Farrow, Mia 1945(?)-

views updated May 14 2018

Farrow, Mia 1945(?)-


Full name, Maria de Lourdes Villiers Farrow; born February 9, 1945 (some sources cite 1946), in Los Angeles (some sources cite Hollywood, Los Angeles), CA; daughter of John N. B. Villiers Farrow (a film director) and Maureen Paula O'Sullivan (an actress); married Frank Sinatra (a singer, actor, producer, and director), July 19, 1966 (divorced August, 1968); married Andre Previn (an orchestra conductor, composer, musician, musical director, music supervisor, and actor), October 10, 1970 (divorced February, 1979); companion of Woody Allen (an actor, director, and writer), 1981-92; children: (second marriage) Matthew Phineas, Sascha Villiers, Fletcher, Lark Song, Summer Song (also known as Daisy), Soon Yi; (with Allen) Ronan Seamus (originally known as Satchel O'Sullivan), Malone (also known as Mallone and Eliza; originally known as Dylan O'Sullivan), Moses Amadeus (also known as Misha); Tam, Isaiah Justus, Gabriel Wilk, Thaddeus Wilk, Kaeli-Shea (originally known as Quincy), Frankie-Minh. Education: Attended convent schools in Madrid and England; attended Cygnet School, England, through 1962; graduated from Marymount School, Los Angeles. Avocational Interests: Human rights issues, animals.


Manager—Hofflund/Polone, 9465 Wilshire Blvd., Suite 420, Beverly Hills, CA 90212.


Actress. Member of the Royal Shakespeare Company, beginning c. 1974. Appeared in advertisements. Worked with UNICEF, beginning 2002; United Nations Goodwill Ambassador, beginning 2007. Public speaker at various venues.

Awards, Honors:

Golden Globe Award, most promising newcomer, 1965; Golden Globe Award nomination, best television star—female, 1966, for Peyton Place; Golden Laurel, female new face, and nomination for Golden Laurel, female dramatic performance, both Golden Laurel awards, Producers Guild of America, 1968, Cesar Award, best actress, Academie des Arts et Techniques du Cinema (France), David di Donatello Award, best foreign movie performer, Rio de Janeiro Film Festival Award, best actress, San Sebastian Film Festival Award, best actress, and Golden Globe Award nomination, best motion picture actress—drama, all 1969, Fotogramas de Plata, best foreign movie performer, and Film Award nomination, best actress, British Academy of Film and Television Arts, both 1970, all for Rosemary's Baby; Etoile de Cristal, 1969, and Film Award nomination, best actress, British Academy of Film and Television Arts, 1970, both for Secret Ceremony; Golden Globe Award nomination, best motion picture actress—musical/comedy, and Film Award nomination, best actress, British Academy of Film and Television Arts, both 1970, for John and Mary; Henrietta Award, world film favorite—female, Golden Globe awards, 1970; Prize San Sebastian, best actress, San Sebastian International Film Festival, 1972, for Follow Me!; Kansas City Film Critics Circle Award, best supporting actress, 1984, for Zelig; Golden Globe Award nomination, best performance by an actress in a motion picture—comedy/musical, 1985, for Broadway Danny Rose; Golden Globe Award nomination, best performance by an actress in a motion picture—comedy/musical, Film Award nomination, best actress, British Academy of Film and Television Arts, and Saturn Award nomination, best actress, Academy of Science Fiction, Fantasy, and Horror Films, all 1986, for The Purple Rose of Cairo; Film Award nomination, best actress, British Academy of Film and Television Arts, 1987, for Hannah and Her Sisters; D. W. Griffith Award, best actress, National Board of Review Award, best actress, 1990, and Golden Globe Award nomination, best performance by an actress in a motion picture—comedy/musical, 1991, all for Alice; Golden Satellite Award nomination, best performance by an actress in a miniseries or motion picture made for television, International Press Academy, 1999, for "Miracle at Midnight," The Wonderful World of Disney; Golden Globe Award nomination, best performance by an actress in a miniseries or motion picture made for television, 2000, for Forget Me Never; Prism Award nomination, performance in a television movie or miniseries, Entertainment Industries Council, Inc. (EIC), 2003, for The Secret Life of Zoey.


Film Appearances:

(Uncredited) Herself, Unusual Occupations (short documentary; also known as Unusual Occupations L-6-6: Film Tot Holiday), Paramount, 1947.

John Paul Jones, Warner Bros., 1959.

The Age of Curiosity (short film), 1963.

Karen Ericksson, Guns at Batasi, Twentieth Century-Fox, 1964.

Caroline, A Dandy in Aspic, Columbia, 1968.

Cenci, Secret Ceremony, Universal, 1968.

Herself, Mia and Roman (short documentary), Paramount, 1968.

Rosemary Woodhouse, Rosemary's Baby (also known as Rosemaries Baby, A semente do diabo, Dziecko Rosemary, El bebe de Rosemary, La llavor del diable, La semilla del diablo, Le bebe de Rosemary, O bebe de Rosemary, Rosemary ma detatko, Rosemaryn painajainen, Rosemaryna beba, and Rouzmerina beba), Paramount, 1968.

Mary, John and Mary, Twentieth Century-Fox, 1969.

Sarah, See No Evil (also known as Blind Terror and Unseen), Columbia, 1971.

Belinda Sidley, Follow Me! (also known as The Public Eye), Universal, 1972.

