Dern, Laura 1967–

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DERN, Laura 1967–


Full name, Laura Elizabeth Dern; born February 10, 1967, in Santa Monica, CA; daughter of Bruce Dern (an actor) and Diane Ladd (an actress); granddaughter of Mary Lanier (an actress); godchild of Shelley Winters (an actress); companion of Ben Harper (a musician); children: (with Harper) Ellery Walker, Jaya. Education: Attended University of Southern California and University of California, Los Angeles; studied acting at Lee Strasberg Theatre Institute, Royal Academy of Dramatic Art, and the Tracy Roberts Workshop; studied with Peggy Feury and Sandra Seacat; attended Harvard Workshop.


Agent—Creative Artists Agency, 9830 Wilshire Blvd., Beverly Hills, CA 90212. Manager—Untitled Entertainment, 331 North Maple Dr., Second Floor, Beverly Hills, CA 90210. Publicist—Wolf/Kasteler/Van Iden and Associates Public Relations, 335 North Maple Dr., Suite 351, Beverly Hills, CA 90210. Contact—c/o 2401 Main St., Santa Monica, CA 90405.


Actress, producer, and director.

Awards, Honors:

Miss Golden Globe, 1982; New Generation Award, Los Angeles Film Critics Association, 1985, for Smooth Talk and Mask; Independent Spirit Award nomination, best female lead, Independent Features Project/West, 1986, for Smooth Talk; Independent Spirit Award nomination, best female lead, 1987, for Blue Velvet; Montreal World Festival Award, best actress, 1991, Academy Award nomination, best actress, and Golden Globe Award nomination, best performance by an actress in a motion picture—drama, both 1992, all for Rambling Rose; Emmy Award nomination, outstanding lead actress in a miniseries or a special, 1992, and Golden Globe Award, best performance by an actress in a miniseries or motion picture made for television, 1993, both for Afterburn; Emmy Award nomination, outstanding guest actress in a drama series, 1994, for Fallen Angels; Saturn Award nomination, best actress, Academy of Science Fiction, Fantasy & Horror Films, 1994, for Jurassic Park; Montreal World Festival Award, best actress, 1996, for Citizen Ruth; Emmy Award nomination, outstanding guest actress in a comedy series, 1997, for Ellen; Golden Satellite Award nomination, best performance by an actress in a miniseries or motion picture made for television, International Press Academy, 1997, for The Siege at Ruby Ridge; Golden Globe Award nomination, best performance by an actress in a miniseries or motion picture made for television, 1999, for The Baby Dance; Tribute to Independent Vision Award, Sundance Film Festival, 1999; Boston Society of Film Critics Award, best supporting actress, 2004, for We Don't Live Here Anymore.


Film Appearances:

(Uncredited) Sharon Anne (Maggie's daughter), White Lightning (also known as McKlusky), United Artists, 1973.

(Uncredited) Girl eating ice cream cone, Alice Doesn't Live Here Anymore, Warner Bros., 1975.

Debbie, Foxes, United Artists, 1980.

Jessica McNeil, Ladies and Gentlemen: The Fabulous Stains (also known as All Washed Up), Paramount, 1982.

Diane, Teachers, Metro–Goldwyn–Mayer/United Artists, 1984.

Connie, Smooth Talk, Spectrafilm, 1985.

Diana, Mask (also known as Peter Bogdanovich's "Mask"), Universal, 1985.

Sandy Williams, Blue Velvet, Di Laurentiis Entertainment Group, 1986.

Sister, Sister, New World Entertainment/Odyssey Entertainment, 1987.

Kathleen Robinson, Fat Man and Little Boy (also known as Shadowmakers), Paramount, 1988.

Claire Clairmont, Haunted Summer, 1988, Cannon, 1989.

Lula Pace Fortune, Wild at Heart, Samuel Goldwyn, 1990.

Rose, Rambling Rose, New Line Cinema, 1991.

Dr. Ellie Sattler, Jurassic Park (also known as JP), Universal, 1993.

(Uncredited) Herself, The Last Party (documentary), LIVE Entertainment, 1993.

Sally Gerber, A Perfect World, Warner Bros., 1993.

Ruth Stoops, Citizen Ruth (also known as Meet Ruth Stoops), Miramax, 1996.

Miss Freida Riley, October Sky, Universal, 1999.

Peggy, Dr. T and the Women, Artisan Entertainment, 2000.

