Real name: Shirley MacLean Beaty
Birthdate: April 24, 1934
Her early childhood dream was to be a ballerina. She took ballet classes fervently all throughout her youth and never missed one, and whenever they performed a piece, she would play the boy's role, due to being the tallest one there. She was so determined and so set on being a dancer that her recurring childhood nightmare was that she missed the bus to class. She finally got to play a respectable woman's role, the Fairy Godmother in "Cinderella," and while warming up backstage, she snapped her ankle. Many would bow out in this particular situation, but she was so determined that she simply tied the ankle ribbon on her toe shoes extra tight and go "on with the show." After it was over, she called for an ambulance.
Her first film was the Alfred Hitchcock film The Trouble with Harry in 1955. In 1958, she took part in Hot Spell and Around the World in Eighty Days. At the same time, she stared in Some Came Running, this film gave her her first Academy Award nomination. She got her second nomination in two years later for The Apartment, one of her most famous films starring alongside Jack Lemmon and directed by Billy Wilder. This film won 5 Oscars, including Best Director. She was again nominated for Irma la Douce, once again reunited with Wilder and Lemmon. In 1975, she also received a nomination for Best Documentary Feature for her documentary film The Other Half of the Sky: A China Memoir. Two years later, she was once again nominated for The Turning Point, as was her co-star Anne Bancroft. In 1983, she finally won her first Oscar for Terms of Endearment. The film won 5 Oscars, including one for Jack Nicholson and three for director James L. Brooks. After she won an Oscar, she still starred in some major films, like Steel Magnolias with Julia Roberts. She also directed and starred in Bruno as Helen. She completed Closing the Ring, directed by Richard Attenborough and staring Christopher Plummer, it will be released in 2007.
Maclaine is also set to star in Poor Things, a drama. The production has been delayed due to Lindsay Lohan's stint in rehab.
As of 2004, she is the only actress to win a Golden Globe for Best Actress (Drama) without getting an Oscar nomination for the same performance, for Madame Sousatzka (1988).
On the album 'Bebop Moptop' by Scottish band Danny Wilson (band), there is a song called 'The Ballad Of Me And Shirley Maclaine'.
In a scene from Mrs. Doubtfire, when Daniel (Robin Williams) tells his brother (Harvey Firestein) that they need to go older when transforming him into a woman, his brother asks "Shelly Winters older or Shirley Maclaine older?" Daniel asks what the differnce is and his brother says, "Some scotch tape and red hair dye."