|Born||Patricia Davies Clarkson
December 29, 1959
New Orleans, Louisiana, U.S.
Patricia Davies Clarkson (born December 29, 1959) is an American actress. She has starred in many leading and supporting roles in films such as The Station Agent, The Green Mile, Far from Heaven, High Art, Dogville, Good Night, and Good Luck, Easy A, and Cairo Time. She was nominated for the Academy Award for Best Supporting Actress and the Golden Globe for her performance in Pieces of April (2003). She twice won the Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Guest Actress in a Drama Series for her recurring role in Six Feet Under. In 1998 she was nominated for a Drama Desk Award for Best Featured Actress in a Play for her Off-Broadway performance in The Maiden's Prayer.
Clarkson was born in New Orleans, the daughter of Jacquelyn (née Brechtel), a local New Orleans politician and councilwoman, and Arthur, a school administrator who worked at Louisiana State University's Department of Medicine. She studied drama at Fordham University, where she graduated summa cum laude, and earned her MFA at the Yale School of Drama before making her film debut in The Untouchables in 1987.
Clarkson's Broadway theatre credits include The House of Blue Leaves and Eastern Standard. She had supporting roles in a series of high-profile films in her early career. Her first movie role, at age 27, was as the wife of Eliot Ness (Kevin Costner) in The Untouchables. She was also featured in The Dead Pool, Rocket Gibraltar and Everybody's All-American. She starred in the short-run television series Davis Rules, and in the miniseries Alex Haley's Queen.
More often a character actor than a leading woman, she has also appeared in such major films as The Green Mile (1999), Far from Heaven (2002), Good Night, and Good Luck (2005) and Lars and the Real Girl (2007). Her breakthrough role was in High Art (1998) where her portrayal of Greta, a German, drug-addicted lesbian former model, gained rave reviews. She has said about acting, "I’m deeply invested in everything I do, and it’s a good thing, because acting is the only thing I know how to do."
In 2002, she originated her role as Sarah O'Connor (a.k.a. "Aunt Sarah") in HBO's Six Feet Under. She went on to win the Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Guest Actress in a Drama Series that year for her performance, she repeated for the same role in 2006. In 2003, she gained critical acclaim and a Special Jury Prize for her work in four films that debuted at the Sundance Film Festival: All the Real Girls, The Baroness and the Pig, The Station Agent and Pieces of April. Later that same year, she was nominated for an Academy Award for Best Supporting Actress for Pieces of April, in which she played an acerbic mother dying of cancer. In 2006, she portrayed Sadie Burke, in All the King's Men, set in her native New Orleans. In 2008, she had supporting roles in Elegy, as a womanizer's put-upon girlfriend, and Woody Allen's Vicky Cristina Barcelona as an unhappily married housewife.
In 2008, producer Gerald Peary approached Clarkson to do the voice-over for the documentary film For the Love of Movies: The Story of American Film Criticism. Says Peary, "She agreed to do the narration ... And she was so nice, and so cooperative, and so prepared, and so intelligent. And one of the key reasons she wanted to do the movie was that she regularly reads criticism, and has a genuine respect for the critic profession.
Clarkson returned to New Orleans for the January 17, 2009 reopening of the Mahalia Jackson Theatre for the Performing Arts. She served as Master of Ceremonies for a gala featuring Plácido Domingo in concert with the New Orleans Opera, conducted by Robert Lyall. She also made a cameo appearance in the Saturday Night Live Digital Short "Motherlover" on May 9, 2009. The video featured Andy Samberg, Justin Timberlake, and Susan Sarandon. She reprised the role on May 21, 2011 in the Digital Short "3-Way (The Golden Rule)". In 2010, she starred in Martin Scorsese's Shutter Island. Clarkson was honored by the Jameson Dublin International Film Festival when she received one of the 2010 Volta awards for achievements in her career.
In response to the Deepwater Horizon oil spill, Clarkson published a post for Natural Resources Defense Council's magazine OnEarth. She also released a public service announcement talking about her experiences growing up in New Orleans. Both pieces were released on July 26, 2010.
|1985||Spenser: For Hire||Elizabeth Haller||Episode: "The Choice"|
|1986||Equalizer, TheThe Equalizer||Deborah Wade||Episode: "Breakpoint"|
|1990||Tales from the Crypt||Suzy||Episode: "Mute Witness to Murder"|
|1990||Law & Order||Laura Winthrop||Episode: "By Hooker, By Crook"|
|1991||Davis Rules||Cosmo Yeargin||13 episodes|
|1995–1996||Murder One||Annie Hoffman||23 episodes|
|2000||Wonderland||Mrs. Tammy Banger||2 episodes|
|2001||Frasier||Claire French||4 episodes|
|2002–2005||Six Feet Under||Sarah O'Connor||7 episodes
Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Guest Actress in a Drama Series (2002, 2006)
|2007||American Masters||Narrator||Episode: "The American Dream"|
|2009–2011||Saturday Night Live||Mother||2 episodes|
|2011||Parks and Recreation||Tammy Swanson I||2 episodes|
- Patricia Clarkson profile, filmreference.com; accessed July 9, 2014.
- Patricia Clarkson Biography, movies.yahoo.com; accessed July 9, 2014.
- "Clarkson Shifts Her Weight" in the Washington Times (March 28, 2008), p. D1
- Altmann, Howard 'Patricia Clarkson', BOMB Magazine, Spring 2010; retrieved July 21, 2011
- Gordon, Devin, "A Woman on the Verge of a Breakthrough" in Newsweek, October 20, 2003, pp. 11
- "Move Over Sundance Kids, There's a New ... Star of Indies", New York Post, January 23, 2003, p. 39
- :SXSW '09 Interview: For the Love of Movies Director & Film Critic Gerald Peary", efilmcritic.com; accessed July 9, 2014.
- Theodore P. Mahne, "Star Emcee Patricia Clarkson Shares in the Excitement over Tonight's Opera Gala", The Times-Picayune, 2009 January 17, pp. C1, C3
- "Video Interviews: Shutter Island - Martin Scorsese, Leonardo DiCaprio, Ben Kingsley, Dennis Lehane", DreadCentral.com
- JDIFF announce recipients of this year's Volta Awards, Filmbase; retrieved February 24, 2010.
- Michael Ausiello (July 28, 2011). "Patricia Clarkson to Raise Hell as Tammy 1". TVLine. Retrieved July 9, 2014.
- Patricia Clarkson (July 26, 2010). "Returning to the Gulf After BP Destroyed It". OneEarth.org.
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Patricia Clarkson.|
- Patricia Clarkson at the Internet Movie Database
- Patricia Clarkson at the Internet Broadway Database
- Patricia Clarkson at the Internet Off-Broadway Database
- Patricia Clarkson at AllMovie
- "Patricia Clarkson, Directors' Stealth Weapon" Michelle Orange, The New York Times, July 30, 2010