Who is Bess Armstrong?
Bess Armstrong was born in Baltimore, Maryland USA, on 11 December 1953 – her zodiac sign is Sagittarius, and she holds American nationality. She’s an actress who’s appeared in close to 100 movies and TV series, while she’s perhaps still known best for her portrayal of Kathryn Morgan, one of the main characters in the 1983 adventure horror thriller movie “Jaws 3-D”. It was directed by Joe Alves, also starred Dennis Quaid and Simon MacCorkindale, and follows a giant shark which has become trapped at a theme park, while the sons of a local police chief have to help rescue everyone; the movie was nominated for five awards.
Early life and education
Bess was raised in Baltimore by her father Alexander Armstrong who taught English at Gilman School, and her mother Louise Allen (nee Parlange) who was a teacher at Bryn Mawr School; because she hasn’t spoken of having any siblings, most people believe Bess to be an only child.
She studied at Bryn Mawn School, and it was during her four years there that she became interested in acting; Bess was a member of its drama club, and appeared in numerous plays performed both at the school and at a local theatre. Upon matriculating in 1971, she enrolled at Brown University, from which she graduated with a Bachelor’s degree in Latin and theatre in 1975.
Bess appeared in more than 100 theatre plays while attending high school and college.
Roles in TV series
Bess made her debut TV series appearance in 1977, when she starred as Julia Peters in the comedy “On Our Own”, created by Bob Randall, and which also starred Lynnie Greene and Dixie Carter. It follows seven siblings whose parents have just died, and who now have to learn to take care of themselves. By the end of the ‘70s, Bess had made guest appearances in an episode of the romantic comedy drama “The Love Boat”, and the drama “Sweepstakes”.
In 1986, she portrayed the main character Paula Winters Russell in the popular comedy “All Is Forgiven”, which also starred Terence Knox and David Alan Grier, and follows the life of Paula Russell, who has just married and has started working as a producer of a TV series; it was nominated for two awards.
Mad Men (Season 5)Catherine Orcutt (Bess Armstrong) – Mad Men – Season 5, Episode 6
In 1990 and 1991, Bess starred alongside Ray Aranha and Megan Gallivan in the comedy “Married People”, and the remainder of the ‘90s saw her make a guest appearance in an episode of various popular series, such as the fantasy crime comedy “Tales from the Crypt”, the family fantasy drama “Touched by an Angel” and the romantic family comedy “The Nanny”.
She played the supporting character Mickey Glass in the 2002 fantasy comedy drama “That Was Then”, and appeared in five episodes of the critically acclaimed romantic sports drama “One Tree Hill” between 2004 and 2010. In 2013, Bess played Julianne Hotschragar in the hit comedy drama “House of Lies”, created by Matthew Carnahan, and which starred Don Cheadle, Ben Schwartz and Kristen Bell.
It follows the management consultant Marty Kaan, who is trying to persuade CEOs of successful companies to sign contracts with him; the series aired from 2012 to 2016, won seven awards including a Primetime Emmy, while it was nominated for 23 other awards.
Three of Bess’ most recent roles in TV series have been in three episodes of the action crime adventure “S. W. A. T” in 2018 and 2019, three episodes of the romantic drama “Grey’s Anatomy” between 2019 and 2021, and 10 episodes of the crime drama “Bosch” between 2019 and 2021.
Roles in movies
She made her debut film appearance in the 1978 romantic comedy “Getting Married”, while a couple of her following roles were later that year in the comedy “How to Pick Up Girls!”, the drama “Walking Through the Fire” and the action drama “11th Victim” both in 1979.
Bess gained recognition in 1982, when cast to play the lead character Mary Carew in the musical science fiction comedy “Jekyll and Hyde… Together Again”, written and directed by Jerry Belson, and which also starred Mark Blankfield and Krista Errickson. It follows the doctor Daniel Jekyll who has discovered a powder which can turn a man into an animal. Some of Bess’ other notable performances in the ‘80s were in the 1983 mystery comedy “This Girl for Hire”, the 1986 romantic comedy drama “Nothing in Common”, and the 1989 science fiction mystery comedy “Second Sight”.
She played Eugene Sutphin’s Nurse in the 1994 crime thriller comedy “Serial Mom”, written and directed by John Waters, and which starred Kathleen Turner, Sam Waterston and Ricki Lake. The movie follows an American mother who’s ready to do whatever it takes to make her children happy; it was nominated for a single award.
Bess played supporting characters in numerous movies in the ‘90s, with some of the most popular amongst these having been the 1995 romantic drama “Mixed Blessings”, the 1996 fantasy comedy “Christmas Every Day”, and the 1998 romantic drama “Forever Love”.
She appeared in only four movies in the 2000s, including the 2000 drama “Diamond Men”, the 2002 romantic drama “Her Best Friend’s Husband”, and the 2008 comedy “Corporate Affairs”. Three of her most recent film roles have been in the 2016 romantic family drama “Diagnosis Delicious”, the 2018 short comedy “Peaked in High School” and the 2019 romantic drama “Love and Sunshine”.
Bess received special thanks for three short documentary videos which were released in 2007, entitled “My So-Called Life: The Friends”, “My So-Called Life: The Chase Family” and “My So-Called Life: Angela”.
She has made a guest appearance in numerous talk-shows, including “The Tonight Show Starring Johnny Carson”, “Biography”, and “The Peter Austin Noto Show”.
Awards and nominations
Bess was nominated for a 1984 Academy of Science Fiction, Fantasy & Horror Films Saturn Award for Best Actress, for her performance in the romantic adventure drama “High Road to China”.
Love life and husband
Bess prefers to keep the details of her love life to herself, but has still allowed her fans to have a glimpse into it. She married her first husband Chris Carreras in January 1984; he’s an American film producer and director, who has worked on more than 60 movies and TV series, while he’s recently worked as a second unit director on the critically acclaimed 2021 action adventure movie “Dune”. The two were married for only a year.
Bess married her second husband, John Fiedler, on 12 April 1986; he’s working at Columbia Pictures, and is a producer and an actor. On 22 July 1986, Bess gave birth to their daughter Lucy Chase Fiedler, however, the girl was born with several health problems, and died six months later.
On 14 January 1988, Bess gave birth to their son Luke Allen Fiedler, and their second son Samuel Chase Fiedler followed on 16 June 1991.
As of January 2022, Bess’ married to her second husband John Fiedler, and has two sons with him.
Hobbies and other interests
Bess has been into music since a very early age, and has been playing the violin since she was seven.
She was physically highly active during her 20s, 30s and 40s, and had a couple of training sessions at the gym every week, but no longer works out.
Bess is a huge lover of animals, with dogs and horses being her favorites. She has apparently donated money to various animal shelters, as well as to a couple of charity organizations which aim to improve the quality of life for underprivileged children.
HOUSE OF LIES (Season 2)Bess Armstrong as Julianne Hofshrager in House of Lies (Season 2, Episode 1) – Photo: Randy Tepper/SHOWTIME – Photo ID: HouseOfLies_201_0316 Copyright: Showtime 2012
One of her favorite actors is Tom Selleck, whom she believes to be talented, gorgeous and charming; some of Bess’ favorite movies include “Three Men and a Baby”, “Quigley Down Under” and “An Innocent Man”.
She’s into travelling, and her acting career has taken her all around the world, while Bess’ dream travel destination is Marseille in France.
Age, height and net worth
Bess’ age is 68. She has short brown hair and green eyes, her height is 5ft 4ins (1.65m) and she weighs around 120lbs (55kgs).
As of January 2022, her net worth has been estimated at over $3 million.