Brenda Strong

Active - 1986 - 2017  |   Born - Mar 25, 1960 in Portland, Oregon, United States  |   Genres - Drama, Comedy, Comedy Drama, Science Fiction

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Biography by Nathan Southern

Brenda Strong's offscreen name might not immediately register with Seinfeld fans, but they will immediately identify the character actress after learning that she played the grating Sue Ellen Mischke, one of Elaine Benes's thorn-in-the-flesh nemeses, on that seminal American sitcom. Actually, Strong's television-heavy resumé reads like a best-of prime-time series list -- including not only Seinfeld, but Ally McBeal, Nip/Tuck, Gilmore Girls, 7th Heaven, and others. Strong remains best known, however, for her pivotal contribution to Desperate Housewives as the ill-fated Mary Alice Young, a social-climbing hausfrau who commits suicide in the opening episode of the program, and then hangs around (in a regular voice-over) to offer acerbic observations from the afterlife about her backstabbing earthbound friends. Once Desperate Housewives ended in 2012, Strong joined the continuation of the series Dallas, playing Ann Ewing, Bobby's wife.

In addition to her television work, Strong also landed bit parts in such features as Spaceballs (1987), The Craft (1996), and Starship Troopers 2 (2004). In 2009 she appeared in Melora Hardin movie You. Strong hosted a series of exercise videos in the early 2000s as well, among them Yoga 4 Fertility (2001) and Yoga 4 Partners (2002).

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  • Won the Miss Arizona title in 1980 and competed in the Miss America pageant later that year.
  • Appeared in Billy Crystal's "You Look Mahvelous" video.
  • Has taught at UCLA's Mind/Body Institute, owns a yoga studio in Los Angeles and has released a line of yoga DVDs.
  • Has been a spokesperson for the American Fertility Association and was presented with the Beacon of Light Award in 2007 for her work with them.
  • Prior to costarring with Felicity Huffman on Desperate Housewives, played her nemesis on several episodes of the Aaron Sorkin dramedy Sports Night.