Shirley MacLaine is a Hollywood legend. She’s starred in many acclaimed films and can play any character in any time period, just look at her character in Downton Abbey. Keep reading to learn MacLaine’s net worth and more about her personal life and acting career.
MacLaine’s early years
Born on April 24, 1934, MacLaine grew up in Richmond, Virginia. Her parents, Ira Owens Beatty and Kathlyn Corinne (MacLean) welcomed MacLaine’s younger brother, Warren Beatty (acting runs in the family) three years later in March of 1937.
Here’s a fun fact about MacClaine. She and Meryl Streep share the same birthday, which they celebrate together every year, according to IMDb.
After she graduated high school, MacLaine moved to New York City. With ballet training, she auditioned for Me and Juliet by Richard Rogers and Oscar Hammerstein II. Apparently the producer kept mispronouncing her name — at the time her name was Shirley MacLean Beatty — so she changed her name to Shirley MacLaine.
The producer, Hal B. Wallis, saw MacLaine perform in The Pajama Game, and signed her to a five-year deal with Paramount Pictures. Wallis only saw her perform because Carol Haney, the lead, had an injury and couldn’t perform. MacLaine was her understudy.
Her first movie, The Trouble with Harry premiered in 1955 followed by Hot Spell in 1958 and Around the World in 80 Days in 1956.
MacLaine had a daughter, Sachi Parker (born Stephanie), with her husband, Steve Parker. MacLaine and Parker had an open marriage for nearly 30 years, which MacLaine talked about with Oprah Winfrey on an episode of her talk show in 2011, according to The Telegraph.
While promoting her book, I’m Over All That And Other Confessions, MacLaine discussed her open marriage. “I wasn’t into ‘sexcapades,’ although I tried it once,” the actress told Oprah. “I had three people in one day.”
“It was on a political campaign, where everybody was doing the same thing,” she said. “I just didn’t want to be left out.”
Parker and MacLaine divorced in 1982, after MacLaine learned that her husband only married her for money, according to ABC News.
MacLaine developed a reputation in Hollywood for falling for her male co-stars. She told Oprah two of her co-stars she fell for were Robert Mitchum and French actor Yves Montand.
“Frank called me one day and said that he and his pack were doing a picture in Las Vegas and they wanted me to play a bit part of an inebriated New Year’s Eve celebrant,” MacLaine said. “The abbreviated part would pay no money, and I would have no billing… but they would give me a new car for less than five minutes of work.”
“Their energy and stamina was uncanny,” she said of her friends and co-stars.
In 1958, McLaine got her first Academy Award nomination for Best Actress in Some Came Running. She didn’t win but got nominated again two years later for The Apartment. In 1963, she received her third nomination for Irma la Douce.
MacLaine worked on the 1975 documentary film, The Other Half of the Sky: A China Memoir, which garnered her another Oscar nomination. Two years later she received yet another nomination for her work in The Turning Point.
Not until 1984 did MacLaine finally win an Academy Award. She won in the Best Actress category for her role in the 1983 film, Terms of Endearment. In her acceptance speech she showcased her wit and said, “I have wondered for 26 years what this would feel like. Thank you so much for terminating the suspense.”
Shirley MacLaine’s net worth
MacLaine has been working as an actress since the 1950s and has amassed quite a fortune.
She’s written upwards of 20 books and acted in successful films. Her estimated net worth is in the $50-$60 million range. Some sources estimate her net worth to be at $50 million while another lists it as $60 million.