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Valerie Perrine

Date of birth : 1943-09-03
Date of death : -
Birthplace : Galveston, Texas, U.S.
Nationality : American
Category : Arts and Entertainment
Last modified : 2010-09-01

Valerie Ritchie Perrine, born September 3, 1943 in Galveston, Texas is an American actress and model.

The daughter of a US Army officer and a former Broadway dancer, Valerie Perrine was raised in various places around the world, including Japan. After briefly studying psychology, she began her show business career as a topless dancer in Las Vegas. Perrine traveled throughout Europe and lived for a time in Paris before finally settling in L.A. in the early 70s. Landing her first role as Montana Wildhack in George Roy Hill's screen adaptation of Kurt Vonnegut Jr.'s "Slaughterhouse-Five" (1972), she was singled out for her portrayal of a voluptuous kidnapped bride of the hero (Michael Sacks). This led to her first starring role as the trampy girlfriend of race car driver Jeff Bridges in "The Last American Hero/Hard Driver" (1973). Perrine had what was perhaps her best role to date as Honey Harlowe, the drug-addicted stripper-wife of comic Lenny Bruce in Bob Fosse's biopic "Lenny" (1974). Bringing class and smarts to what could have been a stereotypical role, she proved to critics and audiences just how strong an actor she could be, given the right material. Perrine earned awards from critics groups, won an Oscar nomination as Best Actress and received the Best Actress trophy at the 1975 Cannes Film Festival.

Finding appropriate follow-up roles, however, proved challenging. With her tiny voice and full-figure, Perrine tended to be cast as the good-hearted bimbo. She reportedly chose not to play screen legend Carole Lombard in a biopic, but instead agreed to star as Carlotta Monti opposite Rod Steiger in another film biography, "W.C. and Me" (1976). The film, however, received mixed reviews and Perrine's career stalled. She was shown to much better effect, subverting the stereotype, in the supporting role of Eve Teschmacher, the moll of villain Lex Luthor (Gene Hackman) in Richard Donner's "Superman" (1978), which she briefly reprised in the 1980 sequel. Her career was dealt another near fatal blow, however, when she co-starred with Bruce Jenner in the laughable "Can't Stop the Music" (1980). Most of Perrine's film appearances in the 80s and 90s have been in generally forgettable fare that has not served her particularly well; exceptions could be argued for her turn as Jack Nicholson's money-hungry wife in "The Border" (1982) and her brief appearance as Dermot Mulroney's mother in "Bright Angel" (1990).

The small screen has offered limited success, as well. Perrine first appeared on TV in the ABC movie "The Couple Takes a Wife" (1972) and had a good role as one of the showgirls in "Ziegfeld: The Man and His Women" (NBC, 1978). During the 80s, Perrine began to find better roles. She was one of the residents of "Malibu" (NBC, 1983), co-starred with Harvey Korman in the short-lived "Leo & Liz in Beverly Hills" (CBS, 1986), as one-half of a self-made New Jersey couple who settle among the rich and famous, and lent support to Elizabeth Taylor and Mark Harmon in Nicolas Roeg's TV-remake of "Sweet Bird of Youth" (NBC, 1989). She also won praise as the overbearing mother of Dr. Lewis (Sherry Stringfield) on NBC's "ER" (1995).


* 1971 Film debut, Slaughterhouse Five
* 1972 TV-movie debut, The Couple Takes a Wife (ABC)
* 1975 Became a star as Honey, the wife of comedian Lenny Bruce in Bob Fosse s acclaimed biopic Lenny
* 1978 Played Lex Luthor s moll, Eve Teschmacher in Richard Donner s Superman
* 1980 Reprised her role as Miss Teschmacher in the sequel Superman II
* 1986 Starred in the short-lived TV series, Leo and Liz in Beverly Hills
* 1993 Had regular role on the short-lived series The Secrets of Lake Success (NBC)
* 1995 Played the mother of Dr. Lewis (Sherry Stringfield) on the hit NBC drama series ER
* 1998 Joined the cast of the CBS daytime drama As the World Turns as Dolores Pierce, described as a boozy, trailer-trash mother
* Lived in Paris
* Performed as a showgirl in Las Vegas s Lido de Paris revue
* Spent childhood traveling the world with her parents; studied ballet, tap and acrobatics

Film Appearances

# Las Vegas showgirl, Diamonds Are Forever (also known as Ian Fleming's "Diamonds Are Forever"), Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer, 1971
# Montana Wildhack, Slaughterhouse-Five, Universal, 1972
# Marge, The Last American Hero (also known as Hard Driver),Twentieth Century-Fox, 1973
# Honey Bruce, Lenny, United Artists, 1974
# Carlotta Monterey (some sources cite Carlotta Monti), W. C. Fields andMe, Universal, 1976
# Rosie Jones, Mr. Billion (also known as The Windfall), Twentieth Century-Fox, 1977
# Eve Teschmacher, Superman (also known as Superman: The Movie), Warner Bros., 1978
# Charlotta Steele, The Electric Horseman, Columbia, 1979
# Zeftel, The Magician of Lublin (also known as Der Magier and Ha-Kosem Mi'Lublin), Cannon, 1979
# Samantha Simpson, Can't Stop the Music, Associated Film Distributors, 1980
# Brenda Wilcox, Agency (also known as Mind Games, L'agence de la peur, and Les espions dans la ville), Jensen Farley, c. 1980
# Eve Teschmacher, Superman II, Warner Bros., 1981
# Marcy, The Border, Warner Bros., 1982
# Pamela, Water (also known as Water: The Movie), Handmade Films, 1986
# Georgette Starkey, Maid to Order, New Century/Vista, 1987
# Maria, Mask of Murder (also known as The Investigator), Master Films, 1989
# Aileen Russell, Bright Angel, Hemdale Releasing, 1990
# Caterina, Riflessi in un cielo scuro (also known as Reflectionsin a Dark Sky), Starlet Film, 1991
# Mona, Boiling Point (also known as L'extreme limite), Warner Bros., 1993
# Delores Smith, The Break, Trimark Pictures, 1995
# Tilly Baker, Girl in the Cadillac, Overseas FilmGroup, 1995
# Elaine's patron, 54 (also known as Fifty-Four), Miramax, 1998
# Marguerita Hansen, Brown's Requiem, Avalanche Releasing, 1998
# Rita Lindross, My Girlfriend's Boyfriend, Enlightenment Productions, 1998
# Picture This, 1999
# Margo, What Women Want, Paramount, 2000
# Gloria Vassick, Directing Eddie (also known as Project: Indie), Kaldor Productions, 2001
# Mrs. Duncan, The End of the Bar, Carbonated Films/Sub Q Films, 2002
# Lenora Tripp, The Californians, Fabrication Films, 2005
# V, The Moguls (also known as The Amateurs), Bauer MartinezStudios, 2006
# Some sources cite appearances in other films, including Doppio sogno, 1990; Men in Heels, Women in Tights, 1996; and Claudine's Return (also known as Fire of Love and Kiss of Fire), Jazz Pictures, c. 1997.

