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Melanie Griffith Poster

Biography

Jump to: Overview (3) | Mini Bio (1) | Spouse (4) | Trade Mark (4) | Trivia (49) | Personal Quotes (12) | Salary (3)

Overview (3)

Born in New York City, New York, USA
Birth NameMelanie Richards Griffith
Height 5' 9¼" (1.76 m)

Mini Bio (1)

Melanie Griffith was born on August 9, 1957 in New York City, to then model/future actress Tippi Hedren and former child actor turned advertising executive Peter Griffith. Her parents' marriage ended in 1961 and Tippi brought Melanie to Los Angeles to get a new start. Tippi caught the eye of the great director Alfred Hitchcock, who gave her starring roles in The Birds (1963) and Marnie (1964). She married her then-agent, Noel Marshall, in 1964 (they divorced in 1982), and Melanie grew up with three stepbrothers. Meanwhile, her father married Nanita Greene Samuels and had two more children: Tracy Griffith and Clay A. Griffith.

Melanie also grew up with tigers and lions, as Tippi and Noel were raising them for the movie Roar (1981), in which the family later starred. Melanie's acting career, however, began as a model at just nine months old in a commercial and she later appeared as an extra in Smith! (1969) and The Harrad Experiment (1973), where she fell in love with her mother's co-star, Don Johnson. She was only 14 years old, while he was a twice-divorced 22-year-old. Tippi took a very liberal approach and allowed Melanie to move in with Don at a tender age. Even though Melanie didn't like modeling, she continued to do it to pay the bills. One day she went to meet with director Arthur Penn for what she thought was a modeling assignment. It was actually an audition for his film Night Moves (1975), and Penn gave her the role of a runaway nymphet. She was hesitant, but Johnson encouraged her to take the role. She agreed but was terrified of performing in front of the camera. Penn took a paternal interest in her, and she felt confident and gave a riveting performance, doing racy nude scenes. It immediately typecast her and led to more nymphet roles, with her beautiful nude body a permanent fixture in movies like Ha-Gan (1977) and Joyride (1977). She also married Johnson, in Las Vegas in 1976, but the union ended within six months, possibly because her early movie success outshone his.

Unfortunately, as her career progressed, she became increasingly dependent on drugs and alcohol, a fact well-known to studio executives, who stopped considering her for feature film roles. She started doing television work, where she met her second husband, Steven Bauer, on the set of the TV movie She's in the Army Now (1981). He helped her to overcome her drug and alcohol problems and got her to take acting classes with Stella Adler in New York. The classes paid off, as director Brian De Palma cast her as a porno actress in his murder mystery Body Double (1984) and her sexy, funny performance won her rave reviews and the Best Supporting Actress Award by the National Society of Film Critics and a Golden Globe nomination. Jonathan Demme was so impressed with her performance that he gave her the female lead in Something Wild (1986) without even auditioning her. The film became a cult favorite, with Melanie again getting critical plaudits and a Golden Globe nomination. The birth of her first child, Alexander, in 1985, didn't help to save her struggling marriage, and she and Bauer divorced shortly thereafter. She was given starring roles in Cherry 2000 (1987) and Stormy Monday (1988), but the films were barely released. Soon writers were asking when the public at large was going to take notice of this talented and unique actress.

Melanie's career skyrocketed when Mike Nichols cast her as a spunky secretary named Tess McGill in Working Girl (1988), a box-office hit for which she received an Oscar nomination as Best Actress and won the Golden Globe Award as Best Actress in a Comedy. Behind the scenes, however, her ongoing substance abuse had become problematic, and Nichols pushed her into a rehabilitation clinic after production wrapped. En route to the clinic she called ex-husband Johnson for support, and they reconciled after her release from the clinic. She got pregnant and remarried Johnson in 1989, and later that year their daughter Dakota Johnson was born. A sober Melanie now concentrated on her film career, but the two-year absence after Working Girl (1988) took a toll, since younger actresses (Julia Roberts, Michelle Pfeiffer, Demi Moore, Meg Ryan, Jodie Foster(to whom Melanie lost the Oscar to)) became bankable stars, and there was stiff competition for the good roles. The films Melanie chose usually flopped badly, such as The Bonfire of the Vanities (1990), which reunited her with director Brian De Palma. Even though she gave heartfelt performances in all her films, she was often miscast, with her breathy little-girl voice not helping matters in her role as a spy in Shining Through (1992) and as a homicide detective going undercover in the Hassidic Jewish community in New York City in A Stranger Among Us (1992).

