Virginia Cathryn 'Gena' Rowlands (born June 19, 1930) is an American actress of film, stage and television. The four-time Emmy and two-time Golden Globe winner is best known for her collaborations with her actor-director husband John Cassavetes in ten films, in two of which, Gloria and A Woman Under the Influence, she gave Academy Award-nominated performances. Rowlands was born as Virginia Cathryn Rowlands in Madison, Wisconsin. Her mother, Mary Ellen (nee Neal), was a painter and housewife originally from Arkansas. Her father, Edwin Myrwyn Rowlands, was a banker and a state legislator. He was a member of the Wisconsin Progressive Party, and was of Welsh descent. She had a brother, David Rowlands. Her family moved to Washington, D.C.
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