5 Things You Didn't Know About Me
- I'm a photo buff...love to have my own private POV of my subject
- Love to drop off the planet and explore the canals of Europe
- Love to hang out in Zoos
- Love to Read
- Love to play Gin!
Currently playing Linda Garner in "The Hangover Part III" and Miss Vivian on OWN's "Love Thy Neighbor"
Sondra Currie always knew she would be an actress. At one time, however, she shared part of that dream with another ambition; to become a race car driver. Her first ambition has won out with quite a diversified and rewarding career.
Blue-eyed, red-haired, Sondra was born, raised and educated in Los Angeles. Her mother, actress Marie Harmon (who made more than two dozen films while under contract to Republic Pictures) wanted Sondra to follow her own career direction unaware of her beautiful daughter's secret desire. It happened, oddly, as a result of her hobby… which in her mid teens, became off-road dirt car and motorcycle racing. Sondra found that a neighbor in her apartment building was also a weekend dirt road racing enthusiast and, from this, developed a friendship with well-known producer/director Howard Hawks. It wasn't long before Hawks put Sondra under contract and into her first film, "Rio Lobo." Her role, as she delicately puts it, "mostly ended up on the cutting room floor." But it was a beginning.
She went on to star in numerous features (among them, cult favorites "Jessi’s Girls," "Policewomen" and "Concrete Jungle"). She refers to them as "slice and dice" films where she received her "college education!" Learning on her feet was not always easy and she discovered what it meant to be a survivor in Hollywood. "Passion and commitment along with talent, tenacity and luck are essential. I feel we create our own luck,” she stresses. "And the talent is something that constantly needs to be nurtured in theatre or classes." She was a member of Milton Katselas’ Saturday Master class for 17 years, and continues to study at The Actors Studio with Martin Landau, Mark Rydell and Lou Antonio. (She's a Lifetime Member.)
Sondra has been extremely fortunate. She's consistently worked, guest-starring in well over 110 TV shows (including "NCIS," "ER," "JAG," "Cheers," "The Golden Girls," "The Odd Couple," "Eight Is Enough" and "The Bob Newhart Show") plus several Movies of the Week (including starring roles in two "Columbo" specials, "Kid Cop," "The Secretary," "The Perfect Wife," Hallmark’s "Thicker Than Water," "Dark Horizon" and the recently completed "Lords Of The Underworld").
She is perhaps best known for her role as Linda Garner, Alan's (Zach Galifianakis) mom in one of the biggest comedy franchises of all-time, "The Hangover" trilogy. She can currently be seen in the recurring role of Miss Vivian on Tyler Perry's "Love Thy Neighbor" on OWN.
Sondra and her husband, renowned producer/director Alan J. Levi, have a production company (Lumina Pictures and Entertainment LTD.) They have several projects in development. Another passion is theatre and she does it every chance she gets. Theatre credits in LA includes "Sidetracked," "Hatful of Rain," "Chesterfield Woman," "Doubleplay," "After the Fall" and "Separate Rooms." She is a founding member of the Camelot Artists (now the Katselas Theatre Co.) at the Beverly Hills Playhouse and is a member of the prestigious Theatre West. She considers her mentor, her husband, her luckiest gift of all. "He's the most patient, giving, talented person I've ever known. And I'm the smartest," she says with a glint in her eye. "I married him!”
The Currie family boasts other talents as well. Sondra's twin sisters, Cherie and Marie, made major waves in the music business. Cherie recorded three albums as lead singer of The Runaways (with Joan Jett and Lita Ford), and later teamed up with Marie to record two more albums. Cherie got her first acting break in "Foxes" with Jodie Foster. Sondra's brothers-in law are actor Robert Hays and Steve Lukather (lead guitarist and singer for the Grammy Award winning group Toto). She has a brother, Don A. Currie, who owns HighTechLending and is a mortgage banker.
Sondra and her husband are on the Board of the California Independent Film Festival and have been Jury members for the past five years, “a truly inspirational environment where we see passionate, creative independent filmmakers, who won’t take 'no' for an answer against many odds and with very little money.” They were honored to be invited to be Jurors of the First International Indie Film Festival in Sapporo, Japan, where Sondra was the only woman on the panel. She is also a member of Women in Film and Women in Theater.
Sondra says one of her most rewarding endeavors is being a member of SHARE, a charity devoted to helping abused, developmentally disabled and mentally challenged children, and children with HIV and AIDS. "This is a place where I might really be able to make a difference," she says. "I see it first hand. The children are so receptive, and it's such a positive experience. It helps me keep everything else in perspective. My life is very rich."