Mary Stuart Masterson

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Mary Stuart Masterson
Mary Stuart Masterson at Tribeca 2007 cropped 2.jpg
Mary Stuart Masterson at 2007 Tribeca Film Festival
Born(1966-06-28) June 28, 1966 (age 48)
New York City, US
Years active1975–present
Spouse(s)Jeremy Davidson (2006–present)
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Mary Stuart Masterson
Mary Stuart Masterson at Tribeca 2007 cropped 2.jpg
Mary Stuart Masterson at 2007 Tribeca Film Festival
Born(1966-06-28) June 28, 1966 (age 48)
New York City, US
Years active1975–present
Spouse(s)Jeremy Davidson (2006–present)

Mary Stuart Masterson (born June 28, 1966) is an American film, stage and television actor, and director.

Early life[edit]

Masterson was born in Manhattan to writer-director Peter Masterson and actress Carlin Glynn. She has two siblings: Peter, Jr., and Alexandra. As a teen, she attended Stagedoor Manor Performing Arts Training Center in upstate New York with actors Robert Downey, Jr. and Jon Cryer. Later, she attended schools in New York, including eight months studying anthropology at New York University.[1]

Early career[edit]

Masterson's first film appearance was in The Stepford Wives (1975) at the age of eight, playing a daughter to her real-life father. Rather than continue her career as a child actor, she chose to continue her studies, although she did appear in several productions at the Dalton School. In 1985, she returned to cinema in Heaven Help Us as Danni, a courageous teen running the soda shop of her gravely depressed Dad. She appeared with Sean Penn and Christopher Walken in the film At Close Range (1986) as Brad Jr's girlfriend Terry, a film based on an actual rural Pennsylvania crime family led by Bruce Johnston, Sr. during the 1960s and 1970s. She later starred as the tomboyish drumming Watts in the teenage drama Some Kind of Wonderful (1987). As a result, she is loosely connected with the Brat Pack.[2] The same year Francis Ford Coppola cast her in Gardens of Stone in which she acted with her parents, hired by Coppola to play her on-screen parents.[3] In 1989, she played in Chances Are alongside Cybill Shepherd, Ryan O'Neal and Robert Downey, Jr., and she starred as Lucy Moore, a teenage girl giving up her first baby to a wealthy couple, played by Glenn Close and James Woods in Immediate Family. For her work in that film she received a "Best Supporting Actress" award from the National Board of Review of Motion Pictures.


Masterson continued acting in both films and television during the 1990s. In 1991, she starred in Fried Green Tomatoes, a film based on the novel Fried Green Tomatoes at the Whistle Stop Cafe. The film was well-received, with film critic Roger Ebert applauding Masterson's work.[4] The following year she was invited to host Saturday Night Live. In 1993, she played opposite Johnny Depp in Benny & Joon as Joon, his mentally ill love interest. In 1994, she acted in Bad Girls, playing Anita Crown, a former prostitute, who joins with three other former prostitutes (played by Madeleine Stowe, Andie MacDowell and Drew Barrymore) in traveling the Old West. In 1996, Masterson acted alongside Christian Slater in the romantic drama Bed of Roses.


Although Masterson carried on her work in the film industry, by 2000 she had made a move towards television. In 2001, she produced her own television series, Kate Brasher, which was canceled by CBS after six episodes. In 2004, Masterson starred in the Emmy and Peabody Award-winning HBO biographical drama Something the Lord Made. Between 2004 and 2007, she made five guest starring appearances on Law & Order: Special Victims Unit as Dr. Rebecca Hendrix.

Masterson has appeared in Broadway theatre productions, and was nominated for a 2003 Tony Award as "Best Featured Actress in a Musical" in the Maury Yeston musical Nine: The Musical, directed by David Leveaux.[5]

Masterson has narrated several audiobooks, including I See You Everywhere by Julia Glass, Book of the Dead by Patricia Cornwell, and Look Again by Lisa Scottoline.[citation needed]


By May 1993, Masterson revealed she had written a screenplay for a film tentatively entitled Around the Block, a romantic comedy about a "woman who conquers her fears by becoming a singer"; in a cover story about Benny & Joon's box office success, she told Entertainment Weekly she was going to direct it herself, with principal photography expected that autumn.[6]

In 2001, she began her directing career with a segment titled "The Other Side" in the television movie On the Edge.[citation needed]

Masterson made her feature film directorial debut in 2007, with The Cake Eaters, which premiered at the Ft. Lauderdale International Film Festival as well as the Ashland Independent Film Festival where it received the 'Audience Award – Dramatic Feature' prize in 2008.[7] Of her move to directing, Masterson said in an interview, "When I signed to do this, I wasn't scared but, yes, it was scary. I'm already 40, although we don't want to talk about that. In '92, I wrote my first screenplay, which I then was to direct, but I ended up taking an acting job because it takes forever to get a movie made."[8]

Personal life[edit]

Masterson has been married three times. In 1990, she married George Carl Francisco; they divorced in 1992.[citation needed] In 2000, she married American film director Damon Santostefano; they divorced in 2004.[citation needed] In 2006, Masterson married actor Jeremy Davidson. Both had starred in the 2004 production of Cat on a Hot Tin Roof. Masterson gave birth to their son on October 11, 2009.[9] Masterson gave birth to twins in August 2011.[10] Their fourth child was born in October 2012.



