Robin Tunney (born June 19, 1972) is an American actress. She is known for her role as Teresa Lisbon on the television series The Mentalist (2008–2015) and the portrayal of Veronica Donovan on Prison Break (2005–2006).
(m. 1995; div. 2006)
|Partner(s)||Nicky Marmet (2012–present)|
Tunney made her film debut in the 1992 comedy Encino Man. She came to prominence with leading roles in the cult films Empire Records (1995) and The Craft (1996). She received the Volpi Cup for Best Actress, as well as Gotham and Independent Spirit nominations for her performance in Niagara, Niagara (1997). She had leading roles in the action-thriller films End of Days (1999), Supernova and Vertical Limit (both 2000). In 2006, she earned critical acclaim for her portrayal of a victim of sexual assault in the independent drama Open Window. Her other notable film appearances include Cherish, The Secret Lives of Dentists (both 2002), The In-Laws (2003), Hollywoodland (2006), August, The Burning Plain (both 2008), Passenger Side (2009), and Looking Glass (2018).
Tunney was born in Chicago, Illinois, to a car salesman father, Patrick, and a bartender mother, Cathy. Tunney's father was born in Straide, County Mayo, Ireland, while her maternal grandparents were from Clare Island. Tunney grew up in Orland Park, a southwest suburb of Chicago. She was raised Catholic, attended Saint Ignatius College Prep in Chicago and the Chicago Academy for the Arts in Chicago, and resided in Palos Heights, also in the Chicago area.
Tunney moved to Los Angeles and was cast in roles in Class of '96, Law & Order, Dream On, and Life Goes On amongst other works. She realized subsequent success in the role of Sarah Bailey in The Craft.
Tunney later accepted a role in Niagara, Niagara, for which she won the Volpi Cup at the 1997 Venice International Film Festival. Tunney also was featured opposite Arnold Schwarzenegger in the 1999 supernatural action film End of Days. She was later cast in a guest-star role in the pilot episode of the TV series House as a kindergarten instructor who collapses in the midst of a lesson, resulting in an aphasic condition. She also portrayed Veronica Donovan on the first season of Prison Break. Among Tunney's other accomplishments were roles in The Mentalist, Closing the Ring, as well as The Fix.
On June 28, 2006, Tunney won her table in the eighth tournament series of Bravo's Celebrity Poker Showdown, moving on to the final table. The finale aired on July 5, 2006, where she finished second to Jason Alexander, earning $200,000 for her charity of choice, The Children's Health Fund. In August 2006, Tunney played in the World Series of Poker after having her entrance fee covered by the online cardroom PokerRoom.com.
|1996||The Craft||Sarah Bailey|
|Riders of the Purple Sage||Elizabeth 'Bess' Erne|
|Rescuers: Stories of Courage: Two Families||Melvina 'Malka' Csizmadi|
|1999||End of Days||Christine York|
|2000||Vertical Limit||Annie Garrett|
|2002||The Secret Lives of Dentists||Laura|
|2003||Abby Singer||Herself (cameo)|
|The In-Laws||Angela Harris|
|Shadow of Fear||Wynn French|
|2005||The Zodiac||Laura Parish|
|The Darwin Awards||Zoe|
|The Burning Plain||Laura|
|The Two Mr. Kissels||Nancy Kissel|
|2012||See Girl Run||Emmie|
|2015||My All American||Gloria Steinmark|
|Monster Party||Roxanne Dawson|
|2020||Horse Girl||Agatha Kaine|
|1992||Perry Mason: The Case of Reckless Romeo||Sandra Turner||Television film|
|1993||JFK: Reckless Youth||Kathleen 'Kick' Kennedy||Television film|
|1994||Law & Order||Jill Templeton||Episode: "Mayhem"|
|2003||The Twilight Zone||Edie Durant||Episode: "Developing"|
