In 1963, Arquette's family moved to Chicago, where her father managed The Second City theater for several years. When she was 11 years old, her parents moved to a commune in Front Royal, Virginia. Arquette did not do well at school. In 1974, she hitchhiked across the country with three older teenagers, eventually going to San Francisco, where she worked at Renaissance and Dickens fairs. Her professional theater debut was May 27, 1977, appearing in the Story Theatre Musical Ovid's The Metamorphoses at the Callboard Theatre on Melrose Place in Los Angeles.
In 1989, Martin Scorsese offered her a part in New York Stories. Since then, Arquette has appeared, with few exceptions, in one or in several movies each year, some of them of notable interest, like Pulp Fiction and the David Cronenberg film, Crash. An offbeat choice, however, was to fly downunder and make the Australian film Wendy Cracked a Walnut (1990) (also known as "…Almost"). An expensive film, and a huge box office flop, only the musical score by Bruce Smeaton was generally noted by critics, for its musical innovation. In 1990, Arquette appeared on the cover and in a nude pictorial in Playboy's September issue, although she claimed it was without her prior knowledge or approval.
In recent years, Arquette has also been expanding into directing. Recent films which she has directed include the documentaries Searching for Debra Winger (2002) and All We Are Saying (2005); she also produced both projects.
Arquette also appeared in the short running What About Brian as Nicole Varsi.
More recently, Arquette has focused her energies on spending time with her daughter and promoting awareness of breast cancer, while continuing with her work, now also as a director. Her mother had died of breast cancer in 1997. In 2002 her critically acclaimed documentary Searching for Debra Winger was released. In the film, Arquette interviews prominent and respected actresses (mostly between the ages of 30 and 60) in an attempt to find out whether it was practical for a working actress to successfully maintain a family.
What about Rosanna? Arquette turns to TV: In ABC's 'What About Brian,' she's happy to be playing a woman her own age
Apr 16, 2006; Leading film roles have dried up for Rosanna Arquette. At 46, she can only watch as they pass her by. "When a woman [character]...
Arquette gets real with ABC Family.(ABC Family will develop a comedy based on Rosanna Arquette's life)(Brief Article)
Jul 21, 2003; BURBANK, CALIF. -- ABC Family has agreed to develop a not-yet-titled half-hour scripted comedy based on Rosanna Arquette's life....
Grammy Award Winner Leann Rimes, Eddie Cibrian 'Ugly Betty' and Golden Globe and Emmy Award Nominee Rosanna Arquette 'Desperately Seeking Susan' To Star in the Lifetime Original Movie 'Nora Roberts' Northern Lights,' To Premiere in 2009 on L.
Nov 29, 2008; The Lifetime Original Movie "Nora Roberts' Northern Lights," starring Grammy Award winner LeAnn Rimes ("Holiday in Your Heart...