Meryl Streep is said to be the greatest living actress in Hollywood today by the film fraternity and the viewers. She has portrayed an astonishing array of roles in a career that has cut its own unique path from the theater through film and television. She received her long-awaited third Oscar for Iron Lady in the 84th Academy Awards, and also has a record breaking 17 Oscar nominations. Her on-screen prowess is considerable; her ability to elicit emotional responses from the audience is uncanny. Streep's variable career has allowed her to form a varied and salient relationship to American culture by taking on roles that reflects the issues of the day. She excels in adaptability , often taking on roles that have defined the realm of woman's issues.
- Born Mary Louise Streep on June 22, 1949 in Summit, New Jersey, to pharmaceutical company executive Harry Streep and commercial artist Mary Streep. Meryl describes herself at age seven as already looking like a forty year old and acting like one too! She got her first applause by age twelve when she sang “O Holy Night” in French in her school’s Christmas concert. She was so good, in fact, that she stunned her family and classmates and others urged her parents to get her singing lessons.
- Streep had never acted in a drama before her sophomore year (second year under-graduate). An honors exchange program led to Dartmouth where she studied play-writing as well as set and costume design. After graduating , she won a scholarship to the Yale School of Drama where she received a Master of Fine Arts degree. Then, in New York City, she made both Broadway and off-Broadway appearances, and was honored with two Theater World Awards.
- Streep began her feature film in Julia, directed by Fred Zinneman. In her second screen role, Streep starred opposite Robert De Niro and Christopher Walken in The Deer Hunter, receiving her first Oscar nomination for her portrayal of a working-class Pennsylvania girl who's lonely, small-town life is irrevocably altered by the Vietnam War.
- She performed the stage plays at night, and during the day alternated filming Manhattan for Woody Allen and Kramer vs. Kramer with Dustin Hoffman. As Hoffman's troubled ex-wife in a custody battle, she garnered her first Academy Award for Best Supporting Actress.
- A perfectionist in her craft and meticulous and painstaking in her preparation for her roles, Meryl turned out a string of highly acclaimed performances over the next 10 years in great films like Silkwood (1983); Out of Africa (1985); Ironweed (1987); and Evil Angels (1988). Her career declined slightly in the early 1990s as a result of her inability to find suitable parts, but she shot back to the top in 1995 with her performance as Clint Eastwood's married lover in The Bridges of Madison County (1995).
- Trade Mark : Known for being a perfectionist when preparing for roles. Known for her ability to master almost any accent. She frequently plays real-life characters.
- Before making it big, she was a waitress at The Hotel Somerset in Somerville, New Jersey, USA.
- In 2007, she ranked #6 on Entertainment Weekly's 'The 50 Smartest People in Hollywood'. Premiere Magazine ranked her as #46 on a list of the Greatest Movie Stars of All Time in their Stars in Our Constellation feature. She was voted the 37th Greatest Movie Star of all time by Entertainment Weekly. Ranked #24 in Empire (UK) magazine's "The Top 100 Movie Stars of All Time" list.
- Her performance as "Karen Silkwood" in Silkwood (1983) is ranked #71 on Premiere Magazine's 100 Greatest Performances of All Time. Her performance as "Sophie Zawistowska" in Sophie's Choice (1982) is ranked #3 on Premiere Magazine's 100 Greatest Performances of All Time.
- Her accumulation of 17 Oscar nominations (2 wins) was accomplished over a period of only 30 years. The longest she has gone without an Oscar nomination is five years, between Postcards from the Edge (1990) and The Bridges of Madison County (1995).
- Robert De Niro said she is his favorite actress to work with. Has said she is a great fan of actor Leonardo DiCaprio.
Meryl Streep Quotes :
"But ... in my own experience of male and female directors, people have a much, much harder time taking a direct command from a woman. It's somehow very difficult for people."
"Hello? How did this happen? I was only the sixth woman to receive it, but they found 26 men to give it to. I thought that was embarrassing." [on her Lifetime Achievement Award from the AFI]
"Let's face it, we were all once 3-year-olds who stood in the middle of the living room and everybody thought we were so adorable. Only some of us grow up and get paid for it."
" When I was 20 I made music in public park to afford accommodation. One night I hadn't earned enough, I actually slept in the open in Green Park [in London]. The view was of the Ritz Hotel and I vowed I'd stay there one day. And I have."
It is with some trepidation that I have written about Meryl Streep. After all, how does one write a brief summary of the world’s best female actress? One can understand much about a person’s soul by their actions and words. Meryl’s quotes and actions tell of a women who places family high on her list of precious things, a person who strongly supports a woman’s right to freedom, equality, safety and opportunity. Thank you Meryl for portraying a depth of humanity that is unparalleled in its artistic perfection as well as in its keen regard for women’s challenges, rights and freedoms.
Whatever the future will hold for Meryl, moviegoers can be sure that it will be just as stunning as her work in the past has been.
Meryl Streep Oscar acceptance for Iron Lady
Meryl Streep - Wikipedia