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Glenne Headly

Glenne Headly

American actress
The basics
Occupations Actor Stage actor Film actor Television actor
Countries United States of America
A.K.A. Glenne Aimee Headly
Gender female
Birth March 13, 1955 (New London)
Spouse: John Malkovich
Height: 1.7272 m
Authority IMDB id ISNI id Library of congress id VIAF id
Glenne Headly
The details

Glenne Aimee Headly (born November 13, 1955) is an American actress. She is known for her roles in Dirty Rotten Scoundrels and Mr. Holland's Opus. Headly has received Theatre World Awards and four Joseph Jefferson Awards, and was nominated for two Primetime Emmy Awards. Most recently, Headly and Ed Begley Jr. have been tapped for lead roles opposite Josh Hutcherson in Future Man, Hulu's half-hour comedy pilot from Seth Rogen and Evan Goldberg.

Early life

Headly was born in New London, Connecticut. Her first years were spent living under the care of her mother in San Francisco and her maternal grandmother in Lansford, Pennsylvania. Early in her elementary school years, she joined her mother, who was then living in Greenwich Village, and grew up having a rich cultural life. She studied ballet at the Robert Joffrey school of ballet and modern dance at the Martha Graham Studios. In New York, she attended public schools, including P. S. 41, where she was placed in a class for intellectually gifted children. It was here that a fifth grade teacher introduced her to the work of Jacques Cousteau in an oceanography class, spawning a lifelong interest for her in preserving the natural world. She later went on to the High School of Performing Arts, majoring in drama and graduated with honors.

Rather than continuing to study the dramatic arts, she attended a small American college in Switzerland from which she graduated with a Bachelor's Degree. Soon after, she moved to New York, taking day jobs as a waitress so that she could work nights in the theatre for little or no salary. Later she moved to Chicago, where she joined the "New Works Ensemble" at the St. Nicholas Theatre and was eventually cast in a Goodman Theatre production of Curse of the Starving Class, directed by Robert Falls and co-starring John Malkovich.

Film and television career

While appearing on the Chicago stage in Curse of the Starving Class, Headly was asked to join the Steppenwolf Theatre ensemble, who were looking to expand their group. She also appeared in several other productions. In Chicago, she was nominated for five Joseph Jefferson awards and won three for best supporting actress. She received her Actors' Equity card when cast by Vivian Matalon in a summer theatre production of Charley's Aunt and joined SAG when Arthur Penn wrote a breakout role for her in the film Four Friends.

In 1982 Headly married fellow ensemble member John Malkovich and moved with him to New York City. Soon after, she was cast to replace Ellen Barkin in Extremities with Susan Sarandon off Broadway. She then was cast in The Philanthropist, also off Broadway, and won a Theatre World Award for best newcomer. In New York, she appeared in Balm in Gilead with her fellow Steppenwolf Theatre ensemble members and Arms and the Man on Broadway with Kevin Kline and Raul Julia.

1988–1995: Early career

Headly played several supporting roles in such films as Making Mr. Right, Paperhouse, Seize the Day and Nadine, but it was her role in Dirty Rotten Scoundrels (1988) opposite Steve Martin and Michael Caine that truly launched her film career. Headly was named Most Promising New Actress by the Chicago Film Critics Association.

She was then cast by Warren Beatty to appear opposite him as Tess Trueheart in Dick Tracy. She next starred opposite Demi Moore and Bruce Willis in Mortal Thoughts, directed by Alan Rudolph. In 1988 she divorced Malkovich after he had an affair with Michelle Pfeiffer during the filming of Dangerous Liaisons. In 1992, she went to Canada to work on a small Canadian film called Ordinary Magic with Ryan Reynolds and on the first day of filming, met her future husband Byron McCulloch, whom she married on 25 August 1993. She also co-starred with Ted Danson and Macaulay Culkin in the 1994 comedy Getting Even with Dad.


She went on to appear in Mr. Holland's Opus, Sgt. Bilko, What's the Worst That Could Happen?, Breakfast of Champions, Around the Bend, 2 Days in the Valley and others.

Headly appeared in the television movies Winchell, And the Band Played On, Pronto, My Own Country and Women Vs. Men and was nominated for two Emmy Awards, for best supporting actress in a television movie for both Lonesome Dove (1989) and Bastard Out of Carolina (1996). She appeared as Julie Andrews' and Christopher Plummer's daughter in the 2001 live telecast of the play On Golden Pond for CBS. She was cast in the series Encore! Encore!, starring Nathan Lane and Joan Plowright, from 1998–1999, and had recurring roles as Dr. Abby Keaton on ER from 1996–1997 and as Leland Stottlemeyer's wife, Karen on Monk from 2003–2004.


In 2004, she played the mother of Lindsay Lohan's character in Confessions of a Teenage Drama Queen. Her recent appearances include the films The Amateurs (2005), The Namesake (2006), Comeback Season (2006), Kit Kittredge: An American Girl (2008), The Joneses (2009), and Don Jon (2013).

More recently, Headly appeared in the film Strange Weather (2016).

Future Man

Glenne Headly and Ed Begley Jr. have been tapped for lead roles opposite Josh Hutcherson in Future Man, Hulu's half-hour comedy pilot from Seth Rogen and Evan Goldberg.

Headly will play Diane, Hutcherson's nurturing, ever-supportive mother. Her love for him, while unyielding and sweet, is also a detriment to his growth. She makes it almost impossible for him to move out; she does all his cooking, cleaning, laundry and dotes on him constantly. She has recently retired and is getting back into smoking pot on a regular basis.