Dr. Ellie Sattler, Jurassic Park III (also known as JPIII), MCA/Universal, 2001.

Gertrude "Gert" Hart, Focus, Paramount Classics, 2001.

Jean Noble, Novocaine, Artisan Entertainment, 2001.

Randy Carpenter, I Am Sam, New Line Cinema, 2001.

Ruby Montgomery, Daddy and Them, Miramax, 2001.

Herself, Mysteries of Love (documentary), Metro–Goldwyn–Mayer/United Artists Home Entertainment, 2002.

Herself, Searching for Debra Winger (documentary), Lions Gate Films, 2002.

Terry Linden, We Don't Live Here Anymore, Warner Bros., 2004.

Dortha Schaefer, The Prize Winner of Defiance Ohio (also known as The Prize Winner of Defiance, Ohio: How My Mother Raised 10 Kids on 25 Words or Less), DreamWorks, 2005.

Mother, The Girl Who Loved Tom Gordon, Lions Gate Films, 2005.

Pam, Happy Endings, Lions Gate Films, 2005.

Inland Empire, Studio Canal, 2005.

Rene, Lonely Hearts, Millennium Films/Emmett/Furla Films, 2006.

Television Appearances; Miniseries:

Vicki Weaver, The Siege at Ruby Ridge (also known as Every Knee Shall Bow: The Siege at Ruby Ridge and Ruby Ridge: An American Tragedy), CBS, 1996.

Television Appearances; Movies:

Audrey Constantine, Happy Endings, NBC, 1983.

Crissy, The Three Wishes of Billy Grier, 1984.

Rebecca, The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde, 1989.

Nightmare Classics, 1989.

Mrs. Harduvel, Afterburn, HBO, 1992.

Helen McNulty, Down Came a Blackbird (also known as Ramirez), Showtime, 1995.

Voice of adult Bone, Bastard out of Carolina, Showtime, 1996.

Wanda LeFauve, The Baby Dance, Showtime, 1998.

Sister Pauline Quinn, Within These Walls, Lifetime, 2001.

Linda Peeno, Damaged Care, Showtime, 2002.

Television Appearances; Specials:

Heartbroken woman, Industrial Symphony No. 1: The Dream of the Broken Hearted, 1990.

Herself, Jonathon Ross Presents for One Week Only: David Lynch, 1990.

Rock the Vote, Fox, 1992.

Voice of Amelia Earhart, A Century of Women (documentary; also known as A Family of Women), TBS, 1994.

AFI's 100 Years … 100 Movies, CBS, 1998.

The Real Ellen Story, Bravo, 1998.

Warner Bros. Story: No Guts, No Glory: 75 Years of Laughter (documentary), TNT, 1998.

Warner Bros. Story: No Guts, No Glory: 75 Years of Stars (documentary), TNT, 1998.

Berry Thompson, "A Season for Miracles," Hallmark Hall of Fame, CBS, 1999.

Herself, AFI's 100 Years … 100 Stars, CBS, 1999.

Fall In Love with a Stranger, PAX TV, 1999.

Equality Rocks, VH1, 2000.

Herself, The Making of "Ladies and Gentlemen, the Fabulous Stains" (documentary; also known as "Ladies and Gentlemen, the Fabulous Stains": Behind the Movie), Independent Film Channel, 2004.

Television Appearances; Awards Presentations:

(Uncredited) Presenter, The 1987 IFP/West Independent Spirit Awards, Independent Film Channel, 1987.

(Uncredited) Herself, The 64th Annual Academy Awards, ABC, 1992.

The 18th Annual People's Choice Awards, 1992.

Presenter, The 66th Annual Academy Awards, ABC, 1994.

The 51st Annual Golden Globe Awards, TBS, 1994.

Fourth Annual Environmental Media Awards, TBS, 1994.

The 66th Annual Academy Awards Presentation, ABC, 1994.

The American Film Institute Salute to Steven Spielberg (also known as The 23rd American Film Institute Life Achievement Award: A Salute to Steven Spielberg), NBC, 1995.

Family Film Awards, CBS, 1996.

The Blockbuster Entertainment Awards, UPN, 1997.

The 54th Annual Golden Globe Awards, NBC, 1997.

Herself, The 71st Annual Academy Awards, ABC, 1999.

Hollywood Salutes Jodie Foster: An American Cinematheque Tribute, TNT, 1999.

