Spotlight on an “Icon” Golden Globe® Winning Actress Sally Kirkland!

Sally as Marilyn

Sally as Marilyn Monroe in “Norma Jean, Jack, & Me” 1998

There are few actresses working today that have had a career as long and as fascinating as Oscar® nominated and Golden Globe® winning actress Sally Kirkland.

Over the summer Sally recently completed two films “The Most Hated Woman in America” playing Oscar® Winner Melissa Leo’s (“Frozen River”, “The Fighter”) mother for Netflix and the indie film “Making A Killing” where she co-stars with three time Emmy® winner Christopher Lloyd (“Taxi”, “The Adams Family”). These two (2) projects bring her current film and television credits on IMDB to 225.

Sally is well known for her uncanny ability to express herself, take center stage, and her love for the craft of acting. Sally has often quoted Garbo who once said “The Camera is My Lover”.

On the verge turning 75, Sally still commands the screen and has now been captivating audiences and fans for over five (5) decades.

In 2003, when I was on my second date with my husband I asked him if he had seen Sally Kirkland’s brilliant performance in “Anna?” Lucky for him he immediately brought up one of Sally’s best performances “EdTV” and said he had always wanted to see “Anna”.

In honor of Sally’s 75th Birthday on Halloween here are a few of the reasons she has earned the title of “Icon”:

Sally became a lifelong member of the Actors Studio in New York in 1961 at the age of 20. She became an acting teacher in 1971 at the age of 30 and has since taught over 2,000 students including: Barbra Streisand, Liza Minnelli, Roseanne, Bill Paxton, Amy Madigan, Sela Ward, Sandra Bullock, Kathy Griffin, and Rebecca DeMorney.

Sally introduced yoga to Farrah Fawcett, Dwight Yoakum, Robert Redford, Raul Julia, Robert De Niro, Elia Kazan, Bob Dylan, James Keach, Richard Benjamin, and Paula Prentiss among others, and has been on staff at the Integral Yoga Institute in New York and Los Angeles.

In 1970, Sally was only the second person to demonstrate Yoga on US television on “The Merv Griffin Show” and “The David Susskind Show”. In 1990’s Sally taught Yoga on an episode of “the Oprah Winfrey Show”.

In 1964 Andy Warhol featured Sally as one his 13 most beautiful women along with Edie Sedgwick, Nico, & Ultra Violet to name a few.

Sally was the first actress to ever appear nude on stage in an equity play in New York City “Sweet Eros” in 1968 (Before “Hair” and “Oh! Calcutta!”.)

In July of 1969 “Time Magazine” anointed her “The later day Isadora Duncan of nudothespianism.”

In 1969 Sally co-starred with Emmy® winner and Oscar® Nominee Rip Torn in the now classic film “Coming Apart.”

Sally has been an ordained minister since 1975 with MSIA (Movement of Spiritual Inner Awareness). Sally’s spiritual work includes: heartfelt foundation, insight seminars, and the Institute for Individual & World Peace. In 1999 Sally won MSIA Minister of the Year.

Sally is the recipient of several humanitarian awards including The Southern California Motion Picture Council’s Humanitarian Award, and the Omni Humanitarian Award (for her contribution to the arts by bringing and supporting the arts for children of all races between the ages of 7 thru 15 including acting, dancing, singing, and music).

Sally has been an outspoken advocate for LGBTQ rights since the 1960’s and as a minister performed countless spiritual partnership ceremonies for same sex couples before the legalization of same sex marriage.

In February 1987 with the premiere of “Anna” at the San Francisco Film Festival, at age 45, Sally’s acting career finally took off. The reviews for Sally performance earned her critical acclaim from film critics and audiences around the world.

Sally’s notable credits and co-stars include:

“The Sting”: Oscar® winners Robert Redford & Paul Newman

“The Way We Were”: EGOT® winner Barbra Streisand

“Love Song”: Golden Globe® winner George Segal

“Roseanne”: Emmy® winner Roseanne, Golden Globe® nominee Johnny Galecki

“The Woman Who Loved Elvis”: Golden Globe® winner Roseanne

“EdTV”: Oscar® winners Matthew McConaughey & Martin Landau

“The Heat of Passion”: Highest grossing double RR rated feature of all time!

“Heat Wave”: Emmy® winners Ruby Dee, James Earl Jones, & Cicely Tyson

“JFK”: Oscar® winners Kevin Costner, Tommy Lee Jones, & Sissy Spacek

“High Stakes”: Emmy® winner Sarah Michelle Gellar & Oscar® winner Kathy Bates

“Revenge”: Oscar® Winner Kevin Costner, Anthony Quinn, & Madeline Stowe

“Cold Feet”: Keith Carradine, Tom Watts, & Bill Pullman

“Best of the Best”: Oscar® Nominees James Earl Jones & Eric Roberts

“Bullseye”: Two time Oscar® winner Michael Caine & Roger Moore

“Cheatin Hearts”: Emmy® winner James Brolin

“The Haunted”: Fox networks highest rated TV movie of all time.

“Norma Jean, Jack, & Me”: Sally as Marilyn Monroe is a must see!

“Coffee Date”: Jonathan Silverman and Elaine Hendrix

“Neo Ned”: Oscar® Nominee Jeremy Renner and Gabrielle Union

“Bruce Almighty”: Two time Golden Globe® winner Jim Carrey

On December 19, 1987 Sally won the Los Angeles Film Critics Association Best Actress Award for “Anna.”

On January 23, 1988 Sally won Golden Globe® Award for Best Actress in a Motion Picture Drama for “Anna.”

On February 14th, 1988 Sally was nominated for the Best Actress Academy Award® (Oscar®) “Anna”.

On April 10th, 1988 Sally won the Independent Spirit® Award for Best Actress for “Anna”.

In December 1991 Sally received a Golden Globe® Nomination for Best Actress in TV Movie for “The Haunted.”

In December 2013 Sally generated serious Oscar® buzz and received some of the best reviews of her career for her acclaimed performance in the indie film “Archaeology of a Woman.”

Sally was the recipient of a 2003 Honorary Award for her “Contributions to the Arts” by the Malibu Chamber of Commerce.

Over the years Sally has given some great quotes:

“I have some great stories and I will get around to writing a book.”

“I made a conscious decision back then that I would rather be the best actress who ever lived than the most famous one.”

“I really think that women should be allowed to be more European, in this country.”

“I suppose if I wanted to be the girl next door, I could have been. I think America is confused by someone who appears to be sexual and spiritual at the same time.”

“Do I really want to just do gratuitous nudity? Do I want to do gratuitous violence? No, I don’t. I’ve turned down quite a bit.”

“Everyone should have a moment with Ron Howard in their life to give you faith in our industry.”

“For me, my salvation has always been acting, painting, dancing, directing, producing, coaching, writing poetry, creativity, and my spiritual path.”

“I certainly was one of the instigators in the 1960s of freedom of expression.”

“I didn’t go to college, not that I don’t think people shouldn’t, but I didn’t because I was Off-Broadway when I was 18, with James Earl Jones.”
J. Rosenberg