Melanie made a minor comeback with her supporting role as a desperate housewife in Nobody's Fool (1994), which reunited her with Bruce Willis, her co-star in The Bonfire of the Vanities (1990), and Paul Newman, her co-star from The Drowning Pool (1975). She also earned a Golden Globe nomination for her work in the well-received TV miniseries Buffalo Girls (1995), followed by another hit film, the ensemble Now and Then (1995). Her personal life was making headlines again, though, as she left Johnson because of his own substance-abuse problems, reconciled with him briefly when he became sober, only to leave him again, this time for Antonio Banderas, her married co-star from Two Much (1996). Both she and Banderas created a scandal in 1995 with their torrid romance, and the tabloids followed their every move, including her divorce from Johnson and his divorce from wife Ana Leza. Melanie became pregnant with her third child, and she and Banderas married in 1996. Their daughter Stella Banderas was born the same year, and the notorious couple were forgiven by the public and the media.

Melanie won strong reviews in independent films like Another Day in Paradise (1998), where she played a heroin-using criminal accomplice on the run, and the made-for-cable movie RKO 281 (1999), in which she portrayed actress Marion Davies, a part that garnered her Golden Globe and Emmy nominations as Best Supporting Actress. Melanie became dependent to pain killers, however, returning to rehab in 2000. She wrote about her struggle and recovery in her journal on her official website. Greenmoon Productions, the production company that she formed with Banderas, produced several flops, such as her starring vehicle Crazy in Alabama (1999), directed by Banderas. Her career took another blow when her TV series, Me & George (1998), never even aired. After making Cecil B. DeMented (2000) and Forever Lulu (2000), Melanie did a voice-over role in Stuart Little 2 (2002) and played supporting roles in minor films Tempo (2003), as Sylvester Stallone's girlfriend in Shade (2003), and as Barbara Marx in The Night We Called It a Day (2003) with Dennis Hopper playing Frank Sinatra, but none of these films made a ripple at the box office. As a result, film and television offers started to dry up.

In 2003, a resourceful Melanie turned to the Broadway stage, and packed houses with her turn as the murderess "Roxie Hart" in the musical "Chicago," for which she received a rave review from the New York Times theater critic. It renewed her confidence, as she had never sang, danced or been on the Broadway stage before. In 2005 she surprised viewers by playing a mom to two grown women in the TV series Twins (2005), which was canceled after one season. She tried to resurrect her career with another attempt at a TV series, Viva Laughlin (2007), but it was canceled after just two episodes. Melanie didn't act again for the remainder of the decade, because, by self-admission, she couldn't obtain any worthwhile roles. In 2009, she was back in rehab after yet another relapse, emerging after a three-month stay. Professionally, she was faced with more disappointment in 2012 when This American Housewife (2012), a Lifetime series that Banderas produced for her to star in, never aired. She went back to the stage in 2012 and played Scott Caan's mother in a play that he wrote titled "No Way Around but Through." She impressed Caan enough to recommend her to producers of his television show Hawaii Five-0 (2010). Since 2014, she started playing a recurring role as his mother on the show.

Also in 2014, Melanie filed for divorce from Banderas citing "irreconcilable differences" after nearly twenty years together. She never publicly discussed her reasons for the divorce, and she didn't promote her feature film Automata (2014), the final time that she acted with Banderas. It took a year for the divorce to be finalized, during which time, she and Banderas made one important appearance together at their daughter Stella's high school graduation. She also made another public appearance with another ex-husband, Don Johnson, on Saturday Night Live (1975) to support their daughter Dakota, who was the host for that week. Dakota was promoting her star-making turn in Fifty Shades of Grey (2015), thus carrying on the family tradition of being a film actress. Melanie maintains close ties with her three children and her mother Tippi Hedren. She is involved in various charities, including raising funds for Tippi's Shambala preserve, a refuge for wild animals. Melanie also runs a non-profit organization for benefiting burned children. Melanie is single and her children are living on their own. So she has devoted most of her time seeking out acting roles.

