Edit
Dianne Wiest Poster

Biography

Jump to: Overview (2) | Mini Bio (1) | Trade Mark (1) | Trivia (18) | Personal Quotes (3)

Overview (2)

Date of Birth 28 March 1948Kansas City, Missouri, USA
Height 5' 5" (1.65 m)

Mini Bio (1)

One of three children (she has two brothers, Greg and Don), Dianne Wiest was born in Kansas City, Missouri, USA. Her mother, Anne Stewart (Keddie), was a nurse from Auchtermuchty, Scotland, and her father, Bernard John Wiest, was a college dean and social worker who was born in Pennsylvania, of German and Croatian descent. Dianne's original ambition was to be a ballerina, but she was bitten by the acting bug after some stage work, most notably playing Desdemona to James Earl Jones' Othello on Broadway. She made her film debut in 1980, but did not make a name for herself until her performance as Emma, a prostitute during the 1930s Depression, in Woody Allen's The Purple Rose of Cairo (1985). Allen was so impressed by Wiest's acting ability that he has directed her on four more occasions since. Under Allen's direction, Wiest won a well deserved Oscar for Best Supporting Actress, for her brilliant performance as the neurotic, wannabe actress Holly in Hannah and Her Sisters (1986). She followed her Academy Award success with performances in The Lost Boys (1987) and Bright Lights, Big City (1988) before stealing the show from the likes of Steve Martin, Mary Steenburgen, Jason Robards, Keanu Reeves and Martha Plimpton in Ron Howard's Parenthood (1989).

Playing Helen Buckman, the divorced mother of two difficult teenagers, Wiest was both touching and hilarious, and received her second Oscar nomination. Arguably her most beloved role came as Peg Boggs, the kindly Avon Lady who discovers the titular Edward Scissorhands (1990). Wiest returned to Woody Allen for Bullets Over Broadway (1994), a superb comedy film set in 1920s New York, winning her second Best Supporting Actress Oscar for her magnificent portrayal of Helen Sinclair, a boozy, glamorous and neurotic star of the stage, who could made the words "Don't speak!" the funniest sentence ever captured on film. Recently enjoying great success with witchy roles in the comedy film Practical Magic (1998) and the television miniseries The 10th Kingdom (2000), Dianne Wiest lives in New York City with her two adopted daughters, Emily and Lily.

- IMDb Mini Biography By: Barnaby Marriott barnabymarriott@hotmail.com

Trade Mark (1)

Soft spoken voice

Trivia (18)

Listed as one of twelve "Promising New Actors of 1985" in John Willis' Screen World, Vol. 37.
2 adopted children: Emily (b. 1987), Lily (b. 1991).
Last name is pronounced 'Wee-st'.
She is Brad Pitt's favorite actress.
She received both of her Oscars for performances in a Woody Allen movie.
Graduated from the University of Maryland in 1969 with a degree in Arts and Sciences.
Had a long relationship with Sam Cohn in the 1980s. He was godfather to her daughters Emily and Lily.
She has played the same character (Nora Lewin) in three different television series: Law & Order (1990), Law & Order: Special Victims Unit (1999) and Law & Order: Criminal Intent (2001).
Performing on Broadway alongside Katie Holmes in the revival of Arthur Miller's "All My Sons" at the Gerald Schoenfeld Theatre in New York. [September 2008]
Co-starring in "Salome: The Reading" with Al Pacino and Marisa Tomei on Broadway. [April 2003]
Resides in the Upper West Side of New York City [October 2006]
Was the 93rd actress to receive an Academy Award; she won the Best Supporting Actress Oscar for Hannah and Her Sisters (1986) at The 59th Annual Academy Awards (1987) on March 30, 1987.
Both her Oscar-winning performances were directed by Woody Allen. This makes her one of four actors to win two Oscars under the same person's direction. The other three are: Walter Brennan for Come and Get It (1936) and The Westerner (1940) (both directed by William Wyler), Jack Nicholson for Terms of Endearment (1983) and As Good as It Gets (1997) (both directed by James L. Brooks) and Christoph Waltz for Inglourious Basterds (2009) and Django Unchained (2012) (both directed by Quentin Tarantino).
Along with Shelley Winters, she is one of only two actresses to have won the Academy Award for Best Supporting Actress on two occasions: Winters won for The Diary of Anne Frank (1959) and A Patch of Blue (1965) and Wiest won for Hannah and Her Sisters (1986) and Bullets Over Broadway (1994).
She appeared in five films directed by Woody Allen: The Purple Rose of Cairo (1985), Hannah and Her Sisters (1986), Radio Days (1987), September (1987) and Bullets Over Broadway (1994).
She appeared in four films with Mia Farrow: The Purple Rose of Cairo (1985), Hannah and Her Sisters (1986), Radio Days (1987) and September (1987). All four were written and directed by Woody Allen.
Is just 9 years older than Lori Singer, who played her daughter in Footloose (1984).

Personal Quotes (3)

[speaking in 1987] All I've done since is three days on Bright Lights, Big City (1988) as Michael J. Fox's mother. That's what an Oscar does for you.
My first meeting with Woody Allen lasted 30 seconds. He looked at me, said hello, asked someone to take a Polaroid, thanked me very much and I was shown the door. When I came out, the woman due after me was still doing the same thing as when I went in. She was shocked - 'What happened?' But that's how it is. My agent had warned me. Not hers. She was stunned.
"I'd like to play a real cold, mean mass murderer. Some cruel, hard-bitten women, like the roles Glenn Close gets, just to show that I am capable of not being vulnerable and not being fragile on screen." (on being typecast as fragile or neurotic characters)

See also

Other Works | Publicity Listings | Official Sites | Contact Info

Contribute to This Page