Jamie Lee Curtis is an American actress and writer who has been on the big screen and on television. Following her husband’s inheritance of the Barony, she became known as Baroness, ‘Lady Haden-Guest.’ Her first picture, ‘Halloween,’ in which she played Laurie Strode, was a hit, establishing her as a well-known horror actress. Her outstanding performance in the film led to her being cast in additional horror films such as ‘Terror Train,’ ‘The Fog,’ ‘Roadgames,’ and ‘Halloween II.’ Her portrayals in horror films earned her the moniker “scream queen.” Later in her career, she excelled in the comedy genre as well, receiving positive reviews and establishing herself as a versatile actor. ‘Trading Places,’ “A Fish Called Wanda,” and “True Lies” are among her best comedies. ‘Operation Petticoat,’ ‘Anything But Love,’ ‘NCIS,’ and ‘New Girl’ are just a few of her notable television credits. She has appeared in a number of television films, beginning with ‘She’s in the Army Now’ and continuing with ‘The Heidi Chronicles,’ ‘Nicholas’ Gift,’ and ‘Only Human.’ She now portrays Dean Cathy Munsch, the principal character in the FOX series ‘Scream Queens.’ She has written a number of children’s books, including ‘When I Was Little: A Four-Year-Memoir Old’s of Her Youth’ and ‘Today I Feel Silly and Other Moods That Make My Day,’ which have gained both critical acclaim and popular recognition. Jamie Lee Curtis has won a number of accolades, including the BAFTA Award, the Golden Globe Award, the Saturn Award, and the American Comedy Award.
Childhood and Adolescence
Jamie Lee Curtis was born in Santa Monica, California, on November 22, 1958, to Tony Curtis and Janet Leigh. Her parents were both movie celebrities who separated in 1962.
Kelly Curtis, an actress, is her older sister. Her father’s half-siblings were her other half-siblings.
She attended Los Angeles’ all-girls ‘Westlake School’ (now ‘Harvard-Westlake School’) and was a cheerleader there alongside Gigi Garner, who went on to become a film producer. Jamie Lee Curtis went on to ‘Beverly Hills High School’ following that.
She received her diploma from ‘Choate Rosemary Hall’ in Connecticut in 1976. She went on to the ‘University of the Pacific,’ which is located in Stockton, California, after graduation. She intended to major in social work, but she dropped out after a semester to pursue acting.
Career of Jamie Lee Curtis
She began her acting career on television, appearing in single episodes of shows such as ‘Columbo,’ ‘The Hardy Boys/Nancy Drew Mysteries,’ and ‘Charlie’s Angels,’ among others (1978).
In 1978, she played Lt. Barbara Duran, a nurse in ‘Operation Petticoat,’ a 23-episode military comedy based on his father Tony Curtis’ 1959 film. She made her debut the same year with the famous horror picture ‘Halloween,’ which went on to become a massive smash and was believed to have made the most money as an independent film at the time.
Her performance as Laurie Strode in ‘Halloween’ received critical acclaim, and she went on to star in several additional horror films over the next few years. ‘The Fog,’ ‘Terror Train,’ and ‘Prom Night’ were released in 1980, followed by ‘Roadgames,’ and ‘Halloween II,’ in 1981. She was dubbed the’scream queen’ due to her prominence in the genre.
She appeared in many television movies during the 1980s, including ‘She’s in the Army Now’ (1981), ‘Money on the Side’ (1982), and ‘As Summers Die’ (1986).
In a more varied move, she moved away from horror and starred as Ophelia in the 1983 picture ‘Trading Places,’ which showcased her comedic abilities. The film earned her a BAFTA Award for Best Actress in a Supporting Role and catapulted her career forward.
She was able to shake off her horror starlet image and pursue a variety of ventures, all of which received mediocre reviews. In 1984, she appeared in three films: “Love Letters,” “The Adventures of Buckaroo Banzai Across the 8th Dimension,” and “Grandview, U.S.A.” In 1985, she starred alongside John Travolta in the film “Perfect.” In 1987, she released ‘A Man in Love,’ ‘Amazing Grace and Chuck,’ and ‘Dominick and Eugene,’ and in 1988, she released ‘Dominick and Eugene.’
For her appearance as Wanda Gershwitz in the 1988 comedy picture ‘A Fish Called Wanda,’ she was nominated for a BAFTA Award and a Golden Globe Award.
She won the ‘Festival du Film Policier de Cognac Special Mention Award’ her acting performance as Megan Turner in the 1989 film ‘Blue Steel,’ as well as the ‘Mystfest Film Festival Award for Best Actress’.
She starred as Hannah Miller in the sitcom ‘Anything But Love’ from 1989 to 1992, partnering comic Richard Lewis. In 1989, she was honored with the ‘Golden Globe Award for Best Actress in a Television Series Musical or Comedy.’ ‘Queens Logic’ (1991), ‘My Girl’ (1991), ‘Forever Young’ (1992), ‘My Girl 2’ (1994), ‘Mother’s Boys’ (1994), ‘Homegrown’ (1998), and ‘Virus’ are some of her 1990s films (1999). She served on the jury of the ‘Cannes Film Festival’ in 1992.
