Independent Spirit

Michelle Williams has had a lot of ‘pinch me I’m dreaming’ moments in her outstanding career, but her latest role in Steven Spielberg’s The Fablemans, playing no less than a fictionalized version of the famed director and producer’s mother, is definitely near the top of a very illustrious list. 

“To not only be asked to play a part in one of his movies, but to be asked to play his beloved mother,” Williams said, “it’s like being taken inside somebody’s heart, to be trusted with this most personal material.

The 42-year-old actress has always had a fierce independent streak. Hailing from the small town of Kalispell, Montana, she became emancipated from her parents, with their approval, at the age of 15 to avoid child labor laws and focus on acting. The precocious teen was first noticed for her portrayal of bad girl Jen Lindley in the 1998 TV series Dawson’s Creek.

FOSSE VERDON — Pictured: (l-r) Michelle Williams as Gwen Verdon, Sam Rockwell as Bob Fosse. CR: Pari Dukovic/FX

Throughout her career Williams has consistently won hearts, displaying raw naivete backed by a core strength that breathes vibrant sincerity into every character she portrays. Her breakthrough role came in 2005’s Brokeback Mountain, and since then she has wowed in Shutter Island, Blue Valentine, My Week with Marilyn and Fosse/Verdon, to name just a few.

Over her 25-year career, she has garnered two Golden Globes and a Primetime Emmy, as well as nominations for four Oscars and a Tony Award.

Although a fixture in smaller, indie films, Williams, a bookworm and mother of three, has shown she can also shine in larger productions, as audiences are eager to take her into their hearts just as Spielberg did in her latest role, won over by her indomitable sweetness and spirit.

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