The Roles of a Lifetime: Michelle Pfeiffer

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The Roles of a Lifetime: Michelle Pfeiffer

Michelle Pfeiffer jumped into acting as a college student fresh off the California beauty pageant circuit, immediately landing bit parts “playing bimbos and cashing in on my looks,” as she later put it. But her breakout role was hard-won. Director Brian De Palma initially refused to allow her to audition for Scarface (he’d seen her in the stinker Grease 2), relenting only after its producer insisted. Pfeiffer went on to achieve commercial and critical success, particularly in the 1990s. Her most acclaimed role, Susie Diamond in The Fabulous Baker Boys, won her several industry awards for best actress and one of her three Oscar nominations. Follow Pfeiffer’s career—from her 1979 TV debut in Delta House to her most recent film, The Family—in our photo gallery.