Christine Dupont, Docteur Popaul (also known as Dr. Popaul, High Heels, Scoundrel in White, and Trappola per un lupo), Twentieth Century-Fox/Rank/CIC, 1972, dubbed version released as Play Now, Pay Later.

Daisy Buchanan, The Great Gatsby (also known as A Nagy Gatsby, Den store Gatsby, Der Grosse Gatsby, El gran Gatsby, Gatsby Ha-Godel, Gatsby le magnifique, Il grande Gatsby, and Kultahattu), Paramount, 1974.

Julia Lofting, Full Circle (also known as The Haunting of Julia, Demonio dalla facia d'angelo, Julian painajainen, La maison maudite, Le cercle infernal, and Noidankehae), 1977, Cinema International Corporation, 1978, Discovery Films, 1981.

Caroline Brace, Avalanche, New World Pictures, 1978.

Elizabeth "Buffy" Brenner, A Wedding (also known as Bir dueguen, Cerimonia de casamento, Eine Hochzeit, Mitkae haeaet!, Oh, vilket brollop!, Um casamento, Un dia de boda, Un mariage, and Un matrimonio), Twentieth Century-Fox, 1978.

Jacqueline de Bellefort, Death on the Nile (also known as Agatha Christie's "Death on the Nile," Assassinio sul Nilo, Doden paa Nilen, Doeden paa Nilen, Eglima sto Neilo, Kuolema Niilillae, Morte no Nilo, Morte sobre o Nilo, Mort sur le Nil, Smierc Nilu, and Tod auf dem Nil), Paramount, 1978.

Charlotte Bruckner, Hurricane (also known as Forbidden Paradise), Paramount, 1979.

Ariel Weymouth, A Midsummer Night's Sex Comedy (also known as Comedia sexual en una noche de verano, Comedie erotique d'une nuit d'ete, Eine Sommernachts-Sexkomoedie, En midsommarnatts sexkomedi, En midsommernats sexkomedi, Kesaeyoen seksikomedia, La comedia sexual de una noche de verano, Szentivaneji szexkomedia, Uma comedia sexual numa noite de verao, and Una commedia sexy in una notte di mezza estate), Orion, 1982.

Voices of the last unicorn (title role) and Lady Amalthea, The Last Unicorn (animated; also known as Das Letzte Einhorn, El ultimo unicornio, La derniere licorne, O ultimo unicornio, Ostatni jednorozec, and Posledni jednorozec), Jensen Farley Pictures/Sunn Classic Pictures, 1982.

Dr. Eudora Nesbitt Fletcher, Zelig, Warner Bros., 1983.

(Uncredited; in archive footage) Herself, The Compleat Beatles (documentary), Beatlesi, L'histoire des Beatles, and La historia de los Beatles), TeleCulture, c. 1984.

Alura Zor-El, Supergirl (also known as Supergirl: The Movie), TriStar, 1984.

(In archive footage) Rosemary Woodhouse, Terror in the Aisles (also known as Time for Terror), Universal, 1984.

Tina Vitale, Broadway Danny Rose, Orion, 1984.

Cecilia, The Purple Rose of Cairo, Orion, 1985.

Hannah, Hannah and Her Sisters, Orion, 1986.

Lane, September, Orion, 1987.

Sally White, Radio Days (also known as A era do radio, A radio aranykora, Dias da radio, Dias de radio, and Dies de radio), Orion, 1987.

Hope, Another Woman, Orion, 1988.

Halley Reed, Crimes and Misdemeanors, Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer, 1989.

Lisa, "Oedipus Wrecks," New York Stories, Buena Vista, 1989.

Alice Tate (title role), Alice, Paramount/Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer, 1990.

(In archive footage) Ucieczka z kina "Wolnosc" (also known as Escape from the "Liberty" Cinema and L'evasion du cinema liberte), Crone Film Produktion, 1991.

Irmy, Shadows and Fog (also known as Arnyekok es koed, Cienie i mgla, Neblina e sombras, Ombre e nebbia, Ombres et brouillard, Ombres i boira, Schatten und Nebel, Skuggor och dimma, Skygger og taage, Sombras e nevoeiro, Sombras y niebla, Sombras y nieblas, and Varjoja ja sumua), Orion, 1992.

Judy Roth, Husbands and Wives, TriStar, 1992.

Katherine O'Hare Clancy, Widow's Peak, Fine Line Features, 1994.

Nina Marcus, Miami Rhapsody (also known as Miami, Ask oyunlari, Casos e casamentos, Malzenska rapsodia, Miami rapszodia, Miami rhapsodie, MiamiRhapsody—Heisse Naechte in Florida, and Promesse e compromessi), Buena Vista, 1995.

Rachel, Reckless (also known as Aconteceu no natal and Wer hat Angst vorm Weihnachtsmann?), Samuel Reckless, 1995.

Title role, Angela Mooney (also known as Angela Mooney Dies Again), 1996.

(Uncredited) Herself, Private Parts (also known as Howard Stern's "Private Parts," Private Parts—Dirty Radio, Czesci intymne, Howard Sternin intiimit osat, Intim reszek, Naga resnica, O rei da baixaria, O rei da radio, Partes privadas, Parties intimes, and Private Parts—Howard Sterns liv och under), Paramount, 1997.

Voices of Doris and Mrs. Wolf, Redux Riding Hood (short animated film), 1997.

Herself, Junket Whore (documentary), 1998.

Judy Hodsell, Coming Soon (also known as Coming Soon—Kommt sie, kommt sie nicht?), 1999, Unapix Entertainment, 2000.

