Lara Flynn Boyle (born March 24, 1970) is an American actress.
Boyle was born in Davenport
, the daughter of Sally Boyle, a clerical worker, assistant, and manager. Although she is of mostly Roman Catholic Irish
descent, Boyle also has an Italian-American
great-grandfather. She is named after a character in Boris Pasternak
's novel Dr. Zhivago
. She was raised in Chicago
. Boyle studied at and graduated from The Chicago Academy for the Arts
Boyle's first film role was a bit part in Ferris Bueller's Day Off
(1986), which earned her a SAG card
, though her scene was eliminated from the final cut of the film. She then appeared in the mini-series Amerika
(1987) and films Poltergeist III
(1988) and Dead Poets Society
(1989), before landing her first major part, that of Donna Hayward
in the critically acclaimed series Twin Peaks
. When the series ended in 1991, creator David Lynch
produced a movie, Twin Peaks: Fire Walk with Me
, but—largely due to her rise in fame and increased film offers—Boyle chose not to return. Moira Kelly
took over the role of Donna for the film.
Boyle spent much of the 1990s making a name for herself in films with varying degrees of success. Some of her most notable roles during that time were:
- the obsessive and accident-prone Stacy in Wayne's World (1992)
- the fragile, homeless teen Heather in Where The Day Takes You (1992)
- psycho secretary-from-hell Kris Bolin in what was geared to be her breakout success, but ultimately became a box-office bust, The Temp (1993)
- the sultry and manipulative Suzanne of Red Rock West (1993), which solidified her status as a premier femme fatale
- Alex, the sexually assured drama queen in the Generation X comedy Threesome (1994)
- flighty, manically repressed housewife Marianne Byron in Afterglow (1997)
In 1997, Boyle auditioned for the title role in David E. Kelley's Ally McBeal. Although she lost out to Calista Flockhart, the actress impressed Kelley enough to create the role of Assistant District Attorney Helen Gamble in his other 1997 series, The Practice, specifically for her. She starred on that show until 2003, when - in a dramatic attempt to revamp the show and cut costs - she was unceremoniously dismissed along with most of the cast. The role of Helen earned her an Emmy nomination, as well as several Screen Actors Guild ensemble cast nominations. Boyle also made a crossover appearance in the role of Helen in an episode of Ally McBeal, the show she originally was not cast for.
In 2002, Boyle played a lead role in the blockbuster film Men in Black II as the villainous alien Serleena. She also guest-starred on one of the last episodes of Ally McBeal, this time as Tally Cupp, a completely different role from that which she had played before. Recently, she had a recurring role on several episodes of Huff, playing Melody Coatar, an unstable patient with borderline personality disorder and bipolar disorder.
In 2005, Boyle joined the cast of Las Vegas for a seven-episode stint as Monica, a new hotel owner. She played Barbara Amiel in the TV true story "Shades of Black", about Amiel's controversial husband, Lord Conrad Black. Boyle also guest-starred as an ambitious reporter involved with the suspects in a possible murder in the Law & Order 2008 episode "Submission".
Boyle has dated actors Jack Nicholson
, Richard Dean Anderson
, Kyle MacLachlan
, David Spade
, and Eric Dane
. She has a tattoo on her back from then-boyfriend Jay Penske
. She is dyslexic
She has been married twice. Her first husband was John Patrick Dee III, whom she married on August 11, 1996 and divorced two years later. Her current husband is Donald Ray Thomas II, a real-estate investor, whom she married on December 18, 2006 in San Antonio, Texas. She has two half-brothers, Michael Boyle and Ethan Boyle.
Boyle's home in Beverly Hills was built in the 1920s as servants' quarters for Pickfair, the home of actress Mary Pickford.