Ellen Barkin was born on April 16, 1954, in the Bronx, New York, to Sol Barkin, a pharmacist, and Evelyn Barkin, a hospital administrator. She has a sister, Robin. Barkin was raised in a Jewish household and attended the High School of Performing Arts. She then studied drama at the Stella Adler Conservatory of Acting.
Barkin made her film debut in 1981’s Diner, and went on to star in such films as Tender Mercies (1983), The Big Easy (1987), Sea of Love (1989), Wilder Napalm (1993), This Boy’s Life (1993), Bad Company (1995), Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas (1998), Drop Dead Gorgeous (1999), and Ocean’s Thirteen (2007).
On television, Barkin starred in the short-lived series Smith (2006) and the miniseries The Bible (2013). She also had recurring roles on the series Rescue Me (2009-2010) and The New Normal (2012-2013).
Barkin has been married twice. Her first marriage was to actor Gabriel Byrne, with whom she has two daughters, Romy and Lily. Her second marriage is to businessman Ronald Perelman, with whom she has a son, Jack.
Film producer, Actor, Businessperson, Film producer, Actor, Businessperson
High School of Performing Arts, Fiorello H. LaGuardia High School, Actors Studio, Hunter College, High School of Performing Arts, Fiorello H. LaGuardia High School, Actors Studio, Hunter College
Ronald Perelman, Gabriel Byrne, Ronald Perelman, Gabriel Byrne
Romy Marion Byrne, Jack Daniel Byrne, Romy Marion Byrne, Jack Daniel Byrne
Sol Barkin, Evelyn Rozin Barkin, Sol Barkin, Evelyn Rozin Barkin
George Barkin, George Barkin
Tony Award for Best Featured Actress in a Play, Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Lead Actress in a Limited Series or a Movie, Satellite Award for Best Supporting Actress – Series, Miniseries or Television Film, Drama Desk Award for Outstanding Ensemble Performance, Tony Award for Best Featured...
Golden Globe Award for Best Actress – Motion Picture – Musical or Comedy, Golden Globe Award for Best Performance by an Actress In A Mini-series or Motion Picture Made for Television, Golden Globe Award for Best Actress – Motion Picture – Musical or Comedy, Golden Globe Award for Best Perfor...
Sea of Love, Ocean's Thirteen, The Big Easy, This Boy's Life, Another Happy Day, The Adventures of Buckaroo Banzai Across the 8th Dimension, The Cobbler, She Hate Me, Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas, Drop Dead Gorgeous, Brooklyn's Finest, Diner, Johnny Handsome, Happy Tears, Wild Bill, Palindromes, S...
The New Normal, Faerie Tale Theatre, Animal Kingdom, The New Normal, Faerie Tale Theatre, Animal Kingdom
[In a 1984 interview concerning her career] It's like having been brought up in the best neighborhood and having been to the best schools. It's kind of nice to be 29 and have people refer to you as a character actor.
It's difficult to get into trouble if you don't take yourself too seriously.
[on working with Paul Newman] You forget he's Paul Newman on the set after a while... that is until you look into his eyes.
I'd rather just be stuck at home watching Turner Classic Movies. I'm stuck with a book and old movies, that's pretty much the beginning and end of my life.
[on becoming a young actress in the 2000s] Their careers are over in a blink. So I think it's harder for them to feel motivated to exhibit a real professionalism because they must wonder how long they are really going to be around for. It's really bad. There are exceptions obviously. There's no slow build anymore where you get a little part, then you get a little better part, then a better part until one day your agent calls you us and says 'guess what you're a movie star' and you say 'thank you!
A successful marriage isn't necessarily one that lasts until you're dead. (Parade magazine, May 13, 2007)
[of her second marriage] What the hell was I thinking? Marry a rich guy? Was I crazy? I didn't need that. I was already at the party. I didn't need someone to get me through the door. How could I be so clueless about who I am and what I value? Did I actually think I was going to give up working? It's important for me to work. (Parade magazine, May 13, 2007)
[Speaking in 1987] It's difficult to be married outside the profession. A lawyer might not understand that going to bed with Gabriel Byrne for three days is work for me.
No more bare bodies in film scenes for me. For my children's sake, I must stop. The other kids at school keep throwing it up to my children, and they are not kind.
Won a Tony for her Broadway debut in 'The Normal Heart'.
Barkin got a big break in 1980, when she beat out many actresses, including Amanda Plummer and Diane Lane, and landed a key role as a disturbed teenager in the play, "Shout Across the River", at the Phoenix Playhouse.
Made her Broadway debut in 2011 as Dr. Emma Brookner in "The Normal Heart".