Mariska Hargitay Biography
Her mother was the famous actress Jayne Mansfield and her father was once Mr. Universe, Mickey Margitay. In 1964, a few months after she was born, her parents divorced and her mother married her Hollywood director Matt Cimber. He directed her mother in the production of Bus Stop.
In 1967, her mother died from a car accident in Highway 90, along with her boyfriend Sam Broady and their driver. Mariska Hargitay and her brothers were also in the car but fortunately, they only sustained minor injuries. With their mother dead, their father raised them with his new wife, Ellen Siano.
Even while Mariska Hargitay was younger, she already had her mothers talents and passion for acting. She attended the Marymount High School, where she was active in its theater program. Later, she earned her degree in theater from the UCLA School of Theater Film and Television. Then in 1983, she won the Miss Beverly Hills beauty pageant which lead to her appearing on television.
Mariska Hargitay was first seen in Star 80, which starred Mariel Hemingway. Then other roles followed including Carly Fixx in Falcon Crest. In 1992, she played the role of Angela Garcia, a police officer in the series Tequila & Bonetti. Mariska was also seen in the hit sitcom Seinfeld. Then in 1995, she played the role of Didi Edelstein in the sitcom Cant Hurry Love, opposite Nancy Mc Keon.
Then in 1997, Mariska Hargitay was seen as Detective Nina Echeverria on the series Prince Street. That same year, she played the role of Cynthia Hooper in the hit medical drama ER, for which she reprised her character several times during its fourth season.
In 1999, Mariska Hargitay landed the lead female role of Detective Olivia Benson in the series Law & Order: Special Vicitms Unit. For her performance she soon became the highest paid television actress to date and is considered as one of the hottest television stars in Hollywood. She has also received several awards including, Outstanding Leading Actress in a Drama Series by the Emmy Awards, Best Performance by an Actress in a Drama Series form the International Press Academy and Favorite Actress in a New Series from TV Guide.
In 2005, Mariska Hargitay was one of 50 Most Beautiful People by the People Magazine.