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Katharine Ross Biography
- Katharine Ross was born in Hollywood, California on January 29, 1940. Her father was in the US Navy and was away when she was born. His navy career shuttled the family around to Virginia, then Palo Alto and finally to Walnut Creek, outside of San Francisco, where Ross grew up. She graduated from Las Lomas High School in Walnut Creek in 1957 and attended Diablo Valley College in the Bay Area, where she took part in her first onscreen work in a student film. Moving to San Francisco, into an apartment on Stockton Street above a grocery store, she began her acting career as an understudy in Actors Workshop productions, and was soon auditioning for roles. Work came quickly for Ross, at first mainly in television westerns, and indeed Westerns would make up the majority of her best-known work, her natural beauty being a strong asset in that genre. Her first film role was in the Civil War era Shenandoah (1965) starring James Stewart . Rosss career as a leading actress began in earnest in 1967, with her strong turn co-starring with James Caan and Simone Signoret in Games (1967), and with The Graduate (1967). Despite being nearly a decade older than her character, Rosss performance as Elaine earned her a Supporting Actress Oscar nomination. A disappointing, formulaic John Wayne vehicle, Hellfighters (1968), followed but she soon returned to form with two films with Robert Redford . As Etta Place in Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid (1969), Ross was part of the most memorable scene from that hit film, precariously perched barefoot on the bumper of that newfangled contraption, the bicycle, as Paul Newman s Butch Cassidy takes her for a ride. The compelling Tell Them Willie Boy Is Here (1969) was less of a box office success but more highly regarded by the critics, and Ross won a BAFTA Award for her work as Lola, a Paiute Indian who flees with her boyfriend, played by Robert Blake , after he kills her father in self-defense. Swept up into a whirlwind of fame, widely idealized as the symbol of beauty for the Woodstock generation, Ross had accomplished so much so quickly that it seemed her entire career had happened almost all at once, in that frenzy of activity between 1967 and 1969. Sure enough, there followed a long dry spell in which she was mostly cast in forgettable roles; her next strong film wasnt for another six years. In The Stepford Wives (1975), an intriguing black comedy-cum-horror film, Ross plays a independent, free-spirited wife newly relocated to a suburb where the other wives all seem to be just a little too perfect, too submissive; it was arguably her strongest performance to date, but Stepford Wives would prove to be but a temporary resurgence for Ross, and her work in the decade and a half to follow would include such star-studded duds as The Betsy (1978), and a return to TV, including a part in primetime soap opera "The Colbys" (1985). Along the way, however, Ross found love. After four failed marriages, she met fifth husband Sam Elliott while working on The Legacy (1978). The two actors married in 1984. That September, four months before her 45th birthday, Ross gave birth to her only child, daughter Cleo. In 1991, Ross and Elliott adapted the Louis LAmour novel Conagher (1991) for television in a remarkably affecting Western tale which showcases both actors remarkable talents. Ross continues to take roles on occasion and, as usual, her work is strong -- something that was sometimes overlooked in her youth due to her famous beauty. For instance, Ross turned up in Donnie Darko (2001), in a solid performance as Donnies psychiatrist. Ross and Elliott live on their ranchito in Malibu.