Anna Simmons, Purpose, Momentum Pictures/Lakeshore Entertainment, 2001.

Mrs. Baylock, The Omen (also known as Omen 666, The Omen 666, A profecia, Das Omen, I profiteia, La profecia, and Oomen), Twentieth Century-Fox, 2006.

Voice of Granny, Arthur et les Minimoys (animated; also known as Arthur and the Invisibles, Arthur and the Minimoys, Arthur e il popolo dei Minimei, Arthur et les Minimoys, Arthur i els Minimoys, Arthur ile Minimoylar, Arthur ja Minimoit, Arthur och Minimojerna, Arthur og Minimoyene, Arthur og Minimoyserne, Arthur und die Minimoys, Arthur y los Minimoys, Artur es a villangok, Artur i Minimki, Artur ja Minimoid, and O Arthur kai oi Minimoy), Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer, 2006.

Herself, Polanski (documentary; also known as Untitled Roman Polanski Documentary), Antidote Films, c. 2006.

Amelia Kowalski, The Ex (also known as Fast Track, Dein Ex—mein Albtraum, and O ex-namorado da minha mulher), Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer/The Weinstein Company, 2007.

Dedication, The Weinstein Company/First Look International, 2007.

Ms. Kimberley, Be Kind Rewind, Focus Features, 2008.

Television Appearances; Series:

Alison MacKenzie, Peyton Place, ABC, 1964-66.

Interviewer, Private View, [Great Britain], beginning 2000.

Television Appearances; Miniseries:

Betty McCarthy, "Unholy Alliances," A Girl Thing (also known as Girls in the City, Affaires de femmes, Coses de dones, and Un amour au feminin), Showtime, 2001.

Television Appearances; Movies:

Brooke Collier, Goodbye, Raggedy Ann, CBS, 1971.

(In archive footage) Alison MacKenzie, Murder in Peyton Place, NBC, 1977.

(In archive footage) Alison MacKenzie, Peyton Place: The Next Generation, NBC, 1985.

Doris Koster, "Miracle at Midnight" (also known as "Miraklet vid midnatt" and "Stille Helden"), The Wonderful World of Disney, ABC, 1998.

Diane McGowin, Forget Me Never (also known as Au coeur du labyrinthe), CBS, 1999.

Marcia Carter, The Secret Life of Zoey (also known as On the Edge, A vida secreta de uma adolescente, La vie secrete de Zoe, La vie secrete de Zoey, Min datters dobbeltliv, and Zoeyn salainen elaemae), Lifetime, 2002.

Grandmary Edwards, Samantha: An American Girl Holiday, The WB, 2004.

Television Appearances; Specials:

Belinda McDonald, Johnny Belinda, ABC, 1967.

Herself, Peyton Place Revisited, ABC, 1973.

Title role, "Peter Pan" (musical), Hallmark Hall of Fame, NBC, 1976.

(In archive footage) Jacqueline de Bellefort, Death on the Nile: Making of Featurette, 1978.

Narrator and voice of title role, Sarah (animated; also known as The Seventh Match), 1982.

Herself and Alura Zor-El, Supergirl: The Making of the Movie, 1984.

(In archive footage) Herself, Weddings of a Lifetime, 1995.

Fashion Kingdom: Naomi Campbell, VH1, 1998.

The Late Show with David Letterman Fifth Anniversary Special, CBS, 1998.

Herself, The AFI's 100 Years100 Stars, CBS, 1999.

(Uncredited; in archive footage) Herself, Hollywood Screen Tests: Take 1, 1999.

Herself, Hollywood Home Movies, Arts and Entertainment, 2004.

Herself, The Omen: Prophecy Fulfilled, 2006.

Herself, Darfur: On Our Watch (documentary), CBC, 2007.

Herself and the voice of Granny, Arthur and the Invisibles: The Making of the Year's Greatest Adventure, 2007.

Appeared in other programs.

Television Appearances; Awards Presentations:

The American Film Institute Salute to Bette Davis (also known as The AFI Salute to Bette Davis), CBS, 1977.

Presenter, The 51st Annual Academy Awards, ABC, 1979.

Presenter, The 34th Annual Tony Awards, CBS, 1980.

(In archive footage) The 59th Annual Academy Awards, ABC, 1987.

The Kennedy Center Honors: A Celebration of the Performing Arts, CBS, 1998.

Television Appearances; Episodic:

Herself, The Mike Douglas Show, syndicated, 1964.

Mystery guest, What's My Line?, CBS, 1966.

Narrator, "Beauty and the Beast" (animated), Long Ago & Far Away, PBS, 1990, originally broadcast on Stories to Remember, syndicated.

Narrator, "Pegasus the Flying Horse" (animated; also known as "Pegasus"), Long Ago & Far Away, PBS, 1990, originally broadcast on Stories to Remember, syndicated.

Herself, Showbiz Today, Cable News Network, 1992.

Herself, Tal cual, 1994.

Herself, Late Show with David Letterman (also known as The Late Show and Late Show Backstage), CBS, 1994, 1995, 1996 (multiple episodes), 1997 (multiple episodes), 1999.

Herself, Die Harald Schmidt Show (also known as Late Night Show mit Harald Schmidt), 1996.

Herself, Intimate Portrait: Audrey Hepburn, Lifetime, 1996.

Herself, "Mia Farrow: A Life of Drama," Biography (also known as A&E Biography: Mia Farrow), Arts and Entertainment, 1997.

