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Jessica Lange 'American Horror Story' Success Story, Glenn Close: SAG Awards

Jessica Lange American Horror Story Best ActressJessica Lange: 'American Horror Story' Best Actress SAG Award winner.

Best Actress Jessica Lange: 'American Horror Story' SAG Awards' success story

Jessica Lange, American Horror Story Best Actress in a Drama Series SAG Award winner, poses in the press room during the 18th Annual Screen Actors Guild Awards, held at the Shrine Auditorium in downtown Los Angeles on Jan. 29, '12. Lange's competitors were:

  • Kathy Bates for Harry's Law.
  • Glenn Close for Damages.
  • Julianna Margulies for The Good Wife.
  • Kyra Sedgwick for The Closer.

Besides Jessica Lange, the American Horror Story cast includes Dylan McDermott, Frances Conroy, Kate Mara, Denis O'Hare, Evan Peters, Taissa Farmiga, and Lily Rabe.

Among the series' directors are Ryan Murphy and Brad Falchuk.

SAG Award, Oscar nominations

Jessica Lange (born on April 20, 1949, in Cloquet, Minnesota) had previously been nominated for two SAG Awards:

  • Best Actress for Tony Richardson's Blue Sky (1994), opposite Tommy Lee Jones.
    Winner: Jodie Foster for Nell.
  • Best Actress in a Television Movie or Miniseries for Michael Sucsy's Grey Gardens (2009), opposite Drew Barrymore.
    Winner: Drew Barrymore for Grey Gardens.

Additionally, Lange has six Academy Award nominations to her credit. She won twice:

  • Best Supporting Actress for Sydney Pollack's Tootsie (1982), opposite Dustin Hoffman.
  • Best Actress for Blue Sky.

Her other Oscar nominations, all of them in the Best Actress category, were for:

  • Frances (1982), as troubled 1930s/1940s actress Frances Farmer (Come and Get It, South of Pago Pago).
    Dir.: Graeme Clifford.
    Cast: Kim Stanley. Sam Shepard.
  • Country (1984).
    Dir.: Richard Pearce.
    Cast: Sam Shepard.
  • Sweet Dreams (1985), as country singer Patsy Cline.
    Dir.: Karel Reisz.
    Cast: Ed Harris.
  • Music Box (1989).
    Dir.: Costa-Gavras.
    Cast: Armin Mueller-Stahl. Frederic Forrest.

American Horror Story Best Actress SAG Award winner Jessica Lange photo: Michael Buckner / WireImage.

Jessica Lange King Kong actress SAG AwardsJessica Lange: 'King Kong' actress wins SAG Awards.

'To be an actor means everything'

Pictured above is American Horror Story Best Actress winner Jessica Lange while accepting her 2012 SAG Award. “To be an actor means everything to me,” Lange told the crowd at the Shrine Auditorium.

Luckily for her, in the last (almost) four decades she has found lots of opportunities to enjoy meaningful experiences.

Jessica Lange movies

In addition to the titles listed further up, among Jessica Lange's more than 30 movie credits are the following:

  • Wild Oats (2016).
    Dir.: Andy Tennant.
    Cast: Demi Moore. Jessica Lange. Jay Hayden. Shirley MacLaine. Billy Connolly. Judd Hirsch. Stephanie Beacham. Rebecca Da Costa. Matt Walsh.
  • The Gambler (2014).
    Dir.: Rupert Wyatt.
    Cast: Mark Wahlberg. George Kennedy. Jessica Lange. Griffin Cleveland. Brie Larson. John Goodman. Andre Braugher.
  • The Vow (2012).
    Dir.: Michael Sucsy.
    Cast: Rachel McAdams. Channing Tatum. Jessica Lange.
  • Don't Come Knocking (2005).
    Dir.: Wim Wenders.
    Cast: Jessica Lange. Sam Shepard. Eva Marie Saint. George Kennedy. Sarah Polley.
  • Cousin Bette (1998).
    Dir.: Des McAnuff.
    Cast: Jessica Lange. Elisabeth Shue. Bob Hopkins. Hugh Laurie.
  • Rob Roy (1995).
    Dir.: Michael Caton-Jones.
    Cast: Liam Neeson. Jessica Lange. Tim Roth.
  • Cape Fear (1991), in the old Polly Bergen role.
    Dir.: Martin Scorsese.
    Cast: Robert De Niro. Jessica Lange. Nick Nolte. Juliette Lewis.
  • Crimes of the Heart (1986).
    Dir.: Bruce Beresford.
    Cast: Sissy Spacek. Diane Keaton. Jessica Lange. Tess Harper. Sam Shepard. Hurd Hatfield.
  • The Postman Always Rings Twice (1981).
    Dir.: Bob Rafelson.
    Cast: Jack Nicholson. Jessica Lange.
  • All That Jazz (1979).
    Dir.: Bob Fosse.
    Cast: Roy Scheider. Jessica Lange. Ann Reinking. Leland Palmer. Sandahl Bergman. Ben Vereen. Cliff Gorman. John Lithgow. William LeMassena. Gwen Verdon. Michael Tolan. Wallace Shawn.
  • King Kong (1976).
    Dir.: John Guillermin.
    Cast: Jessica Lange. Jeff Bridges. Charles Grodin.