Television Appearances - Series

# Liz Green, Leo & Liz in Beverly Hills, CBS, 1986
# Dolores Pierce, As the World Turns, CBS, 1998-99


# Dee Staufer, Malibu, NBC, 1983
# Honey Potts Atkins, The Secrets of Lake Success (also known as Great Escapes and Lake Success), NBC, 1993


# Jennifer Allen, The Couple Takes a Wife, ABC, 1972
# Lillian Lorraine, Ziegfeld: The Man and His Women, NBC, 1978
# Stella White, Marian Rose White, CBS, 1982
# Ronda Thompson, When Your Lover Leaves, 1983
# Isabelle, Mountain of Diamonds (also known as Burning Shore, Gluehender Himmel, La montagna dei diamanti, and La montagne de diamants), 1990
# (Uncredited) Monica Gilroy, Curtain Call, Starz!, 1998
# Estelle, A Place Called Truth, The Movie Channel, 1999
# Maura's mother, Shame, Shame, Shame (also known as Climax),The Movie Channel, 1999


# Meredith, Steambath, PBS, 1972
# Female team captain, Celebrity Challenge of the Sexes, CBS, 1977
# Circus of the Stars, CBS, 1977
# Circus of the Stars #2, CBS, 1977
# The Making of "Superman: The Movie," 1978
# Circus of the Stars #3, CBS, 1979
# Cohost, Allan Carr's "Magic Night" (also known as Magic Night), 1980
# Ringmaster, Circus of the Stars #5, CBS, 1980
# It's Not Easy Bein' Me: The Rodney Dangerfield Show, ABC, 1982
# Miss Lucy, Tennessee Williams's "Sweet Bird of Youth" (also knownas Sweet Bird of Youth), NBC, 1989

Awards Presentations

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


# Guest, The Tonight Show Starring Johnny Carson (also known as The Best of Carson), NBC, 1972, 1973, 1976
# Marlene, "When the Girls Came Out to Play," Love Story, NBC, 1973
# Guest, Omnibus, ABC, 1980
# Tina, "The Three Little Pigs," Faerie Tale Theater (also known asShelley Duvall's "Faerie Tale Theater"), Showtime, 1982
# "The Couch," George Burns Comedy Week, CBS, 1985
# Jackie Vincoeur, "The Bad Seed," Northern Exposure, CBS, 1992
# Suzanne Dubonet, "Who Killed the Romance?," Burke's Law, CBS, 1994
# Brigitta, "Law and Disorder," Homicide: Life on the Street (also known as H: LOTS and Homicide), NBC, 1995
# Cookie Lewis, "And Baby Makes Two," ER (also known as EmergencyRoom), NBC, 1995
# Cookie Lewis, "Motherhood," ER (also known as Emergency Room), NBC, 1995
# Mrs. Nassiter, "The Brothers McMillan," Nash Bridges (also known as Bridges), CBS, 1996
# Mrs. Nassiter, "Internal Affairs," Nash Bridges (also known as Bridges), CBS, 1996
# The widow, "Key Witness," Nash Bridges (also known as Bridges), CBS, 1996
# Jane Elaine, "Hide and Seek," The Practice, ABC, 1997
# Marge Wyman, "Eyes of a Ranger," Walker, Texas Ranger, CBS, 1998
# Barbara Silberger, "The Delivery," The Beast, ABC, 2001
# Carol, "Where's Poppa?," Just Shoot Me!, NBC, 2001
# Helen, "The Gay Divorcee," Family Law, CBS, 2001
# Herself, "Dick Van Patten: The Sure Bet," Biography (also known asA&E Biography: Dick Van Patten), Arts and Entertainment, 2001
# Maureen Bustamante, "I Fought the In-Laws," Grounded for Life, Fox, 2002
# Merlene, "Welcome Home," Third Watch, NBC, 2005


# Laura (title role), Lady Luck, NBC, 1973
# Molly, "Changing Patterns," CBS Summer Playhouse, CBS, 1987
# Some sources cite an appearance in Some Nerve!, c. 1999.


# Rose (also known as The Story of Rose), 1986
# Rosa, Rosa, quattre storie di donne, 1987
# Una casa a Roma (also known as Un'americana a Roma), 1987

Stage Appearances

# Steel Magnolias, 1992
# The Man Who Came to Dinner, 1995
# Later Life, Merrimack Repertory Theatre, Lowell, MA, 1997
# Performed as a showgirl at various venues.

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