Amy Madigan

Active - 1981 - 2021  |   Born - Nov 9, 1950 in Chicago, Illinois, United States  |   Genres - Drama

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Biography by Hal Erickson

Actress Amy Madigan is the daughter of Chicago political commentor John Madigan, well known in the Windy City for his WBBM radio signoff, "John Madigan...News Radio Ssssseventy-eight." After studying piano at the Chicago Conservatory and philosophy at Milwaukee's Marquette University, Madigan spent the next decade as a touring rock musician. In the late 1970s, she began preparing for an acting career at L.A.'s Lee Strasberg Institute, making her TV bow on an episode of Hart to Hart. While she may have looked like a standard blonde ingenue, Madigan's endearingly raspy voice and '60s-style ebullience secured her a series of offbeat leading roles, culminating with her performance as Kevin Costner's ex-activist wife in Field of Dreams (1989). In 1985, Amy Madigan was Oscar-nominated for her performance as Gene Hackman's embittered daughter in Twice in a Lifetime. She is married to actor Ed Harris, with whom she has co-starred in Places in the Heart (1984) and Alamo Bay (1985). Madigan would continue to act in the decades to come, memorably starring on Carnivale and Grey's Anatomy.

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  • Studied piano at the Chicago Conservatory, philosophy at Marquette University and acting at Los Angeles' Lee Strasberg Institute.
  • Toured as a musician for more than 10 years with a number of different rock bands.
  • Posed in Playboy magazine in the 1970s smeared in jelly to promote her rock band Jelly.
  • Appeared opposite husband Ed Harris in Places in the Heart (1984), Alamo Bay (1985), Riders of the Purple Sage (1996), Pollock (2000), Just a Dream (2002), Winter Passing (2005) and Gone Baby Gone (2007).
  • Served on the national board of NARAL Pro-Choice America, a pro-choice/women's rights organization.