Sally Margaret Field (born November 6, 1946) is an American actress, producer, and director. She began her professional career on television, starring in the short-lived comedies Gidget (1965–1966), The Flying Nun (1967–1970), and The Girl with Something Extra (1973–1974). She garnered critical acclaim for her performance in the miniseries Sybil (1976), with Joanne Woodward; for which she received the Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Lead Actress in a Limited Series or Movie.
Her film debut was as an extra in Moon Pilot (1962), her movie career escalated during the 1970s with starring roles including Bob Rafelson‘s Stay Hungry (1976), with Jeff Bridges and Arnold Schwarzenegger; Hal Needham’s Smokey and the Bandit (1977), with Burt Reynolds, Jerry Reed, and Jackie Gleason; Heroes (1977), with Henry Winkler and Harrison Ford; The End (1978), with Reynolds (who also directed), Dom DeLuise, Strother Martin, David Steinberg, Woodward, Norman Fell, Myrna Loy, Kristy McNichol, Pat O’Brien, Robby Benson, and Carl Reiner; Needham’s Hooper (1978), with Reynolds, Jan-Michael Vincent, Brian Keith, Robert Klein, James Best and Adam West; and Irwin Allen’s Beyond Poseidon Adventure (1979), with Michael Caine, Telly Savalas, Peter Boyle, Jack Warden, Shirley Knight, Slim Pickens, Angela Cartwright, Mark Harmon, Shirley Jones, and Karl Malden.
Her career further expanded during the 1980s, winning the Academy Award for Best Actress twice for; Martin Ritt‘s Norma Rae (1979), with Beau Bridges, Ron Leibman, Pat Hingle, Barbara Baxley, and Gail Strickland; and Robert Benton’s Places in the Heart (1984), with Lindsay Crouse, Ed Harris, Ray Baker, Amy Madigan, John Malkovich, Danny Glover, Jerry Haynes and Terry O’Quinn.
Other notable films in the 80s include Smokey and the Bandit II (1980), Black Roads (1981), with Tommy Lee Jones; Sydney Pollack’s Absence of Malice (1981), with Paul Newman, Wilford Brimley, Melinda Dillon, and Bob Balaban; Kiss Me Goodbye (1982), with James Caan, Jeff Bridges, Paul Dooley, and Claire Trevor; Murphy’s Romance (1985), with James Garner, Brian Kerwin, and Corey Haim; Punchline (1988), with Tom Hanks, John Goodman, and Mark Rydell; Herbert Ross‘s Steel Magnolias (1989), Dolly Parton, Shirley MacLaine, Daryl Hannah, Olympia Dukakis, Julia Roberts, Tom Skerritt, Dylan McDermott, Kevin J. O’Connor, and Sam Shepard.
Films in the 90s include Not Without My Daughter, with Alfred Molina and Roshan Seth; Soapdish (1991), with Kevin Kline, Robert Downey Jr., Elisabeth Shue, Whoopi Goldberg, Teri Hatcher, Cathy Moriarty, Garry Marshall, Kathy Najimy, and Carrie Fisher; Mrs. Doubtfire (1993), with Robin Williams and Pierce Brosnan; Robert Zemeckis‘ Forrest Gump (1994), with Hanks, Robin Wright, Gary Sinise, and Mykelti Williamson; and Eye for an Eye (1996), with Kiefer Sutherland, Harris, Beverly D’Angelo, and Joe Mantegna.
Films in the 2000s include Where the Heart Is (2000), with Natalie Portman, Stockard Channing, Ashley Judd, Joan Cusack, James Frain, Dylan Bruno, and Keith David; Say It Isn’t So (2001), with Heather Graham, Chris Klein, Orlando Jones, and Richard Jenkins; and Legally Blonde 2 (2003), with Reese Witherspoon, Regina King, Jennifer Coolidge, Bruce McGill, Dana Ivey, Mary Lynn Rajskub, Bob Newhart, and Luke Wilson. She returned to television with a recurring role on the NBC medical drama ER, for which she won the Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Guest Actress in a Drama Series in 2001 and the following year made her stage debut with Edward Albee’s The Goat, or Who Is Sylvia?. From 2006 to 2011, she portrayed Nora Walker on the ABC television drama Brothers & Sisters, for which she received the Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Lead Actress in a Drama Series in 2007.
Later films include Steven Spielberg‘s Lincoln (2012), with Daniel Day-Lewis, David Strathairn, Joseph Gordon-Levitt, James Spader, Hal Holbrook, and Jones; The Amazing Spider-Man (2012), with Andrew Garfield, Emma Stone, Rhys Ifans, Denis Leary, Campbell Scott, Irrfan Khan, and Martin Sheen; and its 2014 sequel (with Jamie Foxx, Dane DeHaan, Campbell Scott, Embeth Davidtz, Colm Feore, and Paul Giamatti joining the cast); Hello, My Name Is Doris (2015), with Max Greenfield, Beth Behrs, Wendi McLendon-Covey, Stephen Root, Elizabeth Reaser, Natasha Lyonne and Tyne Daly; and Little Evil (2017), directed by her son Eli Craig, costarring alongside Adam Scott, Evangeline Lilly, Owen Atlas, Bridget Everett, Kyle Bornheimer, Chris D’Elia, Donald Faison, Carla Gallo, Tyler Labine, Brad Williams, and Clancy Brown.
