Photo of Mercedes Ruehl Mercedes Ruehl

Often cast as street-savvy, lippy characters, Mercedes Ruehl was born Feb. 28, 1948, in Queens, N.Y. She began her acting career in regional theater productions and by the 1970s had graduated to New York plays, including "I'm Not Rappaport."

Ruehl debuted on film in The Warriors (1979) and continued to find steady employment in such movies as Four Friends (1981) and Heartburn (1986). In 1988, she appeared in the box-office smash Big and gained notoriety as a mafioso's hellcat wife in Married to the Mob (1988). Playing opposite Jeff Bridges in The Fisher King (1991), Ruehl collected a richly deserved Oscar and a Golden Globe for her potent supporting turn.

For the rest of the '90s, Ruehl alternated between feature films and television. Her big-screen works included Last Action Hero (1993) and The Minus Man (1999), and her TV credits included the made-for-cable film Gia (1998).

Mercedes Ruehl in Heartburn

Heartburn

1986 R

The marriage between a New York writer and a political columnist ends when, among other things, his infidelity becomes a problem they cannot overcome in this drama loosely based on the real-life woes of screenwriter Nora Ephron.

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  • Mercedes Ruehl in Big Big
  • Mercedes Ruehl in The Warriors The Warriors
  • Mercedes Ruehl in The Fisher King The Fisher King
  • Mercedes Ruehl in Gia Gia
  • Mercedes Ruehl in Last Action Hero Last Action Hero
  • Mercedes Ruehl in 84 Charing Cross Road 84 Charing Cross Road
  • Mercedes Ruehl in What's Cooking? What's Cooking?
  • Mercedes Ruehl in Married to the Mob Married to the Mob
  • Mercedes Ruehl in Subway Stories Subway Stories
  • Mercedes Ruehl in The Minus Man The Minus Man
  • Mercedes Ruehl in Four Friends Four Friends
  • Mercedes Ruehl in For Roseanna For Roseanna
  • Mercedes Ruehl in Widows Widows
  • Mercedes Ruehl in Bad Apple Bad Apple
  • Mercedes Ruehl in Slaves of New York Slaves of New York
  • Mercedes Ruehl in Running with the Hitman Running with the Hitman