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Virginia Elizabeth "Geena" Davis (born January 21, 1956) is an American actress, film producer, writer, former fashion model, and a women's Olympics archery team semi-finalist.

Early life

Davis was born in Wareham, Massachusettsmarker, USAmarker, the daughter of Lucille, a teacher's assistant, and William Davis, a civil engineer; she has a brother named Dan. At an early age, she became interested in music. She learned piano, flute and played organ well enough as a teenager to serve as an organist at her church in Wareham. Davis attended Wareham High School and while an exchange student in Sandviken, Swedenmarker, she became bilingual; she is fluent in Swedish. Enrolling at New England Collegemarker, Davis eventually graduated with a bachelor's degree in drama from Boston Universitymarker in 1979. While at Boston University, Davis worked part time for the Media Group.


Davis at the 1989 Academy Awards.
After graduating, Davis served as a window mannequin for Ann Taylor until signing with New York's Zoli modelling agency in 1979. Davis auditioned for roles in many popular movies, including The Terminator’s Sarah Connor, which went to Linda Hamilton. She was working as a model when director Sydney Pollack spotted her and cast her in Tootsie (1982) as a soap opera actress. In 1983, she appeared in an episode of "Knight Rider(TV Series)" entitled "K.I.T.T the cat". She followed this up with roles in the short-lived television series Buffalo Bill (1983–1984) (for which she also wrote an episode); Sara; and a small role in Fletch (1985).

Davis made her film breakthrough with Fletch, The Fly and Beetlejuice. She received an Oscar as Best Supporting Actress for her role in The Accidental Tourist (1988), and a Best Actress nomination for her role in Thelma and Louise (1991). Davis replaced Debra Winger for the lead in A League of Their Own (1992) and received a Best Actress Golden Globe Award nomination for her performance. She then co-starred in Hero alongside Dustin Hoffman and Andy Garcia. Following this, Davis teamed up with then-husband Renny Harlin for the films Cutthroat Island and The Long Kiss Goodnight. She and Harlin co-produced the films.

In 2000-2001, Davis starred in the short-lived sitcom The Geena Davis Show. In early 2004, she guest-starred as Grace Adler's sister Janet on the NBC sitcom Will & Grace. She most recently starred in the ABC television series Commander in Chief as the first female President of the United States. This role garnered her a Golden Globe for Best Actress in a Drama Series in 2006, and she also was nominated for an Emmy Award and a SAG Award for Outstanding Female Actor in a Drama Series.

Personal life

Reza Jarrahy and Davis in 2009.
Davis was married to Richard Emmolo (March 25, 1982 – February 26, 1983); actor Jeff Goldblum, with whom she co-starred in three films, Transylvania 6-5000, The Fly and Earth Girls Are Easy (1987 – 1990); and Renny Harlin, who directed her in Cutthroat Island and The Long Kiss Goodnight (1993 – 1998).On September 1, 2001, Davis married Iranian American plastic surgeon Reza Jarrahy MD. They have three children: daughter Alizeh Keshvar (born April 10, 2002) and fraternal twin boys Kian William Jarrahy and Kaiis Steven Jarrahy on May 6, 2004.

Davis is tall and is a member of American Mensa, the society of persons with IQs in the statistical top 2%, with an IQ of 140.


Davis is fronting the Women's Sports Foundation campaign Geena Takes Aim in support of Title IX — an Act of Congress focusing on equality in sports opportunities, now expanded to prohibit gender discrimination in United Statesmarker' educational institutions.

In 2004, while watching children’s television programs and videos with her daughter, Davis noticed what she thought was an imbalance in the ratio of male to female characters. From that starting point, Davis went on to sponsor the largest research project ever undertaken on gender in children’s entertainment (resulting in 4 discrete studies, including one on children’s television) at the Annenberg School for Communication of University of Southern California. The study, directed by Dr. Stacy Smith, shows that there are nearly 3 males to every 1 female character in the nearly 400 G, PG, PG-13, and R-Rated movies the undergraduate team of Annenberg students coded.

In 2005, Davis teamed up with the non-profit group Dads and Daughters to launch a venture dedicated to balancing the number of male and female characters in children's TV and movie programming.

Davis launched The Geena Davis Institute on Gender in Media in 2007. The Institute’s first focus is an on-the ground program that works collaboratively with the entertainment industry to dramatically increase the presence of female characters in media aimed at children and to reduce stereotyping of both males and females.

For her work in this field she received an honorary Doctor of Fine Arts degree from Bates Collegemarker in May 2009.


Davis states that she wasn't an athlete growing up, and that her introduction to archery was in 1997, two years prior to her tryouts.

Geena Davis was one of 300 women competing in July 1999. for a semifinals berth in the US Olympic team for archery, to participate in the Sydney 2000 Summer Olympics She placed 24th of 300 and did not qualify for the team, but participated as a wild-card entry in the Sydney International Golden Arrow competition.


Year Film Role Notes
1982 Tootsie April Page
1985 Fletch Larry
Transylvania 6-5000 Odette
1986 The Fly Veronica Quaife Nominated — Saturn Award for Best Actress
1988 Beetlejuice Barbara Maitland
Earth Girls Are Easy Valerie Gail
The Accidental Tourist Muriel Pritchett Academy Award for Best Supporting Actress
1990 Quick Change Phyllis Potter
1991 Thelma & Louise Thelma Yvonne Dickinson Boston Society of Film Critics Award for Best Actress
David di Donatello Award for Best Foreign Actress shared with Susan Sarandon
National Board of Review Award for Best Actress tied with Susan Sarandon
Nominated — Academy Award for Best Actress
Nominated — BAFTA Award for Best Actress in a Leading Role
Nominated — Golden Globe Award for Best Actress – Motion Picture Drama

1992 A League of Their Own Dottie Hinson Nominated — Golden Globe Award for Best Actress – Motion Picture Musical or Comedy
Hero Gale Gayley
1993 Princess Scargo and the Birthday Pumpkin Narrator (voice) short subject
1994 Angie Angie Scacciapensieri
Speechless Julia Mann also producer
Nominated — Golden Globe Award for Best Actress – Motion Picture Musical or Comedy
1995 Cutthroat Island Morgan Adams
1996 The Long Kiss Goodnight Samantha Caine / Charly Baltimore also producer
Nominated — Saturn Award for Best Actress
1999 Stuart Little Mrs. Eleanor Little Nominated — Saturn Award for Best Supporting Actress
2002 Stuart Little 2 Mrs. Eleanor Little
2006 Stuart Little 3: Call of the Wild Mrs. Eleanor Little voice
2009 Accidents Happen Gloria Conway

Television work

Year Filmbest! style="background:#B0C4DE;" | Role Notes
1983-1984 Buffalo Bill Wendy Killian
1983 Knight Rider Grace Fallon Guest star, "K.I.T.T. The Cat" (Season 2, Episode 6)
1984 Family Ties Karen Nicholson Guest star, two episodes
1984 Riptide Dr. Melba Bozinsky Guest star, "Raiders of the Lost Sub" (Season 1, Episode 12)
1985 Sara Sara McKenna Cancelled after a few months
Secret Weapons Tamara Reshevsky/Brenda
Remington Steele Sandy Dalrymple "Steele in the Chips" (Season 3, Episode 20)
2000-2001 The Geena Davis Show Teddie Cochran
2003 Will & Grace Grace's Sister
2005-2006 Commander in Chief President Mackenzie Allen Golden Globe Award for Best Actress – Television Series Drama
Nominated — Emmy Award for Outstanding Lead Actress – Drama Series
2008-present Link's Future Mrs. Diane Bolton Season 3-present


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