Herself, Howard Stern (also known as The Howard Stern Show), E! Entertainment Television, 1997 (multiple episodes).

Herself, 20/20 (also known as ABC News 20/20), ABC, 1997.

Voice, Total Security (also known as Os vigilantes and Taeyttae turvaa), ABC, 1997.

Herself, The Rosie O'Donnell Show, syndicated, 1997, 1999.

Herself, "Mia Farrow," The E! True Hollywood Story (also known as Mia Farrow: The E! True Hollywood Story and THS), E! Entertainment Television, 1998.

Herself, Que apostamos?, 1998.

Herself, Intimate Portrait: Mia Farrow, Lifetime, 1999.

Herself, "On Cukor," American Masters, PBS, 2000.

Herself, "Roman Polanski: Reflections of Darkness," Biography (also known as A&E Biography: Roman Polanski), Arts and Entertainment, 2000.

(In archive footage) Herself, "Shirley MacLaine: This Time Around," Biography (also known as A&E Biography: Shirley MacLaine), Arts and Entertainment, 2000.

Mona Mitchell (Faith's mother), "Know Thyself," Third Watch, NBC, 2000.

Herself, Brigitte & Friends (also known as Gittes venner), 2000.

Herself, "Robert Redford," Bravo Profiles (also known as Bravo Profiles: Robert Redford), Bravo, 2001.

Herself, "Sharon Tate: Murdered Innocence," Biography (also known as A&E Biography: Sharon Tate), Arts and Entertainment, 2002.

Herself, Intimate Portrait: Elizabeth Taylor, Lifetime, 2002.

Herself, The View, ABC, 2002, 2006, 2007.

Mona Mitchell (Faith's mother), "Collateral Damage: Part 1," Third Watch, NBC, 2003.

Mona Mitchell (Faith's mother), "Goodbye to All That," Third Watch, NBC, 2003.

Mona Mitchell (Faith's mother), "In Lieu of Johnson," Third Watch, NBC, 2003.

(In archive footage) Herself, 101 Most Shocking Moments in Entertainment (also known as E's "101"), E! Entertainment Television, 2003.

Herself, "Liza Minelli," Biography (also known as A&E Biography: Liza Minelli), Arts and Entertainment, 2004.

(In archive footage) Herself, "Sobre ‘Muerte en el Nilo,’" Ciclo Agatha Christie, 2005.

Herself, Hardball with Chris Matthews, CNBC, 2005, 2007.

Herself, The Early Show, CBS, 2006.

Herself, This Week, BBC, 2006.

Herself, Entertainment Tonight (also known as E.T., ET Weekend, Entertainment This Week, and This Week in Entertainment), syndicated, 2007.

Herself, Martha, syndicated, 2007.

Herself, Real Time with Bill Maher, HBO, 2007.

Appeared in other programs, including appearances in archive footage featured in "Frank Sinatra: The Voice of the Century," Biography (also known as A&E Biography: Frank Sinatra), Arts and Entertainment.

Television Appearances; Pilots:

Herself, The Muppets Valentine Show, ABC, 1974.

Julie's mother, Julie Lydecker, CBS, 2002.

Stage Appearances:

Cecily Cardew, The Importance of Being Earnest, Madison Avenue Playhouse, New York City, c. 1963.

Jeanne d'Arc, London, 1971.

Title role, Mary Rose, Shaw Theatre, London, 1972.

Irina, The Three Sisters, Greenwich Theatre, London, 1973.

Jan and Adela, The House of Bernarda Alba, Greenwich Theatre, 1973.

Ann Leete, The Marrying of Ann Leete, Royal Shakespeare Company, Aldwych Theatre, London, 1975.

Pavla Tselovnyeva, Zykovs, Royal Shakespeare Company, Aldwych Theatre, 1976.

Sasha, Ivanov, Royal Shakespeare Company, Aldwych Theatre, 1976.

Phoebe Craddock, Romantic Comedy, Ethel Barrymore Theatre, New York City, 1979-80.

Recorded voice of Dr. Bering's wife, Getting Away with Murder, Broadhurst Theatre, New York City, 1996.

Honey, Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf?, Ahmanson Theatre, Los Angeles, 2000.

Sunny Jacobs, The Exonerated, The Culture Project, 45 Bleecker, New York City, c. 2002-2004.

Fran, Fran's Bed, Long Wharf Theatre—Second Stage, New Haven, CT, 2003, Playwrights Horizons, New York City, 2005.

Children and Art (benefit production), New Amsterdam Theatre, New York City, 2005.

Appeared as the title role, Peter Pan (musical). Appeared in summer stock productions.

Major Tours:

Appeared in a tour of The Exonerated.

Radio Appearances; Episodic:

Herself, Howard Stern (also known as The Howard Stern Radio Show and The Howard Stern Show), 1997 (multiple episodes).

Appeared in various radio programs.



(In archive footage) Elizabeth "Buffy" Brenner, A Wedding: Altman Style (short), Twentieth Century-Fox Home Entertainment, 2006.

Herself, Omenisms (short), Twentieth Century-Fox Home Entertainment, 2006.


Mia Farrow, What Falls Away (also known as What Falls Away: A Memoir), BDD Audio, 1997.


"Lullaby from Rosemary's Baby," 1968.


Teleplays; Episodic:

(Author of excerpts) Total Security (also known as Os vigilantes and Taeyttae turvaa), ABC, 1997.


What Falls Away (also known as What Falls Away: A Memoir), Nan A. Talese/Doubleday, 1997.

