Apr. 28th, 1952
Wilkes-Barre, Pennsylvania, USA
Mary McDonnell's Main TV Roles
Main Movie Roles
Guest TV Roles[none found]
Mary Eileen McDonnell (born April 28, 1952) is an American film, stage, and television actress. She received Academy Award nominations for her roles as Stands With A Fist in Dances with Wolves and May-Alice Culhane in Passion Fish. McDonnell is well known for her performances as President Laura Roslin in Battlestar Galactica, the First Lady in Independence Day, Rose in Donnie Darko, and Captain Sharon Raydor in the TNT crime drama The Closer and spinoff series Major Crimes.
Born in Wilkes-Barre, Pennsylvania, and was raised in Ithaca, New York. After graduating from the State University of New York at Fredonia, she attended drama school and joined the East Coast's prestigious Long Wharf Theatre Company, with which she worked for over 20 years.
McDonnell is married to Randle Mell (born 1951), who is also an actor. McDonnell and Mell currently reside in Pacific Palisades, California. They have two children: Olivia (born 1987) and Michael (born 1993).
- Though born in Pennsylvania, she was raised in Ithaca, New York.
- Listed as one of twelve "Promising New Actors of 1990" in John Willis' Screen World, Vol. 42.
- Two children: 'Olivia Mell' (qv) and Michael Mell.
- Has been a huge fan of 'Vanessa Redgrave' (qv) since the seventies.
- Attended Fredonia State University.
- Was a cast member of the medical situation comedy _"E/R" (1984)_ (qv) and also has a recurring role on the hit 90s medical drama of nearly the same name, _"ER" (1994)_ (qv).
- She has appeared in four films with 'Alfre Woodard' (qv): _Grand Canyon (1991)_ (qv), _Passion Fish (1992)_ (qv), _Blue Chips (1994)_ (qv), and _Mumford (1999)_ (qv).
- Plays the First Lady during a devastating attack by aliens in _Independence Day (1996)_ (qv), and the President during a devastating attack by robots in _"Battlestar Galactica" (2004)_ (qv).