Alison Wright (born 12 July 1976) is an English actress. She is best known for her starring role as Martha Hanson on the FX period spy drama series The Americans (2013–2017), for which she received critical acclaim and a Primetime Emmy Award nomination in 2017. She has also acted in the Ryan Murphy limited series Feud: Bette & Joan (2017) and Hollywood (2019).

Alison Wright
Born (1976-07-12) 12 July 1976 (age 47)
EducationLee Strasberg Theatre and Film Institute
Years active2007–present

Wright's other notable roles were as Marjorie in the Amazon Prime Video crime drama series Sneaky Pete (2015–2019), as Pauline Jameson in the FX docudrama series Feud (2017), and as Ruth Wardell in the TNT dystopian thriller series Snowpiercer (2020–present). She has also appeared in various films, including The Nanny Diaries (2007), The Accountant (2016), and Ask for Jane (2018).

Early life Edit

Wright was born on 12 July 1976, in Sunderland, Tyne and Wear, where she was raised by her adoptive parents.[1] She began dancing and acting at a young age. She studied at the prestigious Lee Strasberg Theatre and Film Institute and The Barrow Group in New York City.[2] She worked as a waitress while auditioning for roles.[3]

Career Edit

Wright made her acting debut in the comedy-drama film The Nanny Diaries, released in 2007. This was followed by appearances in various short films.[3] She made her stage debut as Molly Bhatt in the comedy play Rafta, Rafta... (2008), followed by a role in the play Marie and Bruce (2011), both at the Acorn Theatre.[4]

In 2013, Wright made her television debut in the FX period spy drama series The Americans. Her performance as Martha Hanson, a lonely FBI secretary who is manipulated into spying for the Russians, earned high critical praise.[5] She was promoted to a series regular for the second season, which premiered in January 2014.[6][7] In 2017, she received a Primetime Emmy Award nomination for Outstanding Guest Actress in a Drama Series for her guest appearance in The Americans fifth season.[8] The series ended after six seasons in 2018.

From 2015 to 2019, Wright starred as Marjorie in the Amazon Prime Video crime drama series Sneaky Pete, receiving positive reviews.[9]

In 2016, she starred as Justine in the action thriller film The Accountant and as Virginia Thomas in the HBO political thriller film Confirmation.

In 2017, she starred as Pauline Jameson, the assistant to Robert Aldrich, in the FX docudrama series Feud: Bette and Joan, which chronicles the rivalry between Hollywood actresses Bette Davis and Joan Crawford during and after the production of What Ever Happened to Baby Jane?.[10] She also made her Broadway debut as Jessie in the play Sweat at Studio 54.[4]

In 2018, she had a starring role as Ada in the historical drama film Ask for Jane and as Emilia in a stage production of the Shakespearean tragedy play Othello at Delacorte Theater.[4] In 2019, she had a recurring role in the second season of psychological horror anthology series Castle Rock. She starred as Valerie, a "kind-hearted local who explores the town’s evil history".[11]

In 2020, Wright began a starring role in the TNT post-apocalyptic dystopian thriller series Snowpiercer (2020–present), based on the 2013 film of the same name by Bong Joon-ho. She played Ruth Wardell, a hospitality worker aboard the train who helps look after First Class passengers.[12] Also that year, she made a guest appearance as Ms. Roswell, the gatekeeper to Ace Studios, in the Netflix period drama miniseries Hollywood.[13]

Filmography Edit

Film Edit

Year Title Role Notes
2007 The Nanny Diaries Bridget
2009 Nights Bartender Short film
2011 Braaains! Monique Gold Short film
2015 Good Ol' Boy Mrs. Reynolds
2016 The Accountant Justine
2017 Active Adults Therapist
2018 Ask for Jane Ada
2019 Georgica Sophie Short film
2021 Biscuit Short film; post-production

Television Edit

Year Title Role Notes
2013–2017 The Americans Martha Hanson 37 episodes
2013 Blue Bloods Brijita Holden Episode: "Lost and Found"
2015–2019 Sneaky Pete Marjorie 14 episodes
2016 Confirmation Virginia Thomas Television film
2017 Feud: Bette and Joan Pauline Jameson 7 episodes
2019 Castle Rock Valerie 6 episodes
2020–2022 Snowpiercer Ruth Wardell 30 episodes
2020 Hollywood Ms. Roswell Episode: "Hooray for Hollywood"

