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      Shirley Knight

      Shirley Knight

      Highest Rated: 88% If These Walls Could Talk (1996)

      Lowest Rated: Not Available

      Birthday: Jul 5, 1936

      Birthplace: Goessel, Kansas, USA

      Kansas-born Shirley Knight originally intended to be an opera singer until she saw a touring company of "The Lark" starring Julie Harris and switched to acting. In 1957, she headed west to study at the Pasadena Playhouse where she made her stage debut the following year in "Look Back in Anger." Knight was put under contract by Warner Bros. and the petite blonde earned critical acclaim and a Best Supporting Actress Oscar nomination as an Oklahoman in love with a Jew in the screen adaptation of William Inge's "The Dark at the Top of the Stairs" (1960). She picked up a second nod in the same category as Heavenly Finley, the woman seduced and abandoned by Chance Wayne, in "Sweet Bird of Youth" (1962). In "The Group" (1966), her character found seeming happiness with James Broderick while later that same year she delivered a strong turn as a sluttish white woman who confronts a young black male passenger in "The Dutchman." After a strong turn as a pregnant woman who runs off with a football player in Francis Ford Coppola's "The Rain People" (1969), Knight moved to England with her second husband, British playwright John Hopkins and did not act on screen for five years, returning in "Juggernaut" (1974). Her subsequent film roles have generally cast her in maternal roles as in "Endless Love" (1981), "Stuart Saves His Family" (1995) and "As Good As It Gets" (1997). While she found almost immediate success in films, Knight has a stated preference for stage work. Spurning an offer to play Ophelia to Richard Burton's "Hamlet," she opted to co-star with Geraldine Page and Kim Stanley in an Actors Studio production of Chekhov's "Three Sisters" (1964). She acquired a Tony as Featured Actress in a Play for her turn as a floozy in "Kennedy's Children" (1975) and has appeared in several classics including twice playing Blanche in "A Streetcar Named Desire," Lola in "Come Back, Little Sheba" and Amanda Wingfield in "The Glass Menagerie." More recently, Knight returned to Broadway and netted a Tony nomination for her turn as a woman who refuses to accept that her son committed suicide in Horton Foote's Pulitzer-winning "The Young Man From Atlanta" in 1997. The small screen has also provided the actress with challenging roles. She made her first appearance in the medium in a live broadcast in 1959 and amassed numerous guest credits in the 60s and 70s. Knight co-starred opposite Jason Robards in a "Hallmark Hall of Fame" presentation of "The Country Girl" (NBC, 1974) and Alan Arkin in the above average CBS movie "The Defection of Simas Kudirka" (1978). She offered a strong turn and earned her first Emmy nomination as a concentration camp inmate in the acclaimed "Playing for Time" (CBS, 1980) before picking up the award for a guest appearance as the mother of Mel Harris' Hope in a 1987 episode of ABC's "thirtysomething." Knight had her first regular series role in the short-lived 1993 CBS drama "Angel Falls." At the 1995 Emmy Awards, she picked up two statuettes, one for her guest appearance as the mother of a murder victim in an episode of "NYPD Blue" and the second as day care center owner Peggy Buckley who was accused of and tried for child molestation in the fact-based HBO drama "Indictment: The McMartin Trial." Knight has continued to be a powerful presence in the medium, offering effective supporting turns in such made-for-television fare as "Stolen Memories: Secrets From the Rose Garden" (Family Channel, 1996), "Mary & Tim" (CBS, 1996) and "The Wedding" (ABC, 1998). She returned to regular series work cast as the mother of the titular "Maggie Winters" in the short-lived 1998 CBS sitcom starring Faith Ford. The actress's schedule remained packed with continual roles in feature films--including "Angel Eyes" (2001), "The Salton Sea" (2002) and "The Divine Secrets of the Ya-Ya Sisterhood" (2002). Knight became a regular fixture on the small screen with guest appearances on such series as "Ally McBeal," "ER," "Law & Order: Special Victims Unit," "Crossing Jordan," and "Cold Case" and "House," and in 2005 she began a recurring stint on "Desperate Housewives" as Phyllis Van De Kamp, the meddling mother-in-law of tightly wound Bree (Marcia Cross). Shirley Knight died on April 22, 2020 in San Marcos, TX at the age of 83.

