Fairuza Balk

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Fairuza Balk
Fairuza Balk.jpg
Fairuza Balk, January 2006
Born Fairuza Alejandra Feldthouse
(1974-05-21) May 21, 1974 (age 42)
Point Reyes, California, United States
Occupation Actress
Years active 1983–present
Website Fairuza.com

Fairuza Balk (born May 21, 1974) is an American film actress. She made her theatrical film debut as Dorothy Gale in Disney's 1985 film Return to Oz. Balk also made appearances in Valmont, The Craft, The Island of Dr. Moreau, American History X, The Waterboy, Almost Famous, and Personal Velocity: Three Portraits.

Early life[edit]

Balk was born as Fairuza Alejandra Feldthouse in Point Reyes, California.[1] Her first name is Farsi for "turquoise". Until age two, Balk lived in Cloverdale, California with her mother. They then moved to Vancouver, British Columbia, where she began acting at age six. They moved from London to Paris for another role. They remained there for six months before returning to Vancouver. Balk moved to Los Angeles as a young woman upon signing to act in The Craft.

Fairuza's mother, Cathryn Balk, has studied, performed, and taught the ethnic and traditional dance forms of many countries such as Egypt, Turkey, Morocco and Spain.[2] Her father, Solomon Feldthouse, was one of the founding members of the 1960s psychedelic rock group Kaleidoscope, and is also a traveling folk musician.[3] He was born in Pingree, Idaho and between the ages of 6 and 10, he lived in Turkey where he learned Greek, Turkish and Iraqui/Iranian music.[4] Balk has stated that her father is of Romani and Cherokee ancestry, and that her mother is of Irish and French descent.[5][6]

Career[edit]

Balk's debut role was in a television film titled The Best Christmas Pageant Ever, produced in 1983. While in London, Balk was cast by Walt Disney Productions to star as Dorothy Gale in Return to Oz, the unofficial sequel to MGM's 1939 musical The Wizard of Oz.[7] This role led to other, minor roles, including that of Mildred Hubble in The Worst Witch, and in 1988, at age 14, she moved to Paris to work on Valmont with Miloš Forman. By 1989 she was back in Vancouver, where she attended high school. However, she soon decided to take correspondence courses instead and went back to Hollywood, where she gained increasing notice as an actress. In 1992 she was awarded an Independent Spirit Award as best actress for her performance in the Allison Anders film Gas Food Lodging.

In 1996, she appeared in a lead role in The Craft, in which her character formed a teenage coven with characters portrayed by Neve Campbell, Rachel True and Robin Tunney.

Since The Craft, Balk has continued to find roles, primarily dark ones. In 1996 she co-starred in The Island of Dr Moreau with Marlon Brando, Val Kilmer and David Thewlis. In 1998 she gave an intense performance as a neo-Nazi goth-punk opposite Edward Norton in his Academy Award-nominated performance in American History X, and was featured in The Waterboy, alongside Adam Sandler. Since 2000, she has appeared in over a dozen films. She has also done voice work for animated films and video games, including Justice League and Grand Theft Auto: Vice City. The 2007 documentary Return To Oz: The Joy That Got Away was dedicated to her.

In 2010, Balk released the single "Stormwinds" under the artist title "Armed Love Militia".

In 2011, Balk began to exhibit art in Los Angeles and New York. On August 4, 2012, she participated in the group show 'MiXTAPE', with other notable artists Mark Ryden, Camille Rose Garcia, Jessicka Addams, and Marion Peck. Artists were asked to pick a song and create art inspired by that song. Fairuza chose the song “Nuages” by Django Reinhardt and created a 16"x20"x12" mixed-media sculpture. The eclectic mix of songs chosen were featured for digital download on iTunes.[8][9][10]

Filmography[edit]

