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Grace Zabriskie

Grace Zabriskie

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Also Known As: Died:
Born: Cause of Death:
Birth Place: New Orleans, Louisiana, USA Profession: actor, silk-screen printer

Biography CLOSE THE FULL BIOGRAPHY

A character actress given to tasty bit parts, Grace Zabriskie vacillates between erotic exhibitionists and colorful, brassy mothers. Since making her feature debut in "Norma Rae" (1978), the New Orleans-born actress has gone on to leave an indelible mark on both the small and big screens. She has been particularly effective in movies playing mothers, albeit not the kind that would be embraced by June Cleaver. In "An Officer and a Gentleman" (1982), Zabriskie portrayed Debra Winger's mom while in "Drugstore Cowboy" (1989), she was the rejecting parent of Matt Dillon. The actress drew on her roots as Dennis Quaid's Cajun mom in "The Big Easy" (1986) and was another Southern mother, this time to Sissy Spacek, in "Even Cowgirls Get the Blues" (1994). Two of her most memorable feature parts were as a crazed killer (in a role tailored specifically for her) in David Lynch's "Wild at Heart" (1990) and as Malcolm McDowall's wife in "Chain of Desire" (1993), for which she donned a maid's uniform and wig for a softly sadistic sex scene. Aong with a steady string of low-profile indie filsm, Zabriskie has appeared in "A Family Thing" (1996), "Armageddon" (1998), "Gone In Sixty Seconds" (2001), "The House on Turk...

A character actress given to tasty bit parts, Grace Zabriskie vacillates between erotic exhibitionists and colorful, brassy mothers. Since making her feature debut in "Norma Rae" (1978), the New Orleans-born actress has gone on to leave an indelible mark on both the small and big screens. She has been particularly effective in movies playing mothers, albeit not the kind that would be embraced by June Cleaver. In "An Officer and a Gentleman" (1982), Zabriskie portrayed Debra Winger's mom while in "Drugstore Cowboy" (1989), she was the rejecting parent of Matt Dillon. The actress drew on her roots as Dennis Quaid's Cajun mom in "The Big Easy" (1986) and was another Southern mother, this time to Sissy Spacek, in "Even Cowgirls Get the Blues" (1994). Two of her most memorable feature parts were as a crazed killer (in a role tailored specifically for her) in David Lynch's "Wild at Heart" (1990) and as Malcolm McDowall's wife in "Chain of Desire" (1993), for which she donned a maid's uniform and wig for a softly sadistic sex scene. Aong with a steady string of low-profile indie filsm, Zabriskie has appeared in "A Family Thing" (1996), "Armageddon" (1998), "Gone In Sixty Seconds" (2001), "The House on Turk Street" (2002) and, in a particularly effective turn, as the near catatonic victim of "The Grudge" (2004).

VIEW THE FULL BIOGRAPHY

Filmographyclose complete filmography

CAST: (feature film)

1.
 Wrong Cops (2013)
3.
 Bob Funk (2009)
4.
 License to Wed (2007)
5.
 Careless (2007)
6.
 Inland Empire (2006)
7.
 Grudge, The (2004) Emma
8.
 Chrystal (2004) Gladys
9.
 No Good Deed (2003) Mrs. Quarre
10.
 Glow, The (2002) Sylvia
VIEW THE FULL FILMOGRAPHY

Milestones close milestones

:
Born and raised in New Orleans, LA
:
Moved to Atlanta; worked as an actress and silk-screen painter
1978:
Made film acting debut in "Norma Rae"
1979:
Made TV debut in "The Concrete Cowboys" (CBS)
1979:
Moved to L.A.
1981:
Played Mrs. Ames in the ABC miniseries "John Steinbeck's East of Eden"
1982:
Cast as Debra Winger's mother in "An Officer and a Gentleman"
1989:
Portrayed Matt Dillon's mother in "Drugstore Cowboy," directed by Gus Van Sant
1990:
Played a crazed killer in David Lynch's "Wild at Heart"
1990:
Made debut as TV series regular, playing Sarah Palmer on the ABC series "Twin Peaks"
1991:
Reteamed with Van Sant for role in "My Own Private Idaho"
1992:
Reprised role of Sarah Palmer in Lynch's feature prequel "Twin Peaks: Fire Walk With Me"
1992:
Made first of several appearances as Mrs. Ross on "Seinfeld" (NBC)
1993:
Appeared in the interactive CD-ROM movie "Voyeur" as Robert Culp's neurotic sister
1993:
Starred in the ensemble-driven feature "Chain of Desire"
1994:
Landed featured role in Van Sant's "Even Cowgirls Get the Blues"
1996:
Co-starred in the acclaimed TV-movie "Bastard Out of Carolina" (Showtime), directed by Anjelica Huston
1997:
Appeared in "Armageddon"
1998:
Cast in Michael Bay's "Armageddon"
2002:
Played supporting role in crime drama "No Good Deed"
2004:
Acted in the U.S. remake of Japanese horror hit "The Grudge"
2006:
Played the mother of Bill Paxton's polygamist character on "Big Love" (HBO)
2009:
Cast as the mother and victim of Michael Shannon's character in Werner Herzog's "My Son, My Son, What Have Ye Done," produced by David Lynch
VIEW ALL MILESTONES

Notes

"I like the idea of staying not too high-profile and never looking back at a peak." --Grace Zabriskie to VANITY FAIR, September 1990

"I've done [normal roles] a few times, and they usually don't want too much personality, just sort of a generic woman. They bore me a little bit. Usually when I'm hired, it's to bring something extra to a role.

" ... I do a lot of mothers, but I do a lot of other parts. I know a lot of people who make a lot more money than I do who would kill for my career because of the variety of roles I get, and people I meet. I don't do badly (financially), and I work constantly." --Zabriskie quoted in Daily News, June 29, 1993.

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