Moving easily between dramatic and comedic roles, actress Lea Thompson has established a career that encompasses film, television, theatre, and interactive computer games. She is perhaps best known for her role in Steven Spielberg and Robert Zemeckis' BACK TO THE FUTURE I, II, and III (Kid's Choice Award winner) and as the title character in the syndicated series, CAROLINE IN THE CITY, for which she won TV Guide and People's Choice Awards.
A native of Minnesota, Thompson began her career as a professional ballet dancer and performed in more than 45 ballets in Minneapolis, Philadelphia and New York. Her first taste of professional theatre was with the Children's Theatre Company in Minneapolis, in Madeline and the Gypsies, and The Little Mermaid. After apprenticing with the Pennsylvania Ballet, Lea moved to New York at the age 20 to pursue an acting career. She was first featured in a supporting role in the motion picture JAWS 3-D with Dennis Quaid, followed by a starring role opposite Tom Cruise in ALL THE RIGHT MOVES.
Her film career took off after that with the BTTF films, RED DAWN, and the now infamous HOWARD THE DUCK. She met her future husband when he directed her in the John Hughes' film, SOME KIND OF WONDERFUL. Some of her other favorite roles were in ARTICLE 99, CASUAL SEX?, DENNIS THE MENACE, THE WIZARD OF LONELINESS, SPACE CAMP, THE BEVERLY HILLBILLIES, THE LITTLE RASCALS, THE UNKNOWN CYCLIST, and FISH DON'T BLINK. Other film credits include COME AWAY HOME; THE WILD LIFE, CALIFORNIA DREAMING; SPLINTERHEADS; and EXIT SPEED. She produced and starred in MAYOR CUPCAKE, which featured her two daughters as well. Lea played Ginger Rogers' mother in Clint Eastwood's J. EDGAR, starring Leonardo DiCaprio. Other recent films include THIN ICE starring Greg Kinnear, the critically acclaimed THE TROUBLE WITH THE TRUTH with John Shea, PING PONG SUMMER with Susan Sarandon, and the most recently shot, LEFT BEHIND playing Nicolas Cage's wife.
Thompson's television credits include the Showtime original movie, THE RIGHT TO REMAIN SILENT; NBC made-for television movies, THE UNSPOKEN TRUTH, THE SUBSTITUTE WIFE, GAME OF YOUR LIFE, and the miniseries A WILL OF THEIR OWN with Thomas Gibson; TNT's original movies, MONTANA and NIGHTBREAKER with Martin Sheen and Emilio Estevez, for which she received a CableACE nomination; an episode of HBO's TALES FROM THE CRYPT; USA's STEALING CHRISTMAS with Tony Danza. For Lifetime, Thompson starred in STOLEN BABIES with Mary Tyler Moore, The Debbie Smith Story: A LIFE INTERRUPTED, LOVE AT THE CHRISTMAS TABLE, and the recent sequel to the award winning Lifetime anthology FIVE, titled CALL ME CRAZY: A FIVE FILM. Lea was also featured in the Lifetime series of INTIMATE PORTRAITS. Her NBC series CAROLINE IN THE CITY was must-see TV for four years (and then in syndication ever since), followed by the Lifetime series, FOR THE PEOPLE. Lea starred in nine films for the Hallmark Channel Mystery Film series, JANE DOE, and directed two of the films. Also for Hallmark, Lea starred in the mini-series with Dean Cain, FINAL APPROACH, and THE CABIN which filmed in Ireland and premiered on the Hallmark Movie Channel. For ION, Lea starred in THE CHRISTMAS CLAUSE. Notable television guest spots include FRIENDS, THE LARRY SANDERS SHOW, ED, LAW AND ORDER: SVU, GREEK, and CSI: CRIME SCENE INVESTIGATION.
Lea can currently be seen in the third season of the ABC Family hit series, SWITCHED AT BIRTH, and has been directing several episodes as well. She just wrapped MY MOTHER'S FUTURE HUSBAND to be aired in 2014 on UP TV.
Theatre highlights include Bus Stop at the Pasadena Playhouse; Tony Kushner's The Illusion for the Los Angeles Theatre Center; Long Time Coming at the Powerhouse Theatre; Charlie Bacon's Family at the John Drew Theatre in East Hampton; and The Trip Back Down at the Actor's Repertory Theatre. Her personal favorite was as Sally Bowles in both the National Tour and the Broadway Studio 54 production of Sam Mendes' revival of Cabaret. More recently back in Los Angeles, Thompson has perfomed in The Vagina Monologues, the LA Reprise Series of I Love My Wife with Jason Alexander. And on the East Coast, Lea played the title character in the debut of Caroline In Jersey (no relation to Caroline in The City!) at the Williamstown Theatre Festival in Massachusetts, and a workshop for Please Don't Eat The Daisies.
Branching out, Thompson starred in Big Fish's computer Game, Mystery Case Files: Shadow Lake, working with her daughter, Madelyn Deutch, who appears in the game as well. Big Fish is the world's largest casual game company: their MCF series is their most popular game franchise and has been played worldwide by more than 100 million people.
Currently, Lea is working on a new Disney animated series PENN ZERO: PART-TIME HERO with David Hasselhoff. Lea can often be seen performing for various charity functions around Los Angeles such as What A Pair for breast cancer research, the Alzheimer's Association, the WeSpark Foundation, and the Schleroderma Foundation, to name a few. Thompson resides in Los Angeles with her husband of 24 years, film director Howard Deutch, their two talented daughters, Zoey and Madelyn, and a menagerie of dogs, a cat, a parrot, a rabbit, an old land tortoise, horses, and countless fish and chickens.
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