Besides American Horror Story, Jessica Lange has been featured in about 10 television productions, most notably as Maggie the Cat in Jack Hofsiss' Cat on a Hot Tin Roof (1984), opposite Tommy Lee Jones, and as Blanche DuBois in Glenn Jordan's A Streetcar Named Desire (1995), opposite Alec Baldwin.

She has been nominated for seven Emmy Awards, winning three times:

  • Best Actress in a Miniseries or a Movie for Grey Gardens (2009).
  • Best Supporting Actress in a Miniseries or a Movie for American Horror Story (2011).
  • Best Actress in a Miniseries or a Movie for American Horror Story (2013).

On stage, she brought Blanche back to life in a 1992 revival of Tennessee Williams' A Streetcar Named Desire on Broadway (reprising the role in London's West End in 1996). At the West End in 2000, she was Mary Tyrone in a production of Eugene O'Neill's Long Day's Journey Into Night – a role previously tackled by the likes of Constance Cummings in the West End and Katharine Hepburn on film.

See also: “Jessica Lange, Peter Dinklage: Golden Globe winners.”

Partial Jessica Lange filmography updated in April 2016.

'The Big Valley' that never was

Back in 2012, Jessica Lange was supposed to have been featured in Daniel Adams' big-screen version of the classic TV Western series The Big Valley. In the old Barbara Stanwyck role, Lange was to have taken over from the previously announced Susan Sarandon.

The Big Valley cast was also to have included Sarah Paxton, Richard Dreyfuss, Lee Majors (of the original series), Aidan Quinn, Bruce Dern, Josh Stewart, John Savage, Travis Fimmel, Buck Taylor, and Jason Alan Smith.

The project was derailed after director Daniel Adams was indicted for fraud in connection with his films The Golden Boys and The Lightkeeper.

Jessica Lange photo: John Shearer / WireImage.

Glenn Close Double SAG Awards nomineeGlenn Close: Double SAG Awards nominee.

Glenn Close: SAG Awards nominations in film & TV categories

Glenn Close, a double 2012 SAG Award nominee for the television series Damages and Rodrigo García's indie movie Albert Nobbs, arrives at the 18th Screen Actors Guild Awards at the Shrine Auditorium.

Close's competition for the Best Actress SAG Award consisted of:

  • Meryl Streep for Phyllida Lloyd's The Iron Lady.
  • Eventual winner Viola Davis for Tate Taylor's The Help.
  • Tilda Swinton for Lynne Ramsay's We Need to Talk About Kevin.
  • Michelle Williams (as Marilyn Monroe) for Simon Curtis' My Week with Marilyn.

Glenn Close Oscar, SAG Award nominations

Like Jessica Lange, Glenn Close has also received six Academy Award nominations; Close, however, has never won.

Glenn Close has been nominated for a total of eight SAG Awards. She won for the television movie The Lion in Winter (2003), in which she plays Eleanor of Aquitaine – the role that earned Katharine Hepburn her third Best Actress Oscar back in early 1969. (Hepburn tied with Barbra Streisand for her performance as Fanny Brice in William Wyler's Funny Girl.)

In the television categories, Close has a total of four nominations for Damages, in addition to nods for her lesbian military officer in Serving in Silence: The Margarethe Cammermeyer Story (1995) and for Christopher Reeve's In the Gloaming (1997), as the mother of a young man (Robert Sean Leonard) dying of AIDS.

Albert Nobbs, in which Close plays a woman passing for a man in 19th-century Ireland, is Close's sole SAG Award nomination in the motion picture categories.

Glenn Close photo: Kevin Mazur / WireImage.

More SAG Awards 2012

Here are a few more 2012 SAG Awards articles:


Golden Globes website.

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