Barbara Hershey is a multi-award-winning actress has been in some of Hollywood’s most memorable films. She has been a winner of an Emmy and a Golden Globe for A Killing in a Small Town (1990). She won two consecutive Best Actress awards at the Cannes Film Festival, (which is unprecedented) for Shy People (1987) and A World Apart (1988). She won a Gemini Award for Anne of Green Gables: A New Beginning (2008) for PBS, and a Lifetime Achievement Award at the Vienna International Film Festival.
Hershey was nominated for an Academy Award for The Portrait of a Lady (1996).
She’s worked with some of the world’s great directors, among them Martin Scorsese, William Wyler, Woody Allen, Jane Campion, and Darren Aronofsky.
The versatile actress was first discovered by a talent agent while she was attending Hollywood High School. She began working in television, The Monroes (1966), and film, With Six You Get Eggroll (1968) with Doris Day. And with roles in The Baby Maker (1970) and Boxcar Bertha (1972), Hershey quickly advanced to starring roles.
The 1980’s catapulted Hershey’s film career, when she starred in The Stunt Man (1980) with Peter O’Toole, The Right Stuff (1983), The Natural (1984) with Robert Redford, Hannah and Her Sisters (1986) with Woody Allen, Hoosiers (1986) with Gene Hackman, Tin Men (1987), Shy People (1987), The Last Temptation of Christ (1988), A World Apart (1988), and Beaches (1988) with Bette Midler.
Hershey returned to television in 1990 with her highly-lauded performance in A Killing in a Small Town (1990), Paris Trout (1991), Return to Lonesome Dove (1993), the British mini-series Daniel Deronda (2002), and the last season of Chicago Hope (1994).
During the same period, Hershey remained active in features. She was nominated for an Oscar and Golden Globe for The Portrait of a Lady (1996). She also starred in Merchant-Ivory’s A Soldier’s Daughter Never Cries (1998) and the award-winning Australian film Lantana (2001).
She then appeared in James Wan’s cult-hit, Insidious (2010) and Darren Aronofsky’s award-winning Black Swan (2010), playing Natalie Portman’s insane mother.
In 2012 she had a recurring role in the first two seasons of ABC’s hit drama Once Upon a Time as Cora, the Queen of Hearts and mother of the Evil Queen. In 2014, she reprised the role in one episode of the show’s spin-off Once Upon a Time in Wonderland. In 2015, she once more reprised the role when she returned to the show for an episode of its fourth season, and in 2016, she appeared again for two episodes of the show’s fifth season, most notably its landmark 100th episode.
In A&E’s series Damien, Hershey portrayed series regular Ann Rutledge, the world’s most powerful woman, who has been given the task to make sure Damien fulfills his destiny as the Antichrist.
In 2018, Hershey will play recurring character Erika Price in the upcoming season of Fox’s The X-Files.