This accomplished actress is also a well-known children’s book author who has received positive reviews from both readers and critics. Her first book for children, ‘When I Was Little: A Four-Year-Memoir Old’s of Her Youth,’ was published in 1993. Her novels are published by HarperCollins Children’s Books and feature pictures by Laurel Cornell.
With ‘True Lies,’ opposite Arnold Schwarzenegger, she successfully navigated the action thriller genre in 1994. For her performance, she won the ‘Golden Globe Award for Best Actress in a Motion Picture Musical or Comedy,’ the ‘Saturn Award for Best Actress,’ and the ‘American Comedy Award for Funniest Actress in a Motion Picture.’
Along with her success on the big screen, she continued to dabble in television movies, such as the 1995 film ‘The Heidi Chronicles,’ which was based on Wendy Wasserstein’s original play. Her performance as ‘Heidi Holland’ garnered her a Golden Globe nomination for ‘Best Actress – Miniseries or Television Film.’
Following the adoption of her first child Annie, she wrote her second book, ‘Tell Me Again About The Night I Was Born,’ in 1996.
‘Today I Feel Silly, and Other Moods That Make My Day,’ published in 1998, spent ten weeks on the ‘New York Times’ best-seller list. She was nominated for a ‘Primetime Emmy Award’ in the same year for her performance as Maggie Green in the television movie ‘Nicholas’ Gift.’
Following the 2002 release of ‘Halloween: Resurrection,’ she reprised her role as Laurie Strode / Keri Tate in the horror film ‘Halloween H20: 20 Years Later’ in 1998.
Her supporting roles as Rona Mace in ‘Drowning Mona’ and Louisa Pendel in ‘The Tailor of Panorama’ were both outstanding (2001).
She had another big screen success in 2003 with the Disney feature ‘Freaky Friday,’ in which she co-starred with Lindsey Lohan. For the film, she received nominations for the ‘Satellite Award for Best Actress – Motion Picture Musical or Comedy,’ the ‘Saturn Award for Best Actress,’ and the ‘Golden Globe Award for Best Actress – Motion Picture Musical or Comedy.’ She has written a number of other books in addition to acting in films and television series. ‘I’m Gonna Like Me: Letting Off a Little Self-Esteem’ (2002), ‘It’s Hard to Be Five: Learning How to Use My Control Panel’ (2004), and ‘My Mommy Hung the Moon: A Love Story’ are just a few of them (2010). Her 2006 book, ‘Is There Really a Human Race?,’ was prompted by a question from her adopted son Tom.
She returned to ‘Disney’ in 2008, portraying Aunt Viv in the live-action animated film ‘Beverly Hills Chihuahua.’ Apart from her, Piper Perabo was one of the live-action characters.
Other notable television appearances include ‘NCIS’ (2012) and ‘New Girl’ (2012 to 2015).
‘Daddy and Them’ (2000), ‘Christmas with the Kranks’ (2004), ‘The Kids & I’ (2005), ‘You Again’ (2010), and ‘Veronica Mars’ are some of her other films from the 2000s (2014).
She was also a panelist on several episodes of ‘Match Games.’
In 2015 and 2016, she starred in the American comedy horror television series ‘Scream Queens.’
Jamie Lee Curtis returned as Laurie Strode in the eleventh edition of the Halloween film franchise in 2018. The film was a huge success, grossing over $253 million worldwide, making it the franchise’s highest-grossing picture.
She will star in the American mystery crime film ‘Knives Out’ in 2019.
Personal & Family Life
She married J. Michael Riva, a Hollywood production designer, in the 1980s. He is the grandson of Marlene Dietrich, the diva of yesteryear.
She married actor Christopher Guest on December 18, 1984.
Annie (b. 1986) and Thomas (b. 1989) are the two children she adopted from Christopher Guest (b. 1996).
Following her husband’s inheritance of the Barony of Haden-Guest, she became Lady Haden-Guest in 1996.
Her godfather was MCA-Universal CEO Lew Wassermann. Jake Gyllenhaal has her as his godmother.
James Lee Curtis was shocked to hear that she, her children, and her siblings had been left out of her father Tony Curtis’ estate after his death.
In 2003, she was the honorary guest of ‘Women in Recovery,’ a non-profit organization situated in Venice, California. It was the 11th annual gala and fundraising event for the organization.
She is an outspoken supporter of children’s hospitals and serves on the board of ‘Children’s Hospital Los Angeles.’ She also hosts the ‘Dream Halloween’ event, which is held every October and is organized by the ‘Children Affected by AIDS Foundation.’
In March 2012, she starred alongside Brad Pitt and Martin Sheen in Dustin Lance Black’s play ‘8.’ It was performed at the ‘Wilshire Ebell Theatre’ and broadcast on ‘YouTube’ to benefit the ‘American Foundation for Equal Rights.’
Estimated Net Worth
Jamie Lee Curtis has a net worth of $60 million.
Her legs are covered by a $2 million insurance policy. In 1985, she was named one of the ’10 Best Bodies in America’ by ‘Mcall’s’ magazine.
This American actress owned a US patent for “A disposable newborn garment in the form of a diaper incorporating, on its outer side, a sealed, but openable, moisture-proof pocket containing one or more clean-up wipers,” which was issued as Patent No. 4,753,647. The patent’s statutory term ended on February 20, 2007.