As a director, Field is known for the television film The Christmas Tree (1996), with Julie Harris and Andrew McCarthy; an episode of the 1998 HBO miniseries From the Earth to the Moon, and the feature film Beautiful (2000), with Minnie Driver,,Hallie Eisenberg, Joey Lauren Adams, Leslie Stefanson, Bridgette Wilson, and Kathleen Turner. In 2014, she was presented with a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame and in 2019 received the Kennedy Center Honors, along with Earth, Wind & Fire, Linda Ronstadt, Sesame Street, and Michael Tilson Thomas.
Each review will be linked to the title below.
(*seen originally in theaters)
(**seen rereleased in theaters)
- Moon Pilot (1962) – directed by James Neilson – uncredited
- The Way West (1967) – directed by Andrew V. McLaglen
- Maybe I’ll Come Home in the Spring (1971) – directed by Joseph Sargent – TV movie
- Hitched (1971) – directed by Boris Sagal – TV movie
- Marriage: Year One (1971) – directed by William A. Graham – TV movie
- Mongo’s Back in Town (1971) – directed by Marvin J. Chomsky – TV movie – aka Steel Wreath
- Home for the Holidays (1972) – directed by John Llewellyn Moxey – TV movie
- Stay Hungry (1976) – directed by Bob Rafelson
- Bridger (1976) – directed by David Lowell Rich – TV movie
- Sybil (1976) – directed by Daniel Petrie – miniseries
- Smokey and the Bandit (1977)** – directed by Hal Needham
- Heroes (1977) – directed by Jeremy Paul Kagan
- The End (1978) – directed by Burt Reynolds
- Hooper (1978) – directed by Hal Needham
- Norma Rae (1979) – directed by Martin Ritt
- Beyond the Poseidon Adventure (1979) – directed by Irwin Allen
- Smokey and the Bandit II (1980) – directed by Hal Needham
- Back Roads (1981) – directed by Martin Ritt
- Absence of Malice (1981) – directed by Sydney Pollack
- All the Way Home (1981) – directed by Delbert Mann
- Kiss Me Goodbye (1982) – directed by Robert Mulligan
- Places in the Heart (1984) – directed by Robert Benton
- Murphy’s Romance (1985) – directed by Martin Ritt
- Surrender (1987) – directed by Jerry Belson
- Punchline (1988) – directed by David Seltzer
- Steel Magnolias (1989) – directed by Herbert Ross
- Not Without My Daughter (1991) – directed by Brian Gilbert
- Soapdish (1991) – directed by Michael Hoffman
- Homeward Bound: The Incredible Journey (1993)* – directed by Duwayne Dunham
- Mrs. Doubtfire (1993)* – directed by Chris Columbus
- A Century of Cinema (1994) – directed by Caroline Thomas – documentary
- Forrest Gump (1994) – directed by Robert Zemeckis
- A Woman of Independent Means (1995) – directed by Robert Greenwald – miniseries
- Eye for an Eye (1996) – directed by John Schlesinger
- Homeward Bound II: Lost in San Francisco (1996) – directed by David R. Ellis
- The Christmas Tree (1996) – director, co-writer only – TV movie
- Merry Christmas, George Bailey (1997) – directed by Matthew Diamond – TV movie
- A Cooler Climate (1999) – directed by Susan Seidelman – TV movie
- Where the Heart Is (2000) – directed by Matt Williams
- Beautiful (2000) – director only
- David Copperfield (2000) – directed by
- Peter Medak – TV movie
- Say It Isn’t So (2001) – directed by J.B. Rogers
- Legally Blonde 2: Red, White & Blonde (2003)* – directed by Charles Herman-Wurmfeld
- Going Through Splat: The Life and Work of Stewart Stern (2005)- directed by Jon Steven Ward – documentary
- Two Weeks (2006) – directed by Steve Stockman
- The Little Mermaid: Ariel’s Beginning (2008) – directed by Peggy Holmes – straight to video
- The Amazing Spider-Man (2012) – directed by Marc Webb
- Lincoln (2012) – directed by Steven Spielberg
- The Amazing Spider-Man 2 (2014) – directed by Marc Webb
- Hello, My Name Is Doris (2015) – directed by Michael Showalter
- Little Evil (2017) – directed by Eli Craig
- Spielberg (2017) – directed by Susan Lacy
- Maniac (2018) – directed by Cary Joji Fukunaga – miniseries