Mary Steenburgen is an actress from the United States with an estimated net worth of $80 million. That’s her joint net worth with her longtime spouse, fellow actor Ted Danson.
Throughout her career, Mary Steenburgen has been in a number of films. She went on to star in films like “Ragtime,” “Cross Creek,” “Parenthood,” “Elf,” “The Help,” and “Book Club” after receiving an Oscar for Best Supporting Actress for her third picture, 1980’s “Melvin and Howard.” “Ink,” “Curb Your Enthusiasm,” “Joan of Arcadia,” “Justified,” and “Zoey’s Extraordinary Playlist” are among the many television shows in which Steenburgen has appeared.
Early Years and the Start of a Career
Mary Steenburgen was born in the Arkansas town of Newport on February 8, 1953. Her mother, Nellie, worked as a school secretary, and her father, Maurice, worked for the Missouri Pacific Railroad as a freight train conductor. Nancy is her sister’s name. Steenburgen studied acting at Hendrix College in Conway, Arkansas, when she was a teenager.
She relocated to Manhattan in 1972 to study at the Neighborhood Playhouse. Steenburgen worked at the publishing house Doubleday and as a server at the Magic Pan restaurant while learning under William Esper.
In 1978, when she was cast as the female lead in Jack Nicholson’s Western comedy picture “Goin’ South,” Steenburgen achieved a professional breakthrough. She landed the part after meeting Nicholson in the lobby of Paramount’s New York office.
Steenburgen had another prominent part the following year in the science-fiction picture “Time After Time,” opposite Malcolm McDowell.
Steenburgen’s television roles include Kate Montgomery in Ink (1996) and Mary Gulliver in Gulliver’s Travels (1996). In Curb Your Enthusiasm, she plays a recurrent role as herself.
In Joan of Arcadia, Steenburgen played Helen Girardi, the mother of Amber Tamblyn’s title character. She has a recurring role in the HBO series Bored to Death as Josephine in 2011. Outlaw Country, a 2011 FX pilot in which Steenburgen played Anastasia Lee, was passed up by the network.
She played Catherine Newman, the titular character’s eccentric and mentally ill mother, in the dark sitcom Wilfred from 2011 to 2013. From 2012 through 2013, Steenburgen had a recurring role as Diana Jessup on the NBC sitcom 30 Rock.
In the fifth and sixth seasons of Justified, she had a recurring role as Katherine Hale, a former Dixie Mafia boss.
She played Gail Klosterman on the comedy series The Last Man on Earth from 2015 to 2018.
She played Maggie Clarke in the NBC musical comedy-drama series Zoey’s Extraordinary Playlist for two seasons, from 2020 to 2021. In the Roku Channel television film Zoey’s Extraordinary Christmas, she repeated her part.
Steenburgen underwent minor surgery on her arm in 2007 that necessitated the use of a general anesthesia; shortly after, she began to hear “music (…) playing in her mind day and night.”
She took piano classes after that to be able to write down what she was hearing, and by 2013, she had around 50 composition credits. She has worked with Nashville musicians and has a songwriter contract with Universal Music.
Steenburgen plays a nightclub singer in Last Vegas, and she even sings one of her own original tunes on film.
In 2018, her song “Glasgow (No Place Like Home),” performed by Jessie Buckley, was featured as the climax musical scene in the film Wild Rose, winning Steenburgen a number of prizes, including the Critics Choice Award.
Steenburgen inked a global publishing deal with Universal Music Publishing Group on October 30, 2020.
While co-starring in Time After Time in 1978, Steenburgen met and began dating actor Malcolm McDowell. They married and had two children, including Charlie McDowell, their son. They eventually divorced.
Steenburgen married actor Ted Danson on October 7, 1995, after meeting him on the set of Pontiac Moon, and became the stepmother of Danson’s two kids from his previous marriage to producer Cassandra Coates. Steenburgen and her family live in the Los Angeles region.
She is a graduate of Hendrix College, where she got an honorary doctorate in 1989. Lyon College in Batesville, Arkansas awarded Steenburgen an honorary Doctor of Humane Letters degree in 2006.
She and Danson spoke to students at the Clinton School of Public Service in September 2005 about their responsibilities in public service, as well as the foundations and causes with which they are associated.
Steenburgen is a close friend of former Senator and Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, and she backed Clinton’s 2008 presidential campaign alongside Danson.
She also gave a speech at the Democratic National Convention in 2016. Steenburgen is also involved in a number of organizations, spanning from human rights to environmental issues.
Since 2014, Steenburgen’s son Charlie McDowell has made a recurring joke about her on social media, claiming that his mother is actress Andie MacDowell on multiple occasions.