- IMDb Mini Biography By: Ramstep

Spouse (4)

Antonio Banderas (14 May 1996 - 4 December 2015) (divorced) (1 child)
Don Johnson (26 June 1989 - 1996) (divorced) (1 child)
Steven Bauer (8 September 1981 - 1989) (divorced) (1 child)
Don Johnson (8 January 1976 - 1976) (divorced)

Trade Mark (4)

Breathy, little girl voice
Platinum blonde hair
Sparkling blue eyes
Voluptuous figure

Trivia (49)

Her mother, Tippi Hedren, recently stated that the miniature doll of Hedren given to Melanie by Alfred Hitchcock was not intended to be a prank by the director. He merely wanted to give Melanie a beautiful doll with her mother's image, but it happened that the doll was in a wooden box. When Melanie received the gift, she freaked out and became upset thinking that it was indeed meant to be her mother in a coffin.
Born at 11:49pm-EDT
Older half-sister of Tracy Griffith and Clay A. Griffith.
Daughter of Peter Griffith and Tippi Hedren.
14 November 2000 - checked into a Marina Del Rey, California hospital to help her scale back on the use of painkillers she had been prescribed for a neck injury.
In 1980, she went to a movie and dinner with Ricci Martin (son of Dean Martin). Upon leaving La Dome, a restaurant on Sunset Boulevard, a car ran through the crosswalk and hit Melanie. The front of the car struck her hip in mid-stride, whiplashing her head back into the windshield. As the car screeched to a stop, Melanie catapulted more than a dozen feet forward to the curbside, hitting with great force. Melanie was rushed to a hospital. To this day, Melanie still experiences pain from that accident.
Real-life daughters Dakota Johnson and Stella Banderas appear as her character's daughters in the film Crazy in Alabama (1999) directed by her husband Antonio Banderas. Her half-sister Tracy Griffith also has a small role in the film.
Claims that it was love at first sight when she met her husband Antonio Banderas on the set of Two Much (1996). He had sprinted out of his trailer like a starstruck schoolboy to greet her on her first day on the set. Excited and nervous, the first thing he asked her was how old she was. She cursed, laughed, and then finally answered that she was 37. They stayed together for 19 years.
She was unable to star in the stage play "Eden Court" (1985), and in the films The Sheltering Sky (1990) and As Good as It Gets (1997) because of her three pregnancies. The roles went to Ellen Barkin, Debra Winger, and Helen Hunt (who won an Academy Award), respectively.
She has three homes: Los Angeles, Aspen and Marbella, Spain.
Coincidentally, she bears the same first name as her mother Tippi Hedren's character, Melanie Daniels, in The Birds (1963).
Was eighteen when she married Don Johnson for the first time. He was eight years older than she, and they met on the set of her mother's film The Harrad Experiment (1973) in the first half of 1972 when she was 14.
In 2002, she told Larry King that her best films are: Night Moves (1975), Something Wild (1986), Working Girl (1988), and Nobody's Fool (1994).
Auditioned for the role of Susan in Desperately Seeking Susan (1985), but lost out to Madonna.
Her son, Alexander Bauer (born in 1985), is the godson of Warren Beatty. She first met Beatty a decade earlier when she auditioned for his film The Parallax View (1974). She didn't get the role but their friendship lasted, even though their brief 1970s romance ended. She is also friends with Beatty's wife Annette Bening and his sister Shirley MacLaine.
Her father had English, as well as Irish, Scottish, Welsh, and Northern Irish (Scots-Irish) ancestry. Her mother is of half Swedish, one quarter German, and one quarter Norwegian descent.
Goes through two boyfriends in Working Girl (1988). As the film begins, she is in a relationship with Alec Baldwin, but at the end, she is in a relationship with Harrison Ford. Both Baldwin and Ford have played Jack Ryan in adaptations of the Tom Clancy novels.
First "Miss Golden Globe" to win a Golden Globe Award herself.
Joanne Woodward told a 17-year-old Melanie on the set of The Drowning Pool (1975) that her goals were to marry a movie star (Paul Newman); have beautiful babies (she had three); and win an Oscar (which she did in 1958). Melanie said that she adopted the goals for herself by marrying a movie star (Antonio Banderas); have beautiful babies (she also had three); but has expressed frustration that she has not won an Oscar even though she was nominated in 1989.
She and her daughter Dakota Johnson are the only mother-daughter couple to be "Miss Golden Globe".
While in Washington, D.C. addressing the senate on Arts funding, she fell asleep twice during a speech by her host Michigan Senator Spencer Abraham. She apologized citing jet-lag as her reason for snoozing.
Her French dubbing voice Dorothée Jemma is also the French dubbing voice of Sheryl Lee and Jennifer Aniston.
Melanie said that fans sometimes confuse her with actress Meg Ryan, whom she admires. She would sign Meg Ryan's name so as not to disappoint the fans. Ryan said the same thing happened to her where fans thought she was Melanie.
