Patricia T. Arquette (born April 8, 1968) is an American actress and director. She played the lead character in the supernatural drama series Medium for which she won the Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Lead Actress in a Drama Series.
Early life and family
Arquette was born in Chicago, Illinois, the daughter of Lewis Arquette, an actor, and Brenda “Mardi” Olivia (née Nowak), an actress, poet, theater operator, activist, acting teacher and therapist. Arquette’s mother was Jewish, the daughter of a Holocaust refugee from Poland, and Arquette’s father was a convert to Islam and related to explorer Meriwether Lewis. Her paternal grandfather was comedian Cliff Arquette, and her siblings are actors Rosanna, Alexis, Richmond and David Arquette. Arquette was raised in Virginia and California.
At the age of seventeen, Arquette was first cast in a role for Pretty Smart (1986). A year later, she gained attention for her starring role in A Nightmare on Elm Street 3: Dream Warriors, playing Kristen Parker. She won a CableACE Award in 1991 for her portrayal of a deaf epileptic in Wildflower. In 1993, she starred in Tony Scott’s True Romance. She has since appeared in such critically acclaimed movies as Ed Wood as the ‘worst ever’ film director’s eventual wife, Beyond Rangoon, Ethan Frome, Lost Highway, Little Nicky, Stigmata, Bringing Out the Dead, Human Nature, Disney’s Holes, and Flirting with Disaster.
In January 2005, she began starring in her first television series, NBC’s Medium. Her role as psychic Allison DuBois won her an Emmy Award for Outstanding Lead Actress in 2005, as well as nominations for a Golden Globe in 2005, 2006 and 2007, a SAG Award in 2006 and 2010, and an Emmy Award in 2007. In 2009 NBC cancelled Medium until CBS picked the show up and it lasted another two seasons. By 2011 she was earning $225,000 per episode for the series. Arquette played the role of Allison DuBois until 2011 when CBS cancelled the series. The final episode aired on January 21, 2011.
In April 1995, Arquette married Nicolas Cage (with whom she would later co-star in Bringing Out the Dead in 1999). They separated after nine months, but acted as a couple in public until Cage filed for divorce in February 2000. The divorce petition was withdrawn, but Arquette filed again in November 2000.
In 1997, after her mother died of breast cancer, Arquette worked to raise awareness about the disease. She has run in the annual Race for the Cure, and in 1999 was the spokesperson for Lee National Denim Day, which raises millions of dollars for breast cancer research and education. In April 2010, she teamed-up with welding students of the Robert Morgan Educational Center in Miami (Florida), to build shelters in earthquake-ravaged Haiti from 20 used shipping containers.
After the September 11 attacks, Arquette became involved in a project trying to help Arab-Americans who were being subjected to hate crimes. Her work in the project was motivated by her own experience of growing up in Muslim-Jewish family (her father having converted to Islam and her mother being Jewish) that did not experience any religious problems. In Patricia’s own words:
“I was trying to say, ‘Wait a second, I grew up in a family with a Jewish mother and an Islamic father who did Ramadan and there was never any religious conflict in our home.’ I know so many Islamic people who aren’t militant and I just saw this media machine moving forward, fear closing people down, and basically I was really worried about what’s happening in the world… and now, of course, this division is getting worse. People hunkering down in this most exclusive, divisive way.”
Arquette has a son, Enzo (born January 3, 1989), with musician Paul Rossi.
Arquette and actor Thomas Jane met through mutual friends in 2001. While filming Holes in 2002, Arquette discovered she was pregnant; Arquette and Jane became engaged that same year. Their daughter Harlow Olivia Calliope was born on February 20, 2003. Arquette and Jane subsequently married on June 25, 2006 at the Palazzo Contarini in Venice, Italy. In January 2009, Arquette filed for divorce from Jane on the grounds of irreconcilable differences, but the couple soon reconciled and Arquette requested to abandon the divorce petition on July 9, 2009. However, on August 13, 2010, Jane’s representative announced that Arquette and Jane had decided to proceed with a divorce due to “irreconcilable differences”. The divorce was finalized on July 1, 2011. The pair were granted joint custody of their child.
After the Haiti earthquake in 2010, Arquette and childhood friend Rosetta Millington-Getty formed GiveLove, a non-profit organization supporting ecological sanitation and composting, community development projects and housing construction in Haiti.