Kaczmarek at the American Ballet Theatre's Annual Stars Under The Stars Benefit in September 2014
|Born||Jane Frances Kaczmarek
December 21, 1955
Milwaukee, Wisconsin, U.S.
|Alma mater||University of Wisconsin–Madison,
Yale School of Drama
|Spouse(s)||Bradley Whitford (m. 1992; div. 2009)|
Jane Frances Kaczmarek (Polish pronunciation: [kat͡ʂˈmarɛk]; born December 21, 1955) is an American actress. She is best known for playing the character of Lois on the television series Malcolm in the Middle (2000–06). Kaczmarek is a three-time Golden Globe and seven-time Emmy Award nominee.
Kaczmarek was born in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, the daughter of Evelyn (née Gregorska), a teacher, and Edward Kaczmarek, a US Department of Defense worker. Of Polish ancestry, she grew up in Greendale, where she was raised a Roman Catholic. She majored in theater at the University of Wisconsin–Madison and later attended grad school at the Yale School of Drama, where she was a part of its theater company.
In 1998, Kaczmarek was cast as David and Jennifer's mother in the movie Pleasantville. She has had several Broadway hits, including Lost in Yonkers and Raised in Captivity, where she won an LA Drama Critics' Award. Her first television role was that of Margie Spoletto on For Lovers Only (1982). One of her first notable appearances was in the famous 1984 movie Falling in Love, starring Meryl Streep and Robert De Niro, playing the role of Ann Raftis, De Niro's character's wife. She also played a role in The Heavenly Kid in 1985 as Emily.
Kaczmarek has also appeared in over 40 television roles, the most notable including:
- Nurse Sandy Burns on St. Elsewhere (1982).
- Connie Lehman in The Paper Chase: The Second Year (1983–1984).
- Mary Newell Abbott on Hometown (1985), a comedy/drama on CBS directly adapted from the 1983 hit movie The Big Chill.
- Linda Bauer, a lawyer, on the ABC legal drama Equal Justice (1990–1991).
- Maureen Culter, girlfriend of Martin Crane (John Mahoney) on Frasier in "Police Story" (052–1996) and "Dad Loves Sherry, the Boys Just Whine" (082–1997).
- Janet Rudman on Law & Order in "Censure" (414–1994).
- Carol Anderson, biological mother of Julie Emrick on Felicity in 5 episodes (1999–2000).
- Holly in five episodes of Cybill (1996–1997).
- Helene Thompson in three episodes of Party of Five (1995–1999).
- Lois, mother of Malcolm (Frankie Muniz), Reese (Justin Berfield), Francis (Christopher Masterson), Dewey (Erik Per Sullivan), and baby Jamie, and wife of Hal (Bryan Cranston) in 148 episodes of Malcolm in the Middle from 2000–2006.
- Trudy Kessler, Courtroom Judge in 25 episodes of Raising the Bar from 2008–2009.
- The voice of Judge Constance Harm, the strict female judge of Springfield Courthouse, in eight episodes of The Simpsons between 2001 and 2010, namely "The Parent Rap", "Brawl in the Family", "Barting Over", "Brake My Wife, Please", "The Wandering Juvie", "On a Clear Day I Can't See My Sister", "Rome-old and Juli-eh", and recently "Chief of Hearts".
- Mrs. Armwood, Frankie Heck's dental teacher in The Middle.
- Dr. Gallo, psychiatrist in The Big Bang Theory
Malcolm in the Middle
In 2000, Kaczmarek was cast to play Lois in the FOX mid-season replacement Malcolm in the Middle. TV Guide dubbed her role in the series as a "true breakout; a female Homer Simpson", and critics hailed her for her comic talents. Later, Kaczmarek would credit the show for bringing out her comedic side, claiming, "[Before Malcolm] I couldn't even get auditions for comedies. I played very unfunny people." For her performance as Lois, Kaczmarek was nominated for seven Emmy Awards for Outstanding Lead Actress in a Comedy Series. She also earned three Golden Globe Award nominations, two Screen Actors Guild Award nominations, and garnered two Television Critics' Association Awards and the American Comedy Award and Family Television Award in 2001.
