Mercedes Ruehl

Mercedes Ruehl Biography.com

Actress, Theater Actress, Film Actor/Film Actress, Film Actress, Television Actress(1948–)
Mercedes Ruehl is an actress of German, Cuban and Irish descent. She won a Tony Award for Lost in Yonkers and an Oscar for The Fisher King.

Synopsis

Mercedes Ruehl was born on February 28, 1948, in Queens, New York. Of Cuban and Irish descent, she was the daughter of FBI agents and moved frequently as a child. Ruehl won two Obies and a Tony Award for Lost in Yonkers and an Oscar for her supporting role in The Fisher King. She's married to painter David Geiser; they have a son, Jake.

Early Life

Actress Mercedes Ruehl was born on February 28, 1948, in Queens, New York. Of German, Cuban and Irish descent, Ruehl is the daughter of FBI agents and moved frequently with her family before settling in Silver Spring, Maryland. After graduating from the College of New Rochelle in 1969, she performed in community theater and supported herself with odd jobs in New York City while pursuing a stage career. She won two Obie awards and a Tony for Best Actress for Lost in Yonkers.

Breakthrough Role

Ruehl's breakthrough came in 1988, when she landed two scene-stealing supporting roles in feature films, that of Josh's mother in Big and a Mafia wife in Married to the Mob. Her next critical and commercial success was an Oscar-winning supporting performance in The Fisher King in 1991.

With a dearth of film roles to choose from in the 1990s, Ruehl turned her focus to television, engaging audiences with a recurring guest role on the sitcom Frasier. She has appeared in several made-for-TV movies and on such series as Entourage and Law & Order. 

Personal Life

Ruehl is married to painter David Geiser; they have a son, Jake.

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