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Bridget Fonda

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Also Known As: Bridget Jane Fonda Died:
Born: January 27, 1964 Cause of Death:
Birth Place: Los Angeles, California, USA Profession: actor

Biography CLOSE THE FULL BIOGRAPHY

Lithe, graceful Bridget Fonda represents the third generation of the Fonda acting dynasty. Granddaughter of Henry and daughter of Peter, she succumbed to the acting bug after appearing in a high school production of "Harvey". After studying theater at NYU's Tisch School of the Arts (where she played the lead in Andrew Fleming's student short "P.P.T."), Fonda made her professional screen debut in Franc Roddam's "Tristan and Isolde" segment of "Aria" (1987), in a role requiring nudity and little else. A year later, she did a sexy dance with a Confederate flag in "Shag" which caught the eye of writer-director David Hare, who cast her as Blair Brown's flighty younger sister in "Strapless" (1989). By then she had already gained widespread attention in "Scandal" (released two months earlier in 1989), playing Mandy Rice-Davies, one of the young women involved in the notorious English government-sex scandal of the 1960s. The roommate-from-hell thriller "Single White Female" (1992) paired Fonda with another young star, Jennifer Jason Leigh, and she contributed some nice work to the ensemble acting of the twentysomething comedy "Singles" (1992), as the character planning to have her breasts enlarged. Given...

Lithe, graceful Bridget Fonda represents the third generation of the Fonda acting dynasty. Granddaughter of Henry and daughter of Peter, she succumbed to the acting bug after appearing in a high school production of "Harvey". After studying theater at NYU's Tisch School of the Arts (where she played the lead in Andrew Fleming's student short "P.P.T."), Fonda made her professional screen debut in Franc Roddam's "Tristan and Isolde" segment of "Aria" (1987), in a role requiring nudity and little else. A year later, she did a sexy dance with a Confederate flag in "Shag" which caught the eye of writer-director David Hare, who cast her as Blair Brown's flighty younger sister in "Strapless" (1989). By then she had already gained widespread attention in "Scandal" (released two months earlier in 1989), playing Mandy Rice-Davies, one of the young women involved in the notorious English government-sex scandal of the 1960s.

The roommate-from-hell thriller "Single White Female" (1992) paired Fonda with another young star, Jennifer Jason Leigh, and she contributed some nice work to the ensemble acting of the twentysomething comedy "Singles" (1992), as the character planning to have her breasts enlarged. Given the chance to carry a film, she starred as a fairly credible (if whining) assassin in "Point of No Return" (1993), the American remake of Luc Besson's "La Femme Nikita" (1990), but the movie did not make her a superstar as some had hoped. Fonda put down the gun to play an appealing mother in "Little Buddha" (1993), an aspiring musician in "Camilla" (1994) and a down-to-earth waitress who shares a winning lottery ticket with Nicolas Cage in the Capraesque fable, "It Could Happen To You" (1994). She also essayed the female lead in Harold Becker's "City Hall" (1996), a drama about politics and corruption in Manhattan, co-starring Al Pacino (as the mayor) and John Cusack (as a deputy mayor).

Fonda has an elusive, quirky and offbeat quality that few directors have captured, which may explain why that single defining catapulting role to call her very own has remained out of reach. Unable to fully realize her potential, directors have often seriously underused her, and though she's a sexy little thing, she's more than that as her early work in "Strapless" and "Scandal" attest. Quentin Tarantino's "Jackie Brown" (1997) featured her as a conniving, overtanned blonde bimbo surfer "pot-head" who wears cutoff shorts and a bikini top as the kept girl of Samuel L Jackson, reinforcing her image as a so-called sex symbol but also giving her some first-rate, foul-mouthed dialogue to spout. That year also saw her contribute a neat, surprisingly touching cameo as Chris Eigeman's stuttering girlfriend in David Winkler's feature directing debut, "Mr. Jealousy", and earn an Emmy nomination as a yuppie pool of angst in Christopher Reeve's highly-acclaimed "In the Gloaming" (HBO).

