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Marcia Cross

Marcia Cross

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Also Known As: Died:
Born: March 25, 1962 Cause of Death:
Birth Place: Marlborough, Massachusetts, USA Profession: actor

Biography CLOSE THE FULL BIOGRAPHY

Marcia Cross is one of those classically-trained actors who then find themselves playing delicious, yet hardly Shakespearean, characters on daytime and primetime soap operas, while pursuing more substantial roles on stage. The attractive redhead found herself alternating between repertory work and TV Sturm und Drang almost from the outset of her career. After graduating from Juilliard in the early 1980s, she made her debut on ABC's soap "The Edge of Night" before segueing to the same network's "One Life to Live." She also starred in various stage productions, including work at the prestigious Williamstown Theater Festival. In 1988, Cross moved to Los Angeles where she found work in episodic TV, including memorable turns as Rebecca's sultry sister on "Cheers" and as Garry's girlfriend on "It's Garry Shandling's Show." Her debut in the 1990 feature film "Bad Influence," in which she played James Spader's fiance, was well received. Cross made her primetime series debut on the CBS sudser "Knots Landing" (1991-92) as the obsessive former girlfriend of Pierce Lawton (Bruce Greenwood). Aaron Spelling had cast Cross in the unsold pilot "Temporarily Yours" in 1989 and remembered her when an actress was needed...

Marcia Cross is one of those classically-trained actors who then find themselves playing delicious, yet hardly Shakespearean, characters on daytime and primetime soap operas, while pursuing more substantial roles on stage. The attractive redhead found herself alternating between repertory work and TV Sturm und Drang almost from the outset of her career. After graduating from Juilliard in the early 1980s, she made her debut on ABC's soap "The Edge of Night" before segueing to the same network's "One Life to Live." She also starred in various stage productions, including work at the prestigious Williamstown Theater Festival. In 1988, Cross moved to Los Angeles where she found work in episodic TV, including memorable turns as Rebecca's sultry sister on "Cheers" and as Garry's girlfriend on "It's Garry Shandling's Show." Her debut in the 1990 feature film "Bad Influence," in which she played James Spader's fiance, was well received. Cross made her primetime series debut on the CBS sudser "Knots Landing" (1991-92) as the obsessive former girlfriend of Pierce Lawton (Bruce Greenwood).

Aaron Spelling had cast Cross in the unsold pilot "Temporarily Yours" in 1989 and remembered her when an actress was needed in 1992 to play Dr. Kimberly Shaw on "Melrose Place," Fox's young adult twist on "Beverly Hills, 90210." While simultaneously appearing in "Twelfth Night" in San Diego, Cross began her five season tenure as Kimberly, a doctor whose woes were not related to malpractice. She went from respected doctor to jilted lover to kidnapper to mad bomber to terminal patient. She departed the series and earned Master's Degree in psychology at LA's Antioch University.

In 1999 Cross took a recurring role on the ABC sitcom "Boy Meets World" and enjoyed two guest spots on "King of Queens" in 2002 and 2003, while in between she appeared in episodes of hit series including "Ally McBeal," "Spin City," "Touched By an Angel," "Profiler" and "CSI: Crime Scene Investigation." She also appeared in a string of low-profile films and telepics before returning to series televison on The WB's family drama "Everwood," playing Emily VanCamp's physician mother during 2003-2004 season. But the following year Cross was cast in what would likely be her most memorable role, "Desperate Housewives'" (ABC, 2004-12) very proper, Martha Stewart-esque Wisteria Lane homemaker/control freak Bree Van De Camp, whose picture perfect world hides extremely dysfunctional familial relationships. The mega-popular show breathed new life into Cross' career, and she earned a Golden Globe nomination in 2005 for Best Performance by an Actress in a Television Series - Musical or Comedy. The extra attention also put Cross' personal life in the media glare: in 2005 rumors abounded that the single actress was about to come out as a lesbian with a cover story in The Advocate. As the controversy fanned into a firestorm, the actress did indeed appear in the magazine, but only after proclaiming her heterosexuality to journalists including Babara Walters, noting "I just assume this is what results from being 42 and single."

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Filmographyclose complete filmography

CAST: (feature film)

1.
 Living in Fear (2001) Rebecca Hausman
2.
 Dancing in September (2000) Lydia
3.
 Target Earth (1998) Karen Mackaphe
4.
 Always Say Goodbye (1997) Anne Kidwell
5.
 All She Ever Wanted (1996) Rachel Stockman
6.
 Female Perversions (1996) Eve'S Mom
7.
 Mantis (1994) Carla
8.
 Bad Influence (1990) Ruth Fielding
9.
 Storm and Sorrow (1990) Marty Hoey
10.
VIEW THE FULL FILMOGRAPHY

Milestones close milestones

2004:
Cast as Bree Van De Kamp, the picture-perfect Stepford wife in the ABC series "Desperate Housewives"; received Golden Globe (2005, 2006, 2007) and Emmy (2005) nominations for Best Actress in a Comedy Series
1992:
Played Dr Kimberly Shaw on the Fox primetime soap "Melrose Place"
2002:
Played Dr. Linda Abbott on the drama "Everwood"
1989:
Appeared in busted pilot for Aaron Spelling Entertainment entitled "Temporarily Yours"
1990:
Feature film debut as James Spader's fiance in "Bad Influence"
1985:
Made primetime TV debut in movie "Brass" (CBS)
1984:
Made TV debut on ABC soap "Edge of Night"
1988:
Moved to Los Angeles; cast as Kirstie Alley's sultry sister on an episode of "Cheers"
1986:
Played regular role of Kate Sanders Roberts on the ABC daytime soap "One Life to Live"
1991:
Primetime TV series debut, "Knots Landing" (CBS)
1986:
TV-miniseries debut "George Washington II: The Forging of a Nation"
VIEW ALL MILESTONES

Education

The Juilliard School: New York, New York -

Notes

According to Cross in an interview in Entertainment Weekly, making the jump from Shakespeare to Spelling is not always a case of just leaving the bard at the dressing room door: "At one point I kept getting these 'Melrose Place' scripts that were soooo out there, waaaay gone. I was like 'There's no way I can play this and not be the worst actress in Hollywood.' But then I decided that it was Kimberly's party and to just play it scene-by-scene."

Cross has acted in productions at the Williamstown Theatre Festival, at the famed Folger Theater in Washington, DC, and with the Hartford Stage Company, as well as the Old Globe in San Diego.

"From someone like myself who's had, like, lots of therapy, and I have my masters in psychology ... I love that I'm playing this woman that's driven by things that she doesn't even know about."---Cross to US, April 11, 2005.

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