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Linda Hunt (born April 2, 1945) is an Americanmarker film, stage and television actress. She is perhaps best known for her Academy Award-winning role in 1982's The Year of Living Dangerously. She is currently portraying the role of Henrietta "Hetty" Lange, Office of Special Projects Operations Manager on the CBS Television series NCIS: Los Angeles.

Early life

Linda Hunt was born in Morristown, New Jerseymarker and raised in Westport, Connecticutmarker, one of the two daughters of Raymond Davy Hunt, vice president of Harper Fuel Oil on Long Islandmarker and Elsie Doying Hunt, a piano teacher who taught at the Westport School of Musicmarker and accompanied the Saugatuck Congregational Church choir. Linda Hunt attended the prestigious Interlochen Arts Academy. She has a sister, Marcia.


Hunt's film debut in 1980 was in Robert Altman's musical comedy Popeye. Two years later she co-starred as Billy Kwan in The Year of Living Dangerously, Peter Weir's film adaptation of the novel of the same nameFor her role as the male Chinese-Australian photographer, Hunt won the Academy Award for Best Supporting Actress in 1983, becoming the first person to win an Oscar for playing a character of the opposite sex (also the first to win playing an Australian character). This was both cross-gender acting and yellowface.

Also a well known stage actress, Hunt has received two Obie awards and a Tony Award nomination for her theatre work. She created the role of Aunt Dan in Wallace Shawn's play Aunt Dan and Lemon. Recently, she portrayed Sister Aloysius in the Pasadena Playhousemarker production of John Patrick Shanley's Tony Award-winning play Doubt. Her television appearances include recurring roles as Judge Zoey Hiller on David E. Kelley's series The Practice and as Dr. Claire Bryson on Without a Trace. She has narrated several installments of The American Experience on PBS. She now has a recurring role as a technical expert and supervisor on the CBS fall show NCIS: Los Angeles with Chris O'Donnell and LL Cool J.

Voice work

Beside her acting abilities, Hunt is distinguished by her small stature (she is 4'9"/1.45 m), and her rich, resonant voice, which she has used in numerous documentaries, cartoons, and commercials. She is the on-air host for City Arts & Lectures, a radio program recorded by KQEDmarker public radio. Hunt was chosen by Walt Disney Feature Animation to lend her enigmatic speaking and singing voice to Grandmother Willow in the film Pocahontas.

Her voice work also includes the character of "Management" in Carnivàle, and the titan Gaia, who serves as the Narrator in the God of War series of video games. She narrated the introductory film at the International Spy Museummarker in Washington, D.C.

Personal life

Hunt is a lesbian; her partner since 1987 is Karen Kline.


Year Film Role Notes
1980 Popeye Mrs. Oxheart
1983 The Year of Living Dangerously Billy Kwan Academy Award for Best Supporting Actress
Nominated—Golden Globe Award for Best Supporting Actress - Motion Picture
1984 Dune Shadout Mapes
The Bostonians Dr. Prance
1985 Eleni Katina
Silverado Stella
1987 Waiting for the Moon Alice B. Toklas
1989 She-Devil Hooper
1990 Kindergarten Cop Miss Schlowski
Carmilla Narrator
1991 If Looks Could Kill Ilsa Grunt
1992 Rain Without Thunder Atwood Society Director
1993 Younger and Younger Frances
Twenty Bucks Angeline
1994 Prêt-à-Porter Regina Krumm
1995 Pocahontas Grandmother Willow voice
1997 The Relic Dr. Ann Cuthbert
Eat Your Heart Out Kathryn
1998 Pocahontas II: Journey to a New World Grandmother Willow voice
2002 Dragonfly Sister Madeline
2005 Auschwitz—Inside the Nazi State Narrator voice
Yours, Mine and Ours Mrs. Munion
God of War Narrator VG—voice
The Great Transatlantic Cable Narrator
2006 Stranger Than Fiction Dr. Mittag-Leffler
2007 The Singing Revolution Narrator

Selected television credits

Year Title Role Notes
1978 Fame Mona
1993 Space Rangers Commander Chenault
1997–2002 The Practice Judge Zoey Hiller 24 episodes
2003–2005 Carnivàle Management—voice 9 episodes
2006 Nature Narrator "Christmas in Yellowstone"
2007 The Unit Department of Defense Psychiatrist: Dr. Eudora Hobbs 2 episodes
2008 Without a Trace Dr. Claire Bryson: FBI Psychiatrist 3 episodes
2009-Present NCIS: Los Angeles Henrietta "Hetty" Lange Series regular


External links

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