Brenda Buell Vaccaro (born November 18, 1939) is an American stage, television, and film actress. In a career spanning over half a century, she received one Academy Award nomination, three Golden Globe Award nominations (winning one), four Primetime Emmy Award nominations (winning one), and three Tony Award nominations.
Vaccaro in Where It's At (1969)
Brenda Buell Vaccaro
November 18, 1939
Brooklyn, New York City, New York, U.S.
|Education||Neighborhood Playhouse School of the Theatre|
(m. 1965; div. 1970)
(m. 1977; div. 1978)
(m. 1981; div. 1982)
Vaccaro was born in Brooklyn, New York to Italian American parents Christine M. and Mario A. Vaccaro, a restaurateur. She was raised in Dallas, Texas, where her parents, in 1943, founded Mario's Restaurant, and where she graduated from Thomas Jefferson High School.
She returned to New York City to study acting under the guidance of Sanford Meisner at the Neighborhood Playhouse, and made her Broadway debut in the short-lived 1961 comedy Everybody Loves Opal, for which she won a Theatre World Award.
Vaccaro's Broadway credits include The Affair (1962), Cactus Flower (1965), How Now, Dow Jones (1967), The Goodbye People (1968), the female version of The Odd Couple (1985), and Jake's Women (1992). The husky-voiced actress is a three-time Tony Award nominee, for Best Featured Actress in a Play (Cactus Flower), Best Actress in a Musical (Dow Jones), and Best Actress in a Play (The Goodbye People). She was featured on the May 29, 1970 cover of Time Magazine.
Vaccaro appeared with Dustin Hoffman and Jon Voight in the 1969 film Midnight Cowboy, for which she was nominated for a Golden Globe Award for Best Supporting Actress. For her performance in the 1975 film adaptation of Jacqueline Susann's Once Is Not Enough she gained an Academy Award nomination and won the Golden Globe for Best Supporting Actress.
Additional screen credits include Airport '77, Capricorn One, The Pride of Jesse Hallam, Supergirl, The Mirror Has Two Faces, Heart of Midnight, Zorro, The Gay Blade and House by the Lake, also known as Death Weekend.
Her television credits include the title role in the 1976 series Sara, a number of television movies, and a regular role in the short-lived 1984 series Paper Dolls, in addition to guest appearances on Banacek, The Fugitive, The Defenders, Coronet Blue, The Name of the Game, Marcus Welby, M.D., McCloud, The Streets of San Francisco, The Love Boat, St. Elsewhere, Murder, She Wrote, The Golden Girls, Columbo, Touched by an Angel, Friends, The King of Queens, and Nip/Tuck. She was nominated for an Emmy Award three times and won for Best Supporting Actress in Comedy-Variety, Variety or Music for The Shape of Things in 1974.
She supplied the voice for Johnny Bravo's mother Bunny Bravo in the animated cartoon series. She was the first voice of Jay's (Jon Lovitz)'s ex-wife Ardeth on The Critic. She made an appearance on The Smurfs as Scruple, an apprentice of Gargamel, opposite Paul Winchell.
After ill health forced Valerie Harper to bow out of the production of Nice Work if You Can Get It at the Ogunquit Playhouse (Maine), Vaccaro took over the role of Millicent Winter for the remaining performances of the limited run from August 4-15, 2015.
