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Cher

A worldwide superstar and household name for 45 years, Cher has conquered more challenges than a handful of other talents put together recording, concerts, film and Broadway acting, television and directing.

Along the way, she has been richly rewarded with an Academy Award, a Grammy, an Emmy, three Golden Globes, a Cannes Film Festival Award and a People's Choice Award.

Cher began her career as a backing singer, where she met fledgling producer Sonny Bono. Together they quickly hit the jackpot with their signature number one song I Got You Babe in 1965 and their attention-grabbing hair and clothes an early hint of Cher's subsequent influence on the world of fashion.

Solo success soon followed with three more number ones in the early Seventies Half Breed, Dark Lady and Gypsies, Tramps and Thieves. At the same time she was becoming a TV sensation on The Sonny and Cher Comedy Hour, which captured the first of her Golden Globes.

After the couple split in the mid-1970s, Cher went on to her own series The Cher Show, where her revealing Bob Mackie costumes caused an outrage from the censors over her exposed navel.

By the early 1980s, Cher was ready for a new challenge and turned her focus to acting. But it was an uphill battle for an untried actress now in her mid-30s to land roles. In 1982, she took a huge gamble in a Broadway production of "Come Back to the Five and Dime, Jimmy Dean, Jimmy Dean." But it paid off when Robert Altman cast her in the movie version, leading to a Golden Globe nomination.

That led to Silkwood in 1983, alongside Meryl Streep, followed by Mask with Eric Stoltz and Sam Elliott.

Four years later, Cher starred in three films, The Witches of Eastwick (with Jack Nicholson, Susan Sarandon, and Michele Pfeiffer), Suspect with Dennis Quaid, and Moonstruck.

Her roles as the frumpy bookkeeper in Moonstruck (with Nicolas Cage and Olympia Dukakis) won her the ultimate Hollywood accolade the Academy Award for Best Actress, as well as a Golden Globe and People's Choice Award. Cher had come a long way in the short five years since her Broadway debut.

In 1987, Cher went back into the recording studio for the first time since the early eighties, beginning a more rock-oriented phase that led to such major hits as I Found Someone, We All Sleep Alone, If I Could Turn Back Time, and three multi-platinum albums in quick succession.

In 1991, Cher starred with Bob Hoskins, Winona Ryder and Christina Ricci in the film Mermaids, based partially on her own childhood and featuring her international hit version of The Shoop Shoop Song (It's in His Kiss). In 1996, Cher co-executive produced and directed a segment of the controversial HBO abortion drama If These Walls Could Talk, with Demi Moore, Sissy Spacek and Anne Heche, once again earning a Golden Globe nomination for her acting.

It would take a trip to the UK and an introduction to the world of dance music for her next triumph in 1998. Cher's 23rd studio album, the Grammy-winning Believe was a critical and commercial smash, reaching number one in every country and selling an estimated 20 million copies.

Believe made Cher the oldest woman (at 52) to have a number one hit in the Hot 100 rock era. It made her the only female artist to have Top 10 hits in every decade from the 1980s to 2000s. Believe became the biggest selling single ever in the UK by a woman and took her back to the top of the US charts for a month.

The subsequent Believe tour was the most successful of her career at that point, but it would be eclipsed by the three-year, 325-show world Farewell Tour from 2003 to 2005. Playing to more than three million fans, and captured on film in an Emmy-winning NBC special, it remains the most successful tour by any female artist.

Soon after, Las Vegas beckoned and Cher at the Colosseum at Caesars Palace ran for three years and almost 200 concerts before winding down in February of 2011.

Cher most recently returned to the big screen to take on a starring role opposite Christina Aguilera in Screen Gems' musical Burlesque.


Note: This profile was written in or before 2011.
Read earlier biographies on this page.

Cher Facts

Birth NameCherilyn Sarkisian LaPierre
OccupationMusician, Actress
BirthdayMay 20, 1946 (71)
SignTaurus
BirthplaceEl Centro, California, USA
Height5' 8" (1m73)  How tall is Cher compared to you?
Awards1988 Academy Awards: Best Actress (for Moonstruck)
1988 Golden Globe Awards: Best Actress in a Motion Picture - Comedy or Musical (for Moonstruck)
1984 Golden Globe Awards: Best Actress in a Supporting Role - Motion Picture (for Silkwood)
1974 Golden Globe Awards: Best Actress in a Television Series - Musical or Comedy (for The Sonny & Cher Comedy Hour)

Selected Filmography

Suspect
Cher Live: The Farewell Tour
Moonstruck
The Very Best of Cher
Mask: Director's Cut
Burlesque
Dear Mom, Love Cher
Mermaids
Continue » Find more details on the Cher Movies page