The Shalvi/Hyman Encyclopedia of Jewish Women

Features thousands of biographic and thematic essays on Jewish women around the world. Learn more

Jamie Lee Curtis

b. November 22, 1958

by JWA Staff
Our work to expand the Encyclopedia is ongoing. We are providing this brief biography for Jamie Lee Curtis until we are able to commission a full entry.

Jamie Lee Curtis at the 2015 San Diego Comic Con.

Photo courtesy of Gage Skidmore/Wikimedia Commons.

Hailed as the “Scream Queen” for her 1978 film debut in Halloween and her work in other slasher films, Jamie Lee Curtis defied expectations through her roles in A Fish Called Wanda and The Heidi Chronicles. The child of Hollywood stars Tony Curtis and Janet Leigh, Curtis dropped out of college after one semester to pursue acting, landing the lead role in Halloween the following year. After a series of horror flicks including The Fog and Prom Night, she won a BAFTA in 1983 for Trading Places and was nominated for the same award in 1988 for her role in A Fish Called Wanda. She was nominated for a Golden Globe in 1989 for her role in Anything But Love, won a Golden Globe for True Lies in 1994, and was nominated again in 1995 for The Heidi Chronicles. She has also written nine children’s books, including the 1998 New York Times bestseller Today I Feel Silly and Other Moods that Make My Day. A dedicated philanthropist, Curtis has donated to children’s hospitals and performed at benefits for marriage equality. In 2015 she returned to her horror-movie roots as a cast member on Scream Queens.

How to cite this page

Jewish Women's Archive. "Jamie Lee Curtis." (Viewed on October 2, 2023) <>.


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