Priscilla Pointer

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to navigation Jump to search

Priscilla Pointer
Michael Dunn Priscilla Pointer The Inner Journey.JPG
Priscilla Pointer and Michael Dunn (c. 1968)
Priscilla Marie Pointer

(1924-05-18) May 18, 1924 (age 98)
New York City, U.S.
Years active1948–2010
(m. 1947; died 1979)

(m. 1980; died 2007)
Children3; including David Irving and Amy Irving
RelativesAustin Irving (granddaughter)

Priscilla Marie Pointer[1] (born May 18, 1924) is an American actress. She began her career in the theater, including productions on Broadway. Later, Pointer moved to Hollywood to act in films and on television. She is the mother of Amy Irving, therefore making her the former mother-in-law of filmmakers Steven Spielberg and Bruno Barreto and the mother-in-law of documentary filmmaker Kenneth Bowser, Jr.

Personal life[edit]

Pointer was born in New York City. Her mother Augusta Leonora (née Davis) was an artist and an illustrator, and her father Kenneth Keith Pointer was an artist.[1][2] One of her maternal great-grandfathers, Jacob Barrett Cohen, was from a Jewish family that had lived in the United States since the 1700s.[1][3][4]

Pointer was married to film and stage director Jules Irving, former artistic director of Lincoln Center, from 1947 until his death in 1979; they are the parents of Katie Irving, director David Irving, and actress Amy Irving.[5] In 1980, she married actor/director/producer Robert Symonds, who had been Jules Irving's producing partner at Lincoln Center. She appeared several times in stage productions with Symonds, and they remained married until the latter's death in 2007.


Pointer has appeared in many films, including Carrie (1976), in which she played the onscreen mother of Amy Irving's character; The Onion Field (1979); Mommie Dearest (1981); Twilight Zone: The Movie (1983); A Nightmare on Elm Street 3: Dream Warriors (1987); David Lynch's Blue Velvet; and Coyote Moon (1999). In addition to Carrie, she has played onscreen mother to Amy Irving in Honeysuckle Rose (1980) and Carried Away (1996). They were both in the films The Competition in 1980 and Micki & Maude in 1984.

Pointer appeared in three films that her son David Irving directed: Rumpelstiltskin (a 1987 musical version, which starred her daughter), Good-bye, Cruel World, and C.H.U.D. II: Bud the C.H.U.D.

Pointer's first starring television role was on Where the Heart Is as Adrienne Harris Rainey (1972–1973). She has made many guest appearances on television, including Adam-12, L.A. Law, The A-Team, Judging Amy, The Rockford Files, and Cold Case.

From 1981 to 1983, Pointer had a recurring role on the soap opera Dallas as Rebecca Barnes Wentworth, the mother of Cliff Barnes (Ken Kercheval), Pamela Barnes Ewing (Victoria Principal), and Katherine Wentworth (Morgan Brittany).



Year Title Role(s) Notes
1976 Carrie Eleanor Snell
Nickelodeon Mabel
The Great Texas Dynamite Chase Miss Harris
1977 The 3,000 Mile Chase Emma Dvorak
Looking for Mr. Goodbar Mrs. Dunn
1979 The Onion Field Chrissie Campbell
1980 Honeysuckle Rose Rosella Ramsey
The Competition Mrs. Donellan
1981 Mommie Dearest Mrs. Chadwick
1983 Good-bye, Cruel World Myra
Twilight Zone: The Movie Miss Cox Segment: "Kick the Can"
1984 Micki & Maude Diana Hutchison
1985 The Falcon and the Snowman Mrs. Lee
1986 Blue Velvet Mrs. Beaumont
1987 Newhart Clara Whitscomber
Rumpelstiltskin Queen Grizelda
A Nightmare on Elm Street 3: Dream Warriors Dr. Elizabeth Simms
From the Hip Mrs. Martha Williams
1989 C.H.U.D. II: Bud the C.H.U.D. Doctor Berlin
1990 A Show of Force Alice Ryan
Disturbed Nurse Francine
1992 Unbecoming Age Grandma
1993 Painted Desert Barbara
1996 Carried Away Lily Henson
1999 Inferno Mrs. Henry Howard

Partial Television Credits[edit]

Year Title Role Notes
1969 N.Y.P.D. Woman with child in park Episode: "The Night Watch"
1970 The High Chaparral Mrs. Colton Episode: "A Matter of Vengeance"
1971 The Failing of Raymond History Teacher TV Movie
1973 Adam-12 Jacqueline Carey Episode: "Van Nuys Division: Pete's Mustache "
1977 Mary Jane Harper Cried Last Night Laura Atherton TV Movie
1981-1983 Dallas Rebecca Barnes Wentworth 44 episodes
1984 The New Mike Hammer Edna Grundy Episode: "Seven Dead Eyes"
Too Close for Comfort Betty Farnsworth Episode: "The Sound of Mother"
St. Elsewhere Marie Halloran Episode: "In Sickness and in Health"
1986-1988 L.A. Law Judge Dorothy M. Pehlman 4 episodes
1987 Newhart Clara Whitscomber Episode: "Me and My Gayle"
Rags to Riches Ruby Episode: "Vegas Rock"
1990-1991 The Flash Nora Allen 3 episodes
1994 ER Mrs. Abernathy Episode: "The Gift"
1997 Alone Susan Hight TV Movie
2001 Judging Amy Margaret Palmer Episode: "The Unforgiven"
2006 Cold Case Lillian Vine Episode: "Debut"
2008 Sweet Nothing in My Ear voice of Sally TV Movie


  1. ^ a b c "Archived copy" (PDF). Archived from the original (PDF) on December 3, 2010. Retrieved January 11, 2013.{{cite web}}: CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)
  2. ^ "Priscilla Pointer Biography (1924-)".
  3. ^ Archives, American Jewish. "First American Jewish Families - American Jewish Archives".
  4. ^ Elzas, Barnett A. (Barnett Abraham) (April 25, 2019). "Jewish marriage notices from the newspaper press of Charleston, S.C., 1775-1906". New York : Bloch Pub. Co. – via Internet Archive.
  5. ^ Fisher, James (2011). Historical Dictionary of Contemporary American Theater: 1930-2010. Scarecrow Press. p. 393. ISBN 9780810879508. Retrieved June 23, 2019.

External links[edit]