Following the end of Malcolm in the Middle, Kaczmarek went on to star in the short-lived series Help Me Help You co-starring Ted Danson. She starred in the short-lived TNT series Raising the Bar as Judge Trudy Kessler. She also continues to voice Judge Constance Harm on several Simpsons episodes.
Since 2011, she has appeared on Whitney as Whitney's mother.
On November 2012, she made a guest appearance on ABC's The Middle as Frankie Heck's (Patricia Heaton) dental teacher. In 2013, Kaczmarek guest starred on NBC's long-running legal drama, Law & Order: Special Victims Unit, as Suffolk County D.A. Pamela "Pam" James.
In 2013, Kaczmarek played the lead role of Ms. Liz, a third generation dairy woman in the feature film Lost on Purpose starring alongside C. Thomas Howell, James Lafferty, Aaron Hill, Dale Dickey and Academy Award winner Octavia Spencer.
Kaczmarek reprised her role as Lois in an "alternate ending" featurette on the Breaking Bad DVD/Blu-ray box set that was released on November 26, 2013. In it, Hal wakes up from the nightmare that was the plot of Breaking Bad, in a nod to the final scene from Newhart.
In 2014, she appeared as herself on The Comeback, auditioning for the role of Mallory Church in the fictional HBO series-within-a-series entitled Seeing Red.
In 2016 she appeared as a psychiatrist on The Big Bang Theory.
Kaczmarek married fellow Wisconsin native and actor Bradley Whitford (The West Wing, Studio 60 on the Sunset Strip) on August 15, 1992. They lived in Los Angeles with their three children: Frances Genevieve (b. January 1997), George Edward (b. December 23, 1999) and Mary Louisa (b. November 25, 2002). Both were very active with charity, and were seen attending many major award shows together. She is the founder of "Clothes Off Our Back" which auctions celebrity clothing for children's charities. In June 2009, the couple filed for divorce after almost 17 years of marriage. One of the last times they were seen together publicly was in September 2008, at the opening of a Los Angeles production of The House of Blue Leaves, in which Kaczmarek was starring. According to a June 2009 magazine interview with More.com conducted prior to announcement of the divorce, she replied "That's a big no comment" when asked to sum up her love life. She also added that she used to believe that she could "go it alone and as long as I had some fabulous boy on my arm, or man, and my career was sailing, that's all I needed" whereas she now had grown to appreciate the support of her girlfriends "to talk about kids, to talk about marriages, to talk about just life". In 2010, they sold their villa, a former mansion, in San Marino, California.
Kaczmarek underwent a hip replacement in April 2004, due to chronic arthritis. She recovered quickly, and used an X-ray of her new hip for her Emmy campaign the following summer, advertising herself as "the only Emmy nominee with an artificial hip (except for Anthony LaPaglia)".
In 2006, Kaczmarek and Malcolm in the Middle co-star Erik Per Sullivan contributed the afterword for the children's book, Together, that shows the importance of domestic animals to impoverished people in the world, and was inspired by the mission of the nonprofit charitable organization, Heifer International.
