Lili Taylor

Lili Taylor
Taylor in 2013
Born (1967-02-20) February 20, 1967 (age 56)
Alma materDePaul University
Years active1986–present
(m. 2009)

Lili Anne Taylor (born February 20, 1967) is an American actress. She came to prominence with supporting parts in the films Mystic Pizza (1988) and Say Anything... (1989), before establishing herself as one of the key figures of 1990s independent cinema with starring roles in Bright Angel (1990), Dogfight (1991), Household Saints, Short Cuts (both 1993), The Addiction, Cold Fever (both 1995), I Shot Andy Warhol, Girls Town (both 1996), Pecker (1998), and A Slipping-Down Life (1999). She is the recipient of four Independent Spirit nominations, winning once in the category of Best Supporting Female. Her accolades also include a Golden Globe, an NBR Award, a Volpi Cup, a Sant Jordi, a Golden Space Needle, a Chlotrudis Award, an SDFCS Award, a Sundance Special Jury Prize, and a Fangoria Chainsaw Award.

Alongside her work on smaller-scale projects, Taylor has encountered mainstream success with parts in films such as Born on the Fourth of July (1989), Rudy (1993), Ransom (1996), The Haunting (1999), High Fidelity (2000), Brooklyn's Finest, Public Enemies (both 2009), The Conjuring (2013), and Maze Runner: The Scorch Trials (2015). Her other credits include Julie Johnson (2001), Factotum, The Notorious Bettie Page (both 2005), Starting Out in the Evening (2007), The Promotion (2008), Being Flynn (2012), To the Bone, Leatherface (both 2017), Eli (2019), and Paper Spiders (2020).

Outside of film, Taylor has starred in the television series State of Mind (2007), Almost Human (2013–2014), Hemlock Grove (2013–2014), Chambers (2019) and Perry Mason (2020), as well as all three seasons of the ABC drama American Crime (2015–2017), earning a nomination for the Emmy Award for Outstanding Lead Actress for her portrayal of Anne Blaine in the latter. For her guest roles on The X-Files (Marty Glenn; 1998) and Six Feet Under (Lisa Kimmel; 2002–2005), she received a further two Emmy nominations in the category of Outstanding Guest Actress. Taylor's stage credits include Broadway productions of Anton Chekhov's Three Sisters (1997) and Scott McPherson's Marvin's Room (2017). She is married to playwright Nick Flynn, with whom she has a daughter.

Early life

Taylor, the fifth of six children, was born in Glencoe, Illinois, a north suburb of Chicago, to Marie (née Lecour) and George Park Taylor, an artist and hardware store operator. She grew up in a "warm family environment", and has described herself as being "a bit of a searcher" during her childhood. She graduated from New Trier High School in Winnetka, Illinois in 1985. Thereafter, she attended The Theatre School at DePaul University before being cut from the acting program, and the Piven Theatre Workshop.


Taylor has appeared in dozens of films since 1988, including Dogfight, Mystic Pizza, and Rudy. Her work has mostly been in independent films and theater. She played Lisa Kimmel Fisher (mostly in the second and third seasons) in the HBO drama Six Feet Under for which she was nominated for an Emmy Award. Taylor played supporting roles in Mystic Pizza (1988) and Say Anything... (1989). She starred in Dogfight (1991) directed by Nancy Savoca, in which she played an unattractive young woman who is taken to a cruel contest by a Marine (played by River Phoenix) under the pretense of a date. In 1991, she played Grace, the witty and romantic step-daughter of Faye Dunaway, in Arizona Dream (released 1993), directed by Emir Kusturica, co-starring Johnny Depp, Vincent Gallo and Jerry Lewis. In 1993 too, she re-teamed with Savoca for Household Saints. Director Robert Altman hired Taylor in 1993 for his epic Los Angeles drama Short Cuts, in which Taylor shared scenes with Lily Tomlin. Taylor portrayed Valerie Solanas in Mary Harron's I Shot Andy Warhol (1996). The same year, she co-starred in Girls Town with Bruklin Harris and Aunjanue Ellis, where three inner-city friends dealt with a friend's suicide, and later in Ransom, as caterer who helps her corrupt policeman boyfriend kidnap a rich man's son.

In 1998 she appeared in the X-Files episode "Mind's Eye", and was nominated for a Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Guest Actress in a Drama Series. The same year, she appeared in John Waters' film Pecker, alongside Edward Furlong, Christina Ricci and Mary Kay Place. In 1999, Taylor starred in Jan de Bont's remake of The Haunting. In 2001, Taylor appeared in the independent feature Julie Johnson. The film, co-starring Courtney Love, centered on a Long Island mother and housewife who leaves her husband to pursue her dream of studying science. In early 2004, Taylor made her New York City stage debut in Wallace Shawn's Aunt Dan and Lemon in the role of Lemon.

