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      S. Epatha Merkerson

      S. Epatha Merkerson

      Highest Rated: 91% Terminator 2: Judgment Day (1991)

      Lowest Rated: 13% The Rising Place (2002)

      Birthday: Nov 28, 1952

      Birthplace: Saginaw, Michigan, USA

      As an acclaimed performer with gritty but approachable style, actress S. Epatha Merkerson began her career on the stage both on and off-Broadway before moving to television, where she played the longest-running character on the seemingly eternal "Law & Order" (NBC, 1990-2010). Prior to her run on the procedural, Merkerson was perhaps best known for her small, but memorable role as a screaming wife in "Terminator 2: Judgment Day" (1991) while continuing her onstage success with an OBIE Award for her performance in "I'm Not Stupid" (1992). But in 1993, Merkerson went from virtual unknown to household regular who, over the next 17 years, was seen portraying the tough, but determined Lt. Anita Van Buren on "Law & Order," a role she reprised in episodes of the spin-off series and a made-for-television movie. She had arguably her greatest critical success with her leading performance as the spirited "Nanny" Crosby in the acclaimed television movie "Lackawanna Blues" (HBO, 2005), a role that won the actress both a Golden Globe and Emmy Award. Because of her longevity on "Law & Order" and the praise received for "Lackawanna Blues," Merkerson emerged as a highly desirable character actress capable of delivering consistent quality performances.

      Highest rated movies

      We Grown Now Terminator 2: Judgment Day
      Lincoln
      Mother and Child
      Lackawanna Blues
      Black Snake Moan
      Year by the Sea
      Peeples

      Photos

      S. Epatha Merkerson Chicago Fire, S Epatha Merkerson (L), Laurie Holden (R), 'I Am The Apocalypse', Season 3, Ep. #19, 04/07/2015, ©NBC Chicago Fire, from left: Lauren German, S Epatha Merkerson, Emily Shaffer, Patrick Flueger, 'I Am The Apocalypse', Season 3, Ep. #19, 04/07/2015, ©NBC Chicago Med, Rachel DiPillo (L), S Epatha Merkerson (R), 'The Green Branch', Season 1, Ep. #1, 11/17/2015, ©NBC Chicago Med, S Epatha Merkerson (L), Oliver Platt (R), 'Fallback Plan', Season 1, Ep. #3, 12/01/2015, ©NBC Chicago Med, S Epatha Merkerson, 'iNO', Season 1, Ep. #2, 11/24/2015, ©NBC Chicago Med, S Epatha Merkerson, 'iNO', Season 1, Ep. #2, 11/24/2015, ©NBC Chicago Med, S Epatha Merkerson, 'The Green Branch', Season 1, Ep. #1, 11/17/2015, ©NBC Chicago Med, S Epatha Merkerson, 'The Green Branch', Season 1, Ep. #1, 11/17/2015, ©NBC YEAR BY THE SEA, L-R: KAREN ALLEN, S. EPATHA MERKERSON, CELIA IMRIE, 2016. ©REAL WOMEN MAKE WAVES Being Mary Jane, from left: Aaron Spears, Gabrielle Union, S Epatha Merkerson, Gregory Alan Williams, 'Freedom', Season 2, Ep. #2, 02/10/2015, ©BET YEAR BY THE SEA, CENTER: S. EPATHA MERKERSON, RIGHT: KAREN ALLEN, 2016. ©REAL WOMEN MAKE WAVES Chicago Med, Taylor Kinney (L), S Epatha Merkerson (R), 11/17/2015, ©NBC Chicago Med, S Epatha Merkerson (L), Oliver Platt (R), 'An Honest Mistake', Season 1, Ep. #4, 12/08/2015, ©NBC The Good Wife, S Epatha Merkerson, 09/22/2009, ©CBS Deception, S Epatha Merkerson (L), Victor Garber (R), 'Good Luck With Your Death', Season 1, Ep. #9, 03/04/2013, ©NBC Deception, S Epatha Merkerson (L), Victor Garber (R), 'Good Luck With Your Death', Season 1, Ep. #9, 03/04/2013, ©NBC Deception, S Epatha Merkerson (L), Victor Garber (R), 'Good Luck With Your Death', Season 1, Ep. #9, 03/04/2013, ©NBC SLIPSTREAM, S. Epatha Merkerson, Jennifer Mann, 2007. ©Strand Releasing PEEPLES, l-r: S. Epatha Merkerson, Tyler James Williams, 2013, ph: Nicole Rivelli/©Lionsgate

