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Camryn Manheim

Camryn Manheim

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Also Known As: Debra Frances Manheim Died:
Born: March 8, 1961 Cause of Death:
Birth Place: Caldwell, New Jersey, USA Profession: actor, improvisation teacher at NYU, sign language interpreter

Biography CLOSE THE FULL BIOGRAPHY

Camryn Manheim was an American actress who was best known for her Emmy Award-winning role as Ellenor Frutt on the legal drama "The Practice" (ABC, 1997-2004). Born in New Jersey and raised in Peoria, Illinois and Long Beach, California, Manheim first began acting in high school after she attended a Renaissance Fair. She was fascinated by the costumes and pure spectacle of it all, and immediately decided to pursue acting as a career. She would later go on to earn her BFA from the University of California, Santa Cruz, before entering the prestigious graduate acting program at New York University. After earning her MFA in acting from NYU, Manheim stayed in New York to pursue her acting career full-time. It was around this time that she began immersing herself in theater, and soon began appearing in numerous plays each year. As a day job Manheim worked at hospitals as a sign language interpreter, a skill that she would later use on an episode of "The Practice." By the mid-90s Manheim was starting to pick up bit parts in films and on television, most notably "Law & Order" (NBC, 1990-2010), "The Road to Wellville" (1994), and "Jeffrey" (1995). In 1995 Manheim also received wide acclaim for her successful...

Camryn Manheim was an American actress who was best known for her Emmy Award-winning role as Ellenor Frutt on the legal drama "The Practice" (ABC, 1997-2004). Born in New Jersey and raised in Peoria, Illinois and Long Beach, California, Manheim first began acting in high school after she attended a Renaissance Fair. She was fascinated by the costumes and pure spectacle of it all, and immediately decided to pursue acting as a career. She would later go on to earn her BFA from the University of California, Santa Cruz, before entering the prestigious graduate acting program at New York University. After earning her MFA in acting from NYU, Manheim stayed in New York to pursue her acting career full-time. It was around this time that she began immersing herself in theater, and soon began appearing in numerous plays each year. As a day job Manheim worked at hospitals as a sign language interpreter, a skill that she would later use on an episode of "The Practice." By the mid-90s Manheim was starting to pick up bit parts in films and on television, most notably "Law & Order" (NBC, 1990-2010), "The Road to Wellville" (1994), and "Jeffrey" (1995). In 1995 Manheim also received wide acclaim for her successful one-woman show "Wake Up, I'm Fat" (1995), which appeared on stages in New York. Her big break, however, came in 1997 when she was cast on the ABC legal drama "The Practice." Manheim would eventually go on to receive an Emmy for her performance, and appeared in all 167 episodes of the series. After "The Practice" ended its run in 2004 Manheim continued racking up roles on television, including recurring parts on "Ghost Whisperer" (CBS, 2005-2010), "Extant" (CBS, 2014-15), and "Person of Interest" (CBS, 2011-16). Having been fortunate enough to have worked steadily for over 20 years, 2018 also proved to be a banner year for Manheim. In addition to joining the cast of the comedy "Living Biblically" (CBS, 2018- ), she also appeared on the historical miniseries "Waco" (Spike, 2018).

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Filmographyclose complete filmography

CAST: (feature film)

1.
 Cop Car (2015)
2.
 Return to Sender (2015)
3.
 Fort McCoy (2014)
4.
 Makeover, The (2013)
5.
 Hot Flashes, The (2013)
6.
7.
 Love Hurts (2009)
8.
9.
 Slipstream (2007)
10.
VIEW THE FULL FILMOGRAPHY

