Marcia Gay Harden

With two degrees in theatre, Marcia Gay Harden has been singularly focused on a career in acting for decades. Born Aug. 14, 1959, in La Jolla, Calif., Harden swapped coasts for a few years, honing her acting skills in stage productions in Washington, D.C., and, soon after, Broadway, where she received a Tony nomination for "Angels in America."

Trying her hand in Hollywood, she gave a critically acclaimed performance in the Coen Brothers' 1990 film Miller's Crossing. A decade went by before her next critical success, but this one, an unforgettable performance as wife Lee Krasner in the biopic Pollock, came with an Oscar statuette for Best Supporting Actress.

Harden snagged another Oscar nomination for her performance in 2003's Mystic River and wowed audiences in John Sayles's Casa de Los Babys. She received her first Emmy nod in 2007 for her guest role in Law & Order: Special Victims Unit and a second for her role in The Courageous Heart of Irena Sendler.