Elizabeth McGovern

Elizabeth McGovern


7/18/1961, Evanston, Illinois, USA

Birth Name


  • Elizabeth McGovern and Hugh Bonneville o...
  • Elizabeth McGovern and Joanne Froggatt p...
  • Elizabeth McGovern poses in London
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Elizabeth McGovern was the daughter of educators. Born in Evanston, IL, Elizabeth moved to L.A. when her father accepted a job at UCLA. McGovern was appearing in her high school play, when she was discovered and encouraged to audition for film roles. She attended Julliard and the American Conservatory Theatre.more


Trivia and Quotes

  • Trivia

    • Elizabeth and her husband, Simon Curtis, divide their time between West London (England) and Hollywood. The couple has 2 daughters.

    • In Sex, Lies and Videotapes, Steven Soderburg originally wrote the role of Ann for Elizabeth. Eventually, the role was played by Andie MacDowell.

    • In 1981, Elizabeth was nominated for both an Academy Award and a Golden Globe for Best Supporting Actress for her role in Ragtime.

    • Elizabeth was engaged to both Sean Penn (1983-1984)and Rob Reiner (1989-1990) at different times. Both engagements were broken.

  • Quotes

    • Elizabeth: I was incredibly lucky to work with highly intelligent directors who really cared enormously for actors and were very supportive. Nowadays, Hollywood seems more serious: So much focuses on the business side of things.

    • Elizabeth: I think that I would definitely characterize myself as a muddle-througher.

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  • It seems like Elizabeth McGovern has been appearing on our screens forever.

    American actress Elizabeth McGovern is very well known to audiences throughout the world for her many and varied roles. Quite a lot of her work has been done in Britain, where she has lived since the early 1990s. She has performed in a British version of "North and South", the highly acclaimed "Scarlet Pimpernel" with Richard E. Grant and, at aged 50 in 2011, is currently playing Cora, the Countess of Grantham in Julian Fellowes' "Downton Abbey". She has also appeared in guest roles in the United States, such as "Law and Order: SVU".

    Elizabeth is talented but accents seem to be a big stumbling block for her. In "The Scarlet Pimpernel", her character was French, but she had to do a British accent and in "Downton Abbey", in which her character is American, she sounds more British. There is nothing wrong with her performances at all, just with her delivery of lines in a multitude of different tongues. Naturally, she is more at home playing an American in an American show and it is always nice to see her pop up doing just that.

    She is also, in 2011, doing very well in her "Downton Abbey" so she certainly has the capability.moreless