Katharine Ross Filmography
- (2013) Wini + George as Wini
- (2012) We Grew Wings as (voice)
- (2010) Moguls & Movie Stars: A History of Hollywood as Elaine Robinson (archive footage) (uncredited)
- (2008) House of Harrington as (archive footage)
- (2006) All of What Follows Is True: The Making of 'Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid' as Herself
- (2006) Eye of the Dolphin as Lucy
- (2005) 20 to 1 as Elaine Robinson (archive footage) (uncredited)
- (2004) 'Donnie Darko': Production Diary as Herself
- (2004) Capital City as
- (2003) Sex at 24 Frames Per Second as Herself (archive footage)
- (2002) Don't Let Go as Charlene Stevens
- (2002) Film Genre as Herself
- (2001) Donnie Darko as Dr. Lilian Thurman
- (2001) The Android Prophecy as Herself
- (2001) The Stepford Life as Herself
- (2000) Twentieth Century Fox: The Blockbuster Years as Etta Place (archive footage)
- (1999) The American Film Institute Salute to Dustin Hoffman as Herself
- (1997) Home Before Dark as Rose
- (1994) Bravo Profiles as Herself
- (1992) The 49th Annual Golden Globe Awards as Herself - Audience Member
- (1992) The Graduate at 25 as Herself
- (1991) A Climate for Killing as Grace Hines
- (1991) Conagher as Evie Teale
- (1988) The 45th Annual Golden Globe Awards as Herself - Presenter: Best Actress in a Mini-Series or Motion Picture Made for TV
- (1987) Biography as Herself
- (1987) Breastfeeding Your Baby: A Mother's Guide as Herself
- (1986) Houston: The Legend of Texas as Susannah Dickinson (uncredited)
- (1986) Red Headed Stranger as Laurie
- (1986) The 12th Annual People's Choice Awards as Herself - Accepting Award for Favourite New Television Dramatic Program
- (1985) Reel Horror as Miss Macy (archive footage) (as Katherine Ross)
- (1985) The Colbys as Francesca 'Frankie' Scott Colby Hamilton Langdon
- (1983) Secrets of a Mother and Daughter as Ava Pryce
- (1983) Travis McGee as Gretel Howard
- (1982) Marian Rose White as Nurse Bonnie MacNeil
- (1982) The Shadow Riders as Kate Connery/Sister Katherine
- (1982) Wait Until Dark as Suzy Hendrix
- (1982) Wrong Is Right as Sally Blake
- (1981) Entertainment Tonight as Herself (archive footage)
- (1981) Murder in Texas as Ann Kurth Hill
- (1980) Rodeo Girl as Sammy Garrett
- (1980) The Final Countdown as Laurel Scott
- (1979) Murder by Natural Causes as Allison Sinclair
- (1978) Inside 'The Swarm' as Herself
- (1978) The Betsy as Sally Hardeman
- (1978) The Legacy as Margaret Walsh
- (1978) The Swarm as Helena
- (1976) Alle origini della mafia as Rosa Mastrangelo
- (1976) America at the Movies as Elaine Robinson (archive footage)
- (1976) Voyage of the Damned as Mira Hauser
- (1976) Wanted: The Sundance Woman as Etta Place/Mrs. Sundance/Annie Martin/Bonnie Doris
- (1975) Good Morning America as Herself
- (1975) The 47th Annual Academy Awards as Herself - Co-Presenter: Best Actress in a Supporting Role
- (1975) The Stepford Wives as Joanna Eberhart
- (1974) Le hasard et la violence as Docteur Constance Weber
- (1973) The 45th Annual Academy Awards as Herself - Co-Presenter: Best Film Editing
- (1972) ABC Afterschool Specials as Maggie's Mother
- (1972) Get to Know Your Rabbit as Terrific-Looking Girl
- (1972) They Only Kill Their Masters as Kate
- (1970) Fools as Anais Appleton
- (1970) The 42nd Annual Academy Awards as Herself - Presenter: Best Actor in a Supporting Role & Best Adapted Screenplay, and Accepting Original Screenplay Award for William Goldman
- (1970) The Making of 'Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid' as Herself (uncredited) (also archive footage)
- (1969) Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid as Etta Place
- (1969) Tell Them Willie Boy Is Here as Lola
- (1968) Hellfighters as Tish Buckman
- (1968) The 40th Annual Academy Awards as Herself - Nominee: Best Actress in a Supporting Role & Co-Presenter: Best Cinematography
- (1967) Games as Jennifer Montgomery
- (1967) The Graduate as Elaine Robinson
- (1967) The Longest Hundred Miles as Laura Huntington
- (1966) Mister Buddwing as Janet
- (1966) Preview Tonight as Asenath (as Katherine Ross)
- (1966) The Road West as Rachel Adams
- (1966) The Singing Nun as Nicole Arlien
- (1965) Run for Your Life as Laura Beaumont
- (1965) Searchers for a Special City as Herself (uncredited)
- (1965) Shenandoah as Ann
- (1965) The Big Valley as Maria
- (1965) The Loner as Sue Sullivan
- (1965) The Wild Wild West as Sheila Parnell
- (1963) Arrest and Trial as Marietta Valera
- (1963) Bob Hope Presents the Chrysler Theatre as Gloria
- (1963) Kraft Suspense Theatre as Janet Bollington
- (1963) Mr. Novak as Mrs. Bellway (as Katherine Ross)
- (1963) The Lieutenant as Elizabeth
- (1962) Sam Benedict as Teresa Parrelli
- (1962) The Alfred Hitchcock Hour as Carol Brandt
- (1962) The Virginian as Jenny Hendricks
- (1961) Ben Casey as Marie Costeau
- (1957) Wagon Train as Bonnie Brooke
- (1955) Gunsmoke as Liz Beaumont
- (1955) Gunsmoke as Susan
Katharine Ross Trivia and Facts
- Also an accomplished childrens book author, who has written the books "Little Ballerina" and "My Favorite Things".