      Highest rated movies

      If These Walls Could Talk
      Tibet: Cry of the Snow Lion
      As Good as It Gets
      Petulia
      The Rain People
      Redwood Highway
      The Sender
      Juggernaut

      Photos

      THE RAIN PEOPLE, Shirley Knight, 1969 THE COUCH, Grant Williams, Shirley Knight, 1962 THE DARK AT THE TOP OF THE STAIRS, Shirley Knight, 1960 THE RAIN PEOPLE, Robert Duvall, Shirley Knight, 1969 THE GROUP, Shirley Knight, 1966 THE RAIN PEOPLE, Shirley Knight, 1969 THE RAIN PEOPLE, Shirley Knight, 1969 SWEET BIRD OF YOUTH, from left, Shirley Knight, Paul Newman, 1962 THE RAIN PEOPLE, James Caan, Shirley Knight, 1969 THE RAIN PEOPLE, Shirley Knight, James Caan, 1969 THE RAIN PEOPLE, Robert Duvall, Shirley Knight, 1969 THE RAIN PEOPLE, Shirley Knight, Robert Duvall, 1969 THE GROUP, (L-R), Baruch Lumet, Joanna Pettet, Robert Emhardt, Shirley Knight, 1966. SWEET BIRD OF YOUTH, Shirley Knight, Paul Newman, 1962 SWEET BIRD OF YOUTH, Paul Newman, Shirley Knight, 1962 DIVINE SECRETS OF THE YA-YA SISTERHOOD, Ellen Burstyn, Maggie Smith, Fionnula Flanagan, Shirley Knight, 2002, (c) Warner Brothers (c) Warner Brothers. . ICE PALACE, Carolyn Jones, Richard Burton, Shirley Knight, 1960 HOUSE OF WOMEN, Barbara Nichols, Constance Ford, Shirley Knight, 1962 SWEET BIRD OF YOUTH, Paul Newman, Shirley Knight, 1962 THE GROUP, Larry Hagman (front row, 2nd from left), Joanna Pettet (front row, 2nd from right), Kathleen Widdoes (front row, right), Shirley Knight (2nd row, third from right), Elizabeth Hartman (2nd row, middle), Candice Bergen (3rd row, third from right),