1975Stepford Wives, TheThe Stepford WivesKim Eberhart
1985Heaven Help UsDanni
1986At Close RangeTerry
1987Some Kind of WonderfulWatts
1987Gardens of StoneRachel Feld
1987My Little GirlFranny Bettinger
1988Mr. NorthElspeth Skeel
1989Chances AreMiranda Jeffries
1989Immediate FamilyLucy Moore
1990Funny About LoveDaphne
1991Fried Green TomatoesImogene "Idgie" Threadgoode
1992Mad at the MoonJenny Hill
1993Married to ItNina Bishop
1993Benny & JoonJuniper 'Joon' Pearl
1994Bad GirlsAnita Crown
1994Radioland MurdersPenny Henderson
1996Lily DaleLily DaleDirected by Peter Masterson
1996Bed of RosesLisa Walker
1996Heaven's PrisonersRobin Gaddis
1997DogtownDorothy Sternen
1997Postman, TheThe PostmanHopeUncredited Role
1998Digging to ChinaGwen Frankovitz
1999Book of Stars, TheThe Book of StarsPenny McGuire
1999Florentine, TheThe FlorentineVikki
2002West of HereGenevieve Anderson
2005Sisters, TheThe SistersOlga Prior
2005Whiskey SchoolG.G.
2006Insurgents, TheThe InsurgentsDirector
2007Cake Eaters, TheThe Cake EatersDirector


1980City in FearAbby CrawfordABC television film
1985Love Lives OnSusan WallaceABC television film
1986Amazing StoriesCynthia SimpsonSegment: "Go to the Head of the Class (Book Two)"
1992Saturday Night LiveHostEpisode: "Mary Stuart Masterson/En Vogue"
1996Lily DaleLily DaleShowtime television film
1997On the 2nd Day of ChristmasPatricia "Trish" TracyLifetime Television television film
1999Black and BlueFrances BenedettoCBS television film
2001Kate BrasherKate Brasher
2001Three Blind MicePatricia DemmingCBS television film
2001On the EdgeDirector, Writer
Segment: "On the Other Side"
2002R.U.S./H.Elaine BurbaUnsold CBS pilot
2003Gary the RatCaroline SwansonVoice role
Episode: "Old Flame"
2004Blue's CluesCinderellaEpisode: "Love Day"
2004Something the Lord MadeDr. Helen TaussigHBO television film
2004–07Law & Order: Special Victims UnitDr. Rebecca HendrixEpisodes: "Weak", "Contagious", "Identity", "Ripped" & "Philadelphia"
2006WaterfrontHeather Centrella
2009CupidMiraEpisode: "Live and Let Spy"
2010MercyDr. Denise CabeEpisodes: "There is No Room For You on My Ass" & "Of Course I'm Not"
2012TouchBeth CooperEpisode: "The Road Not Taken"
2013The Good WifeRachel KeyserEpisode: "Whack-a-Mole"

Awards and nominations[edit]

Ashland Independent Film Festival

DVD Exclusive Awards

Ft. Lauderdale International Film Festival

Lone Star Film & Television Awards

MTV Movie Awards

National Board of Review of Motion Pictures

Satellite Awards


  1. ^ Mary Stuart Masterson profile, The New York Times; accessed May 20, 2014.
  2. ^ Possibly Pack | Mary Stuart Masterson | Jami Gertz
  3. ^ Mary Masterson – Yahoo! TV
  4. ^ Fried Green Tomatoes :: :: Reviews
  5. ^ L.A. Times
  6. ^ Murphy, Ryan (May 7, 1993). "A Perfect Mismatch". Entertainment Weekly. Retrieved September 29, 2011. "Because there aren't enough good parts to go around, Masterson has written her own. In Around the Block, an independent production she'll also direct this fall, she plays a woman who conquers her fears by becoming a singer. 'It's a romantic comedy too,' she says proudly. 'Who knows? Maybe it will become a big date movie. If I'm lucky.'" 
  7. ^
  8. ^ Actress Goes In Film Direction – New York Post
  9. ^ Joyce Eng. "Mary Stuart Masterson Welcomes a Son". 
  10. ^ "Is Sexy Delta Guy Jeremy Davidson Leaving Army Wives?", March 4, 2011, E Online

External links[edit]