(born July 17 1935
) is an American
Carroll was born Carol Diahann Johnson
in The Bronx, New York
, the daughter of Mabel Faulk and John Johnson. Her family moved to the Washington Heights
neighborhood of New York City
when she was one and a half years old. She attended Music & Art High School
, located on 135th St. and St. Nicholas Ave., New York City, along with schoolmate Billy Dee Williams
Carrol's first film assignment was a supporting role in Carmen Jones
in 1954, playing a friend of the sultry Carmen played by Dorothy Dandridge
. She then starred in the Broadway musical House of Flowers
. In 1959, she played Clara in the film version of Gershwin
's Porgy and Bess
along with such distinguished actors as Sidney Poitier
, Dorothy Dandridge, Sammy Davis Jr.
, and Pearl Bailey
. All singing voices were dubbed in the film, with the exception of Pearl Bailey
, with the opera singer Loulie Jean Norman
standing in for Carroll. In 1962 she won the Tony Award
for best actress (a first for a black woman) for the role of Barbara Woodruff in the Samuel A. Taylor
and Richard Rodgers
musical No Strings
. In 1974 she was nominated for an Academy Award for Best Actress
Carroll is probably best known for her title role in Julia in 1968. This landmark accomplishment established Carroll as the first African American actress to star in her own television series where she did not play a domestic worker. She was nominated for an Emmy Award for the role in 1969, and won the Golden Globe Award for “Best Actress In A Television Series” in 1968. Her first Emmy nomination came in 1963 for her work in Naked City. Some of Carroll's other earlier television work includes appearances on shows hosted by Jack Paar, Merv Griffin, Johnny Carson, Judy Garland and Ed Sullivan, and The Hollywood Palace variety show.
In the 1980s, Carroll was signed on to join the star ensemble of the glitzy nighttime soap opera Dynasty and its spin-off The Colbys, as the jet setter, Dominique Deveraux, the half-sister of Blake Carrington played by actor John Forsythe. It was for her recurring role as Marion Gilbert in A Different World that she received her third Emmy nomination 1989. In 2006, Carroll was cast in the television medical drama Grey's Anatomy as Jane Burke, the demanding mother of Dr. Preston Burke.
Carroll starred in the Canadian production of Andrew Lloyd Webber's musical version of the classic film Sunset Boulevard . She played the lead role, crazed silent movie star Norma Desmond, with the role of Joe Gillis played by Rex Smith.
Carroll has had four marriages, one of which produced a daughter, Suzanne Kay Bamford (born September 9
), who became a freelance media journalist.
In 1973, Carroll surprised the press by marrying Las Vegas boutique owner Fred Glusman. She and British television host and producer David Frost had been dating at the time, and were engaged. After several weeks, she filed for divorce from Glusman, charging physical abuse. In 1975, Carroll married Robert DeLeon, a managing editor of Jet magazine. She was widowed two years later when DeLeon was killed in an autombile accident.
Carroll's fourth and last marriage was to singer Vic Damone in 1987. The union, which Carroll admitted was turbulent, underwent a legal separation in 1991, then reconciled before eventually divorcing in 1996.
Carroll is a breast cancer activist and survivor, who in order to draw attention to the cause, invited a camera crew into her treatment room for a national broadcast special.
Awards and nominations
- 1962 Tony Award for Best Actress – No Strings
- 1968 Golden Globe Award for Best TV Star - Female – JuliaNominations
- 1969 Daytime Emmy Award for Outstanding Actress in a Comedy Series – Julia
- 1963 Daytime Emmy Award for Outstanding Single Performance by an Actress in a Leading Role – Naked City
- 1970 Golden Globe Award for Best Actress in a Comedy/Musical Television Series – Julia
- 1975 Golden Globe Award for Best Actress in a Comedy/Musical Motion Picture – Claudine
- 1975 Tony Award for Best Actress – Claudine
- 1989 Emmy Award for Outstanding Guest Actress in a Comedy Series – A Different World
- 1999 Daytime Emmy Award for Outstanding Performance in a Children's Special/Series – The Sweetest Gift
- 2000 Image Award for Outstanding Actress in a Mini-Series/Television Movie – Having a Say: The Delany Sisters' 1st 100 Years
- 2005 Image Award for Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Television Drama Series – Soul Food
- 2008 Emmy Award for Outstanding Guest Actress in a Drama Series – Grey's Anatomy