      Filmography

      Movies

      Credit
      No Score Yet 67% The Missing Girl Mrs. Colvins (Character) - 2015
      6% 33% Paul Blart: Mall Cop 2 Mom (Character) $71.0M 2015
      No Score Yet 27% Mercy Mercy (Character) - 2014
      80% 51% Redwood Highway Marie Vaughn (Character) $1.3M 2013
      No Score Yet 24% Elevator Jane Redding (Character) - 2011
      71% 51% Our Idiot Brother Ilene (Character) $24.8M 2011
      No Score Yet 56% The Melancholy Fantastic Mor (Character) - 2011
      No Score Yet 76% Listen to Your Heart Grandma Sam (Character) - 2010
      69% 50% The Private Lives of Pippa Lee Dot Nadeau (Character) - 2009
      34% 43% Paul Blart: Mall Cop Mom (Character) $146.3M 2009
      No Score Yet 50% The Other Side of the Tracks Helen (Character) - 2008
      No Score Yet No Score Yet Thanks to Gravity Lea (Character) - 2006
      20% 33% Open Window Dr. Ann Monohan (Character) - 2006
      15% 85% Grandma's Boy Bea (Character) $6.1M 2006
      No Score Yet 42% Sexual Life Joanna (Character) - 2004
      No Score Yet No Score Yet Mrs. Ashboro's Cat Mrs. Ashboro (Character) - 2003
      86% 90% Tibet: Cry of the Snow Lion Tibetan Voiceovers (Character) $577.8K 2003
      75% No Score Yet A House on a Hill Mercedes Mayfield (Character) $678 2003
      24% 36% P.S. Your Cat Is Dead! Aunt Claire (Character) $24.8K 2002
      44% 65% Divine Secrets of the Ya-Ya Sisterhood Necie (Character) $69.6M 2002
      63% 82% The Salton Sea Nancy Plummer (Character) $676.7K 2002
      No Score Yet No Score Yet Shadow Realm Mrs. Finch (Character) - 2002
      No Score Yet 59% My Louisiana Sky Jewel Ramsey (Character) - 2001
      32% 46% Angel Eyes Elanora Davis (Character) $24.0M 2001
      No Score Yet No Score Yet 75 Degrees in July Jo Beth Anderson (Character) - 2000
      No Score Yet 17% A Marriage of Convenience Harriet Winslow (Character) - 1998
      No Score Yet No Score Yet A Father for Brittany Donna Minkowitz (Character) - 1998
      25% 71% Little Boy Blue Doris Knight (Character) $3.5K 1997
      86% 86% As Good as It Gets Beverly Connelly (Character) $147.6M 1997
      No Score Yet No Score Yet Convictions Margaret (Character) - 1997
      23% 40% Diabolique Edie Danziger (Character) $16.5M 1996
      No Score Yet No Score Yet Mary & Tim Esther Melville (Character) - 1996
      No Score Yet No Score Yet The Uninvited Delia (Character) - 1996
      88% 74% If These Walls Could Talk Mary Donnelly (Character) - 1996
      No Score Yet 92% A Promise to Carolyn Jolene Maggart (Character) - 1996
      No Score Yet 40% Somebody Is Waiting Irma Cill (Character) - 1996
      No Score Yet No Score Yet Dying to Be Perfect: The Ellen Hart Pena Story Joan Hart (Character) - 1996
      No Score Yet No Score Yet Stolen Memories: Secrets From the Rose Garden Sally Ann (Character) - 1996
      No Score Yet 77% Indictment: The McMartin Trial Peggy Buckey (Character) - 1995
      No Score Yet 75% A Good Day to Die Aunt Bertha (Character) - 1995
      30% 53% Stuart Saves His Family Mom (Character) $718.5K 1995
      No Score Yet No Score Yet Dad, the Angel & Me Betty (Character) - 1995
      No Score Yet No Score Yet Fudge-A-Mania Unknown (Character) - 1995
      22% 30% Color of Night Edith Niedelmeyer (Character) $19.7M 1994
      No Score Yet No Score Yet Baby Brokers Sylvia (Character) - 1994
      No Score Yet No Score Yet The Secret Life of Houses Aunt Fergie (Character) - 1994
      No Score Yet No Score Yet A Mother's Revenge Bess Warden (Character) - 1993
      No Score Yet No Score Yet Bump in the Night Katie (Character) - 1991
      No Score Yet No Score Yet To Save a Child Rinda Larson (Character) - 1991
      No Score Yet No Score Yet The Sweet Scent of Death Ann Fairfax Denver (Character) - 1985
      No Score Yet No Score Yet Urge to Kill Edna Reinecker (Character) - 1984
      No Score Yet No Score Yet Prisoners Virginia (Character) - 1983
      80% 32% The Sender Jerolyn (Character) - 1982
      26% 51% Endless Love Ann Butterfield (Character) - 1981
      No Score Yet No Score Yet Barbarian Goddess Barbara Shelton (Character) - 1981
      No Score Yet 73% Playing for Time Frau Lagerfuhrerin Maria Mandel (Character) - 1980
      No Score Yet 30% Une Fille pour les Cannibales Barbara Shelton (Character) - 1979
      0% 22% Beyond the Poseidon Adventure Hannah Meredith (Character) - 1979
      No Score Yet No Score Yet Champions: A Love Story Barbara Harlich (Character) - 1979
      No Score Yet 56% 21 Hours at Munich Anneliese Graes (Character) - 1976
      No Score Yet No Score Yet Return to Earth Joan Aldrin (Character) - 1976
      No Score Yet No Score Yet Medical Story Phyllis Lenahan (Character) - 1975
      No Score Yet No Score Yet Please Stand by for Murder Unknown (Character) - 1975
      No Score Yet No Score Yet Friendly Persuasion Eliza Birdwell (Character) - 1975
      80% 56% Juggernaut Barbara Banister (Character) - 1974
      No Score Yet No Score Yet Secrets Beatrice (Character) - 1971
      85% 62% The Rain People Natalie Ravenna (Character) - 1969
      86% 80% Petulia Polo (Character) - 1968
      No Score Yet No Score Yet The Counterfeit Killer Angie Peterson (Character) - 1968
      No Score Yet No Score Yet Shadow Over Elveron Joanne Tregaskis (Character) - 1968
      No Score Yet No Score Yet The Outsider Peggy Leydon (Character) - 1967
      71% 59% The Group Polly (Character) - 1966
      No Score Yet 72% Dutchman Lula (Character) - 1966
      No Score Yet 29% Flight From Ashiya Caroline Gordon/Stevenson (Character) - 1964
      No Score Yet 22% House of Women Erica Hayden (Character) - 1962
      74% 72% Sweet Bird of Youth Heavenly Finley (Character) - 1962
      No Score Yet No Score Yet The Couch Terry Ames (Character) - 1962
      80% 86% The Dark at the Top of the Stairs Reenie Flood (Character) - 1960
      No Score Yet No Score Yet Five Gates to Hell Sister Maria (Character) - 1959