Awards and nominations
|2000||Primetime Emmy Awards||Outstanding Lead Actress in a Comedy Series||Malcolm in the Middle||Nominated|
|2000||TCA Awards||Individual Achievement in Comedy||Won|
|2001||Primetime Emmy Awards||Outstanding Lead Actress in a Comedy Series||Nominated|
|2001||Golden Globe Awards||Best Actress in a Television Series: Musical or Comedy||Nominated|
|2001||Screen Actors Guild Awards||Outstanding Performance by a Female Actor in a Comedy Series||Nominated|
|2001||TCA Awards||Individual Achievement in Comedy||Won|
|2002||Primetime Emmy Awards||Outstanding Lead Actress in a Comedy Series||Nominated|
|2002||Golden Globe Awards||Best Actress in a Television Series: Musical or Comedy||Nominated|
|2002||Satellite Awards||Best Actress in a Television Series: Musical or Comedy||Nominated|
|2003||Primetime Emmy Awards||Outstanding Lead Actress in a Comedy Series||Nominated|
|2003||Golden Globe Awards||Best Actress in a Television Series: Musical or Comedy||Nominated|
|2003||Screen Actors Guild Awards||Outstanding Performance by a Female Actor in a Comedy Series||Nominated|
|2004||Primetime Emmy Awards||Outstanding Lead Actress in a Comedy Series||Nominated|
|2004||Satellite Awards||Best Actress in a Television Series: Musical or Comedy||Won|
|2005||Primetime Emmy Awards||Outstanding Lead Actress in a Comedy Series||Nominated|
|2006||Primetime Emmy Awards||Outstanding Lead Actress in a Comedy Series||Nominated|
|2012||Ovation Awards||Lead Actress in a Play||Good People||Nominated|
|1983||Uncommon Valor||Mrs. Wilkes|
|1984||Something About Amelia||Mrs. Hall||Television movie|
|1984||Falling in Love||Ann Raftis|
|1985||The Heavenly Kid||Emily Barnes|
|1985||Door to Door||Katherine Holloway|
|1986||The Christmas Gift||Susan||Television movie|
|1987||I'll Take Manhattan||Nina Stern||Television movie|
|1987||The Three Kings||Dr. Paula Bolet||Television movie|
|1989||Spooner||Gail Archer||Television movie|
|1994||Without Warning||Dr. Caroline Jaffe||Television movie|
|1996||The Chamber||Dr. Anne Biddows|
|1996||Apollo 11||Jan Armstrong||Television movie|
|1996||Wildly Available||Rita Goodman|
|2010||Reviving Ophelia||Marie||Television movie|
|1983||St. Elsewhere||Sandy Burns||3 episodes|
|1983||Remington Steele||Barbara Troy Dannon||Episode: "Altared Steele"|
|1983||Scarecrow and Mrs. King||Penny||Episode: "Always Look a Gift Horse in the Mouth"|
|1983–84||The Paper Chase||Connie Lehman||8 episodes|
|1984||Hill Street Blues||Officer Clara Pilksy||6 episodes|
|1985||Hometown||Mary Newell Abbott||10 episodes|
|1988||American Playhouse||Susan Glaspell||Episode: "Journey Into Genius"|
|1990–91||Equal Justice||Linda Bauer||22 episodes|
|1993||Big Wave Dave's||Karen Fisher||6 episodes|
|1994||Monty||Nickerson||Episode: "Wild, Wild Willy and His O.K. Corral"|
|1994||Law & Order||Janet Rudman||Episode: "Censure"|
|1994||ABC Afterschool Specials||Mary Reed||Episode: "Boys Will Be Boys"|
|1994||L.A. Law||Attorney Gershonwood||Episode: "Whose San Andreas Fault Is It, Anyways?"|
|1995||Picket Fences||Janice Neiman||Episode: "Heroes and Villains"|
|1995–99||Party of Five||Helene Thompson||3 episodes|
|1996||Touched by an Angel||Bonnie Bell||Episode: "Out of the Darkness"|
|1996||ABC Afterschool Specials||Nancy Gallagher||Episode: "Educating Mom"|
|1996–97||Frasier||Maureen Cutler||2 episodes|
|1997||The Practice||Pamela Boyd||2 episodes|
|1999||Felicity||Carol Anderson||5 episodes|
|2000–06||Malcolm in the Middle||Lois||146 episodes
American Comedy Award for Funniest Female Performer in a Television Series
Satellite Award for Best Actress – Television Series Musical or Comedy