Headly was an ensemble member of the Steppenwolf Theatre Company from 1979 until 2005, although she never returned to Chicago to do a play after the late 1980s, believing that such a move would uproot and be disruptive to her family. She took a break from the stage altogether for ten years until 1999 when she starred on the London stage opposite Miranda Richardson in Aunt Dan & Lemon.

In 2003, Headly starred opposite David Hyde Pierce in The Guys as part of a revolving cast at The Actors' Gang in Los Angeles. She also appeared in Malkovich's production of Shaw's "Arms and the Man," with Kevin Kline at New York City's Circle in the Square Uptown.

1983: The Philanthropist

Headly appeared in Christopher Hampton's The Philanthropist at the Manhattan Theater Club in New York.

1984: Balm in Gilead

Headly appeared in Lanford Wilson's Balm in Gilead presented by The Circle Repertory Company and the Steppenwolf Theater Ensemble.

1985: Arms and the Man

Headly starred as Raina in George Bernard Shaw's Arms and the Man, directed by John Malkovich, in New York.

1999: Aunt Dan and Lemon

Headly starred as Lemon in Aunt Dan and Lemon, written by Wallace Shawn, at the Almeida Theater in London.

Glenne Headly stars as She in Stage Kiss at the Geffen Playhouse

2000: Detachments

Headly starred as Ellen in Detachments at the Tiffany Theater in Los Angeles. Written and directed by Colleen Dodson-Baker.

2001: My Brilliant Divorce

Headly starred as Angela Kennedy Lipsky in the premiere of My Brilliant Divorce at the Druid Theater in Galway, Ireland.

2012: The Jacksonian

Headly played Eva White in The Geffen Playhouse's production of The Jacksonian, written by Beth Henley.

2016: Stage Kiss

Playing at the Geffen Playhouse, Headly starred in Sarah Ruhl's Stage Kiss through Sunday, May 15.



Year Title Role Notes
1981 Four Friends Lola
1983 Doctor Detroit Miss Debbylike
1985 Fandango Trelis
1985 Eleni Joan
1986 Seize the Day Olive
1987 Making Mr. Right Trish
1987 Nadine Renée Lomax
1988 Stars and Bars Cora Gage
1988 Paperhouse Kate Madden
1988 Dirty Rotten Scoundrels Janet Colgate Chicago Film Critics Association Award for Most Promising Actress
1990 Dick Tracy Tess Trueheart
1991 Mortal Thoughts Joyce Urbanski Nominated - Chicago Film Critics Association Award for Best Supporting Actress
1991 Grand Isle Adele Ratignolle
1993 Ordinary Magic Charlotte
1994 Getting Even with Dad Theresa
1995 Mr. Holland's Opus Iris Holland
1996 Sgt. Bilko Rita Robbins
1996 2 Days in the Valley Susan Parish
1998 Babe: Pig in the City Zootie Voice
1999 Breakfast of Champions Francine Pefko
2001 Bartleby Vivian
2001 What's the Worst That Could Happen? Gloria Sidell
2004 Confessions of a Teenage Drama Queen Karen
2004 Eulogy Samantha
2004 Around the Bend Katrina
2005 Amateurs, TheThe Amateurs Helen Tatelbaum
2006 Comeback Season Deborah Pearce
2006 Namesake, TheThe Namesake Lydia
2006 Raising Flagg Anne Marie Purdy
2009 Joneses, TheThe Joneses Summer Symonds
2013 Don Jon Angela
2015 Dial a Prayer Mary
2015 Merry Xmas Sarah Short film
2016 Strange Weather Mary Lou Healy
2017 The Circle Mae's mother Post-production
2017 Villa Capri Post-production


Year Title Role Notes
1989 Lonesome Dove Elmira Boot Johnson 4 episodes
Nominated - Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Miniseries or a Movie
1993 Hotel Room Darlene Episode: "Tricks"
1993 And on the Band Played On Dr. Mary Guinan Television film
1995 Frasier Gretchen (voice) Episode: "An Affair to Forget"
1996 Bastard Out of Carolina Aunt Ruth Television film
Nominated - Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Miniseries or a Movie
1996–1997 ER Dr. Abby Keaton 9 episodes
1997 Pronto Joyce Patton Television film
1998 My Own Country Vickie Talley Television film
1998 Winchell Dallas Wayne Television film
1998–1999 Encore! Encore! Francesca Pinoni 12 episodes
1999 Darkest Day, TheThe Darkest Day Caitlin Television film
2000 Sandy Bottom Orchestra, TheThe Sandy Bottom Orchestra Ingrid Green Television film
2001 Fugitive, TheThe Fugitive Renee Charnquist Episode: "New Orleans Saints"
2001 Girl Thing, AA Girl Thing Helen McCormack Television film
2001 On Golden Pond Chelsea Thayer Wayne Television film
2002 Rugrats Dr. Cathy (voice) Episode: "The Doctor Is In"
2002 Women vs. Men Brita Television film
2003–2006 Monk Karen Stottlemeyer 4 episodes
2004 Guardian, TheThe Guardian Anne Joplin Episode: "Beautiful Blue Mystic"
2005 Law & Order: Special Victims Unit Attorney Simone Bryce Episode: "Intoxicated"
2008 Grey's Anatomy Elizabeth Archer Episode: "Lay Your Hands on Me"
2008 CSI: Crime Scene Investigation Viviana Conway Episode: "The Happy Place"
2012 Psych Grace Larsen Episode: "Autopsy Turvy"
2012 Pound Puppies Miss Petunia (voice) Episode: "Pound Preemies"
2012 Parks and Recreation Julia Wyatt Episode: "Ben's Parents"
2013 League, TheThe League Gloria Episode: "The Von Nowzick Wedding"
2016 The Night Of Alison 4 episodes
2017 Future Man Diane Futterman Hulu pilot

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