      TV

      Credit
      21% 43% The Mob Doctor Unknown (Guest Star) 2012
      No Score Yet 89% Hot in Cleveland Loretta (Guest Star) 2010
      78% 60% Drop Dead Diva Millie Carlson (Guest Star) 2009
      72% 88% Desperate Housewives Phyllis Van De Kamp (Guest Star) 2005 2007
      84% 72% The Unit Unknown (Guest Star) 2007
      90% 96% House Georgia Adams (Guest Star) 2005
      No Score Yet 95% Cold Case Unknown (Guest Star) 2004
      No Score Yet No Score Yet Crossing Jordan Unknown (Guest Star) 2004
      78% 80% Law & Order: Special Victims Unit Dr. Wharton (Guest Star) 2001 2003
      No Score Yet 85% ER Mrs. Burke (Guest Star) 2002
      61% 74% Ally McBeal Unknown (Guest Star) 2002
      No Score Yet No Score Yet The Fugitive Unknown (Guest Star) 2001
      40% No Score Yet Maggie Winters Estelle Winters (Character) 1998-1999
      22% No Score Yet Significant Others Unknown (Guest Star) 1998
      No Score Yet No Score Yet The Wedding Gram (Character) 1998
      No Score Yet No Score Yet Cybill Unknown (Guest Star) 1996
      No Score Yet No Score Yet Children of the Dust Unknown (Character) 1995
      83% No Score Yet NYPD Blue Agnes Cantwell (Guest Star) 1995
      71% No Score Yet Angel Falls Edie Wren Cox (Character) 1993
      No Score Yet 83% Law & Order Unknown (Guest Star) 1991
      No Score Yet No Score Yet Matlock Unknown (Guest Star) 1990
      83% No Score Yet thirtysomething Ruth Murdoch (Guest Star) 1987 1990
      No Score Yet 89% Murder, She Wrote Grace Lambert (Guest Star) 1989-1990
      No Score Yet No Score Yet The Equalizer Kay (Guest Star) 1989
      No Score Yet No Score Yet Spenser: For Hire Unknown (Character) 1985 1987
      No Score Yet No Score Yet Tales of the Unexpected Elizabeth Bourdon (Character) 1981
      No Score Yet No Score Yet Barnaby Jones Unknown (Guest Star) 1975
      No Score Yet No Score Yet The Streets of San Francisco Mary Rae Dortmunder (Guest Star) 1973
      No Score Yet No Score Yet Alias Smith and Jones Unknown (Guest Star) 1972
      No Score Yet No Score Yet The Fugitive Policewoman Jane Washburn (Guest Star) 1964-1966
      92% 86% The Outer Limits Noelle Anderson (Character) 1963
      No Score Yet No Score Yet The Virginian Susan Morrow (Guest Star) 1962
      No Score Yet No Score Yet Lawman Unknown (Guest Star) 1961
      No Score Yet No Score Yet Bronco Unknown (Guest Star) 1959 1961
      No Score Yet No Score Yet Surfside 6 Unknown (Guest Star) 1960-1961
      No Score Yet No Score Yet 77 Sunset Strip Mari Ellen (Guest Star) 1960
      No Score Yet No Score Yet Hawaiian Eye Unknown (Guest Star) 1960
      No Score Yet No Score Yet Johnny Staccato Unknown (Guest Star) 1959
      No Score Yet No Score Yet The Restless Gun Heide Ritter (Guest Star) 1959