(Author of preface) John Farrow, Damien the Leper: A Life of Magnificent Courage, Devotion and Spirit (also known as Damien the Leper), Bantam Doubleday Dell, 1998.



Epstein, Edward Z., and Joe Morella, Mia: The Life of Mia Farrow, Delacorte, 1991.

International Dictionary of Films and Filmmakers, Volume 3: Actors and Actresses, fourth edition, St. James Press, 2000.

Newsmakers 1998, Issue 3, Gale Group, 1998.

Rubin, Sam, and Richard Taylor, Mia Farrow: Flowerchild, Madonna, Muse, St. Martin's Press, 1989.


American Film, March, 1987.

Films and Filming, June, 1986.

Hello!, November 12, 2002.

Interview, April, 1994.

Premiere, February, 1990.

Red, June, 2001.

Time Out, July 18, 1990.

Vanity Fair, November, 1992.

Farrow, Mia

views updated May 29 2018


Nationality: American. Born: Maria de Lourdes Villiers Farrow in Los Angeles, California, 9 February 1945; daughter of the film director John Farrow and the actress Maureen O'Sullivan. Education: Attended convent schools in Madrid, Spain, and in London; Marymount School, Los Angeles; Cygnet School, near London, through 1962. Family: Married 1) the singer Frank Sinatra, 1966 (divorced 1968); 2) the conductor André Previn, 1970 (divorced 1979), twin boys; two children with director Woody Allen; also six adopted children. Career: 1963—off-Broadway debut as Cecily in The Importance of Being Earnest; performed with stock company in Warren, Ohio; 1964–66—in TV series Peyton Place; 1968—breakthrough film performance in Roman Polanski's Rosemary's Baby as the young New Yorker raped by the devil; 1971—on London

stage in Arthur Honegger's Jeanne d'Arc, directed by Previn; 1970s—continued theatrical career in London, including appearances in 1975 and 1976 with Royal Shakespeare Company; 1981—began personal and professional relationship (both ended in 1992) with Woody Allen with production of A Midsummer Night's Sex Comedy.Awards: Etoile de Cristal (France), for Secret Ceremony, 1969; David Di Donatello award (Italy) 1968/69, for Rosemary's Baby; D. W. Griffith Award for Best Actress, for Alice, 1990. Agent: Lionel Larner Ltd., 130 W. 57th Street, New York, NY 10019, U.S.A.

Films as Actress:


John Paul Jones (Farrow) (bit role)


The Age of Curiosity (short)


Guns at Batasi (Guillermin) (as Karen Ericksson)


Johnny Belinda (Bogart—for TV) (title role)


A Dandy in Aspic (Anthony Mann) (as Caroline); Secret Ceremony (Losey) (as Cenci); Rosemary's Baby (Polanski) (as Rosemary)


John and Mary (Yates) (as Mary)


Goodbye Raggedy Ann (Cook—for TV); Blind Terror (See No Evil) (Fleischer) (as Sarah); Follow Me! (The Public Eye) (Reed) (as Belinda Sidley)


Docteur Popaul (Scoundrel in White; High Heels) (Chabrol) (as Christine)


The Great Gatsby (Clayton) (as Daisy)


Peter Pan (Hemion—for TV); Full Circle (Loncraine)


Avalanche (Corey Allen) (as Caroline Brace); Death on the Nile (Guillermin) (as Jacqueline de Bellefort); A Wedding (Altman) (as Buffy)


Hurricane (Troell) (as Charlotte Bruckner)


The Haunting of Julia (Loncraine) (title role)


A Midsummer Night's Sex Comedy (Woody Allen) (as Ariel); The Last Unicorn (Rankin Jr. and Bass—animation) (as voice of Last Unicorn/Lady Amalthea)


Zelig (Woody Allen) (as Dr. Eudora Fletcher)


Broadway Danny Rose (Woody Allen) (as Tina Vitale); Sarah and the Squirrel (part animation); Supergirl (Szwarc) (as Alura Zor-El)


The Purple Rose of Cairo (Woody Allen) (as Cecilia); Hannah and Her Sisters (Woody Allen) (as Hannah)


Radio Days (Woody Allen) (as Sally White)


September (Woody Allen) (as Lane)


Another Woman (Woody Allen) (as Hope)


"Oedipus Wrecks" ep. of New York Stories (Woody Allen) (as Lisa); Crimes and Misdemeanors (Woody Allen) (as Halley Reed)


Alice (Woody Allen) (as Alice)


Shadows and Fog (Woody Allen) (as Irmy); Husbands and Wives (Woody Allen) (as Judy Roth)


Widows' Peak (Irvin) (as Catherine O'Hare)


Miami Rhapsody (Frankel) (as Nina); Reckless (René) (as Rachel)


Angela Mooney (title role)


Redux Riding Hood (Moore) (as voice of Doris/Mrs. Wolf); Private Parts (Thomas) (as herself-uncredited)


Miracle at Midnight (Ken Cameron—for TV) (as Doris Koster)


Coming Soon (Burson) (Judy Hodsell); Forget Me Never (Yelin, Longstreet) (as Diane McGowin)


By FARROW: books—

Farrow, Mia, What Falls Away: A Memoir, New York, 1997.

By FARROW: articles—

Interview in Films and Filming (London), June 1986.

Interview with Christine Haas, in Première (Paris), February 1990.

Interview in Time Out (London), 18 July 1990.

