Sigourney Weaver (born October 8, 1949) is an American actress. She is best known for her roles as Lieutenant Ellen Ripley in the Alien film series and as Dana Barrett in the Ghostbusters movies. Weaver is also a three-time Academy Award nominee for her performances in Aliens, Gorillas in the Mist and Working Girl. She is still one of the very few actresses who has ever been nominated for an Academy Award for Best Actress for her role in a science fiction movie (Aliens).
Weaver attended the Ethel Walker School, a prep school in Simsbury, Connecticut where she was made fun of all the time for being a "nerd" and for her height. She also attended The Chapin School She was reportedly 5'10" by age 13, but only grew another inch to her adult height of 5'11". She graduated from Stanford University (BA, English, 1972). She earned an MFA (1974) at Yale School of Drama, where she appeared in the chorus of a production of Stephen Sondheim's The Frogs and as one of a mob of Roman soldiers in another production as well as, later, in original plays by friend and classmate Christopher Durang. She later appeared in the 1981 Off Broadway production of his comedy Beyond Therapy directed by then up-and-coming director Jerry Zaks. She is fluent in French and in German.
In 1997, Weaver won the BAFTA Award for her supporting role in Ang Lee's The Ice Storm. In 2003, she was voted 20th in Channel 4's countdown of the 100 greatest movie stars of all time. She was one of only two women in the top 20 (the other was Audrey Hepburn). That year, she also played The Warden in the movie Holes. In 2006, Weaver returned to Rwanda for the BBC special Gorillas Revisited.
Weaver was approached to star in The Accused but felt the nature of the story was too violent. She was considered for the role of Catherine Tramell in Basic Instinct, but Sharon Stone was cast instead. Jane Campion wanted a "Sigourney Weaver-type" for her film The Piano, but Weaver's agent turned the film down without consulting Weaver. Holly Hunter went on to win the Oscar for the role, and Weaver fired her agent. Bryan Singer originally wanted Weaver for the role of Emma Frost in X-Men: The Last Stand, but Singer (along with screenwriter Dan Harris, who had directed Weaver in Imaginary Heroes) left the project, and the idea to include Frost was dropped. In 2009, Weaver starred as Mary Griffith in her first made-for-TV movie, Prayers for Bobby, for which she was nominated for an Emmy Award. She also guest starred in the TV show Eli Stone in the fall of 2008..
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