Melinda Dillon

Actor, Director
An original member of the Second City improv troupe, Melinda Dillon scored a Tony nomination for her supporting work as the vulnerable Honey in the original Broadway production of "Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf?" After ... Read more »
Born: 10/13/1939 in Hope, Arkansas, USA

Filmography

Actor (49)

The Effects of Magic 2014 (Movie)

Mom (Actor)

Heartland 2007 (Tv Show)

Actor

Reign Over Me 2007 (Movie)

Ginger Timpleman (Actor)

Adam & Steve 2006 (Movie)

Dottie (Actor)

Law & Order: Special Victims Unit 2005 (Tv Show)

Actor

John Grisham's A Painted House 2002 - 2003 (TV Show)

Actor

Cowboy Up 2001 (Movie)

Rose Braxton (Actor)

Judging Amy 2001 (Tv Show)

Actor

Magnolia 1999 (Movie)

Rose Gator (Actor)

Tracey Takes On... 1995 - 1999 (TV Show)

Actor

How to Make An American Quilt 1995 (Movie)

Mrs Darling (Actor)

Sioux City 1994 (Movie)

Leah Goldman (Actor)

The Prince of Tides 1991 (Movie)

Savannah Wingo (Actor)

Captain America 1990 (Movie)

Mrs Rogers (Actor)

Spontaneous Combustion 1990 (Movie)

Nina (Actor)

Staying Together 1989 (Movie)

Eileen McDermott (Actor)

The Twilight Zone 1985 - 1989 (TV Show)

Actor

Harry and the Hendersons 1987 (Movie)

Nancy Henderson (Actor)

James A. Michener's "Space" 1984 - 1985 (TV Show)

Actor

Songwriter 1984 (Movie)

Honey Carder (Actor)

A Christmas Story 1983 (Movie)

Mother (Actor)

The Juggler of Notre Dame 1982 - 1983 (TV Show)

Actor

Absence of Malice 1981 (Movie)

Teresa (Actor)

Fallen Angel 1980 - 1981 (TV Show)

Actor

F.I.S.T. 1978 (Movie)

Anna Zerinkas (Actor)

Close Encounters of the Third Kind 1977 (Movie)

Jillian Guiler (Actor)

Enigma 1976 - 1977 (TV Show)

Actor

Slap Shot 1977 (Movie)

Suzanne (Actor)

Bound For Glory 1976 (Movie)

Mary Guthrie (Actor)

Freeman 1975 - 1976 (TV Show)

Actor

Story Theater 1971 - 1972 (TV Show)

Actor

The April Fools 1969 (Movie)

Leslie Hopkins (Actor)

A Painted House (Movie)

Gran Chandler (Actor)

Fallen Angel (Movie)

Sherry Phillips (Actor)

Hellinger's Law (TV Show)

Actor

Marriage Is Alive and Well (TV Show)

Actor

Nightbreaker (TV Show)

Actor

Right of Way (TV Show)

Actor

Shattered Innocence (TV Show)

Actor

Shattered Spirits (TV Show)

Actor

State of Emergency (TV Show)

Actor

The Critical List (TV Show)

Actor

The Shadow Box (TV Show)

Actor

Transplant (TV Show)

Actor

Biography

An original member of the Second City improv troupe, Melinda Dillon scored a Tony nomination for her supporting work as the vulnerable Honey in the original Broadway production of "Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf?" After her Golden Globe-nominated turn in "Bound for Glory" (1976), she earned an Oscar nomination for one of her most famous roles, that of a mother in search of her alien-abducted child in "Close Encounters of the Third Kind" (1977). After roles in "Slap Shot" (1977) and "F.I.S.T." (1978), she earned another Oscar nomination as a woman driven to suicide by the machinations of a reporter (Sally Field) in "Absence of Malice" (1981) and achieved pop cultural immortality as the sweet, slightly goofy mother in the ultimate holiday classic, "A Christmas Story" (1983). Dillon scored important roles as John Lithgow's wife in "Harry and the Hendersons" (1987) and Nick Nolte's troubled sister in "The Prince of Tides" (1991), but notched smaller supporting turns in the ensemble pieces "To Wong Foo, Thanks for Everything, Julie Newmar" (1995), "How to Make an American Quilt" (1995) and "Magnolia" (1999). Working steadily but quietly, the actress continued to pop up in character roles, including an uncredited turn in "Seeking a Friend for the End of the World" (2012). Equally adept at comedy as well as drama, Melinda Dillon was an exceptionally gifted actress who brought a unique spark to any project in which she appeared.

Relationships

E Norine Dillon

Mother

Son
Father, Richard Libertini

W Dillon

Father

Richard Libertini Actor

Husband
Married Sept. 30, 1963 Divorced Jan. 18, 1978

EDUCATION

studied acting with Lee Strasberg from 1962-64

The Goodman School of Drama

Chicago , Illinois 1958 - 1961

Milestones

2007

Cast on the short-lived TNT series "Heartland"

2007

Acted in the post 9/11 drama "Reign Over Me"

2006

Co-starred with Chris Kattan in Craig Chester's directing debut "Adam & Steve"

1999

Played the long suffering wife of a game show host in "Magnolia"

1995

Landed supporting roles in "How to Make an American Quilt" and "Too Wong Foo, Thanks for Everyhting, Julie Newmar"

1993

Cast as Robert Blake's wife in the based-on-fact TV-movie "Judgment Day: The John List Story" (CBS)

1992

Played recurring role on CBS drama series "Middle Ages"

1991

Appeared as Nick Nolte's suicidal sister in "The Prince of Tides"

1987

Co-starred in "Harry and the Hendersons"

1983

Played the mother in Bob Clark's minor masterpiece "A Christmas Story"

1982

Earned second Best Supporting Actress Oscar nomination for "Absence of Malice"

1978

Received Best Supporting Actress Academy Award nomination for "Close Encounters of the Third Kind"

1978

TV miniseries debut "The Critical List" (NBC)

1976

First film in seven years, "Bound for Glory"

1970

TV debut as regular cast member in the syndicated series "Story Theater"

1968

Screen acting debut in "The April Fools"

1962

Broadway debut as Honey, in original Broadway production of "Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf?"

1958

Became member of original company of the Second City improvisational troupe

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