|1961||Naked City||Rosa Alloro||Episode: "The Corpse Ran Down Mulberry Street"|
|1963||The Fugitive||Joanne Spencer||Episode: "See Hollywood and Die"|
|1971||What's a Nice Girl Like You...?||Shirley||Television movie|
|1972||Marcus Welby, M.D.||Marilyn Hoffman||Episode: "House of Mirrors"|
|1972||Streets of San Francisco||Police Officer Sherry Reese||Episode: "Act of Duty"|
|1972||McCloud||Police Officer Margaret Sereno||Episode: "The Park Avenue Rustlers"|
|1972||Banacek||Sharon Clark||Episode: "To Steal a King"|
|1974||The Shape of Things||Unknown role||Television movie|
Primetime Emmy Award for Individual Performance in a Variety or Music Program
|1974||Streets of San Francisco||Hit Woman Sidney (AKA Sally Banning)||Episode: "The Most Deadly Species"|
|1976||Sara||Sara Yarnell||12 episodes|
Nominated—Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Lead Actress in a Drama Series
|1976||Territorial Men||Sara Yarnell||Television movie – compiled from footage shot for the television series Sara|
|1979||Dear Detective||Det. Sgt. Kate Hudson||4 episodes|
|1980||Guyana Tragedy: The Story of Jim Jones||Jane Briggs||Television movie|
|1981||The Star Maker||Dolores Baker||Television movie|
|1981||The Pride of Jesse Hallam||Marion Galucci||Television movie|
|1984||Paper Dolls||Julia Blake||13 episodes|
|1984||St. Elsewhere||Rose Orso||Episode: "The Women"|
|1984||The Love Boat||Eleanor Savage||2 episodes|
|1985||Deceptions||Helen Adams||Television movie|
|1985||Care Bears||Auntie Freeze||2 episodes; uncredited|
|1987||The Jetsons Meet the Flintstones||Didi||Television movie|
|1988||Murder, She Wrote||Mimi Harcourt||Episode: "Just Another Fish Story"|
|1990||Murder, She Wrote||Didi Blair||Episode: "The Fixer-Upper"|
|1990||Murder, She Wrote||Sheila Kowalski Finley||Episode: "The Family Jewels"|
|1990||The Golden Girls||Angela Petrillo||Episode: "Ebbtide's Revenge"|
Nominated—Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Guest Actress in a Comedy Series
|1990||Columbo||Jess McCurdy||Episode: "Murder in Malibu"|
|1990||Stolen: One Husband||Lisa Jarrett||Television movie|
|1992||Civil Wars||Actress||Episode: "Oceans White the Phone"|
|1992||Red Shoe Diaries||Martha||Television movie|
|1994||Following Her Heart||Cecile||Television movie|
|1995||Friends||Gloria Tribbiani||Episode: "The One with the Boobies"|
|1996||Touched by an Angel||Al||Episode: "Out of the Darkness"|
|1997||Ally McBeal||Karen Horowitz||Episode: "The Attitude"|
|1997–2004||Johnny Bravo||Bunny Bravo, various||55 episodes|
|1998||The King of Queens||Sheila Rednester||Episode: "Paternal Affairs"|
|2001||Becker||Bob's Mother||Episode: "The Ghost of Christmas Presents"|
|2002||Just a Walk in the Park||Selma Williams||Television movie|
|2004||Just Desserts||Lina||Television movie|
|2005||American Dad!||Strip Club Manager||Episode: "Stan Knows Best"|
|2006||Nip/Tuck||Beatrice Madsen||Episode: "Diana Lubey"|
|2006||The War at Home||Barbara||Episode: "The West Palm Beach Story"|
|2010||You Don't Know Jack||Margo Janus||Television movie|
Satellite Award for Best Supporting Actress – Series, Miniseries or Television Film
Nominated—Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Miniseries or a Movie
|2017||Gypsy||Claire Rogers||8 episodes|
|2017||Superior Donuts||Ellen||Episode: "Get It, Arthur"|
|2018||Summer Camp Island||Godmonster||Episode: "Monster Visit"|
- "Brenda Vaccaro biography". FilmReference.com. Retrieved August 2, 2015.
- "Brenda Vaccaro profile". Yahoo! Movies. Archived from the original on May 22, 2011.
- "Texas Obituaries July 1999 - July 2001: Vaccaro, Christine Pavia". TexasAlmanac.com. Retrieved July 3, 2018.
- Wuntch, Philip (August 17, 2006). "'Boynton' star Brenda Vaccaro's still got the sass". The Dallas Morning News via The Providence Journal. Archived from the original on September 3, 2006. Retrieved August 2, 2015.
- "Past Recipients". Theatre World Awards. Archived from the original on October 4, 2015. Retrieved May 3, 2015.
- Miller, Daryl H. (March 22, 1998). "Vivacious With a Capital 'V'". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved May 3, 2015.
- "Brenda Vaccaro". Playbill. Retrieved May 3, 2015.
- "The Mayor, The Mob and The Lawyer". Time. May 29, 1970.
- "Jacqueline Susann's Once Is Not Enough, Golden Globes". Golden Globe Awards. Archived from the original on February 17, 2019. Retrieved February 17, 2019.
- IMDb profile, imdb.com; accessed September 9, 2015.
- "The Shape Of Things, Television Academy". Television Academy. Archived from the original on February 17, 2019. Retrieved February 17, 2019.
- Gans, Andrew. "Brenda Vaccaro Will Replace Valerie Harper in Nice Work" Playbill, August 2, 2015