Checked into the Cirque Lodge in Utah for rehab treatments [August 24, 2009]. Same place where Kirsten Dunst and Lindsay Lohan spent time in recent years.
Ex-stepdaughter of Nanita Greene Samuels and Noel Marshall.
In August 2000, she held a live "ChitChat" on her website with Dr. Judith Reichman to discuss her personal efforts to become pregnant. When Reichman wrote on the forum that smoking is toxic to a woman's ovaries and causes earlier menopause by an average of two years, Melanie replied "I honestly didn't know any of that".
Underwent surgery for the early stages of skin cancer in December 2009.
Her mother was 22 while her father was only 18 when they married in 1952. In her 2016 memoir, Tippi wrote, that upon reflection, that they were too young to get married.
Ex-mother-in-law Ana Banderas was disapproving of Melanie at first, but eventually warmed up to her.
In a 2002 interview with More magazine, Melanie admitted giving marijuana to her 16-year-old son Alexander Bauer, because she thought it would be better for him to smoke it at home than to go out on the street and get something that would kill him. Her rationale backfired and she had to put Alexander in a 12-step program. She vowed not to let the same happen to her other children. Her daughter Dakota Johnson saw a therapist as a teenager, because of emotional issues with her parents, who have battled substance abuse.
Has smoked since she was 12 years old.
One of her mentors was Bob Fosse. He considered casting her in his film Star 80 (1983) but instead chose Mariel Hemingway to play the slain actress Dorothy Stratten.
Holds the record - along with Madonna and Demi Moore - for the most Razzie Award nominations for Worst Actress with 6 nominations. She was nominated for The Bonfire of the Vanities (1990), Shining Through (1992), A Stranger Among Us (1992) (both in the same year), Born Yesterday (1993), Two Much (1996), Crazy in Alabama (1999) and Cecil B. DeMented (2000). She won for Shining Through (1992) and A Stranger Among Us (1992). She also won Worst Supporting Actress for Mulholland Falls (1996).
Gave birth to her 1st child at age 28, a son Alexander Griffith Bauer on August 22, 1985. Child's father is her now ex-2nd husband, Steven Bauer.
Gave birth to her 2nd child at age 32, a daughter Dakota Mayi Johnson (aka Dakota Johnson) on October 4, 1989. Child's father is now ex-3rd husband, Don Johnson.
Gave birth to her 3rd child at age 39, a daughter Stella del Carmen Banderas Griffith (aka Stella Banderas) on September 24, 1996. Child's father is her now estranged 4th husband, Antonio Banderas.
(June 6, 2014) Filed for divorce from her 4th husband of 18 years Antonio Banderas.
She stays on good terms with her ex-husbands (Steven Bauer, Don Johnson, and Antonio Banderas), since they share children together (Alexander Bauer, Dakota Johnson, Stella Banderas). She attends events with them and posts pictures on her twitter and instagram accounts with flattering captions calling them "handsome".
Some of the films that she considered acting in never came to fruition: projects with her then-husband Don Johnson ("The Friendly" (1991) and film adaptation of Dean R. Koontz novel "The Bad Place" (1990)) ; "Jane" (1997) with Howard Stern; film adaptation of the J.M. Barrie play 'Mary Rose'' in 2000, that Alfred Hitchcock also considered casting her mother Tippi Hedren in 1964; and "Mrs. California" (1993).
In her divorce settlement with Antonio Banderas, she got the house in Aspen and they sold their L.A. mansion and split the profits. Melanie receives $65,000 monthly spousal support from Antonio.
$75,000 was taken out of her paycheck for Working Girl (1988) when she showed up to the set intoxicated and unable to say her lines coherently. The money was used to fund the reshoot of that day's scenes.
Ex-stepmother of Jesse Johnson.
By her own admission, she drank alcohol when she was ten. Her father Peter Griffith was an alcoholic, as was his father.
Her childhood friend is Patricia Nedd, known as Patsy. Melanie backed out of her family's film Roar (1981) because she was afraid that one of the big cats might hurt her. So her real-life mother Tippi Hedren cast Patsy in Melanie's role and shot several scenes. Then, Melanie changed her mind and decided that she wanted her old role back. Tippi and her then-husband Noel Marshall replaced Patsy and re-shot her scenes with Melanie. Melanie did get hurt in the film and had to have reconstruction surgery. But she came back and finished the film.
She recalled auditioning for director Adrian Lyne unsuccessfully twice. The first time was for Flashdance (1983) where she danced in a bikini to the Rolling Stones song "Start Me Up". She lost the role to Jennifer Beals. The second time was for Fatal Attraction (1987), but she lost the role to Glenn Close. Lyne finally selected her for Lolita (1997) for which she didn't even audition, beating out Dianne Wiest and Cybill Shepherd.
She appeared in five remakes, but none did well: Paradise (1991), Born Yesterday (1993), Two Much (1996), Lolita (1997), and the TV series Viva Laughlin (2007).
Pulled out of The Hot Flashes (2013) in the midst of filming due to creative differences and was replaced by Virginia Madsen.