|2004||House||Rebecca Adler||Pilot episode|
|2005–2006||Prison Break||Veronica Donovan||23 episodes|
|2007||Robot Chicken||Madame Razz / Entrapta / Carole Demas / Skin Graft Patient (voice)||Episode: "Slaughterhouse on the Prairie"|
|2008–2015||The Mentalist||Teresa Lisbon||Main role; 151 episodes|
|2016||Love||SLAA Woman||Episode: "The End of the Beginning"|
|2018||Insatiable||Brandylynn Huggens||Episode: "Miss Bareback Buckaroo"|
|2019||The Fix||Maya Travis||Lead role; 10 episodes|
Awards and nominationsEdit
|1997||MTV Movie Awards||Best Fight (shared with Fairuza Balk)||The Craft||Won|
|1997||Volpi Cup||Best Actress||Niagara, Niagara||Won|
|1999||Independent Spirit Awards||Best Female Lead||Niagara, Niagara||Nominated|
|2001||Blockbuster Entertainment Awards||Favorite Actress – Action||Vertical Limit||Nominated|
|2006||Boston Film Festival||Festival Prize||Open Window||Won|
|2009||People's Choice Awards||Best New Series (shared with Simon Baker, Amanda Righetti, Owain Yeoman and Tim Kang)||The Mentalist||Won|
|2015||People's Choice Awards||Favorite Crime Drama TV (shared with Simon Baker, Amanda Righetti, Owain Yeoman and Tim Kang)||The Mentalist||Nominated|
|Favorite TV Crime Drama Actress||Nominated|
- John Horn (July 16, 2007). "An open window on a filmmaker's trauma". The Los Angeles Times. Retrieved September 5, 2018.
- "Robin Tunney Biography (1972?-)". Film Reference. Archived from the original on July 10, 2012.
- McGavin, Patrick Z (July 5, 1998). "It's All An Act". Chicago Tribune. Archived from the original on September 17, 2011.
- "My Irish dad would pretend to be a gay hairdresser!". Independent. March 19, 2012. Retrieved June 15, 2013.
- Hughes, Scott (December 5, 1999). "Robin Tunney's angst-ridden roles". The Guardian. London. Archived from the original on February 19, 2014. Retrieved June 24, 2010.
...her compulsion to tackle tough parts range from her Irish-Catholic background...
- "Robin Tunney:Biography". Movies MSN. Archived from the original on June 3, 2012. Retrieved June 24, 2010.
- Crowder, Courtney (September 21, 2010). "Palos Heights native wears a smile on CBS' 'Mentalist'". Chicago Tribune. Archived from the original on July 29, 2012. Retrieved October 15, 2010.
- Channel Guide Magazine (February 28, 2019). "Channel Guide Magazine March 2019 cover featuring Robin Tunney of The Fix ABC". Facebook. Retrieved June 15, 2020.
- Weiner, Carey (March 22, 1998). "Up and Coming: Robin Tunney; a young best actress takes the plunge in 'Niagara, Niagara'". The New York Times. Archived from the original on July 8, 2011. Retrieved December 28, 2010.
- Zuckerman, Suzanne (May 2009). "Actress Robin Tunney on How to Speak Your Mind". Women's Health. Archived from the original on October 5, 2010. Retrieved December 28, 2010.
- Morrison, Mark (August 2010). "Robin's Green Shades". In Style Magazine. Archived from the original on November 2, 2010. Retrieved December 28, 2010.
- Eggenberger, Nicole (February 5, 2013). "Exclusive: Robin Tunney, the Mentalist star, engaged to Nicky Marmet". Us Weekly. Archived from the original on February 9, 2013. Retrieved February 18, 2013.
- "Robin Tunney Welcomes Son Oscar Holly". People. July 27, 2016. Archived from the original on July 18, 2017. Retrieved March 3, 2021.
- Pasquini, Maria (January 23, 2020). "Robin Tunney Welcomes Daughter Colette Kathleen: She's 'Ready to Take Over the World'". People. Retrieved March 3, 2021.
- "Favorite Crime Drama TV Actress". People's Choice Awards. Retrieved December 11, 2014.
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