Milestones close milestones

2005:
Cast in Lasse Hallström's "An Unfinished Life" with Robert Redford and Jennifer Lopez
2003:
Cast in the comedy "Scary Movie 3" written by the Wayans brothers
2005:
Earned an Emmy and Golden Globe nomination for her portrayal of Gladys Presley in the CBS miniseries "Elvis"
1997:
Had small role in "Romy and Michele's High School Reunion"
1994:
Co-starred in "The Road to Wellville"
1991:
Had early TV work guest-starring on "Law & Order" (NBC) for the first of four times
1995:
Made TV-movie debut in "Deadly Whispers" (CBS)
2007:
Had a recurring guest role on "Hannah Montana"
2011:
Played A.D.A. Kim Mendelsohn on the short-lived crime comedy series "Harry's Law"
2014:
Cast as Sam Barton on "Extant"
2017:
Cast in a recurring guest role on "Major Crimes"
1977:
Had her first professional "acting" role as a wench at the Renaissance Faire in Los Angeles
1987:
Made New York stage debut in Tony Kushner's "Hydriotaphia"
1990:
Made screen debut with a bit part in "The Bonfire of the Vanities"
1997:
Appeared as Ellenor Frutt on ABC's "The Practice"
2002:
Cast in "The Laramie Project," the true story of an American town in the wake of the murder of Matthew Shepard
2000:
Played Snow White in the television mini series "The 10th Kingdom"
2001:
Appeared in "A Girl Thing," starring Kate Capshaw, Stockard Channing and Mia Farrow
1998:
Published her book <i>Wake Up, I'm Fat!</i>, after her stage show
1993:
Starred in one-person Off-Broadway show, "Wake Up, I'm Fat"
2006:
Joined the cast of "Ghost Whisperer"
2018:
Was a supporting character on "By the Book"
:
Starred in a successful one-woman show "Wake Up, I'm Fat"
:
Appeared on the eagerly anticipated mini-series "Waco"
VIEW ALL MILESTONES

Education

Cabrillo Junior College: Santa Cruz, California -
University of California at Santa Cruz: Santa Cruz, California - 1984
New York University: New York, New York - 1987

Notes

Manheim rides a motorcycle and has since finishing at NYU also worked and volunteered as a sign language interpreter for the hearing-impaired.

She has 12 earrings in her right ear.

"I'm fat . . . a sexy, confident woman who embraces herself and isn't afraid." --Camryn Manheim in PEOPLE, November 21, 1994

"All the kids in California walked around in bathing suits; people went grocery shopping in bikinis. It was horrifying for me. I think gaining weight was a shield against that body-image stuff." --Manheim in PEOPLE, November 21, 1994

"She can play anyone." --stage director Michael Mayer in PEOPLE, November 21, 1994

"Someone has to dispel these myths that we [overweight people] are pathetic slobs. Yes, I'm fat. Yes, if there were a magic pill to make my body thin, I would take it. But I'm going to stop beating myself up, because what's inside that body is so worthwhile." --Manheim in PEOPLE, November 21, 1994

"There was a certain lack of support for Camryn at NYU. So she was pretty insecure. But Camryn is phenomenally talented and was perfect for the lead, so I cast her, which sort of shocked her. She was worried she wouldn't be taken seriously as a grown-up woman with adult sexual desires. She had no reason to be nervous. She's quite beautiful, immensely passionate." --Playwright Tony Kushner in THE NEW YORK TIMES, October 23, 1994

"I want to create my own type. I'm a five-foot-10 Amazon who isn't afraid to be naked or to kiss men or to be sexual anymore. I'm not pathetic, and I'm not self-deprecating. But I am still looking for a boyfriend, so I'd be really grateful if you could slip that in [the article] somewhere." --Manheim in THE NEW YORK TIMES, October 23, 1994

"I have always felt like a misfit in Hollywood, Well, actually, like a misfit in life. To be included in this very elite club [the Emmys] was more than just an honor. It felt like the fighting and the struggles I've been through will finally see an end." --Manheim quoted in USA TODAY, August 25, 1998

Companions close complete companion listing

companion:
Gregory Hines. Actor, dancer. Reportedly dated in summer 1998.

Family close complete family listing

father:
Jerry Manheim. College math professor.
mother:
Sylvia Manheim. Schoolteacher.
brother:
Karl Manheim. Lawyer. Older.
sister:
Lisa Manheim. Older.
son:
Milo Jacob Manheim. Born on March 6, 2001; Manheim refuses to identify the child's father.
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Bibliography close complete biography

"Wake Up, I'm Fat!" Broadway Books

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