Taylor won the 2005 Best Actress award at the Copenhagen International Film Festival for her role in Factotum. In 2006, Taylor worked again with Mary Harron in The Notorious Bettie Page. She starred in the Lifetime cable network's hour-long comedy-drama series State of Mind, as a New Haven therapist dealing with a divorce and a parade of quirky clients. She played the daughter of Frank Langella's character in Andrew Wagner's 2007 drama Starting Out in the Evening. In the 2008 film The Promotion, Taylor played Lori Wehlner, the wife of John C. Reilly's character. In 2009, Taylor played Sheriff Lillian Holley of Lake County, Indiana, who incarcerates John Dillinger (played by Johnny Depp), in Michael Mann's Public Enemies. In 2011, Fence Books released Taylor's audio recording of poet Ariana Reines' Save The World. In 2013, Taylor starred in the horror hit The Conjuring.

In 2014, Taylor starred alongside Chloë Grace Moretz in the off-Broadway play The Library directed by Steven Soderbergh. The following year she co-starred in Maze Runner: The Scorch Trials, as Dr. Mary Cooper, "a doctor who helps Thomas and his fellow Gladers". Filming began at the end of October, and the movie was released on September 18, 2015. In 2020, Taylor starred opposite Stefania LaVie Owen in Paper Spiders.

Personal life

In 2009, Taylor married writer Nick Flynn. They have a daughter Maeve.

In May 1997, Taylor's former boyfriend, actor Michael Rapaport, was arrested for harassing Taylor and charged with two counts of aggravated harassment. He pleaded guilty to the charges. New York Supreme Court Justice Arlene Goldberg issued a protection order forbidding him from contacting Taylor and requiring him to undergo counseling.

Taylor is an activist for conservation issues, particularly those having to do with birds, and sits on the boards of the American Birding Association and National Audubon Society. She introduced Louise Post and Nina Gordon, founding members of 1990s alternative band Veruca Salt, in the early 1990s.


Taylor is a three-time Primetime Emmy Award nominee. Also recognized for her extensive work in American independent film, she has been nominated for four Independent Spirit Awards, winning Best Supporting Female for her performance in Household Saints (1993). She was nominated for Best Female Lead for Bright Angel (1990) and The Addiction (1995), and again for Best Supporting Female for Girls Town (1996). In 1996, she received a Special Recognition award from the Sundance Film Festival for her performance in Mary Harron's I Shot Andy Warhol, in which she portrayed Valerie Solanas. Ten years later, in 2006, she was honored with the Excellence in Acting Award at the Provincetown International Film Festival.