Theater Edit

Year Title Role Venue Ref.
2008 Rafta, Rafta... Molly Bhatt Acorn Theatre [4]
2011 Marie and Bruce Performer
2017 Sweat Jessie Studio 54
2018 Othello Emilia Delacorte Theater

Awards and nominations Edit

Year Award Category Work Result Ref.
2016 20th OFTA Television Awards Best Supporting Actress in a Drama Series The Americans Nominated [14]
2017 21st Satellite Awards Best Supporting Actress in a Series, Miniseries, or Television Film Nominated [15]
69th Primetime Emmy Awards Outstanding Guest Actress in a Drama Series Nominated [8]
21st OFTA Television Awards Best Guest Actress in a Drama Series Nominated [16]
2019 64th Drama Desk Awards Outstanding Featured Actress in a Play Othello Nominated [17]
2021 1st Critics' Choice Super Awards Best Actress in an Action Series Snowpiercer Nominated [18]
2022 2nd Critics' Choice Super Awards Best Actress in an Science Fiction/Fantasy Series Snowpiercer Nominated [19]

References Edit

  1. ^ "We Are All Martha: Alison Wright On How Her 'Americans' Character Became A Hit". Retrieved 28 March 2017.
  2. ^ "Sunderland actress hides Mackem accent to land role in US TV spy drama The Americans". Sunderland Echo. 5 July 2013. Archived from the original on 20 April 2016. Retrieved 23 February 2015.
  3. ^ a b Lindsay, Benjamin (15 March 2017). "'The Americans' Star Alison Wright On Orchestrating a Late-Career Breakout". Backstage. Retrieved 12 July 2020.
  4. ^ a b c d "Alison Wright Broadway and Theatre Credits". BroadwayWorld. Retrieved 12 July 2020.
  5. ^ Gilbert, Matthew (10 May 2016). "You may be missing one of the best TV performances this year". Boston Globe. Retrieved 12 July 2020.
  6. ^ Webb Mitovich, Matt (7 May 2013). "'The Americans' Season 2 Spoilers — Nina and Martha Returning". TVLine. Retrieved 23 February 2015.
  7. ^ "'The Americans' actress Alison Wright sued by former agent". NY Daily News. 31 July 2013. Retrieved 23 February 2015.
  8. ^ a b "Alison Wright Emmy Awards, Nominations and Wins". Retrieved 12 July 2020.
  9. ^ Goodman, Tim (9 March 2018). "'Sneaky Pete' Season 2: TV Review". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved 12 July 2020.
  10. ^ Petski, Denise (9 November 2016). "Alison Wright Joins Ryan Murphy's FX Anthology Series Feud". Deadline Hollywood. Retrieved 12 July 2020.
  11. ^ Petski, Denise (27 June 2019). "'Castle Rock': Robin Weigert, Sarah Gadon, Alison Wright & Greg Grunberg To Guest Star On Season 2". Deadline Hollywood. Retrieved 12 July 2020.
  12. ^ Petski, Denise (15 June 2017). "'Snowpiercer' Casts Alison Wright & Benjamin Haigh; Vincent Piazza Enters 'The Passage'". Deadline Hollywood. Retrieved 12 July 2020.
  13. ^ Bentley, Jean (4 May 2020). "Ryan Murphy's Hollywood Limited Series Binge Club: Episodes 1-7". Refinery29. Retrieved 12 July 2020.
  14. ^ "20th Annual TV Awards (2015-16)". Retrieved 12 July 2020.
  15. ^ Kilday, Gregg (29 November 2016). "Satellite Awards Nominees Revealed". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved 17 March 2017.
  16. ^ "21st Annual TV Awards (2016-17)". Retrieved 12 July 2020.
  17. ^ Fierberg, Ruthie (2 June 2019). "Tootsie, Hadestown, and The Ferryman Lead 2019 Drama Desk Award Winners". Playbill. Retrieved 12 July 2020.
  18. ^ Hammond, Pete (19 November 2020). "'Palm Springs', 'Lovecraft Country' Top Movie And Series Nominations For Inaugural Critics Choice Super Awards; Netflix Lands 35 Nods". Deadline Hollywood. Retrieved 5 January 2021.
  19. ^ "Nominations Announced for the 2nd Annual Critics Choice Super Awards". Archived from the original on 23 February 2022. Retrieved 22 February 2022.

External links Edit