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Diane Ladd (born November 29, 1935)is an American actress, film director and producer. She has appeared in over 120 roles, in numerous popular TV shows or mini-series during 1958-2003, and several major feature films, including Alice Doesn't Live Here Anymore (1974), Wild at Heart, Rambling Rose (1991), Ghosts of Mississippi, Primary Colors, 28 Days (2000), American Cowslip (2008) and Jake's Corner (see below: Filmography). Married three times, Ladd is the mother of actress Laura Dern with ex-husband actor Bruce Dern, the father.

Personal life

Ladd was born Rose Diane Ladner in Meridian, Mississippimarker, the daughter of Mary Bernadette (née Anderson), a housewife and actress, and Preston Paul Ladner, a poulterer.She is the second cousin of playwright Tennessee Williamsand also related to poet Sidney Lanier.Ladd was raised Catholic.Ladd was formerly married to actor and one-time co-star Bruce Dern from 1960-1969; the couple had two children, Diane Elizabeth Dern and Laura Elizabeth Dern, of whom only actress Laura Dern survives. (Diane died at 18 months from head injuries caused by falling into a swimming pool). Ladd and Laura Dern co-starred in the films Wild at Heart and Rambling Rose. They also appeared together in Inland Empire, another film by David Lynch. Ladd is now married to Robert Charles Hunter.


In 1971, Ladd joined the cast of the CBS soap opera, "The Secret Storm." She was thesecond actress to play the role of Kitty Styles on the long-running daytime serial.Ladd had a supporting role in Roman Polanski's 1974 film Chinatown, and was nominated for an Academy Award for Best Actress in a Supporting Role for her role as Flo in the film Alice Doesn't Live Here Anymore. That film inspired the TV series Alice, in which Flo was portrayed by Polly Holliday. When Holliday left the TV series, Ladd succeeded her as waitress Isabelle "Belle" Dupree. In 1993, Ladd appeared in the episode "Guess Who's Coming to Chow?" of the CBS comedy/western series Harts of the West in the role of the mother of co-star Harley Jane Kozak. The 15-episode program, set on a dude ranch in Nevadamarker starred Beau Bridges and Lloyd Bridges.

In 2004, Ladd played psychic Mrs. Druse in Stephen King's miniseries Kingdom Hospital. In April 2006, Ladd released her first book entitled: Spiraling Through The School Of Life: A Mental, Physical, and Spiritual Discovery. In 2007, she co-starred in the Lifetime Television film Montana Sky.

In addition to her Academy Award nomination for Alice Doesn't Live Here Anymore, she was also nominated (again in the Best Actress in a Supporting Role category) for both Wild at Heart and Rambling Rose, both of which she starred alongside her daughter Laura Dern. Dern received a nomination for Best Actress for Rambling Rose. The dual mother and daughter nominations for Ladd and Dern in Rambling Rose marked the first time in Academy Award history that such an event had occurred. They were also nominated for dual Golden Globe Awards in the same year.

Ladd has also worked on the stage. She made her Broadway debut in the play Carry Me Back to Morningside Heights in 1968. In 1976 she starred in the play A Texas Trilogy: Lu Ann Hampton Laverty Oberlander for which she received a Drama Desk Award nomination.



  1. According to the State of California. California Divorce Index, 1966-1984. Center for Health Statistics, California Department of Health Services, Sacramento, California. At
  2. Diane Ladd Biography (1939-)
  3. 05-31-02obituaries
  4. Diane Ladd Biography - Yahoo! Movies
  5. STLtoday - St. Louis Post-Dispatch Archives
  6. NewsLibrary Search Results
  7. Tavis Smiley . Archives . Thomas Hubbard . July 10, 2006 | PBS
  8. Diane Ladd Savors 'Top of World' - Free Preview - The New York Times
  9. Internet Broadway Database: Diane Ladd Credits on Broadway


  • "Diane Ladd Biography (1939-)",, 2008, webpage: Filmr-Diane- Ladd.

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