BOSTON LEGAL Candice Bergen Biography

Candice Bergen : Shirley Schmidt

Date Of Birth: May 9th, 1946   Hometown: Beverly Hills, California

Candice Bergen is “a beautiful actress who projects intelligence, humor, vulnerability and self-reliance-all more or less simultaneously,” wrote critic Vincent Canby in the New York Times.

Bergen proved this every week for 10 years as Murphy on the critically acclaimed CBS comedy “Murphy Brown,” for which she received five Emmy Awards and two Golden Globe Awards. She had earlier received extraordinary critical and audience response for her performance as a college student caught up in the turmoil of a campus revolt in “Getting Straight”; as the personification of the clean cut all-American dream girl of the ’40s in Mike Nichol’s “Carnal Knowledge”; and as the newly liberated wife in “Starting Over,” for which she received an Oscar nomination for Best Supporting Actress.

For her role as Shirley Schmidt in “Boston Legal,” Bergen has been nominated for an Emmy for Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Drama Series, a Screen Actors Guild Award for Outstanding Performance by a Female Actor in a Comedy Series, and a Golden Globe Award for Best Performance by an Actress in a Supporting Role in a Series, Mini-Series or Motion Picture Made for Television.

Bergen was seen in “The In-Laws,” with Michael Douglas and Albert Brooks, “A View from the Top,” “Sweet Home Alabama,” with Reese Witherspoon, and “Miss Congeniality.” She co-starred with Jacqueline Bisset in “Rich and Famous,” which was inspired by the 1943 film “Old Acquaintance,” starring Bette Davis and Miriam Hopkins. She also appeared in the role of Margaret Bourke-White in Richard Attenborough’s “Gandhi,” and starred opposite Burt Reynolds in “Stick.”

On television Bergen had her own show on the Oxygen Network, “Bergen Checks It Out,” where she tapped into current trends and interviewed people from all walks of life. Before that she hosted “Exhale,” a nightly one-hour talk show, also on the Oxygen Network.

The daughter of Frances and the late Edgar Bergen, Candice Bergen attended the Westlake School for Girls in Los Angeles, the Cathedral School in Washington, DC, as well as school in Switzerland and the University of Pennsylvania, where she majored in art history and creative writing. While still in college, she commuted to New York for modeling assignments. She was still a student at the University of Pennsylvania when she made her motion picture debut as the mysterious, glamorous Lakey in “The Group.”

Combining her acting career with an insatiable desire to see the world, Bergen traveled to Formosa to star opposite Steve McQueen and Sir Richard Attenborough in Robert Wise’s “The Sand Pebbles”; to Greece to appear in “The Day the Fish Came Out”; and to France to star with Yves Montand in Claude LeLouche’s “Vivre Pour Vivre.” She also starred in “T.R. Baskin,”

“The Adventurers,” “Soldier Blue,” “The Magus,” “The Hunting Party,” “11 Harrowhouse,” “The Wind and the Lion,” “Bite the Bullet,” “The Domino Principal,” “A Night Full of Rain” and “Oliver’s Story.”

Over the years Bergen has achieved great success in the worlds of photography and journalism. She has produced magazine articles and photographic essays filled with intelligence and wit, observing the world with a keen eye for detail and humor. She has written a cover story for New York magazine about working with Lina Wertmuller on “A Night Full of Rain,” articles about the Masai Tribe of Kenya and Emperor Haile Selassie of Ethiopia, and for Playboy an account of her four-week trip to Red China entitled “Can a Cultural Worker from Beverly Hills Find Happiness in the People’s Republic of China?” She also wrote the cover story on Charlie Chaplin’s return to the United States for Life magazine.

Her articles, including that on her first film, “The Group,” the mayhem of roller derbies, a social history of Bel Air, the presidential primaries in 1968, plus profiles of Los Angeles Mayor Sam Yorty, Oscar Levant, Paul Newman and Lee Marvin, have appeared in Esquire, Vogue, Cosmopolitan and Ladies’ Home Journal.

Bergen made her Broadway debut starring as Darlene in the critically acclaimed “Hurly Burly,” directed by long-time friend Mike Nichols, and which also starred William Hurt, Judith Ivey and Ron Silver.

In addition to “Murphy Brown,” Bergen’s other television credits include three TV movies for CBS — “Mayflower Madam,” “Murder: By Reason of Insanity” and “Mary & Tim.” She was also seen in the highly rated ABC miniseries “Hollywood Wives,” based on the bestselling novel by Jackie Collins.

Bergen’s autobiography, Knock Wood, which she worked on for five years, was released in April 1984 to critical acclaim and enjoyed several weeks on the New York Times Bestseller List.

Bergen resides in New York with her developer/philanthropist/husband Marshall Rose. She has a daughter who is in college.

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