Television Critics Association Award for Individual Achievement in Comedy (2000–01)
Nominated—Golden Globe Award for Best Actress – Television Series Musical or Comedy (2001–03)
Nominated—Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Lead Actress in a Comedy Series (2000–06)
Nominated—Satellite Award for Best Actress – Television Series Musical or Comedy
Nominated—Screen Actors Guild Award for Outstanding Performance by a Female Actor in a Comedy Series (2001, 2003)
Nominated—Teen Choice Award for Choice TV Actress – Comedy
Nominated—Viewers for Quality Television Award for Best Actress in a Quality Comedy Series
|2001–10||The Simpsons||Judge Constance Harm||8 episodes|
|2006–07||Help Me Help You||Anne Hoffman||6 episodes|
|2008–09||Raising the Bar||Judge Trudy Kessler||23 episodes|
|2012–13||The Middle||Sandy Armwood||2 episodes|
|2012–13||Jake and the Never Land Pirates||Red Jessica||11 episodes|
|2013||Law & Order: SVU||D.A. Pam James||Episode: "Beautiful Frame"|
|2013||Breaking Bad||Lois (Malcolm in the Middle)||Episode: "Felina" (Alternate Ending)|
|2014||Us & Them||Pam||7 episodes|
|2014–15||Playing House||Gwen Crawford||5 episodes|
|2014||The McCarthys||Eileen||Episode: "Sister Act"|
|2015||Big Time in Hollywood, FL||Dr. Moore||2 episodes|
|2015||Penn Zero: Part-Time Hero||Coach Jackie||Episode: "Ultrahyperball"|
|2016||The Big Bang Theory||Dr. Gallow||Episode: "The Sales Call Sublimation"|
- Roberts, Robin (July 13, 2003). "'Malcolm's' new fifth dimension". Record-Journal. p. F1, F5. Retrieved 10 April 2014.
- Borun, Thaddeus (1946). We, the Milwaukee Poles: The History of Milwaukeeans of Polish Descent and a Record of Their Contributions to the Greatness of Milwaukee. Nowiny Publishing Company. Retrieved 10 April 2014.
- "Gregorski, Frances J.". Milwaukee Journal Sentinel. May 29, 2003. Retrieved 10 April 2014.
- "Jane Kaczmarek Biography (1955-)". Film Reference. Advameg, Inc. Retrieved 10 April 2014.
- "Jane Kaczmarek Biography". The Biography Channel. A&E Television Networks. Retrieved 10 April 2014.
The daughter of a defense department employee and a teacher, she grew up in a strict, Catholic household.
- Off Topic With Tichina Arnold Archived March 21, 2007 at the Wayback Machine
- Malcolm in the Middle at the Wayback Machine (archived December 18, 2008). Fox.com
- "Malcolm in the Middle" on TV.com
- Schneider, Michael (Jul 22, 2011). "Exclusive: Sharon Osbourne Gets Animated for Next TV Gig". TV Guide. Retrieved 10 April 2014.
- Stanhope, Kate (November 19, 2012). "Law & Order: SVU Exclusive: Malcolm in the Middle Mom to Battle DA Barba". TV Guide. Retrieved November 19, 2012.
- Teti, John (November 17, 2013). "A Breaking Bad alternate ending is a Malcolm In The Middle dream sequence". The A.V. Club. Retrieved November 30, 2013.
- "Bradley Whitford and Jane Kaczmarek File for Divorce". People.
- "Bradley Whitford, Jane Kaczmarek File for Divorce After Nearly 17 Years". TVGuide.com. Retrieved June 20, 2009.
- Search: bradley whitford. Getty Images. Retrieved on 2011-09-23.
- Health, Beauty, Fashion, Love, Careers and more – MORE Magazine. More.com. Retrieved on 2011-09-23.
- Beale, Lauren (August 17, 2010). "Jane Kaczmarek, Bradley Whitford sell San Marino villa". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved October 3, 2014.
- "Malcolm in the Middle – Kaczmarek Has Hip Replacement Surgery". contactmusic.com, 24 June 2004.
- "Jane Kaczmarek – Kaczmarek Explains Hip Emmy Ad." contactmusic.com, 29 August 2004.
- "Center Theatre Group Tops 2012 Ovation Awards.". 13 November 2012.
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