Molly Parker biography

Molly Parker

Date of Birth: June 30, 1972

Raised on a farm in picturesque Pitt Meadows, B.C., Molly Parker's parents owned a retail seafood store and reveled in their kids, giving them unconditonal support in whatever they wanted to do. At three, Parker started ballet and until she was 17, danced three times a week. Her schools included the Royal Winnipeg Ballet of Canada. At 14, she discovered her other passion: acting. Beginning with the usual fare - high school plays and drama club, at 15, her uncle, an actor, took her to his agency. She seldom worked at first, staying on only because going to auditions was fun. But over the next few years, she got small roles in television series and movies of the week, including American TV shows shot in Vancouver. 

After high school, Parker cashed in her acting scholarships and bursaries and took a three-year course with Mel Austin Tuck at Vancouver's Gastown Actors' Studio. On the side, she took supplementary voice and singing lessons and had roles in TV series such as Neon Rider, Outer Limits and The Highlander.

When a cinematographer friend approached her about auditioning for a role in a new low-budget feature film he was working on, it set off a chain of events that changed her career. The film was Kissed, about a woman who is a necrophiliac. Intrigued, she agreed to meet with the director, Lynne Stopkewich. The two hit it off immediately and Parker was cast in the director's feature debut. Parker read the script and was fascinated by the part and faced the daunting task of finding common ground with a person most of us would dismiss as sick.

Opening in 1996 at the Toronto Film Festival, Kissed earned a special jury citation and was picked up for distribution by Samuel Goldwyn Ltd. in the United States. Within days of its first showings, the actress was fielding offers from scads of Hollywood agents. Parker landed on the cover of Variety, was snapped up with the powerful William Morris Agency in Los Angeles and won a best-actress Genie. 

Her performance in Kissed also attracted the attention of Egg Pictures, Jodie Foster's L.A. based production outfit, which led to a lead role in Waking The Dead, which Foster executive-produced. The dramatic love story from writer-director Keith Gordon also co-starred Billy Crudup, Jennifer Connelly and Janet McTeer. Parker also filmed Sunshine with Ralph Fiennes, a drama about three generations of a Jewish family before the Holocaust, Ladies Room and The Five Senses.

In addition, Parker landed a recurring role on CBC's Twitch City, a quirky six-part sitcom created by Toronto writer-actor Don McKellar, following by a regular role on the HBO-TV series Deadwood, a western filmed in California.

The Canadian star has had continued success on the small screen over the past few years, earning a recurring role as Abby McDeere on The Firm, and as Jackie Sharp on the Emmy winning Netflix series House of Cards.

She can most recently be seen on the Amazon Video series Goliath, as well as in the sci-fi flick Darwin (2016), the mystery thriller The 9th Life of Louis Drax (2016), the political drama American Pastoral (2016), and the drama Weirdos (2016).

Parker makes her home in Toronto with her husband, Matt Bissonette, a musician.

Molly Parker Photo