Jessica Harper

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Jessica Harper
Jessica Harper 1977 publicity shot.jpg
Harper in Little Women (1977)
Born (1949-10-10) October 10, 1949 (age 69)
Chicago, Illinois, U.S.
Residence Los Angeles, California, U.S.
New York City, New York, U.S.
Alma mater Sarah Lawrence College
Occupation Actress, producer, singer, author
Years active 1971-present
Spouse(s)
Tom Rothman (m. 1989)
Children 2

Jessica Harper (born October 10, 1949) is an American actress, producer, and singer. Harper began her feature film career with a starring role in Brian De Palma's Phantom of the Paradise (1974) as well as a role in Inserts (1975). She is best known for her portrayal of Suzy Bannion, the protagonist of Dario Argento's giallo cult classic Suspiria (1977),[1] and appeared in a supporting role in Luca Guadagnino's 2018 remake.[2]

Her other films include Stardust Memories (1980), Shock Treatment (1981) (the followup to The Rocky Horror Picture Show in which she replaced Susan Sarandon as Janet Weiss), The Blue Iguana (1988), Safe (1995), and Minority Report (2002). In addition to acting, Harper is also an author of children's music and books.

Early life[edit]

Harper was born in Chicago, Illinois, the daughter of Eleanor (née Emery), a writer, and Paul Church Harper, Jr., a painter and the former chairman of the Needham Harper Worldwide advertising agency in New York.[3][4][5] She attended the North Shore Country Day School in Winnetka, Illinois, and Sarah Lawrence College in New York.[6] She has three brothers, including a twin brother, William Harper, a composer, Sam Harper, a screenwriter and director, Charles Harper, and two sisters, Lindsay Harper duPont[4] and Diana Harper.

Career[edit]

Harper has appeared in more than twenty motion pictures, most notably in My Favorite Year, alongside Peter O'Toole and Mark Linn-Baker; and costarring with Steve Martin and Bernadette Peters in Pennies from Heaven. Woody Allen featured her in his films Stardust Memories and Love and Death. She appeared in the fourth season of It's Garry Shandling's Show and in the Steven Spielberg/Tom Cruise film Minority Report. She was seen in a 2005 episode ("Forget Me Not") of the television series Crossing Jordan.

She has written eleven books for children, and made seven albums of songs for children. She was named by Parenting magazine as "Parent of the Month" in 2004. In 2000, she sang background vocals on selected tracks on the Dan Hicks and his Hot Licks album Beatin' the Heat. [7]

In December 2010, Harper released a cookbook titled The Crabby Cook Cookbook: Recipes and Rants. In a January 2011 interview[8] Harper said, "I thought it was high time there was a book that acknowledged that not everybody experiences the joy of cooking, that sometimes cooking for a family on a daily basis can be really irritating! This book, with 135 easy recipes, is for those people, crabby cooks like me! It's a collection of humor, survival tips and recipes, for the kitchen-challenged!" In March 2011, she was on tour promoting her book. Stops included Chicago,[9] where she held a "Lunch and Learn with Jessica Harper".

Personal life[edit]

Harper married Thomas Edgar Rothman, a top executive at Sony Pictures (formerly of Columbia Pictures) on March 11, 1989.[4] She has two daughters, Elizabeth and Nora, who are featured on her children's albums and books. Harper resides in Los Angeles, California, and New York City.[10]

In a blog post on her official website in 2017, Harper revealed she had suffered from neovascular macular degeneration for the past 15 years, and that she receives injections in her eye every six weeks to treat the condition.[11]

Recordings[edit]

  • A Wonderful Life (1994)[12]

Filmography[edit]

Film[edit]

