Who is Julia Duffy?
Julia Margaret Hinds was born on 27 June 1951, in Minneapolis, Minnesota, USA, and is an actress, perhaps still best known for her work in the 1970s television series “The Doctors” in which she played Penny Davis. She also gained critical acclaim for her role in the sitcom “Newhart”, which helped her get nominated numerous times for Primetime Emmys.
The Riches of Julia Duffy
As of early-2020, Julia Duffy’s net worth is estimated to be over $4 million, earned through a successful career in the entertainment industry as an actress since the 1970s.
While she’s not as active as during her youth, her work still helps in building her current status.
Early Life and Acting Beginnings
Julia grew up in Minneapolis the youngest among three siblings. Her father passed away when she was only seven years old, and after a few years, her mother remarried. Growing up, she developed an interest in acting, particularly theatre, working in various local stage productions as a teenager; one of her first productions in the area was “The Girl in the Freudian Slip”.
In 1970, she desired to take her career further, and enrolled at the American Academy of Dramatic Arts which required her to move to New York City.
While studying in the private performing arts school, she worked as a waitress to earn extra income. She completed the program in two years, and began finding work with soap operas which were mostly based in New York. Some of her projects during this period included “Love of Life” and “One Life to Live”. She gained a bit of attention for her work in “The Doctors” which she held for five years through to 1978.
Continued Rise to Fame
After her run in “The Doctors”, Duffy returned to the stage and appeared in a revival of “Once in a Lifetime” which gained critical acclaim. She then went back to on-camera roles, having a string of film projects during the early-1980s, including “Cutter’s Way” and “Night Warning” which had her work alongside Jimmy McNichol. In 1982, she was considered for the lead role in the television program “Cheers” but it was given to Diane Chambers, but she still made an appearance during the first season in a guest spot. The following year she became a regular cast member of the CBS show “Wizards and Warriors”, but which was canceled after a short run.
One of her biggest roles came when she became a main cast member in “Newhart” from its second season. She played the role of Stephani Vanderkellen who is an upper-class maid at the Stratford Inn – the show followed the story of a couple who operate a small inn located in a rural town, with their business often leading them to encounter eccentric people. She held her role for seven seasons, and gained national popularity thanks to her performance, as evidenced by straight nominations for an Emmy Award for Supporting Actress in a Comedy Series. She was also nominated for a Golden Globe.
After “Newhart”, Julia worked on the sitcom “Baby Talk”, which was short-lived apparently due to problems among the cast members. She was set to work alongside George Clooney, but the actor walked off the set leading her to ask to be released from her role as well. She then worked on “Designing Women” and would later reconcile her relationship with Clooney as the duo worked together in “Intolerable Cruelty”. She replaced Delta Burke in “Designing Women” and her entry in the show would lead to the highest-rated season in the show’s history, but she was later released due to creative conflicts between her and the writers.
In 1993, she was then cast in “The Mommies” as Barb Ballantine, but it was another short-lived affair. Afterward, she found work in “The Drew Carey Show” as the ex-wife of Lord Mercer, Lindsay Mercer. Her next project would lead her to Nickelodeon, as she signed a contract with the company, and appearing in numerous programs in the network, including “True Jackson, VP”, “Drake & Josh”, and “The Suite Life of Zack & Cody”.
In 2009, Duffy returned to work on stage with a production of “The Little Foxes”, alongside Kelly McGillis. She then appeared in a production of “The Heiress”, and was cast in several television programs in recurring roles.
Some of her projects during the next few years included “Scream Queens” and “Shameless”. In 2014, she appeared in the film “Camp X-Ray”, starring alongside Kristen Stewart.
In this latter part of her career, she has focused more on theatre, with some of her most recent projects including “Rancho Viejo” and “Guess Who’s Coming to Dinner”; her performance in the latter gained her gain a nomination for an IRNE Award. She was also the lead character in “Sex and Education”, and starred in “The Outsider”, with her performances have attracted praise from various critics.
She’s also been doing a lot more independent film work, and one of her latest on-screen projects is a guest appearance in “The Cool Kids” which airs on FX, starring David Alan Grier and Martin Mull. She also recently released the book “Bad Auditions”, which as the name denotes, covers a little about her past in the entertainment industry.
Julia met actor Jerry Lacy on the set of “Dark Shadows”, and the two would work together once more in “Love of Life”. They began dating shortly afterwards, and married in 1984. He is best known for his work in “Dark Shadows” as various characters, and also made a name for himself in sitcoms such as “As the World Turns” and “The Young and the Restless”. The two had two children together, the youngest of whom passed away in 2019 when he committed suicide.