Year Title Role Notes
1988 She's Having a Baby Lab Technician O. Palmer
Mystic Pizza Josefina "Jojo" Barbosa
1989 Say Anything... Corey Flood
Born on the Fourth of July Jamie Wilson – Georgia
1990 Bright Angel Lucy Nominated—Independent Spirit Award for Best Female Lead
1991 Dogfight Rose
1993 Arizona Dream Grace Stalker
Watch It Brenda
Short Cuts Honey Bush
Household Saints Teresa Carmela Santangelo Independent Spirit Award for Best Supporting Female
Rudy Sherry
1994 Touch Base Darcy Winningham Short film
Mrs. Parker and the Vicious Circle Edna Ferber
Prêt-à-Porter Fiona Ulrich National Board of Review for Best Acting by an Ensemble
1995 The Addiction Kathleen Conklin Málaga International Week of Fantastic Cinema: Best Actress
Sant Jordi Award for Best Foreign Actress
Nominated—Independent Spirit Award for Best Female Lead
Cold Fever Jill Seattle International Film Festival: Best Actress (also for I Shot Andy Warhol and Girls Town)
Four Rooms Raven Segment: "The Missing Ingredient"
Killer: A Journal of a Murder Woman In Speakeasy (uncredited)
1996 Plain Pleasures Unknown Short film
Girls Town Patti Lucci Seattle International Film Festival: Best Actress (also for I Shot Andy Warhol and Cold Fever)
Nominated—Independent Spirit Award for Best Supporting Female
I Shot Andy Warhol Valerie Solanas Seattle International Film Festival: Best Actress (also for Girls Town and Cold Fever)
Stockholm International Film Festival: Best Actress
Sundance Film Festival: Special Recognition
Nominated—Chicago Film Critics Association Award for Best Actress
Nominated—National Society of Film Critics Award for Best Actress (3rd place)
Cosas que nunca te dije Ann Thessaloniki International Film Festival: Best Actress
Illtown Micky
Ransom Maris Conner Blockbuster Entertainment Award for Favorite Supporting Actress—Suspense
1997 Kicked in the Head 'Happy'
1998 OK Garage Rachel
The Impostors Lily 'Lil'
Come to Angela Short film
Pecker Rorey Wheeler
1999 A Slipping-Down Life Evie Decker Indianapolis International Film Festival: Special Jury Prize (shared with Sara Rue)
Newport Beach Film Festival: Outstanding Achievement in Acting
The Haunting Nell Vance Nominated—Blockbuster Entertainment Award for Favorite Supporting Actress – Horror
Nominated—Golden Raspberry Award for Worst Screen Couple (with Catherine Zeta-Jones)
2000 High Fidelity Sarah Kendrew
2001 Julie Johnson Julie Johnson
Gaudi Afternoon Ben
Anne Frank: The Whole Story Miep Gies
2003 Casa de los Babys Leslie
2005 Factotum Jan Copenhagen International Film Festival: Best Actress
San Diego Film Critics Society Award for Best Supporting Actress
Nominated—St. Louis Gateway Film Critics Association Award for Best Supporting Actress
The Notorious Bettie Page Paula Klaw
2007 Starting Out in the Evening Ariel Schiller
The Secret Hannah Marris
2008 The Promotion Lori Wehlner
2009 Tired of Being Funny Lee Short film
Brooklyn's Finest Angela Procida Nominated—Black Reel Award for Best Ensemble
Public Enemies Sheriff Lillian Holley
2011 The Pier Grace Ross
2012 About Cherry Phyllis
Being Flynn Joy
The Courier Mrs. Capo
Future Weather Ms. Markovi
2013 The Cold Lands Nicole
The Conjuring Carolyn Perron Fangoria Chainsaw Award for Best Supporting Actress
Fright Meter Award for Best Actress in a Supporting Role
Blood Ties Marie Pierzynski
2015 Maze Runner: The Scorch Trials Dr. Mary Cooper
A Woman Like Me Anna Seashell
2017 To the Bone Judy
Leatherface Verna Sawyer-Carson
2019 Eli Dr. Isabella Horn
2020 The Evening Hour Ruby Freeman
Paper Spiders Dawn
2021 The Winter House Eileen
2023 There There [unnamed in film]
TBA The Gettysburg Address Emily Souder (voice) Post-production


Year Title Role Notes
1986 Crime Story Waitress Episode: "Hide and Go Thief"
1987 Night of Courage Marina Television film
1990 Monsters Jamie Neal Episode: "Habitat"
American Playhouse Younger Marianne Episode: "Sensibility and Sense"
Family of Spies Laura Walker Television film
1997 SUBWAYStories: Tales from the Underground Belinda Television film
1997–1998 Mad About You Arley 2 episodes
1998 The X-Files Marty Glenn Episode: "Mind's Eye"
Nominated—Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Guest Actress in a Drama Series (1998)
2000–2001 Deadline Hildy Baker 13 episodes
2001 Anne Frank: The Whole Story Miep Gies 2 episodes
2002 Live from Baghdad Judy Parker Television film
2002–2005 Six Feet Under Lisa Kimmel Fisher 25 episodes
Screen Actors Guild Award for Outstanding Performance by an Ensemble in a Drama Series
Nominated—Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Guest Actress in a Drama Series (2002)
2003 Penguins Behind Bars Doris Fairfeather (voice) Television film
2007 State of Mind Ann Bellows, M.D. 8 episodes
2010 The Good Wife Donna Seabrook Episode: "Poisoned Pill"
2013–2014 Hemlock Grove Lynda Rumancek 11 episodes
Almost Human Captain Sandra Maldonado 13 episodes
2014 Gotham Patti Episode: "Selina Kyle"
2015 Law & Order: Special Victims Unit Martha Thornhill 2 episodes
2015–2017 American Crime Nancy Straumberg / Anne Blaine / Claire Coates 21 episodes
Nominated—Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Lead Actress in a Limited Series or Movie
Nominated—Critics' Choice Television Award for Best Actress in a Movie/Limited Series
2019 Chambers Ruth Pezim 7 episodes
2020 Perry Mason Birdy McKeegan 7 episodes
2022 Outer Range Cecilia Abbott 8 episodes
TBA Manhunt Mary Todd Lincoln Upcoming miniseries

Stage credits

Year Title Role Notes
1997 Three Sisters Irina Roundabout Theatre Company, New York
2001 The Dead Eye Boy Shirley-Diane MCC Theater, New York
2006 Landscape of the Body Betty Off-Broadway, Peter Norton Space, New York
2009 Mourning Becomes Electra Christine Mannon Off-Broadway, Acorn Theatre, New York
2014 The Library Dawn Sheridan Off-Broadway, Public Theater, New York
2017 Marvin's Room Bessie Wakefield Broadway, American Airlines Theatre

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