Margaret Colin was born in Brooklyn, New York City, and was raised in Baldwin, New York, on Long Island. She is of Irish descent and was raised in a Catholic family; She graduated from Baldwin Senior High School in 1976, and after attended Hofstra University.
Colin began her acting career in the soap opera The Edge of Night, playing an heiress and former terrorist. In seven months on that show, her character survived seven murder attempts and ended up marrying her stepbrother. She followed that role with a longer stint on As the World Turns, originating the role of Margo Montgomery, a character that endured nearly 30 years.
She has appeared on a number of primetime television shows, starting with Foley Square, Leg Work, and several early episodes of Chicago Hope. She played Lisa Wiseman on the 1999 series Now and Again, with Eric Close and Dennis Haysbert. In 2003, she appeared in an episode of Law & Order: Special Victims Unit titled "Tortured", playing a mother/bakery owner who was later arrested for abetting a murder.
From 2007 to 2012, Colin played the recurring role of Eleanor Waldorf, mother of Blair Waldorf, on the teen drama television series Gossip Girl. In the pilot episode, Eleanor was played by One Life to Live actress Florencia Lozano.
Colin has also been in a number of films, some of the most well-known including Something Wild (1986), Three Men and a Baby (1987), The Butcher's Wife (1991), Independence Day (1996), The Devil's Own (1997), Unfaithful (2002), and First Daughter (2004). She also appeared in the play Jackie: An American Life, in which she played Jacqueline Kennedy.
During her 2003 performance of the English play A Day in the Death of Joe Egg on Broadway, Colin smoked her way through the second half of the show and dedicated the performance to Mayor Michael Bloomberg in defiance of the state's smoking ban. After the play finished its run, she gave up smoking.
In 2017, Colin appeared as a recurring character throughout the sixth season of the HBO comedy series Veep, playing fictional CBS News anchor Jane McCabe. Along with her fellow cast members, Colin won the Screen Actors Guild Award for Outstanding Performance by an Ensemble in a Comedy Series. In 2019, she reprised her role as McCabe in the seventh season premiere of Veep and again in the series finale.
Colin performed on Broadway as Mrs. Mullin in the 2018 revival of Carousel.
Colin met actor Justin Deas when he played her love interest, Tom Hughes, on As the World Turns. They were married in January 1988. The couple have two sons, Sam and Joe, and Colin is stepmother of her husband's daughter from his first marriage. The family moved to Upper Montclair, New Jersey in the late 1990s.
She is an anti-abortion activist and was formerly the honorary co-chair of Feminists for Life, an organization opposed to abortion. Colin is an honorary board member of the group Feminists for Nonviolent Choices.
|1986||Pretty in Pink||English Teacher|
|1987||The Return of Sherlock Holmes||Jane Watson||Television film|
|1987||Warm Hearts, Cold Feet||Amy Webster||Television film|
|1987||Like Father Like Son||Ginnie Armbruster|
|1987||Three Men and a Baby||Rebecca|
|1989||True Believer||Kitty Greer|
|1989||Traveling Man||Joanna Reath||Television film|
|1990||Martians Go Home||Sara Brody|
|1990||Goodnight Sweet Wife: A Murder in Boston||Michelle Caruso||Television film|
|1991||The Butcher's Wife||Robyn Graves|
|1993||Amos & Andrew||Judy Gillman|
|1994||Terminal Velocity||Joline 'Jo'||Uncredited|
|1995||In the Shadow of Evil||Molly Nostrand||Television film|
|1996||Independence Day||Constance Spano|
|1996||Milk & Money||Lorraine|
|1997||The Devil's Own||Sheila O'Meara|
|1997||Time to Say Goodbye?||Kristen Hamstra|
|1998||The Adventures of Sebastian Cole||Joan Cole|