"Mia's Story," interview with Maureen Orth, in Vanity Fair (New York), November 1992.

Interview with Ingrid Sischy, in Interview (New York), April 1994.

On FARROW: books—

Romero, J., Sinatra's Women, New York, 1976.

Rubin, Sam, and Richard Taylor, Mia Farrow: Flowerchild, Madonna, Muse, New York, 1989.

Epstein, Edward Z., and Joe Morella, Mia: The Life of Mia Farrow, New York, 1991.

Groteke, Kristi, and Marjorie Rosen, Mia and Woody: Love and Betrayal, New York, 1994.

On FARROW: articles—

"The Moonchild and the Fifth Beatle," in Time (New York), 7 February 1969.

Current Biography 1970, New York, 1970.

Shipman, David, in The Great Movie Stars: The International Years, London, 1972.

"Mia Farrow," in Film Dope (London), September 1978.

Photoplay (London), September 1984.

Ciné Revue (Paris), 23 October 1986.

Brown, Georgia A., "Much Ado about Mia," in American Film (Washington, D.C.), March 1987.

On FARROW: film—

Love and Betrayal: The Mia Farrow Story, for television, 1995.

* * *

Mia Farrow began her career in the successful television series Peyton Place playing Allison Mackenzie, a type of role that would become standard in her repertoire: the virginal and innocent waif—sensitive, vulnerable, and intelligent. Admired for her long, Alice-in-Wonderland hair, Farrow shocked Hollywood one day by cutting it all off, an independent act which, odd as it may seem now, made headlines across the country, and characterized Farrow as not just another pretty face content to follow the instructions of her male Hollywood bosses.

That Farrow's boyish charm was a significant part of her attractiveness is clear; her slightly enigmatic grin, those fetching and luminous eyes, the short hair that sets off her features, and the thin body, recalling Audrey Hepburn. "Victim" roles followed: in a television adaptation of Johnny Belinda, in which she played a deaf mute who is raped; and in Rosemary's Baby, in which she plays a contemporary New York City woman who is raped by the devil and subsequently gives birth to Satan's son. Directed by Roman Polanski, Rosemary's Baby was an incredible box-office and critical success. Farrow's slight physical presence and vulnerability made her a believable victim. It seems ironic that at a time of emerging women's liberation, an actress should appear whose persona was that of a woman apparently so in need of being taken care of.

Despite the popularity of Rosemary's Baby, Farrow has never been especially admired by the critics or popular at the box office; that she failed to win an Academy Award nomination for this or any other film seems to reflect her lack of general appeal. John and Mary, Farrow's first film after Rosemary's Baby, was widely ridiculed, although today, while still rarely screened, it seems to be among the earliest American films of the 1960s to deal with sexual relationships in a relatively honest way. Another underrated performance was as Daisy in The Great Gatsby, a multimillion dollar film which cast her opposite Robert Redford. Here director Jack Clayton revealed Farrow's innocence and beauty as a corrupt facade in a film that looks increasingly praiseworthy, as does her performance in it. Other Farrow roles seem either to perpetuate the waif/victim persona (such as See No Evil, in which she plays a blind woman who is terrorized by a killer, or in her theatrical and television performances as Peter Pan), or to manipulate and subvert the waif/victim persona by countering audience expectations (as in the Agatha Christie adaptation Death on the Nile, Robert Altman's A Wedding, or Claude Chabrol's Docteur Popaul). Yet if Farrow's persona is often vulnerable, her offscreen image has about it a considerable element of independence: one thinks of her interest in social issues, her adoption of Vietnamese children, her visits to the Maharishi Mahesh Yogi in the 1960s, and her highly publicized relationships with a variety of famous and talented men such as Frank Sinatra, André Previn, and Woody Allen.

Certainly the period of Farrow's career with the highest profile comprises her numerous performances for director Woody Allen. While generally thought of as an instinctual, if mannered, actress, Farrow reveals herself in Allen's films to be an actress of substantial technical skill; and before its termination, their collaboration acquired the stature of a Chabrol and Audran, a Fellini and Masina, a Bergman and Ullmann. Farrow played a liberated freethinker in A Midsummer Night's Sex Comedy, a psychiatrist in the pseudodocumentary Zelig, and—most surprisingly—a vulgar Italian woman in Broadway Danny Rose, a key Allen film in which Farrow played il bruto to Allen's Gelsomina in a contemporary comedy evoking Fellini's La Strada. Her excellent work for Woody Allen has been judged surprising particularly by those critics who had already tended to underrate or dismiss her. Her totally luminous and sensitive performance as the forlorn movie fan in the 1985 The Purple Rose of Cairo seems already to be a key performance in the American cinema: the performance and film both extraordinary achievements largely ignored at their release, pushed aside by the Spielberg-inspired, special-effects spectaculars of the Reagan era. As the daughter in September (based loosely on Lana Turner's relationship with her daughter in the aftermath of the Johnny Stompanato murder), Farrow shows the ability to eradicate her own charismatic personality within an intimate chamber drama in a way that recalls and rivals Liv Ullmann in Autumn Sonata, with which the film bears comparison: Farrow's sniffling, whiny protagonist is both terrifyingly vulnerable and pitiable, as well as the temperamental opposite to Farrow's spunky cigarette girl who becomes a star in Radio Days, in which Farrow offers a deft, comic turn.

