Colleen Dewhurst

Active - 1959 - 2002  |   Born - Jun 3, 1924 in Montreal, Quebec, Canada  |   Died - Aug 22, 1991   |   Genres - Drama, Comedy

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Biography by Hal Erickson

With the same drive that had distinguished her father's hockey career, Colleen Dewhurst took any number of odd jobs to pay for her tuition at the American Academy of Dramatic Arts. On Broadway from 1955, Dewhurst became one of America's foremost interpreters of such pantheon playwrights as Eugene O'Neill and Edward Albee; she won a 1981 Tony Award for her performance in the revival of O'Neill's A Moon for the Misbegotten. The forceful, deep-throated Dewhurst was not always easy to cast in films, but she chalked up several memorable movie portrayals, not least of which was as Diane Keaton's WASP-ish mom in Annie Hall (1977). Her TV work included the delightful "middle aged pregnancy" comedy And Baby Makes Six (1979) and numerous appearances as Candice Bergen's mom on Murphy Brown. From 1985 through 1991, Colleen was president of Actors' Equity. Twice married to actor George C. Scott, Colleen Dewhurst is the mother of another performer, Campbell Scott.

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  • Moved to the U.S. from Canada as a child.
  • Adopted the Christian Science faith of her mother.
  • Studied at the American Academy of Dramatic Arts in New York City.
  • Worked as a receptionist, elevator operator and switchboard operator while trying to get acting jobs.
  • Directed a 1984-85 National Theatre of the Deaf production of All the Way Home. Dewhurst won a Tony in 1961 for her starring role in the original Broadway production of All the Way Home.
  • Was inducted in the American Theatre Hall of Fame in 1981.
  • Made her final film appearance in 1991's Dying Young, which starred her son Campbell Scott.
  • Served as president of the Actors' Equity Association from 1985 until 1991.