Personal Quotes (12)

[about her work with James Woods] It's kind of like being pregnant. You know, you go through the initial joy of it. Then you go through wanting it to be over. And then you're finished with it and you forget how bad it was.
There's a bit of a stripper in every woman.
I don't walk around with fear. I walk around with strength. I believe in cause and effect.
I don't think I'm beautiful. When I look in the mirror, I just see me - and, I'm pretty used to me.
Antonio [husband Antonio Banderas] is the best. He is compassionate and humble.
Angelina Jolie may get him [husband Antonio Banderas] in bed for eight hours on a movie set, but I get him in bed every day.
[on being typed as a sex symbol] I hope not! I don't want to be -- I've done enough parts like that. I can't say I won't do more, but I really want to do a variety of roles.
I would just like to be able to give to people through acting. If I can entertain people by being somebody else and allow somebody to feel something, then that makes me feel good.
I like smoking! I mean, God, I quit everything else, can't I smoke?
[on researching the Holocaust for her film, Shining Through (1992)] I didn't know that 6 million Jews were killed. That's a lot of people... until I started researching the movie I didn't know it was that many people. I thought it was like in the hundreds of thousands. I didn't realize it was 6 million people. What I was trying to say was I think a lot of people don't know it was that severe. I wasn't born during the war. I was born in '57... but I think a lot of people don't know.
[on Bruce Willis] I think he's pretty damn near perfect except for the Republican thing.
[on being hit by a car at 23] God's way of telling me to slow down.

Salary (3)

The Bonfire of the Vanities (1990) $1,000,000
Women and Men: Stories of Seduction (1990) $50,000
Milk Money (1994) $2,000,000

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