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  • MELANIE GRIFFITH

    August 9, 1957
    New York, New York

          Melanie Griffith is the daughter of actress Tippi Hedrin [best known for her role in Alfred Hitchcock's "The Birds"] and businessman Peter Griffith. Surrounded by the entertainment lifestyle, it's no wonder that Melanie followed in her mother's thespian footsteps. At fourteen Melanie got a role in "The Harrad Experiment", and it was during the filming of that movie that she met Don Johnson, who was eight years her senior. They fell in love and Melanie soon moved in with him. When she turned eighteen, they married, but the union was shortlived; within a year they were divorced.
          Although Melanie continued to win parts in such films as "Night Moves" and "The Drowning Pool", the breakdown of her marriage took its tole, and Melanie found herself floundering professionally as well as emotionally. Taking a breather, she decided to take a step back and in the interim concentrated on honing her acting skills with the renounded Stella Adler.
          In 1980 she married actor Steven Bauer, and in '86 she gave birth to her first child, Alexander. Unfortunately, problems in the marriage ended the union the next year. This time around, Melanie was older, wiser and more confident. She had already turned heads in Hollywood with her stunning 1984 performance in Brian DePalma's, "Body Double", and it only took a few years and some hard work to prove she had the makings of a bona fide Hollywood starlet, when she excited critics and peers alike with her part in the comedy-drama "Working Girl" opposite Harrison Ford and Sigourney Weaver.
          Melanie's future looked promising, and her personal life seemed to be coming up roses when she re-married Don Johnson in 1989; the reunion producing daughter, Dakota. But getting to the top can sometimes be a lot easier than staying at the top. Six years of cinematic flops followed along with the sad decline of her marriage. Depressed and alone, Melanie succumbed to the lure of drugs. Thankfully, she was later able to climb out of the pit it created around her. In spite of the turmoil in her personal life, Melanie continued to produce stellar performances in such films as "Shining Through" and "Paradise".
          In 1995, while filming the feature film "Two Much", Melanie met the dashing Antonio Banderas. It was love at first sight. In May of 1996 they married in a private ceremony with Griffith's son as best man and her daughter maid of honor. The happy couple welcomed their first child a few months later, a daughter, Stella del Carmen.
          In 1996, she and Banderas formed their own production company, Green Moon, which produced "Crazy In Alabama", and "Forever Lulu". Melanie is also a strong voice for child welfare and has used her public status and influence to help organize a million-dollar food drive, and continues to have a hand in other charitable events.
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