- Her favorite fragrance is "Rive Gauche", by Yves Saint-Laurent.
- Gave birth to her daughter, Cleo Rose Elliott, with Sam Elliott , on 17 September 1984 (4 months before Katharines 45th birthday).
- Her father was in the Navy when she was born.
- Has lived in Malibu, CA since the late 1960s.
- Has remained good friends with Dustin Hoffman , her co-star from The Graduate (1967).
- Was only 8 years younger than Anne Bancroft , who played her mother in The Graduate (1967).
- Was at one point going to star in Follow Me! (1972).
- Both she and husband Sam Elliot appeared in Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid (1969) , although they had no scenes together and did not meet until 1978. Elliot, had a bit part as a card player in the opening scene, while Ross portrayed Etta Place, the female lead role, along side male leads Robert Redford and Paul Newman .
- Katharine Ross (born January 1940) is only 9 years and 5 months younger than Vera Miles (born August 1930), who portrayed her mother in Hellfighters (1968).
- Arguably the three best known roles of her career were consecutive roles in consecutive years, The Graduate (1967) , Hellfighters (1968) , and Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid (1969).
- Former stepmother of cinematographer Conrad W. Hall , Kate Hall and Naia Hall.
- Ross married cinematographer Conrad L. Hall the year Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid (1969) and Tell Them Willie Boy Is Here (1969) were released. Both movies featured Ross and were filmed by Hall. Ross would later marry Sam Elliott who made his feature debut in Butch Cassidy.
- Turned down Jacqueline Bisset s roles in Bullitt (1968) and Airport (1970).
Katharine Ross Quotes
- [in 1974, about a film she shot in France, Le hasard et la violence (1974) ] What the hell, I got a trip to the French Riviera out of it. It was shot in Nice. I have no idea how good it is. I spoke English and [Yves Montand ] spoke French and the whole thing was dubbed.
- [on meeting The Graduate" co-star, Dustin Hoffman ] He looked about three feet tall, so dead, serious, so humorless, so unkempt. [I thought] this is going to be a disaster.
Katharine Ross Photoshoots
- "Vanity Fair" (UK), April 2000, Vol. 1, Iss. 476, pg. 179, "The Prairie Lovers"
- "Celebrity Sleuth" (USA), 1993, Vol. 6, Iss. 4, pg. 82-83, by: staff, "The Lady IS A Vamp: Katharine Ross, "The Stepford Wives""
- "Celebrity Sleuth" (USA), 1990, Vol. 3, Iss. 4, pg. 76-77, by: staff, "Katherine Ross"
- "Expose!" (USA), September 1983, Vol. 3, Iss. 7, pg. 38, by: n/a, "Hollywood Nude"
- "Playboy" (USA), November 1977, Vol. 24, Iss. 11, pg. 159, by: Arthur Knight, "Sex In Cinema 1977"
- "Playboy" (USA), November 1975, Vol. 22, Iss. 11, pg. 137, by: Arthur Knight, "Sex In Cinema - 1975"
Katharine Ross Other Works
- Childrens book: "Little Ballerina"
- Childrens book: "My Favorite Things"
- (1965) TV commercial for Polaroid Swinger cameras.
- (December 2011-April 2012) Stage play: "Kimberly Akimbo" by David Lindsay-Abaire; played Kimberly, at Malibu Stage Company, Malibu, California.
Katharine Ross Trademarks
- Playing characters much younger than she was at the time (1960s)