HELEN SHAVER Biography - Actors and Actresses


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Name: Helen Shaver                                                                       
Born: 24 February 1951 St. Thomas, Ontario Canada                                         
Helen Shaver (born February 24, 1951 or 1952) is a Canadian actress and film             
and television director.                                                                 
Shaver was born in St. Thomas, Ontario, Canada, and grew up in a small town near         
Toronto, Ontario with her five sisters. As a child, she suffered from rheumatic           
fever and was forced to spend six months of each year in bed. She dated                   
screenplay writer Stephen C. Peters. Shaver is now married to top key grip Steve         
Smith (whom she met on the set of Desert Hearts); they have a son.                       
Shaver has worked with such directors as Sam Peckinpah, Martin Scorsese, Steven           
Spielberg and Brian De Palma. In 1978 she won a Canadian Film Award for her role         
as "Ann MacDonald" in the film In Praise of Older Women. In 1985, she appeared           
in the film Desert Hearts as a 1950s university professor who falls in love with         
another woman, for which she won the Bronze Leopard Award at the Locarno                 
International Film Festival. Shaver's performance, as well as realistic nude             
love scenes with co-star Patricia Charbonneau drew much critical praise.                 
Her most prominent film appearance came in 1986 as the love interest opposite             
Paul Newman in his Oscar-winning portrayal of "Fast Eddie Felson" in The Color           
of Money, a sequel to 1961's The Hustler. In 1990 she guested as the murderer in         
Columbo: Rest In Peace, Mrs. Columbo. She also appeared on television programs           
such as Hill Street Blues, T. J. Hooker and as the title character of the short-lived     
series, Jessica Novak.                                                                   
In 2000, she won a Genie Award for her portrayal of a drug-addicted prostitute           
in the independent feature We All Fall Down. In 2003 she won a Gemini award for           
best direction in a dramatic series for the Just Cause television series. In             
2004, she was inducted into Canada's Walk of Fame.                                       
Shaver has also carved out a career for herself as a director with a number of           
television shows and cable movies to her credit, including The Outer Limits,             
Judging Amy, Joan of Arcadia, Dead Like Me, The OC, The L Word, Jericho, and             
Journeyman. She made her feature-length directorial debut in 1999 with Summer's           
End; the film went on to win an Emmy.