]

Personal life[edit]

Pickles was married to producer/director Victor Lobl for 23 years, divorcing in 1985. She became a United States citizen in 1989. She was romantically linked to actor Herb Edelman, who also played her significant other on St. Elsewhere, from the mid-1980s until his death in 1996.[9]

In 2005, she married Australian journalist Ian Masters.[10]



Year Title Role Notes
1974 Seizure Nicole Blackstone
1978 Rush It Eve
1984 It Came Upon the Midnight Clear Chris
1987 Masters of the Universe Sorceress of Castle Grayskull
1989 The Hijacking of the Achille Lauro Charlotte Television film
1992 Nightmare in the Daylight Sarah Jenner Television film
1993 A Twist of the Knife Marilyn Cabot Television film
1994 Revenge of the Nerds IV: Nerds in Love Tippy
1994 Legends of the Fall Isabel Ludlow
1996 Grace of My Heart Mrs. Buxton
1996 Romeo + Juliet Caroline Montague
1996 No Easy Way Mrs. Livingston
1997 Weapons of Mass Distraction Mrs. Frieda Messinger Television film
1997 The Land Before Time V: The Mysterious Island Elsie (voice)
1998 The Wedding Singer Angie Sullivan
1998 Monday After the Miracle Kate Keller
1998 Murder She Purred: A Mrs. Murphy Mystery Mim Sanburne Television film
1999 Valerie Flake Meg Darnell
1999 Poseidon's Fury: Escape from the Lost City Goddess Short film
2002 Angels Don't Sleep Here Angela Porter
2003 Sol Goode Sol's Mom
2003 George of the Jungle 2 Beatrice Stanhope
2007 The Family Holiday Mrs. Pendergast
2008 Collectibles Narrator
2008 Immigrants Harriet (voice)
2009 Flower Girl Evangeline Walker
2011 Atlas Shrugged: Part I Mother Rearden
2013 Live at the Foxes Den Mrs. Ducksworth
2014 Wild & Precious Bea Short film



  1. ^ Profile,; accessed April 10, 2016.
  2. ^ "Christina Pickles". Yahoo Movies. Retrieved March 9, 2016. 
  3. ^ "Christina Pickles profile". Retrieved March 9, 2016. 
  4. ^ The Broadway League. "Christina Pickles – IBDB: The official source for Broadway Information". Retrieved March 9, 2016. 
  5. ^ a b "Christina Pickles". Television Academy. Retrieved March 9, 2016. 
  6. ^ "New York Times". Retrieved August 12, 2011. 
  7. ^ a b c Christina Pickles at the Internet Movie Database
  8. ^ Denise Petski. "'Drew': Rob McClure Cast In CBS' Nancy Drew Pilot". Deadline. Retrieved March 9, 2016. 
  9. ^ "Herbert Edelman; TV Character Actor". latimes. Retrieved March 9, 2016. 
  10. ^ "'Friends' Star Christina Pickles Invites Closer Into Her Cozy LA Home". August 29, 2015. Retrieved March 9, 2016. 

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