Date of Birth: December 7th 1932
Burstyn debuted on Broadway in 1957 and joined Lee Strasberg's The Actor's Studio in 1967. In 1975, she won a Tony Award for Best Actress in a Play for her performance in Same Time, Next Year (a role she would reprise in the film version, three years later). In 1990 she won the Sarah Siddons Award for her work in Chicago theatre. Until 1970, she was credited as "Ellen McRae" in nearly all her film and TV appearances.
Burstyn received Oscar nominations for Best Supporting Actress in 1971 for her role in The Last Picture Show and for Best Actress in 1973 for the horror movie The Exorcist. She finally won the Academy Award for Best Actress in 1974 for her performance in Alice Doesn't Live Here Anymore, directed by Martin Scorsese. She was nominated again in 1978 for Same Time, Next Year, in 1980 for Resurrection, and for Requiem for a Dream in 2000.
Recently, Burstyn appeared in The Fountain, directed by Darren Aronofsky, with whom she worked in Requiem for a Dream. She provides a supporting role as the mother of two sons in the The Elephant King. The movie originally premiered at the 2006 Tribeca Film Festival but did not open in U.S. theaters until October 2008. At the time, it was credited as receiving the highest per-screen opening gross as any movie in the country.
In 2008, Burstyn returned to the stage in Stephen Adly Guirgis's The Little Flower of East Orange, directed by Philip Seymour Hoffman in a co-production by LAByrinth Theater Company and The Public Theater in New York City. The off-Broadway production ran from March 18 - May 4. Burstyn played the title role of Marie Therese. In addition to her stage work, Burstyn portrayed former First Lady Barbara Bush in director Oliver Stone's film W.