      Filmography

      Movies

      Credit
      91% No Score Yet We Grown Now Anita (Character) - 2023
      48% 81% Year by the Sea Liz (Character) - 2016
      No Score Yet 52% The Challenger Jada (Character) $19.0K 2015
      No Score Yet 78% The Gabby Douglas Story Miss Caroline (Character) - 2014
      39% 49% Peeples Daphne Peeples (Character) $9.1M 2013
      90% 80% Lincoln Lydia Smith (Character) $182.2M 2012
      No Score Yet No Score Yet The Contradictions of Fair Hope Director,
      Executive Producer
      - 2012
      79% 76% Mother and Child Ada (Character) $1.1M 2009
      No Score Yet No Score Yet Zora Neale Hurston: Jump at the Sun Narrator - 2008
      No Score Yet 25% The Six Wives of Henry Lefay Effa (Character) - 2008
      No Score Yet 69% Girl, Positive Ariel Winters (Character) - 2007
      66% 69% Black Snake Moan Angela (Character) $9.4M 2007
      75% 91% Lackawanna Blues Rachel "Nanny" Crosby (Character) - 2005
      35% 79% Radio Maggie (Character) $52.3M 2003
      13% No Score Yet The Rising Place Lessie Watson (Character) - 2002
      No Score Yet 61% A Girl Thing Lani (Co-worker) (Character) - 2001
      No Score Yet 54% Exiled: A Law & Order Movie Lieutenant Anita Van Buren (Character) - 1998
      No Score Yet No Score Yet An Unexpected Life Beverly Hawkins (Character) - 1998
      No Score Yet 83% Breaking Through Barbara (Character) - 1996
      No Score Yet No Score Yet Breaking Free Barbara (Character) - 1996
      No Score Yet No Score Yet A Mother's Prayer Ruby (Character) - 1995
      No Score Yet 68% A Place for Annie Alice (Character) - 1994
      No Score Yet No Score Yet It's Nothing Personal Louise Waters (Character) - 1993
      91% 95% Terminator 2: Judgment Day Tarissa Dyson (Character) $552.8K 1991

      TV

      Credit
      No Score Yet 75% Chicago Med Sharon Goodwin (Character) 2015-2024
      98% 81% Poker Face Joyce Harris (Guest Star) 2023
      No Score Yet 88% Chicago Fire Sharon Goodwin (Guest Star) 2015-2017 2019 2023
      No Score Yet No Score Yet Antiques Roadshow Guest 2021
      No Score Yet No Score Yet Finding Your Roots Guest 2019-2020
      No Score Yet 90% Chicago P.D. Sharon Goodwin (Guest Star) 2016 2018-2019
      No Score Yet No Score Yet Find Our Missing Host 2012-2013
      37% 73% Deception Beverly (Guest Star) 2013
      No Score Yet No Score Yet The Wendy Williams Show Guest 2012-2013
      93% 90% The Good Wife Judge Melanie Ellis (Guest Star) 2013
      78% 60% Drop Dead Diva Judge Hiller (Guest Star) 2012
      No Score Yet 83% Law & Order Lt. Anita Van Buren (Character) 1993-2010
      83% 85% The Closer Dr. Rebecca Dioli (Guest Star) 2007
      No Score Yet No Score Yet Rachael Ray Guest 2006
      No Score Yet No Score Yet Law & Order: Trial by Jury Unknown (Guest Star) 2005
      No Score Yet 71% Law & Order: Criminal Intent Unknown (Guest Star) 2002
      95% 94% Frasier Dr. McCaskill (Guest Star) 2000
      No Score Yet No Score Yet The Daily Show With Jon Stewart Guest 2000
      17% No Score Yet Here and Now Claudia St. Marth (Character) 1992-1993