Earlier this year, Laurie Metcalf won her first Tony Award for playing the role of Nora—the mother and wife who abandoned her family—in Lucas Hnath’s sequel A Doll’s House, Part 2. It was her first victory out of four nominations. Much like the buzz coursing through the theatre community this past summer, she’s turned heads in Hollywood as a different kind of mother—a very present one who sacrifices and tries to keep up with her daughter’s moods, but also one who judges and claims she’s always in the right.
The nomination marks Metcalf’s third Golden Globe nod, her third in total and her first for a feature film. (Her previous two in 1993 and 1995 came for Roseanne.) She’s a three-time Emmy winner for Roseanne—and was nominated seven more times for television’s highest prize.
But Metalf has always been a force. After earning her bachelor’s in theatre from Illinois State University, she stayed in the Midwest and became a charter member of Steppenwolf Theatre Company. She made her Off-Broadway debut in 1984 in Balm in Gilead at Circle Repertory Theatre, winning an Obie and Theatre World Award. In back-to-back years she played Off-Broadway in Bodies, Rest and Motion, and Educating Rita.
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She made her Broadway debut in 1995 in My Thing of Love. It took her more than 20 years to return, but she came back in 2008 to star opposite Nathan Lane in November, for which she earned a Tony nomination. She was part of the short-lived revival of Brighton Beach Memoirs, before she starred in The Other Place and earned a Tony nomination and a Drama Desk nomination. Her work Off-Broadway in Domesticated earned her another Drama Desk nomination in 2013.
In 2016, she earned her third Tony nod for Misery, playing the role originated by Kathy Bates in the film version of the Stephen King novel. And her loyalty to the theatre remains strong: She stars in Three Tall Women coming to Broadway this spring.
Metcalf has even played London, taking on the iconic Mary Tyrone in Eugene O’Neill’s Long Day’s Journey Into Night in the West End back in 2012.
Tune in to the 75th Annual Golden Globes January 7 8PM ET on NBC.