We have rarely seen an actress as versatile as Holland Taylor. In her six-decades long career, she has acted in almost every genre there is. As a person from an older generation, her public life was free of controversies until recently, when she announced her relationship with a few decades younger Sarah Paulson. How did the two meet? And how famous is Holland Taylor?
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Early life and Education
American actress and dramatist Holland Virginia Taylor, is born on 14 January 1943 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania USA. Her mother, Virginia Davis, was a painter, while her father, C. Tracy Taylor, was an attorney. She also has two older sisters, Patricia and Pamela, and through the latter she is an aunt of Brad Anderson, famous Hollywood director.
She was raised a Quaker (a Christian group whose members are united by the belief that God is in every one) and as one she attended Westtown high school in West Chester, Pennsylvania. After high school, she enrolled in drama program at Bennington College that she graduated from in 1964, after which she moved to New York City wishing to pursue an acting career.
Taylor commenced her career in the theater in the late 1960s. During the next few decades, she was a regular face in a plethora of Broadway and off-Broadway productions. She even starred in a few of them, including Simon Gray’s “Butler”, and for her role in A. R. Gurney’s “The Cocktail Hour” she was nominated for a Drama Desk award.
Despite her television debut being in 1969 when she had a role in the TV film “J.T.”, she stuck with mostly performing in the theatre until the early ‘80s, when she took the role of Denise Cavanaugh in “The Edge of Night”. After seeing this, her acting coach Stella Adler encouraged her to keep pursuing television, which finally led Taylor to take a role that will bring her fame – she went on to play Tom Hanks’ sexy boss in “Bosom Buddies”, a well-known sitcom from the 1980s. After this, the casting calls just kept on coming.
Career after the ‘80s
Holland continued to star in numerous TV series, appearing in the ABC sitcom “Going Places”, where she was reunited with her “Bosom Buddies” executive producers Thomas L. Miller and Robert L. Boyet, and joined the cast of “Saved by the Bell: The College Years” in the 1994, but the show was cancelled just a few episodes later. The next year, she played Camilla Dane in another ABC sitcom “The Naked Truth”, where she remained until the show ended in 1998.
She was supposed to get a one-time appearance on “The Practice”, but she impressed the writers so much that they decided to keep her as a regular on the show, and she even won an Emmy for this role in 1999! As of today, she’s been nominated for an Emmy five more times, including for her role of Evelyn Harper in the TV series “Two and a Half Men”.
Holland extensive sitcom appearances also include support roles in “ER”, “The Lot”, “Veronica’s Closet” and “Monk”, as well as many others. She also had several noticeable movie roles, in “Legally Blonde”, one of the most popular comedies of the early ‘00s, as well as in “The Truman Show”, “George of the Jungle”, “Cop and a Half” and “Happy Accidents”. She also voiced Prudence in Disney’s “Cinderella II” and “Cinderella III: A Twist in Time”, and Francine’s biological mother in “American Dad!”
In 2009, Holland began writing her own two-act play entitled “Ann: An Affectionate Portrait of Ann Richards”, which finally opened on 16th of November in Chicago, and remained on Broadway until 2013.
Relationship with Sarah Paulson
Holland Taylor kept her personal life private for decades, so not much is known about her romantic history. However, in an interview for WNYC’s “The Death, Sex and Money” podcast in 2015, she revealed that she is currently dating a much younger woman, and that she had always preferred women.
In March 2016, her partner was confirmed to be “The American Horror Story” actress Sarah Paulson, who is 32 years younger than her.
Paulson said that the two had known each other for years before they officially started dating – as they met back in 2007 at a dinner party – however as they were both in a relationship at the time, nothing happened for a while, until Taylor sent Paulson a message on Twitter, and so a romance was born.
The couple sparked controversy due to their age difference – Paulson was criticized for having “mommy issues”, especially since her ex-wife, Cherry Jones, was also around two decades older than her. She was also warned not to go public with her new relationship, as people close to her were concerned that this could ruin her career. However neither her nor Taylor seem to mind the gossips, as they don’t hide their public affections of love and always speak highly of each other.
As of now, the rumors speculate that Paulson and Taylor married in secret, but as they aren’t hiding their love for each other from public eyes, we don’t think that they would keep such information private.
Taylor loves perfecting herself, and is constantly working on her own education. She graduated from the University of Santa Monica and received her Master degree in Spiritual Psychology in 2005, at the age of 62. She also took ballet classes at the Joffrey in 1978 and studied Jazz and Tap dancing.
In an interview for InStyle, Taylor said that she never intended to hide her preference for women, she simply found it “quite surprising” that people would be interested to talk about personal things in public, and never even thought about disclosing anything from her personal life until Paulson told her that she should do so.
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Holland grew up in a Quaker’s community, which is another reason why she had always found the need to “come out” as weird, since her religion doesn’t make any difference between various sexual orientations. Taylor is an avid supporter of Aid for AIDS, an organization from Los Angeles, California – she is on their Honorary Board, and among other fundraising efforts she is an ongoing participant in their biggest annual fundraiser, “Best in Drag Show”.
Despite often being given the role of someone’s mother during her career, Holland Taylor has never married or had any kids.
Taylor’s net worth has been estimated at around $18 million, as of early 2020. Her main source of income is her acting career, as she has featured in over 60 sitcoms, 45 movies and approximately 35 theatrical productions, and been nominated for multiple Emmy awards.
Holland Taylor is a face many would recognize for her short, blond hair, sharp features and striking blue eyes. She doesn’t hide her age but is well-kept, which makes it hard to believe that she is well into her eighth decade. At 5ft 3ins, she is a bit shorter than her 5ft 6ins tall partner. She nurtures her slim figure even at her age and is taking a good care of her health. Many have praised Taylor for her timeless fashion style, and she is still apparently spending a lot on trying keeping her good looks.