Though she was the top-billed female in Sam Raimi's "A Simple Plan" (1998), the director's first departure from genre fare to concentrate on character development gave her nowhere near as much to sink her teeth as it did Bill Paxton and particularly Billy Bob Thornton. That said, she acquitted herself admirably as the sensible and loving new mom who nevertheless has the chilly heart of Lady Macbeth. She delivered a memorably sexy turn in "Finding Graceland" (1998), dressed in full regalia as a Marilyn Monroe impersonator. "Lake Placid" (1999), a drama penned by David E Kelley, offered her a juicy part as a paleontologist investigating a mysterious death while "The Break Up" (aired on Cinemax in 1999) cast her as a hearing-impaired woman accused of murdering her abusive husband. While still chasing that illusive star-making role, Fonda must remain content with being an actress who works constantly, which isn't so bad, after all.

VIEW THE FULL BIOGRAPHY

Filmographyclose complete filmography

CAST: (feature film)

1.
 Monkeybone (2001) Julie Mcelroy
2.
 Kiss of the Dragon (2001) Jessica
3.
 Whole Shebang, The (2001) Valentina Bazinni
4.
 No Ordinary Baby (2001) Linda Sinclair
5.
 South of Heaven, West of Hell (2000) Adalyne Dunfries
6.
 Lake Placid (1999) Kelly Scott
7.
 Simple Plan, A (1998) Sarah
8.
 Red Coat, The (1998)
9.
 Touch (1997) Lynn Faulkner
10.
 Mr. Jealousy (1997) Irene
VIEW THE FULL FILMOGRAPHY

Milestones close milestones

:
Raised in Coldwater Canyon, California
1987:
Film acting debut in Franc Roddam's segment ("Tristan und Isolde") of "Aria"; released in USA in 1998
1988:
First film released in USA, "You Can't Hurry Love"
1988:
Did a memorable, sexy dance with Confederate flag in "Shag", which led to role in David Hare's "Strapless" (1989)
1989:
TV acting debut in PBS special, "Jacob Have I Loved"
1989:
First film in a starring role, "Scandal", portrayed Mandy Rice-Davies
1990:
Played small role as photojournalist girlfriend of Andy Garcia in "The Godfather, Part III"
1992:
Shared apartment with the 'roommate from hell' (Jennifer Jason Leigh) in Barbet Schroeder's "Single White Female"
1993:
Role as assassin in "Point of No Return" (Hollywood remake of "La Femme Nikita") did not push her over-the-top to superstardom as hoped
1994:
Starred opposite Nicolas Cage in Andrew Bergman's charming but saccharin romantic comedy "It Could Happan to You"
1994:
Portrayed a would-be singer-songwriter who strikes up a friendship with an elderly, eccentric former concert violinist (Jessica Tandy) in "Camilla"; Tandy's last film
1995:
Delivered an oddly likable performance as vivacious magician's assistant in "Rough Magic", directorial debut of Clare Peploe (wife of Bernardo Bertolucci, for whom Fonda acted in "Little Buddha" 1993)
1996:
Cast as the female lead of "City Hall" opposite Al Pacino and John Cusack
1996:
Hosted "Dolphins in Danger: On Location with Bridget Fonda" on TBS, (whose owner, Ted Turner, is Fonda's uncle by marriage)
1997:
Nominated for a supporting actress Emmy Award for her performance as the sister of a man suffering from AIDS complications in "In The Gloaming" (HBO), directed by Christopher Reeve
1997:
Contributed neat, surprizingly touching cameo as Chris Eigeman's stuttering girlfriend in "Mr. Jealousy"
1997:
Played "pot-head" bimbo kept by Samuel L Jackson in Quentin Tarantino's "Jackie Brown", adapted from Elmore Leonard's novel "Rum Punch"
1998:
Portrayed Bill Paxton's scheming pregnant wife in Sam Raimi's "A Simple Plan"
1998:
Offered memorable turn in small role as Marilyn Monroe impersonator in David Winkler's feature directing debut, "Finding Graceland" (aired on Cinemax in 1999)
1999:
Acted in David E. Kelley-produced and scripted comedy-horror pic "Lake Placid"
1999:
Starred as a deaf woman accused of murdering her husband in "The Breakup" (premiered on Cinemax)
2001:
Co-starred with Jet Li in "Kiss of the Dragon"
2001:
Appeared on episodes of Showtime's "The Chris Isaak Show" as the singer's girlfriend Stephanie Furst
2002:
Had title role in the Hallmark TV production "The Snow Queen"
VIEW ALL MILESTONES

Education

Westlake School for Girls: Los Angeles , California -
Tisch School of the Arts, New York University: New York , New York -

Notes

Fonda rolled her silver 1998 Jaguar on the morning of Feb. 27, 2003 after losing control of the car on a rain-slicked section of Malibu's Pacific Coast Highway, flipping it over an embankment . The actress, who was driving alone, suffered a slight fracture of two thoracic vertebrae but was reportedly expected to make a full recovery.