Presenter, The 2004 IFP/West Independent Spirit Awards, Independent Film Channel, 2004.

Television Appearances; Episodic:

The Secret Storm, CBS, c. 1972.

"Gotham Swansong," Shannon, CBS, 1981.

Rebecca Laymon, "The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde," Nightmare Classics, Showtime, 1989.

Narrator, "The Song of Sacajawea," American Heroes & Legends (animated), 1992.

Annie Ainsley, "Murder, Obliquely," Fallen Angels (also known as Perfect Crimes and Sydney Pollack's "Fallen Angels"), Showtime, 1993.

Herself, The Late Show with David Letterman, CBS, 1993, 1995, 1996.

(Uncredited) Herself, Saturday Night Live (also known as NBC's Saturday Night, Saturday Night, and SNL), NBC, 1993.

Storytime, PBS, 1994.

Guest caller June, "Sleeping with the Enemy," Frasier, NBC, 1995.

Herself, The Rosie O'Donnell Show, syndicated, 1996.

Herself, "Death," Dennis Miller Live, HBO, 1997.

Susan, "The Puppy Episode: Parts 1 & 2," Ellen (also known as These Friends of Mine), ABC, 1997.

Herself, "I Buried Sid," The Larry Sanders, HBO, 1998.

Herself, The Martin Short Show, syndicated, 1999.

Intimate Portrait: Kelly Preston (documentary), Lifetime, 1999.

Intimate Portrait: Laura Dern (documentary), Lifetime, 1999.

Intimate Portrait: Mary Steenburgen (documentary), Lifetime, 1999.

Herself, "Shelley Winters—Full Disclosure," Biography (also known as A&E Biography: Shelley Winters—Full Disclosure), Arts and Entertainment, 2001.

Voice of serving wench, "Joust Like a Woman," King of the Hill (animated), Fox, 2002.

United States Poet Laureate Tabatha Fortis, "The U.S. Poet Laureate," The West Wing, NBC, 2002.

Voice of Katherine, "Patch Boomhauer," King of the Hill (animated), Fox, 2003.

Herself, Intimate Portrait: Rosanna Arquette (documentary), Lifetime, 2003.

Herself, Dinner for Five, Independent Film Channel, 2004.

Herself, Ellen: The Ellen DeGeneres Show (also known as Ellen and The Ellen DeGeneres Show), syndicated, 2004.

Appeared in "The Films of Clint Eastwood," "The Films of David Lynch," and "The Films of Steven Spielberg," all episodes of The Directors, Encore.

Television Work:

Director, The Gift (short special), Showtime, 1994.

Executive producer, Down Came a Blackbird (movie; also known as Ramirez), Showtime, 1995.

Coproducer, Damaged Care (movie), Showtime, 2002.

Stage Appearances:

Charlene Loody, The Palace of Amateurs, Minetta Lane Theatre, New York City, 1988.

Brooklyn Laundry, 1988.

Appeared in Hamlet and A Midsummer Night's Dream.



Herself, Beyond Jurassic Park (documentary), Universal Studios Home Video, 2001.

Herself, Becoming Sam (short documentary), New Line Home Video, 2002.



Newsmakers 1992, Issue Cumulation, Gale, 1992.


American Film, October, 1989, p. 46; July, 1991.

Cosmopolitan, July, 1991.

Interview, March, 1986, p. 146; September, 1990, p. 118; August, 2004, pp. 52–54.

Mademoiselle, November, 1989.

Movieline's Hollywood Life, July, 2004, pp. 58–61, 92.

Newsweek, September 15, 1986; August 27, 1990; September 23, 1991.

New York, September 30, 1991.

New Yorker, September 22, 1986.

New York Times, May 4, 1986.

Now, August 19, 2004.

People Weekly, April 29, 1985, p. 107; September 22, 1986; March 19, 1990; August 27, 1990; October 8, 1990, p. 59; October 7, 1991; November 26, 2001, p. 186; February 4, 2002, pp. 103–107.

Premiere, September, 1990, p. 86; January, 1991.

Radio Times, March 30, 1996, pp. 16–18.

Rolling Stone, October 23, 1986; September 6, 1990; October 3, 1991; October 17, 1991.

Starlog, August, 1993.

Time, May 26, 1986; September 22, 1986; August 20, 1990; January 6, 1992.