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Frances McDormand, Award Winner – MovieActors.com

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McDormand in FARGO.

Frances McDormand: Best Actress 1996: MovieActors.com

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FARGO (Crime Drama)

Frances McDormand won an Oscar for her performance as the pregnant small town police chief on a murder case in North Dakota.




About Frances McDormand (1957 – )

Frances McDormand was born in Chicago, Illinois, in 1957. She was adopted by a loving, married couple from Canada; Noreen Eloise, who was a nurse, and Vernon Weir McDormand, who was a Disciples of Christ minister. She had two older siblings, who were also adopted. Her family lived in Monessen, Pennsylvania; a suburb of Pittsburgh.

Frances studied drama at Bethany College, and graduated in 1979 with a B.A. in Theater. She went on to earn her MFA at Yale, in 1982. She started her thespian career on the stage, but also soon found her way into film, as well as finding the love of her life.

McDormand's film career began in the Coen brothers murder-gone-awry thriller, BLOOD SIMPLE, in 1984, where she played a young, philandering wife walking through a macabre murder wonderland.

In that same year, 1984, Frances McDormand married director Joel Coen. Together, they have an adopted son, Pedro, who was born in Paraguay in 1994.

Frances McDormand is known for portraying intelligent characters with eccentric personalities.
She sees herself as a character actress, and makes a pithy observation about the profession of acting; pointing out the difference between an actor and a movie star. In an interview, Frances said, "I'm a character actress, plain and simple. Who can worry about a career? Have a life. Movie stars have careers - actors work, and then they don't work, and then they work again."

Frances McDormand has been nominated for Academy Awards for her supporting roles in Mississippi Burning;(1988), Almost Famous;(2000) and North Country;(2005). In MISSISSIPPI BURNING;(1988), she played Mrs. Pell, a deputy sheriff's wife and victim of domestic violence.

In 1996, Frances McDormand played a savvy, tenacious small town police officer, Marge Gunderson, in the 1996 movie, FARGO. McDormand won an Academy Award for Best Actress for her performance as the feminine, self-effacing, highly observant, intelligent investigator of a gruesome crime spree spiraling out of control. She is the only actress as of 2014 to win a Best Actress Oscar for a performance in a film that was directed by her husband.

Then, Frances McDormand played a neurotic, but loving mother in ALMOST FAMOUS; (2000), an icy, adulterous wife married to an apparent zero, in THE MAN WHO WASN'T THERE; (2001), and a bumbling, murderer and work-out club owner in BURN AFTER READING; (2008).

Frances McDormand still enjoys being on stage as well. In 2011, she won a Best Actress TONY AWARD for her performance in the play, GOOD PEOPLE.

Frances McDormand has found ways to have a private life and a manageable work load. She shared in an interview, "You have to get away from the theater or from the set and live life. If you work constantly from job to job, you're living in a fantasy world and you have nothing else to offer than fantasy."

Frances McDormand's notable movie credits include...

BLOOD SIMPLE (1984)
RAISING ARIZONA (1987)
SHORT CUTS (1993)
CHATTAHOOCHEE (1989)
DARKMAN (1990)
LONE STAR (1996)
PRIMAL FEAR (1996)
PARADISE ROAD (1997)
MADELINE (1998)
TALK OF ANGELS (1996)
WONDER BOYS (2000)
ALMOST FAMOUS (2000)
THE MAN WHO WASN'T THERE (2001)
CITY BY THE SEA (2002)
LAUREL CANYON (2002)
SOMETHING'S GOTTA GIVE (2003)
LAST NIGHT (2004)
NORTH COUNTRY (2005)
AEON FLUX (2005)
FRIENDS WITH MONEY (2006)
MISS PETTIGREW LIVES FOR A DAY (2008)
BURN AFTER READING (2008)
TRANSFORMERS: Dark Of The Moon (2011)
THIS MUST BE THE PLACE (2011)
PROMISED LAND (2012)
THE GOOD DINOSAUR (2015)
HAIL CAESAR! (2016)

Frances McDormand's television credits include...

HILLSTREET BLUES (TV Series 1985)
LEGWORK - (TV Series 1987)
CRAZY IN LOVE (TV MOVIE) (1992)
THE GOOD OLD BOYS (TV Movie) (1995)
STATE OF GRACE - (TV Series 2001)
OLIVE KITTERIDGE (TV Mini-Series 2014)


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Frances McDormand in AEON FLUX (2005).

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Frances McDormand in BLOOD SIMPLE (1984).

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McDormand in ALMOST FAMOUS (2000).

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Frances McDormand (left) in SOMETHING'S GOTTA GIVE (2003).