Perhaps unfortunately, one cannot comprehensively discuss Farrow in the mid-1990s without some consideration of the extraordinary scandal that gripped tabloid America for over a year. The Allen-Farrow breakup, which included dismissed charges against Allen of child sexual abuse and revelations of an acknowledged affair between Allen and Farrow's then-teenaged adopted daughter, Soon-Yi, put the Farrow-Allen collaboration under a microscope. A reevaluation of Allen's use of Farrow reveals, perhaps surprisingly to some, that Farrow's persona in Allen's films (with the exception, perhaps, of Alice, which emphasizes the Roman Catholic, giving component of Farrow's identity) was by no means a heroic or valorized one. In Hannah and Her Sisters, one of Allen's most sustained works, shot largely in Farrow's Manhattan apartment, Farrow played a role patterned upon her own life, allowing the spectator a kind of voyeuristic entrance into Farrow's life with Allen. And yet, if barely commented upon at the time of the film's release, Farrow's Hannah—only apparently the stable, expressive center in Allen's world—is relatively smug, and it is clear that the filmmaker expends much more narrative time and interest on her sisters, as Allen's surrogate (Hannah's husband, played by Michael Caine) falls in love with a sister-inlaw—an incestual precursor to Allen's later disenchantment. In Crimes and Misdemeanors (arguably Woody Allen's finest work), Farrow plays an archetype for our time: the amoral smiler—smart, attractive, talented, and sensitive, yet ultimately ambitious and pragmatic in ways which are all too recognizable. In retrospect it is clearer that in The Purple Rose of Cairo, September, and Another Woman (in which a very pregnant Farrow spends most of the film in therapy nd tears), there is a profound element of masochism implicit in Farrow's suffering, and sadism on the part of the director and/or the narrative.

Husbands and Wives, the Allen masterwork representing the last of their collaboration, in production while the scandal was unfolding, has Farrow and Allen playing a married couple whose marriage traumatically unravels, with Farrow presented as a woman who subtly uses her charm and passivity to manipulate those around her. In this film of vertiginous style and emotion, Farrow's heartrending performance, for many, was so persuasive that the film was greeted (though to disappointing box office) as psychodrama in the Cassavetes style, too painful to watch. Even in the "Oedipus Wrecks" segment of New York Stories, the character played by Woody Allen ultimately rejects as his perfect match the fantasy of Mia Farrow in favor of the reality of Julie Kavner. Is any more evidence necessary that Allen has been no Sternberg elevating his Dietrich? As a last curious footnote to the scandal, one notes that even in non-Allen films, major roles in Rosemary's Baby, Death on the Nile, Docteur Popaul, and The Great Gatsby (among others) put Farrow in a sexual triangle that ends in tragic sensation.

Since the breakup with Allen, Farrow has managed to acquit herself professionally in some interesting, idiosyncratic work. Returning to Ireland and her roots in Widows' Peak, a gentle and surprising comedy, Farrow again played a victim more apparent than real and turned in a luminous, subtle performance, complete with Irish accent. Especially interesting is Miami Rhapsody, a comedy directed by David Frankel explicitly in the style of Woody Allen, in which Farrow plays a woman whose daughter is given the opportunity to sleep with her mother's lover, but refuses out of moral principle—a sly, cinematic rebuke to Allen, if ever there was one. Unfortunately, too much of Farrow's subsequent work has been less satisfactorily distributed or conceived. Reckless, a black comedy made in 1995, was too weird for mainstream audiences. Angela Mooney Dies Again, another film made in Ireland, allows Farrow the opportunity to give an intense performance in a flawed film as a woman who repeatedly threatens suicide. Coming Soon, which went straight to video as a result of the MPAA initially giving the film an NC-17 rating, boasted Farrow, Ryan O'Neal, and Spalding Gray in supporting roles in a feminist comedy centered on women's orgasm. More successful for Farrow, certainly, were two movies made directly for TV. In Miracle at Midnight, a TV movie produced for The Wonderful World of Disney, Farrow plays a heroine from real life: Doris Koster, who together with her husband saved thousands of Jews in Nazi-occupied Denmark during World War II. Forget Me Never, broadcast in 1999, was even more successful—garnering Farrow a Golden Globe nomination for her poignant performance as a married fortysomething attorney who is diagnosed with Alzheimer's. Despite these reent successes, one suspects that Mia Farrow's continuing performance work will continue to be too fine, subtle, and marginal for significant contemporary acclaim. And unlike other of her acting contemporaries (like Streisand or Nicholson), Mia Farrow—even in the midst of her biggest successes with Rosemary's Baby and Hannah and Her Sisters—never particularly worked at capitalizing her potential as a movie star or as a Hollywood power player.

Ironically, Farrow's most overwhelming public success has come not through her acting, but through her writing. Her extraordinary memoir, What Falls Away, which was published in 1997, joins that very rare company of actress memoirs (including Liv Ullmann's Changing and Hildegard Kneff's The Gift Horse) that rise to a literary quality. Dealing courageously with her own childhood polio, her complicated relationships, her unusual inter-racial family of fourteen children (many adopted, with multiple handicaps), and of course, the scandal involving Woody Allen, What Falls Away became a national best-seller as well as an elegant and poetic self-portrait of one of our most sensitive and unique film artists.

—Charles Derry

Farrow, Mia

views updated Jun 08 2018


(b. 9 February 1945 in Los Angeles, California), actress who found fame in the television soap opera Peyton Place and whose big screen breakthrough came in the stylish horror movie Rosemary's Baby (1968).

