Birthplace: Los Angeles
The daughter of actors Bruce Dern and Diane Ladd, she is a talented actress in her own right, having compiled a long list of serious acting credits at a very young age. As an adult Dern stepped confidently into major roles in Smooth Talk (1985) and David Lynch's Blue Velvet (1986), and was nominated for a Best Actress Academy Award for her portrayal of the sexually charged young woman opposite Robert Duvall in Rambling Rose (1991). She won a Best Actress Golden Globe for Afterburn (1992), then went on to hold her own against the dinosaurs in Jurassic Park (1993) and Jurassic Park III (2001) and play the title character in Citizen Ruth (1996). Recent appearances include October Sky (1999), Dr. T & the Women (2000), I Am Sam (2001), and We Don't Live Here Anymore (2004).