Year Film Role Notes
1972-1974 'Rameau's Nephew' by Diderot (Thanx to Dennis Young) by Wilma Schoen Unnamed character experimental film
1973 The Garden Party Peggy Short film
1974 Phantom of the Paradise Phoenix
1975 Inserts Cathy Cake
1975 Love and Death Natasha
1977 Suspiria Suzy Bannion
1979 The Evictors Ruth Watkins
1980 Stardust Memories Daisy
1981 Shock Treatment Janet Majors
1981 Pennies from Heaven Joan
1982 My Favorite Year K.C. Downing
1986 The Imagemaker Cynthia
1988 The Blue Iguana Cora
1989 Big Man on Campus Dr. Fisk
1989 Eat a Bowl of Tea American prostitute Uncredited
1993 Mr. Wonderful Funny Face
1995 Safe Joyce
1996 Boys Mrs. John Baker
2002 Minority Report Anne Lively
2018 Suspiria Anke [2]

Television[edit]

Year Film Role Notes
1971 NBC Children's Theatre Elizabeth Tyler Episode: "Super Plastic Elastic Goggles"[13]
1977 Hawaii Five-O Sunny Mandell Episode: "See How She Runs"
1977 Aspen Kit Kendrick Miniseries
1978 Little Women Jo March Television film
1979 Studs Lonigan Loretta Lonigan Miniseries
1985 When Dreams Come True Annie Television film
1985 Tales from the Darkside Prudence Episode: "The Tear Collector"
1986 The Equalizer Kate Parnell Episode: "Nocturne"
1986 Moonlighting Janine Dalton Episode: "All Creatures Great...and Not So Great"
1987 Once Again Carrie Television film
1987 Starman Charlotte Episode: "The System"
1987 Trying Times Sydney Episode: "Bedtime Story"
1988–90 It's Garry Shandling's Show Phoebe Bass 19 episodes
1990 Tales from the Crypt Marie Episode: "My Brother's Keeper"
1996 The Story First: Behind the Unabomber Linda Television film
1997 On the Edge of Innocence Alice Walker Television film
1998 Ally McBeal Sister Helen Episode: "Words Without Love"
1999 7th Heaven Norma Moon Episode: "Paranoia"
2005 Crossing Jordan Dorris Meisner Episode: "Forget Me Not"
2015 Proof Virginia Tyler Episode: "St. Luke's"

Stage credits[edit]

Year Title Role Venue Notes Ref.
1968–72 Hair Member of the Tribe Biltmore Theatre Replacement [14]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Brown, Nic. "An Interview with Jessica Harper". Rogue Cinema. Retrieved April 28, 2015.
  2. ^ a b Klein, Brennan (October 31, 2016). "Jessica Harper to Return for Suspiria Remake". JoBlo.com. Retrieved December 27, 2016.
  3. ^ Jessica Harper Biography
  4. ^ a b c "Jessica Harper, Actress, Marries T. E. Rothman". The New York Times. March 12, 1989. Retrieved December 30, 2017.
  5. ^ "The Blue Book: Leaders of the English-Speaking World"
  6. ^ Jessica Harper Biography at Yahoo! Movies
  7. ^ "Dan Hicks Discography". Retrieved January 27, 2017.
  8. ^ Mondo-video.com Archived February 7, 2011, at the Wayback Machine.
  9. ^ "Jessica Harper's The Crabby Cook Appearances". Thecrabbycook.com.
  10. ^ "Board of Directors: Jessica Harper". PXE.org. Archived from the original on December 31, 2017. Retrieved December 30, 2017.
  11. ^ "My Skin in the Game". JessicaHarper.com. 2017. Archived from the original on June 1, 2017. Retrieved December 30, 2017.
  12. ^ McCormick, Moria (December 24, 1994). "Child's Play". Billboard. p. 69. Probably the most delightful surprise of the year was actress Jessica Harper's debut children's album, "A Wonderful Life," on Alacazam!/Alacazar, label arm of wholesaler Silo Inc. of Waterbury, Vt.
  13. ^ "Super Plastic Elastic Goggles". PaleyCenter.org. The Paley Center for Media. Retrieved November 13, 2016. Air date was January 30, 1971.
  14. ^ "Hair - Broadway Musical". Internet Broadway Database. Retrieved December 30, 2017.

External links[edit]