Fonda was named after Bridget Hayward and Jane Fonda.

"An actress whom I respect said about me, 'God, she just has it in her blood.' And it hurt me so bad. 'Cause I DIDN'T have it in my blood. I went to school for four years and I was petrified--I had the WORST stage fright. I never learned anything from my family. I didn't take classes with them. I was just told to clean up my room and shit like that." --Bridget Fonda quoted in Premiere, March 1991.

On similarities with her famous father, Fonda told Movieline (November 1993): "We have the same sense of humor and we are both sort of cynical idealists."

"I feel like I've done a range of different roles, but, to a lot of people, it seems, I'm typecast as this slightly dangerous, raunchy, femme fatale type. Sometimes, I think the only way I could get out of it would be to play Nancy Drew, but I suspect the reviews would say that 'Bridget Fonda makes an awfully smutty Nancy Drew ... '" --Fonda quoted in press notes for "Strapless".

"She projects modern-day confidence and sexuality, often with an undercurrent of soul-searching, similar to the persona of Barbara Stanwyck in an earlier era." --From THE FILM ENCYCLOPEDIA by Ephraim Katz (New York: Harper Perennial: 1994)

"It's funny, I was in Peru, in the airport, and three girls with some bible study group taking a trip down the Amazon came up to me and said, 'Ohmygod you're Bridget Fonda, aren't you?' I said, 'Yeah.' And they said, 'You were in "Jacob Have I Loved". Did you do anything else?' That was the only thing they'd seen. That PBS movie of the week. I think, 'Yes! Let me take you home, you've seen this movie that nobody ever saw.'" --Bridget Fonda to Empire, May 1996.

About what her father called a "magical childhood": "On the weekends, we had parades down at the beach--we would carry flags and wear hats. Halloween was always so much fun--my mom would make costumes--and we used to dress up to go to the Renaissance Fair." To Bridget, famous hippies were just her parents' friends, the way Jane Fonda was just Aunt Jane, and Henry Fonda was just Grandpa. It was an upbringing that insulated her so completely from less progressive parts of the world that she was in her late twenties when she first discovered that some people despised her Aunt Jane for having opposed the Vietnam War. "It was shocking to me. I was stunned." --From Details, February 1998.

"It's very easy to get excited about a job, but it's a big commitment because you do it and then you have to live with it when it's finished. It's forever in your section in the video store. It's you. It's almost like deciding who you have a child with." --Fonda to London's Evening Standard, May 6, 1999.

Companions close complete companion listing

companion:
Lee Drysdale. British screenwriter, director, actor. Engaged in the late 1980s; directed Fonda in bomb, "Leather Jackets" (1991); no longer together.
companion:
Eric Stoltz. Actor. Met c. 1986; together from 1989; first movie together, "Singles" (1992); reportedly separated in May 1998.
companion:
Dwight Yoakam. Singer, actor. Dating as of late fall 1998; no longer together.
husband:
Danny Elfman. Film composer. Born c. 1954; engaged as of March 2003, married November 29, 2003.
VIEW COMPLETE COMPANION LISTING

Family close complete family listing

grandfather:
Henry Fonda. Actor.
grandmother:
Frances Brokaw Fonda. Committed suicide on October 14, 1950.
father:
Peter Fonda. Actor. Bridget was age eight when parents divorced.
mother:
Susan Brewer. Artist. Divorced from Bridget's father c. 1972.
aunt:
Jane Fonda. Actor.
brother:
Justin Fonda. Younger; grew up with Peter while Bridget lived with mother.
step-brother:
Thomas. Mother, Portia Rebecca Crockett, second wife of father Peter.
cousin:
Troy Garity. Actor. Born in 1974; son of Jane Fonda and Tom Hayden; appeared in "Conspiracy Theory".
godfather:
Larry Hagman. Actor.
VIEW COMPLETE FAMILY LISTING

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