Photo of Shirley MacLaine Shirley MacLaine

Born in Richmond, Va., on April 24, 1934, Shirley MacLaine moved to New York City and spent years as a Broadway chorus girl, eventually becoming an understudy to Carol Haney in "The Pajama Game." The first time she went on in Haney's place, she made a big impression on audiences and producers alike.

Snatched up by Hollywood, MacLaine's got her first film role in The Trouble with Harry (1955). She garnered the first of five Best Actress Oscar nominations for Some Came Running (1958), and she continued her streak of success with The Apartment (1960), Irma La Douce (1963) and the big-screen adaptation of the musical Sweet Charity (1969).

In later years, MacLaine opted for roles that blended comedy and drama, as illustrated in the films Being There (1979), 1983's Terms of Endearment (for which she finally won a Best Actress Oscar), Steel Magnolias (1989) and Postcards from the Edge (1990). Her work in In Her Shoes (2006) gained her a Golden Globe nod and her role as Coco Chanel got her an Emmy nod in 2009.

Shirley MacLaine in The Last Word

The Last Word

2017 R

Not about to cede control of any facet of her life -- or death -- retired businesswoman Harriet Lawler hires a young writer to pen an obituary worthy of her. When the results fall short of Harriet's expectations, she sets out to reshape her legacy.

  • Shirley MacLaine in Wild Oats Wild Oats
  • Shirley MacLaine in Postcards from the Edge Postcards from the Edge
  • Shirley MacLaine in Bernie Bernie
  • Shirley MacLaine in The Secret Life of Walter Mitty The Secret Life of Walter Mitty
  • Shirley MacLaine in Being There Being There
  • Shirley MacLaine in Guarding Tess Guarding Tess
  • Shirley MacLaine in The Children's Hour The Children's Hour
  • Shirley MacLaine in Steel Magnolias Steel Magnolias
  • Shirley MacLaine in The Apartment The Apartment
  • Shirley MacLaine in Defending Your Life Defending Your Life
  • Shirley MacLaine in Rumor Has It Rumor Has It
  • Shirley MacLaine in Around the World in 80 Days Around the World in 80 Days
  • Shirley MacLaine in Terms of Endearment Terms of Endearment
  • Shirley MacLaine in Valentine's Day Valentine's Day
  • Shirley MacLaine in Elsa & Fred Elsa & Fred
  • Shirley MacLaine in The Trouble with Harry The Trouble with Harry
  • Shirley MacLaine in The Yellow Rolls-Royce The Yellow Rolls-Royce
  • Shirley MacLaine in Two Mules for Sister Sara Two Mules for Sister Sara
  • Shirley MacLaine in Closing the Ring Closing the Ring
  • Shirley MacLaine in Salem Witch Trials Salem Witch Trials
  • Shirley MacLaine in Carolina Carolina
  • Shirley MacLaine in In Her Shoes In Her Shoes
  • Shirley MacLaine in Coco Chanel Coco Chanel
  • Shirley MacLaine in Get Bruce! Get Bruce!
  • Shirley MacLaine in Bewitched Bewitched
  • Shirley MacLaine in Woman Times Seven Woman Times Seven
  • Shirley MacLaine in Sweet Charity Sweet Charity
  • Shirley MacLaine in A Change of Seasons A Change of Seasons
  • Shirley MacLaine in The Celluloid Closet The Celluloid Closet
  • Shirley MacLaine in These Old Broads These Old Broads
  • Shirley MacLaine in Can-Can Can-Can
  • Shirley MacLaine in The Dick Cavett Show: John & Yoko The Dick Cavett Show: John & Yoko
  • Shirley MacLaine in Loving Couples Loving Couples
  • Shirley MacLaine in Stories from My Childhood Stories from My Childhood