Meryl Streep could arguably be called the greatest living film actress. She has been nominated for an Academy Award a record 17 times. She won her first Academy Award for her outstanding performance as a Supporting Actress in "Kramer vs. Kramer" in 1980. Her second Academy Award came in 1982 for her heart wrenching performance as Best Actress in "Sophie's Choice". She won her third Academy Award in 2012 for her stellar performance in the "Iron Lady", playing Margaret Thatcher, the British Prime Minister.
Her other Academy Award nominations were for Best Supporting Actress in "The Deer Hunter" in 1979, for Best Actress in "The French Lieutenant's Woman" in 1982, for Best Actress in "Silkwood" in 1984, for Best Actress in "Out of Africa" in 1986, for Best Actress in "Ironweed" in 1988, for Best Actress in "A Cry in the Dark" in 1989, for Best Actress in "Postcards from the Edge" in 1991, for Best Actress in "The Bridges of Madison County' in 1996, for Best Actress in "One True Thing" in 1999, for Best Actress in "Music of the Heart" in 2000, in 2003 for Best Supporting Actress in "Adaptation", in 2006 for Best Actress in "The Devil Wears Prada", in 2008 for Best Actress in "Doubt", in 2009 for Best Actress in "Julia & Julia", and in 2011 for Best Actress in "Iron Lady".
In addition to the Academy Awards nominations, Streep was nominated and won numerous other awards for her acting performances. Between 1until the present, Streep was nominated for and won numerous awards from such organizations as the National Society of Film Critics, the New York Film Critics Circle, the Los Angeles Film Critics Association, Golden Globes Awards, People's Choice Awards, Cannes Film Festival, Gotham Lifetime Achievement Awards, Berlin International Film Festival, SAG Awards, BAFTA Awards, and the Australian Film Institute and others.
Streep's interest in acting began while still in high school where she participated in a number of school plays. She studied drama at Vassar, Dartmouth and Yale. During that time she appeared in over 30 productions with the Yale Repertory Theater. After graduation from college, Streep headed for Broadway where she played in Tennessee Williams' "Twenty Seven Wagons Full of Cotton". She made her television debut in Robert Markowitz's "The Deadliest Season" in 1977. In the same year she also made her first film appearance in Fred Zinnman's "Julia". During her film acting career Streep appeared in numerous films. As of early 2012, Streep was still on a very active film acting schedule.
Meryl Streep was born on June 22, 1949 in Summit, New Jersey. Her father, Harry Streep, Jr. was a pharmaceutical executive of Dutch descent and her mother Mary was a commercial artist of Irish, Swiss and English descent. The family's original surname, Messerschmitz, was changed to Streep in the Netherlands by her Sephardic Jewish ancestors. Her Jewish ancestry is distant and Streep's father was raised an Episcopalian. The Dutch word "streep" means "line" as in dividing line. There is a Dutch saying,"zet er een streep onder", which translate loosely to "let's start over again". The saying probably explains why her ancestors picked the name "Streep" for their new family name.
Meryl Streep married Don Gummer, a sculptor, in 1978. They are the parents of four children, Henry, Mamie [Mary], Grace and Louisa. Their son Henry and daughter Mamie are currently also involved in the entertainment world. It will be quite a challenge for them to reach the heights of their mother's career.
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PROMINENT DUTCH AMERICANS, CURRENT AND HISTORIC
EIGHT PROMINENT DUTCH AMERICAN FAMILIES: THE ROOSEVELTS, VANDERBILTS AND OTHERS, 2015
FIFTEEN PROMINENT DUTCH AMERICAN FAMILIES: THE VAN BURENS, KOCH BROTHERS, VOORHEES AND OTHERS, 2015
PROMINENT DUTCH AMERICANS IN U.S. GOVERNMENT LEADERSHIP POSITIONS, 2015
DUTCH PEGELS INVOLVED IN WARS
ALLIED EUROPE CAMPAIGN—1944/1945: TACTICAL MISTAKES, 2017
THE SECOND WORLD WAR IN THE NETHERLANDS: MEMOIRS, 2017
FRENCH REVOLUTION, NAPOLEON AND RUSSIAN WAR OF 1812, 2015