Mia Sara is an American film and television actress most fondly remembered for the role of Sloane Peterson in the successful comedy film of 1986, ‘Ferris Bueller's Day Off’. Born and brought up in Brooklyn Heights, Mia was a shy girl with stage fright but she worked hard and grew up to become a confident actor. In pursuit of a career in acting, Mia set out early with a role in ‘All My Children’. When still in high school, Mia tasted success after her performance as Princess Lili in the film ‘Legend’. She started working passionately and worked extremely hard for 8 months during the shooting of the film. Being a part of many popular mini-series, she had a successful carrier in television too. Unfortunately, many of her films were not very successful at the box office, but her roles in ‘Timecop’ and ‘A Stranger among us’ are worth a mention. She was last seen on the big screen in the short film ‘Pretty Pretty’ in 2013. Mia’s hobbies include reading and flying. She is also the mother of two children.
Childhood & Early Life
Mia Sara was born Mia Sarapochiello in Brooklyn Heights, New York, on 19th June 1967. She shortened her name to Mia Sara later.
Her father, Jerome Sarapochiello, was a professional photographer and her mother, Diana, was a stylist. Mia has a younger sister, Cassie.
Soon after Cassie’s birth, her parents were divorced. The sisters were raised by their mother.
Mia pursued elementary school education from St. Ann's School in Brooklyn. She also completed her high school there and graduated in 1985.
After high school, Mia showed interest towards acting due to which she deferred the offer from Barnard University and did not pursue matriculation.
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Mia explored acting with the aim of overcoming her shyness while in high school by taking up the roles of Helena in ‘AMidsummer Night's Dream’ and Juliet in ‘Romeo and Juliet’.
Soon, her professional career in acting began with TV commercials at the age of 14. The assignments also helped her earn some pocket money.
Thereafter, she got a regular role in a soap opera named ‘All My Children’ in 1982. Even before completing high school, 16 year old Mia was offered the role of Princess Lili in the 1986 film ‘Legend’ opposite Tom Cruise. The lead role in this fairy tale film brought Mia to the limelight.
Steadily, she began appearing in other lead roles such as Ferris Bueller’s girlfriend, Sloane Peterson, in ‘Ferris Bueller's Day Off’, a 1986 comedy film. The film became an instant hit and Mia’s performance was widely appreciated and she began featuring in many horror and action films.
Mia Sara’s first television role came in 1986, when she was cast in the mini-series biopic ‘Queenie’. It drew inspiration from the life of actress Merle Oberon. Mia had to compete with 75 others for the role during the auditions.
However, most of Mia’s later films such as ‘Apprentice to Murder’ in 1988 and ‘By the Sword’ in 1991 were not much successful.
She also worked in many other television shows such as Judith Krantz's ‘Till We Meet Again’ and ‘Big Time’ in 1989, ‘Daughter of Darkness’ in 1990 and in ‘Call of the Wild’ during 1993 where she played Loretta Young.
The role for which Mia was very well appreciated came in Sidney Lumet's film ‘A Stranger Among Us’ featuring Mia as Leah, a young Jewish woman.
Her film ‘Timecop’ in 1994 with Jean-Claude Van Damme, became successful after a long time but unfortunately the success faded out soon.
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In 1996, she was seen in the films ‘The Pompatus of Love’, ‘Midnight in Saint Petersburg’, and ‘The Maddening’, but none of them could catch the attention of the audience.
Mia kept working for television shows and movies and appeared in ‘Chicago Hope’ and ‘Undertow’ in 1996; ‘Bullet to Beijing’ and ‘20,000 Leagues Under the Sea’ in 1997.
Finally, after appearing in many small budget films, television shows and movies, Mia came back to limelight as Dr. Harleen Quinzel /Harley Quinn in ‘Birds of Prey’, a spin-off on Batman.
‘Nightmares & Dreamscapes: From the Stories of Stephen King’ in 2006 and ‘The Witches of Oz’ in 2011 were some of her TV-series after which work offers gradually started decreasing.
The film ‘Ferris Bueller's Day Off’ in 1986 made Mia Sara popular and brought her to the forefront. The character of Sloane Peterson, played by Mia in this successful comedy is still remembered.
Peter Hyam's ‘Timecop’ with Jean-Claude Van Damme is another notable film of her career.
Personal Life & Legacy
Sara was married to Jason Connery in March 1996. She gave birth to a son in June 1997 and named him Dashiell Quinn Connery. The couple got divorced in 2002.
Later, Sara married Brian Henson, the son of Jim Henson. She gave birth to a daughter in 2005 and named her Amelia Jane Henson.
Mia is fond of flying and has two Wheaton terriers. She owns a license after undertaking flight training.
After working in the action film ‘Timecop’, Mia took up pilot training.
Mia studied acting from the renowned acting teacher, Roy London.
During the shooting of ‘Quinnie’, Mia became stressed due to workload and suffered from migraine and stomach problems. But she always worked as a professional and never let her health affect her work.