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Ten fun facts about Ellen Burstyn


1. The Exorcist & Alice Star

Born in 1932, Ellen Burstyn was originally named Edna Rae Gillooly. Burstyn is an Academy Award-winning actress who has starred in numerous films, including The Exorcist, Alice Doesn't Live Here Anymore, and Requiem for a Dream. She has also appeared in television shows such as Law & Order: Special Victims Unit and House of Cards. Burstyn has been nominated for five Academy Awards, winning Best Actress for her performance in Martin Scorsese's Alice Doesn't Live Here Anymore in 1974.

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2. household name thanks to iconic role in 'The Exorcist'

Ellen Burstyn is a household name thanks to her iconic role as the mother in the classic horror film, "The Exorcist". Her performance in the movie was so powerful that it earned her an Academy Award nomination for Best Actress, cementing her place in Hollywood history. Burstyn's performance in the film has been praised by critics and fans alike, and her character's struggle to protect her daughter from the demonic forces has become an iconic representation of maternal love.

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3. Ellen Burstyn Wins Oscar for 'Alice'

Ellen Burstyn won an Academy Award for her performance in the 1974 Martin Scorsese-directed film, "Alice Doesn't Live Here Anymore". Burstyn's portrayal of Alice Hyatt, a single mother struggling to make a better life for herself and her son, earned her critical acclaim and the Oscar for Best Actress. The film was also nominated for Best Picture, Best Director, and Best Adapted Screenplay.

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4. A Career in Acting

In the 1950s, Ellen Burstyn made her first big break as a performer when she was a dancer on the Jackie Gleason television show. She worked under the name of Erica Dean, and this experience helped to launch her career in the entertainment industry. Burstyn went on to become an Academy Award-winning actress, with roles in films such as The Exorcist, Alice Doesn't Live Here Anymore, and Requiem for a Dream.

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5. Early Career

In 1957, the young Ellen Burstyn began her career on Broadway under the name Ellen McRae. For the next decade, she continued to use this name for her stage performances, appearing in a variety of plays and musicals. During this time, she established herself as a talented actress, eventually earning a Tony Award nomination for her role in the 1960 production of "Fair Game". She also made her film debut in 1962, appearing in the movie "The Stripper". By the end of the decade, she had become a well-known and respected actress, paving the way for her future success.

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6. From Nurse to Oscar Winner

In 1964, Ellen Burstyn made her television debut on the popular soap opera The Doctors. She played the role of a nurse, and her performance was so well-received that it launched her career in the entertainment industry. Burstyn went on to become an Academy Award-winning actress, with her most notable roles being in films such as The Exorcist, Alice Doesn't Live Here Anymore, and Requiem for a Dream.

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7. A Powerful Actress

Ellen Burstyn had a prominent role in the television series The Iron Horse from 1966 to 1968. During this time, she was a regular cast member, appearing in numerous episodes of the show. Burstyn's character was a strong-willed woman who was determined to make her way in the world, despite the obstacles she faced. Her performance was praised by critics and audiences alike, and she was nominated for an Emmy Award for her work on the show.

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8. The Last Picture Show's breakout star

In 1971, Ellen Burstyn received her first Academy Award nomination for her breakthrough role in The Last Picture Show, a movie costarring Jeff Bridges and Cybil Sheppard. Burstyn's performance in the film was highly praised, and it marked the beginning of her successful career in Hollywood. The Last Picture Show was a critical and commercial success, and it is still considered to be one of the greatest films of all time.

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9. A Legend in Acting

” In 1975, Ellen Burstyn won a Tony Award for her outstanding performance in the Broadway production of “Same Time Next Year.” Burstyn's portrayal of Doris, a woman who meets her lover for a romantic rendezvous once a year, was praised by critics and audiences alike. Her performance earned her the Tony Award for Best Performance by a Leading Actress in a Play, cementing her place as one of the most talented and celebrated actresses of her generation.

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10. Triple Crown Winner!

Ellen Burstyn is an acclaimed actress who has achieved the rare Triple Crown of Acting, which includes an Academy Award, an Emmy Award, and a Tony Award. She is one of only a handful of performers to have earned this prestigious honor, which is a testament to her immense talent and dedication to her craft. Burstyn has been nominated for numerous awards throughout her career, including five Academy Award nominations, and has won numerous awards, including a Golden Globe Award and a BAFTA Award.

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