March 19, 1947
One of four siblings, Glenn Close grew up on a prosperous, 250-acre farm with her father, a surgeon, and her mother, a homemaker. When she was seven years old, the family sold their estate and moved to Mt. Kisco, New York, and joined a
conservative evangelical organization known as Moral Re-Armament - a group that sought to change human society by changing human behavior. Sex, personal love, ambition, pride and vanity were strictly frowned upon. The family's involvement in the group took them abroad to Switzerland and then to the Congo where her father worked as a missionary. Close recalls the experience with mixed emotion but maintains that her childhood was a happy one. Her family eventually left the group and Close returned to Rosemary Hall, an exclusive girls' school, where she got her first taste of acting.
Shortly after graduating high school, she joined Up With People but found it to be too trite for her liking. Five years later she had a brief marriage to a rock guitarist before divorcing and continued her education at The College of William & Mary. It was here that Close dove into theatre work and began to pursue her lifelong goal of becoming an actress.
Having done plenty of theatre work, on and off Broadway, Close emerged in Hollywood in her mid 30s, making her big-screen debut in The World According to Garp in 1982. She followed with a series of stylish, intelligent films that would make her one of the most experienced and respected actresses in film today. Films like The Big Chill, The Natural, Jagged Edge and Reversal of Fortune gave the actress both critical and commercial success. But it was her edgy, terrifying performance in Fatal Attraction, opposite Michael Douglas, that brought Close international stardom and a reputation for playing the devious, yet often sympathetic, villain. She didn't disappoint when she reappeared a year later as the manipulative Marquise de Mertreuil in Dangerous Liaisons.
In 1996 Close got to fulfill a dream by playing Disney's most notorious villain, Cruella DeVil, in the live-action remake of 101 Dalmations, a role she reprised in 2000 with the film's sequel, 102 Dalmations. More dramatic roles in the late 90s, such as Paradise Road and Cookie's Fortune, proved that Close could diversify her roles with uncanny ease.
With five Oscar nominations, three Tony Awards for her work on stage (The Real Thing, Death And The Maiden, Sunset Boulevard) and an Emmy Award for her television portrayal of Colonel Margarethe Cammermeyer in Serving In
Silence, she is one of the most successful and versatile actresses in Hollywood.
Close has been married to venture capitalist James Marlas and has a daughter, Annie, by producer John Starke. She and her daughter live on a ranch in Bedford, New York.
Photo © Unknown - Bio by Andrew Ritchie © 2002 - [used with permission]
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