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People in Film | Patricia Clarkson

Posted June 17, 2011 to photo album "People in Film | Patricia Clarkson"

The New Orleans-born actress finds a way to make every film she’s in better.

Patricia Clarkson: An Essential Character
Between New Orleans and New York
For Yale And Theater
Character Actor And Beyond
The Queen of Sundance
Big Films, Small Films, Character Part, Film Star
For Yale And Theater

For Yale And Theater

While she preformed in high school, and then studied drama at Louisiana State University, and then later Fordham University, Clarkson’s drama career really began when she entered the MFA program at Yale’s School of Drama. Her skill in capturing characters was certainly honed through her appearance in the school’s productions of plays like “Twelfth Night", "The Misanthrope," and "Pacific Overtures." But she got even more experience through her day-to-day class exercises. “I spent three years acting against type, which stretched me and shaped me and made me malleable and pliable,” she told Screenwize in 2009. “After playing classic leading lady roles like “Hedda Gabler” as an undergraduate, I got to Yale and wore more fat suits and wigs than you can imagine. I played the Bard in “Pericles”, and I played a 300-pound woman, and I shared a fat suit with Dylan Baker.” Ready to play skinny (or fat), she took to the New York stage, receiving high marks for her performance in such works as the 1986 staging of John Guare’s "The House of Blue Leaves" and the 1989 staging of Richard Greenberg’s "Eastern Standard."