Amy Ryan

Amy Ryan


11/30/1969, Queens, New York City, New York, USA

Birth Name


out of 10
User Rating
40 votes


A native of Queens, New York, Amy Ryan attended the New York High School of the Performing Arts and Stagedoor Manor Performing Arts Training Center. After graduating from high school, she went on a national tour of Biloxi Blues and appeared in several off-Broadway and regional theater productions.…more


Trivia and Quotes

  • Trivia

    • She has a daughter named Georgia Gracie Slovin with comedian Eric Slovin.

    • Amy and actor Tate Donovan have worked together several times. They appeared together in the film Neal Cassady and an episode of Law & Order: Criminal Intent. The two also took to the stage for the play Rabbit Hole at the Geffen Playhouse in Los Angeles in 2006.

    • Ryan was listed as one of Variety's Actors to Watch in 2007.

    • Amy was so convincing on the set of her movie Gone, Baby, Gone that the police officers would not let her through because they thought she was a local.

    • Amy's off-Broadway credits include On the Mountain, Saved, Crimes of the Heart, Imagining Brad, As Bees in Honey Drown and The Rimers of Eldrich.

    • Amy used her mother's maiden name, Ryan, as her professional last name.

    • Director Sidney Lumet was so impressed by Ryan's acting ability that he cast her in three different roles -- Ellen, Paris and Rebecca -- in the TV series 100 Centre Street.

    • Her movie debut was in a film called Roberta.

    • Amy was nominated for Best Supporting Actress in the 2008 Golden Globe Awards and 2008 Oscar Awards for her role in Gone, Baby, Gone. She also received nominations from other award-giving bodies and critics circles around the country (i.e. Screen Actors Guild, Chicago Film Critics, etc.).

    • Amy has been part of the Cape Cod Theater Project. Among the plays she has been cast in are The Vast Difference (1995) and Welcome to Westchester (2001).

    • Amy had to learn the Bostonian accent in preparation for her role in Gone, Baby, Gone. Filming in Boston and being around Ben and Casey Affleck helped her achieve that. She also used the accent with some of her friends to stay in character.

    • She is best friends with Patricia Clarkson.

    • Amy won Best Supporting Actress in the Los Angeles Film Critics Association Awards for her role in Gone, Baby, Gone. She also got the nod from other award-giving bodies and critics circles around the country (i.e. Satellite Awards, New York Film Critics, etc.).

    • Amy is a New York Mets fan.

    • In 2005, Amy was nominated for a Tony Award as Best Actress for her role in A Streetcar Named Desire.

    • Amy was nominated for Broadway's 2000 Tony Award as Best Actress for her role in Uncle Vanya.

  • Quotes

    • Amy: (on the differences between film and theater) Well, I think theater is a great education. Theater is a story told with language; and movies, obviously, with pictures. So theater is also a lot of training on your feet - you have to learn to trust your instincts because, really, it's you without a safety net. You can't do it again. You do mess up from time to time, and you go, "Well, at least I can go back there tomorrow night to try to redeem myself." Right now, enjoying film is very new to me, and I feel quite enamored by it. And I'm enjoying telling stories in a shorter amount of time, and moving on to another story and being another person.

    • Amy: (on playing a character on "The Office") It's a funny thing to enter a show that you're a great fan of - and it's nice to tell lighter stories. I love the dark, grittier side of life, but it's nice to take a break from that, put a skirt on and brush your hair.

    • Amy: (on whether she found her character in "Gone, Baby, Gone" disturbing to play) Not disturbing to play. Thrilling to play. Disturbing to watch. Disturbing to read about in book form or script form, but as an actor, thrilling to play because it's so complicated. It's not just a bad guy. It's a good guy who makes really, really bad choices, you know.

    • Amy: I don't have a stockpile of offers, but the scripts I've been reading make me realize it's a different chess move to make. More than ever it's about choices, and trying not to repeat myself and just play drug-addicted single-mom characters. It's natural that people will think of me for roles like that, but the trick is to stay one step ahead, and not make choices to be safe.

    • Amy:I do believe everything happens for a reason, not just in career but in life. I think there's some lesson to be gleaned - I believe we control our destinies to a point, but what's happening now is a summary of hard work over the years.

    • Amy: (on her life after the opening of "Gone, Baby, Gone") It's gotten busier, and I've run out of adjectives. Even my mother is complaining that she has no more adjectives. She sent me an e-mail this morning and she just wrote "Woo-hoo!".

    • Amy: I think sometimes that's really what a lot of women get: you're the girlfriend, you're the mother, you're the wife. That's what a lot of roles are for women out there, but I guess there's many different stories to tell in motherhood.

    • Amy: (on walking the red carpet) It's like Cinderella. All that gorgeous stuff is all over your home one day, and the next you are picking up a dirty T-shirt off the floor to wear.

    • Amy: I don't think people, no matter how drastic a situation they're in, I don't believe people really make 180 degree turns in their lives. Human nature really only goes two degrees before the old pattern feels more comfortable that you start going back towards.

    • Amy: Theater will always be in my bones, and I feel it's always where I'm going to root out bad habits I might pick up along the way. So I will always go back to theater, but right now, I'll leave it be for a while.

    • Amy: (on the movie "Gone, Baby, Gone") I think one of the really compelling things about the movie is that it shows people for who they are without really judging them. They might have broken wallets or even broken souls, but there's a humanity to all these characters.

    • Amy: The expectant mind is forever disappointed, so I will stay hopeful that the benefit of working on great scripts like Capote and Gone, Baby, Gone, I hope that becomes the norm. I think, "Do the things that you are most afraid of, and that's what makes you a better actor."

    • Amy: My God, I take my hat off to every woman who raises a child on her own, either with money or without. It's the hardest job in the world, and I was just playing at it.

    • Amy: Right now, enjoying film is very new to me, and I feel quite enamored by it. And I'm enjoying telling stories in a shorter amount of time, and moving on to another story and being another person. In theater, you're going to live with that character.

    • Amy: So theater training is probably some of the best training an actor can get — learning as you go, because you realize it's high stakes all the time, and you have to trust your instincts.