August 5: Happy Birthday Janet McTeer and John Huston


Janet McTeer is celebrating her 56th birthday.  She studied at the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art in London and began working in British theater and television in the mid-eighties.  One of her first notable feature film roles was as Nelly Dean in the 1992 adaptation of Wuthering Heights.  She didn’t really begin to make a mark until the late nineties.  In 1996 she starred as Nora Helmer in a West End revival of A Doll’s House, and then a year later in the same role when the production transferred to Broadway.  She won Olivier, Tony and Drama Desk Awards for her performance.  Then, in 1999, she received a Golden Globe, and was nominated for an Oscar and a SAG Award, for starring in Gavin O’Connor’s Tumbleweeds.

Since then, McTeer’s career has continued to combine work in the theater, on British television, and periodic feature films, but her profile has definitely been higher.  She won a second Drama Desk Award, and was a Tony nominee, in the title role of a revival of Schiller’s Mary Stuart.  Her television work has included receiving Emmy and Golden Globe nominations as Clementine Churchill in Into the Storm, and a Golden Globe nomination for The White Crown.  She has starred in indie films like Songcatcher and Cat Run, and was an Oscar nominee for the second time for Albert Nobbs, starring opposite Glenn Close.

We had some coverage of the career of John Huston (1906-1987) in last year’s article, specifically, his directing career.  Huston was one of a cohort of directors who emerged in the early 1940s, after previously proving themselves as screenwriters; two others were Preston Sturges and Billy Wilder.  Huston received Oscar nominations for screenwriting for Dr. Ehrlich’s Magic Bullet and Sergeant York, and also wrote the screenplays for Jezebel and High Sierra, before making his directing debut with The Maltese Falcon.

Huston continued to write or co-write the screenplays for many of his most famous films.  He won an Oscar for Best Adapted Screenplay for The Treasure of the Sierra Madre, to go with the Best Director statue he won on the same film.  Over the course of his career he received eight Oscar nominations in screenwriting categories, the last of which was for my personal favorite of his films:

Faith Prince, who turns 60, is a prominent musical theater actress who has received four Tony nominations.  She won Best Actress in a Musical for playing Miss Adelaide in a 1992 revival of Guys and Dolls and is also known for roles like Ella Peterson in Bells Are Ringing and Miss Hannigan in Annie.

Paul Kasey, who is 44, would be recognized by many Whoniverse fans for portraying a variety of characters, usually costumed (e.g., robots, aliens) on Doctor Who, The Sarah Jane Adventures, and Torchwood; he was also Admiral Raddus in Rogue OneIddo Goldberg, who is 42, is best known for his starring roles on television, as Ben on Secret Diary of a Call Girl and Isaac Walton on SalemMeegan Warner, best known for playing Mary Woodhull on Turn: Washington’s Spies, is celebrating her 26th birthday.  Genelia D’Souza, who is 30, is an Indian actress who works both in Bollywood and South Indian (e.g., in languages like Telugu, Tamil, etc.) cinema.  She is a four time Filmfare Award nominee.  Canadian director Jerry Ciccoritti is turning 61.  He has worked in theater and film, but is best known for his television directing career, on series like Catwalk, Due South, and Straight Up.

John Saxon turns 82.  His long career included a major role in John Huston’s The Unforgiven and playing Sandra Dee’s love interest in The Reluctant Debutante.  He also played the intergalactic tyrant Sador in Battle Beyond the Stars and starred with Bruce Lee in Enter the Dragon.

Country songwriter and producer Bobby Braddock is 77.  He has written hits for a long list of country stars, most notably for George Jones and Tammy Wynette (“We’re Not the Jet Set,” “Golden Ring,” etc.).  As a producer he is best known as the discoverer of Blake Shelton.  Terri Clark, who is 49, is a Canadian country star who has had several hits on the US Country charts, including “I Just Wanna Be Mad” and “Girls Lie Too.”  Rapper Adam “MCA” Yauch (1964-2012) was a founding member of the Beastie Boys, three-time Grammy winners whose biggest hit was “(You Gotta) Fight for Your Right (To Party!)”  Erich Kleiber (1890-1956) was one of the leading conductors of the mid-20th century, especially noted for his work in opera.  He is also remembered for his firm anti-fascist stance at a time when many of his fellow conductors equivocated; Kleiber refused to cooperate with the Nazis and moved to Argentina until after World War 2.

David Baldacci, a popular writer of thrillers, is 57 today.  His first novel, Absolute Power, was adapted into a feature directed by and starring Clint Eastwood.  His books about Sean King and Michelle Maxwell were the basis for a short-lived TNT series.  French writer Guy de Maupassant (1850-1893) is remembered for his short stories, most notably “Boule de Souf,” which was an influence on films like John Ford’s StagecoachWendell Berry, who turns 83, is known for his novels and short stories chronicling the fictional community of Port William, Kentucky, and for his nonfiction work centered on environmental and agrarian themes.

Last year on August 5, Maureen McCormick and Patrick Ewing were the headliners.

Maureen McCormick is turning 61.  She was a contestant on the 23rd season of Dancing with the Stars last fall.  Patrick Ewing is returning to Georgetown University, where he starred in the early 1980s, as the head men’s basketball coach.  Ewing is 55.

Mark Strong, who celebrates his 54th, co-starred in last fall’s Miss Sloane, and later this year will return to the role of Merlin in Kingsman: The Golden Circle; he also will play Werner Heisenberg in The Catcher Was a Spy.  Strong also remains active on the London stage, starring in David Hare’s newest play, The Red Barn.

James Gunn’s second contribution to the Marvel Cinematic Universe, Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2, came out earlier this year and grossed over $850 million worldwide.  Gunn turns 47 if you accept the most commonly reported year of his birth.  Joining the Marvel Cinematic Universe (small screen division) in the near future is Olivia Holt, who is 20.  She will play Tandy Bowen/Dagger on Cloak & Dagger, which premieres next year; Holt also has a few feature films at various stages of the pipeline.

Also 20 is Adam Irigoyen, who appears in the recurring role of Ray Diaz on The Last Ship.  Jesse Williams, who returns to Grey’s Anatomy for season 14 this fall, is 36.  Loni Anderson, who is 71 today, was seen earlier this year on the web series My Sister is So Gay.

If today is your birthday, congratulations on sharing your big day with these notable names.  Birthday wishes to everyone celebrating a big day today.  Come back tomorrow for more celebrity birthdays.


Posted on August 5, 2017, in Celebrity Birthdays and tagged , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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