Film
Year Title Role Notes
1985 Return to Oz Dorothy Gale
1986 Discovery Molly
The Worst Witch Mildred Hubble
1988 Outside Chance of Maximilian Glick, TheThe Outside Chance of Maximilian Glick Celia Brzjinski
1989 Valmont Cecile
1992 Gas Food Lodging Shade Independent Spirit Award for Best Female Lead
1994 Imaginary Crimes Sonya Weiler
Tollbooth Doris
1995 Things to Do in Denver When You're Dead Lucinda
1996 Craft, TheThe Craft Nancy Downs MTV Movie Award for Best Fight (shared with Robin Tunney)
Nominated – Saturn Award for Best Supporting Actress
Island of Dr. Moreau, TheThe Island of Dr. Moreau Aissa
1997 American Perfekt Alice Thomas
Maker, TheThe Maker Bella Sotto
1998 Life in the Fast Lane Mona
American History X Stacey
Waterboy, TheThe Waterboy Vicki Vallencourt
2000 Red Letters Gretchen Van Buren
Almost Famous Sapphire
2002 Personal Velocity: Three Portraits Paula
Deuces Wild Annie
2005 What is it? Screaming Snail / Insect / Monkey Girl (voice)
Don't Come Knocking Amber
Year and a Day, AA Year and a Day Lola
2006 Wild Tigers I Have Known Logan's Mom
2008 Humboldt County Bogart
Grindstone Road Hannah
2009 Bad Lieutenant: Port of Call New Orleans, TheThe Bad Lieutenant: Port of Call New Orleans Heidi
2010 Shit Year Message Voice
2013 Dose of Reality Rose
Another Stateside Rifka
2014 Beyond Clueless Narrator
2015 Battle Scars Rifka
August Falls Anna Ellison Post-production
Television
Year Title Role Notes
1983 Best Christmas Pageant Ever, TheThe Best Christmas Pageant Ever Beth Bradley Television film
1985 Deceptions Penny Roberts Television film
1986 Worst Witch, TheThe Worst Witch Mildred Hubble Television film
1987 Poor Little Rich Girl: The Barbara Hutton Story Barbara - Age 12 Television film
1991 Deadly Intentions... Again? Stacey Television film
1992 Shame Lizzie Curtis Television film
Danger of Love: The Carolyn Warmus Story, TheThe Danger of Love: The Carolyn Warmus Story Lisa Television film
1993 Murder in the Heartland Caril Ann Fugate Television film
1994 ZZ Top: Breakaway Vampire Girl Television film
1995 Shadow of a Doubt Angel Harwell Television film
2000 Family Guy Connie D'Amico (voice) Episode: "Let's Go to the Hop"
2001 The Sopranos Agent Deborah Ciccerone Episode: "Army of One"
2003 Justice League Penny Dee (voice) Episode: "Only a Dream"
2006 Orpheus Karen Television film
Masters of Horror Stacia Episode: "Pick Me Up"
2015 Ray Donovan Ginger Recurring, Season 3
Video games
Year Title Voice role
2002 Grand Theft Auto: Vice City Mercedes Cortez
2003 Lords of EverQuest Lady T'Lak

References[edit]

  1. ^ California Birth Index 1905–1995.
  2. ^ "Fairuza Balk Biography (1974-)". FilmReference.com. 2010. Retrieved 2010-08-12. 
  3. ^ "Fairuza Balk Photos, Gossip, Bio & Reviews". AskMen.com. IGN Entertainment, Inc. 2010. Retrieved 2010-08-12. 
  4. ^ "The Rise and Fall of the Neoprene Lizards — the Kaleidoscope Story, p. 1". PulsatingDream.com. 2006. Retrieved 2010-08-12. 
  5. ^ Balk, Fairuza (2010-09-10). "Persecution of the Roma". Fairuza.com. Retrieved 2010-09-20. 
  6. ^ "Fairuza Balk on Twitter". Twitter. 
  7. ^ "The Wizard of Oz Production Timeline". The Walt Disney releases an unofficial sequel to the 1939 film titled Return to Oz and starring Fairuza Balk. The film is not a musical, and is much darker in tone than the 1939 film. 
  8. ^ Miller, Bridgette.Frances Bean Cobain & More Create Art That Rocks for MiXTAPE LA Bust (magazine) Aug 02, 2012
  9. ^ LA MIXTAPE: AS A GESTURE OF LOVE L.A. Record August 3, 2012
  10. ^ Duran, Amy.[1] IN L.A.: LA MIXTAPE @ LEBASSE PROJECTS CHINA TOWN juxtapoz magazine Monday August 20, 2012

External links[edit]