|1999||Hit & Run||Joanna Kendall||Television film|
|1999||Swing Vote||Linda Kirkland||Television film|
|2001||Private Lies||Ellen||Television film|
|2001||The Familiar Stranger||Elizabeth 'Peachy' Welsh||Television film|
|2001||The Wedding Dress||Madeline Carver||Television film|
|2004||First Daughter||Melanie MacKenzie|
|2006||A Broken Sole||Nan|
|2009||The Missing Person||Lana Cobb|
|2012||Camilla Dickinson||Mona Rowan|
|2014||Kelly & Cal||Janice|
|2014||You Must Be Joking||Linda Schwartz|
|2015||Stealing Chanel||Constance Borden|
|1979||The Edge of Night||Paige Madison||21 episodes|
|1980–83||As the World Turns||Margo Hughes||Role held: July 1980 – October 1983|
|1985–86||Foley Square||Alex Harrigan||Main cast; 14 episodes|
|1987||Leg Work||Claire McCarron||Main cast; 10 episodes|
|1988||Magnum, P.I.||Connie Northrop||Episode: "Legend of the Lost Art"|
|1991–92||Sibs||Audie Ruscio||Main cast; 22 episodes|
|1994||Related by Birth||Audie Ruscio||Television special|
|1994||Chicago Hope||Dr. Karen Antonovich||5 episodes|
|1995||The Wright Verdicts||Sandy Hamor||Main cast; 6 episodes|
|1999–2000||Now and Again||Lisa Wiseman||Main cast; 14 episodes|
|2000||Madigan Men||Vonda Madigan||Episode: "Pilot"|
|2003||Law & Order: Special Victims Unit||Mrs. Krug||Episode: "Tortured"|
|2004||Law & Order: Criminal Intent||Dr. Eloise Barnes||Episode: "Shrink-Wrapped"|
|2007–12||Gossip Girl||Eleanor Waldorf-Rose||33 episodes|
|2009||Royal Pains||Lucy Everett||Episode: "Strategic Planning"|
|2010||Law & Order||Mary Markson||Episode: "Four Cops Shot"|
|2010||Medium||Kelly Shuler||Episode: "It's a Wonderful Death"|
|2012||Blue Bloods||Melanie Maines||Episode: "Women with Guns"|
|2012||Nurse Jackie||Trish||2 episodes|
|2013||The Good Wife||Rochelle||Episode: "The Seven Day Rule"|
|2013||Elementary||Natalie Gale||Episode: "Blood Is Thicker"|
|2014||Gotham||Taylor Reece||Episode: "Viper"|
|2015||Madam Secretary||Judith Fanning||Season 2 Episode 7: "Catch and Release"|
|2017–2019||Veep||Jane McCabe||9 episodes|
Screen Actors Guild Award for Outstanding Performance by an Ensemble in a Comedy Series
|2017–2018||Shades of Blue||Linda Wozniak||13 episodes|
|2019||The Enemy Within||Evelyn Bell||Episode: "Sequestered"|
|2019||The I-Land||Dr. Stevenson||2 episodes|
|2021||Chicago Med||Carol Conte||7 episodes|
|2021||Gossip Girl||Eleanor Waldorf-Rose||Episode: "Final Cancellation"|
- "Margaret Colin". Playbill. Archived from the original on January 30, 2019. Retrieved January 30, 2019.
- Kaufman, Joanne (June 23, 2017). "A Brooklyn-Born Actress Rediscovers New York". The New York Times.
- "Margaret Colin:Biography". MSN. Archived from the original on 2009-07-10. Retrieved 2010-05-12.
Born in Brooklyn to a large Irish-Catholic family and raised on Long Island, Colin began acting in elementary school.
- DeWalt, Kellie (2009). "Former Hofstra Student Now a "Gossip Girl"". Hofstra Pulse. Hofstra University. Archived from the original on January 30, 2019. Retrieved January 30, 2019.
- New York Post, April 4, 2003
- "Nominees and Recipients for the 24th Annual Screen Actors Guild Awards". sagawards.com. Screen Actors Guild. 21 January 2018. Retrieved 15 February 2019.
- Klein, Alvin. "Baldwin Girl Finds Camelot (on Broadway)", The New York Times, February 22, 1998. Accessed January 26, 2008. "A year and a half ago the couple, married 10 years, and their sons, Sam, 8, and Joe, 4, moved from an apartment in Manhattan to a mansion for the money in Upper Montclair, New Jersey."
- "Margaret Colin Says More Risky Abortions Are Not the Answer for Our Daughters…". Feminists for Life. May 2, 2013. Retrieved September 6, 2020.
- Kolko, Cynthia (March 11, 2015). "Actress Margaret Colin featured at feminist event". Democrat and Chronicle. Retrieved September 6, 2020.