Childhood & Early Years
Lara Flynn Boyle was born March 24, 1970 in Davenport, Iowa. She was the only child of her parents. Her father, Michael L. Boyle, abandoned the family when Lara was six years old. Thereafter, Lara was raised by her mother, Sally Boyle, in a small house near Wrigley Field in Chicago.
To make ends meet, Sally worked simultaneously in three jobs. Like all children from broken home, she partially blamed herself for her parents’ divorce. Moreover, being dyslexic, she could not cope at school, sitting in a corner in her play school, crying until her mother came to collect
As days went by, she learned to fight, determined never to give up. For doing her homework, she would go to the bathroom because it was the only room that had a door. She would then squat on the floor, using the closed toilet seat as table to do her homework.
The situation improved when at the age of twelve she was enrolled at the Piven Theater Workshop, an improvisational theater camp in Evanston. It was during this time that she first developed an interest in acting, eventually entering Chicago Academy of Fine Arts and graduating from there in 1988.
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In 1986, while studying at Chicago Academy of Fine Arts, Lara Flynn Boyle began her career with a small role in the teen comedy film ‘Ferris Bueller's Day Off’. Although her scenes were deleted from the final cut it earned her the Screen Actors’ Guild Card’.
In 1987, she debuted in television, appearing in one episode of ‘Jack and Mike’, five episodes of ‘Amerika’ and one episode of ‘Sable’. Also in the same year, she was cast as Donna Gardner in ‘Poltergeist III’ (released on June 10, 1988).
In 1988, a day after graduating from Chicago Academy, she relocated to Los Angeles, where she landed the roles of Jessica Kailo in ‘How I got into College’ and Ginny Danburry in ‘Dead Poets Society’. While both films were released in 1989, her scenes in ‘Dead Poets Society’ were deleted.
In 1989, her two television films were released: ‘Terror on Highway 91’and 'The Preppie Murder' Also in the same year, she got her biggest break, when she was cast as Donna Hayward in ‘Northwest Passage’, the pilot episode of TV series ‘Twin Peaks’.
Twin Peaks’ was aired on ABC from April 8, 1990 to June 10, 1991, earning her international recognition. Concurrently, she continued to work in other productions, including ‘The Rookie’ (1990), ‘The Dark Backward’ (1991), ‘Mobsters’ (1991) and ‘Eye of the Storm’ (1991).
In 1992, when David Lynch, the creator of ‘Twin Peaks’, decided to adapt the series into a feature film, Boyle was asked to reprise her role in it. But by then, she had accepted the role of Heather in ‘Where the Day Takes You’ and so could not commit herself.
In 1992, her three films, 'Wayne's World', ’Where the Day Takes You’ and ‘Equinox’, were released. In the following year, she starred as Kris Bolin in the thriller film ‘The Temp’, and as Suzanne Brown in ‘Red Rock West’. Thereafter, she continued to appear regularly in films and television productions.
In 1999, she earned great popular and critical acclaim when she portrayed Assistant District Attorney Helen Gamble in ABC television series ‘The Practice’, appearing in its 132 episodes till 2003. Concurrently, she continued to appear in other productions and starred in the blockbuster feature film ‘Men in Black II’ in 2002.
She continued to be active on television till 2008, meanwhile appearing in five episodes of ‘Huff’ (2004-2005), eight episodes of ’Las Vegas’ (2005-2006) and two television films (both relesed in 2006). Her last work on television was ‘Law and Order’ (2008).
Equally active on big screen, she appeared in eight films till 2014; her last film being ‘Lucky Dog’, in which she appeared as Ms. Donley. Meanwhile in 2013, she debuted as a producer, producing and starring in ‘Hansel & Gretel Get Baked’.
Family & Personal Life
On 11 August, 1996, Lora Flynn Boyle married John Patrick Dee III. The couple divorced sometime in 1998.
On December 18, 2006, she married her current husband, Donald Ray Thomas II. She does not have any children from her either marriage.