Born Maria de Lourdes Villiers Farrow, Mia Farrow is the daughter of film director John Farrow and actress Maureen O'Sullivan, who starred as Jane in the popular Tarzan movie series of the 1930s. The third of seven children, Farrow attended convent schools in Madrid, Spain, as well as Marymount School in Los Angeles. At the age of nine she fought a battle with polio and in her teens took bit parts in several of her father's movies. Farrow's schooling finished at the Cygnet School, London, in 1962. From an early age, she craved fame, saying in a 1965 interview with Kitty Kelly, "I just couldn't stand being anonymous."

Aged just eighteen, Farrow made her off-Broadway debut as Cecily in The Importance of Being Earnest in 1963, and in 1964 she began her screen career as Allison Mackenzie on the hit television show Peyton Place. Farrow was known for roller-skating around the set and soon acquired a reputation for wild behavior. Despite the apparent intensity of her real-life ambition, Farrow's blonde hair, wide-eyed look, and gentle smile have led to numerous roles as sensitive, intelligent, but slightly misunderstood women. Peyton Place produced the first public outings for an acting persona Farrow would cultivate and refine over the next thirty years.

Although Farrow's role in Peyton Place was a supporting one, the show's success guaranteed national fame. Starting in 1964 with twice-weekly installments, the show, by the end of the first season, was airing three times a week. Between 1964 and 1966, Allison Mackenzie became one of the show's most popular characters and won Farrow the 1965 Golden Globe for most promising newcomer. Farrow left Peyton Place just as the show's ratings were about to decline. She married fifty-one-year-old Frank Sinatra on 19 July 1966.

Aged just twenty-one and married to one of the greatest popular singers of all time, Farrow quickly became a household name, her photograph appearing in newspapers and magazines around the world. Her waiflike figure, short hair, and vulnerable appearance were much admired. She appeared on the cover of Vogue in 1967, helping to feed the 1960s fashion industry's obsession with thin, boyish women. This new look was a radical departure from the voluptuous figures of the previous generation of actresses, such as Marilyn Monroe and Jane Russell.

Although she was happy to be in the public eye, Farrow also wanted to work. After her marriage, her acting career stalled, and it was against Sinatra's wishes that she took the leading role in Roman Polanski's cult horror movie, Rosemary's Baby (1968). Farrow plays Rosemary Woodhouse, a young woman from the country who moves to New York with her new husband. The couple settle in an old apartment building called the Bramford, which is home to a strange group of neighbors. Rosemary becomes increasingly afraid of an occult presence in the building and is convinced that she has been raped and impregnated by Satan. Rosemary's Baby was perhaps the most influential horror movie of the decade, inspiring a whole subgenre of movies about possessed children, including The Exorcist (1973), and The Omen (1976). Unlike the Ira Levin novel on which it is based, Polanski's movie leaves it unclear whether or not Rosemary has been raped by Satan. The film is more about alienation, loneliness, superstition, and mental collapse than it is about supernatural evil. By the time of the film's release, Farrow was so well known that in an attempt to boost ratings, the writers of Peyton Place introduced a baby to coincide with the movie's opening weekend. The baby was introduced as the child of Allison Mackenzie, Farrow's character in the show.

A career high, Rosemary's Baby earned Farrow a nomination as best actress at the 1969 Golden Globes and won her a David at the 1969 David di Donatello Awards in Italy. However, although the finished movie was a success, the process of filming had been painful. Farrow's decision to continue working brought her marriage to Sinatra to an end, and he served her with divorce papers on the set. When filming was over in January 1968, Farrow went to India to recuperate. As if to confirm her place at the heart of 1960s popular culture, she spent her time in India with the Beatles at the ashram of Maharishi Mahesh Yogi. Farrow and Sinatra divorced on 16 August 1968.

After Rosemary's Baby, Farrow was much in demand in Hollywood. She was nominated for a second Golden Globe in 1970 for her role alongside Dustin Hoffman in the sex comedy John and Mary (1969), although the film was a commercial failure. The same year, she married the orchestral conductor André Previn, had twin boys, and adopted three other children. After their divorce in 1979, Farrow was linked with director Woody Allen for twelve years, although they never lived together. She had one child with Allen and adopted two more. By 1994, two years after her much-publicized split with Allen, Farrow had fourteen children, ten of whom were adopted.

Farrow was one of the most prominent young stars of the 1960s, with an attitude and "look" that have since come to embody the spirit of the decade. However, she failed to achieve the broad popular appeal of contemporaries such as Goldie Hawn and Jessica Lange, possibly because the "little girl lost" persona went out of favor as the decade ended. Yet despite this sense that she is stuck with a screen presence she can exploit but not escape, Farrow has in fact built on her achievements in the 1960s to show great technical breadth. This is especially true of her work for Woody Allen, who managed to draw performances from her that surprised many people. In performances between The Purple Rose of Cairo (1985), and Husbands and Wives (1992), Farrow augmented the vulnerable-yet-strong character she made her own in Rosemary's Baby to become one of the most admired actresses of her generation.

Farrow published her much-praised autobiography, What Falls Away: A Memoir, in 1997. Biographies include Sam Rubin and Richard Taylor, Mia Farrow: Flowerchild, Madonna, Muse (1989), and Edward Z. Epstein and Joe Morella, Mia: The Life of Mia Farrow (1991). Further information is available in Kitty Kelly, My Way (1965), Ivan Butler, The Cinema of Roman Polanski (1970), and David Shipman, The Great Movie Stars: The International Years (1972).

Chris Routledge