Rene Marie Russo (born February 17, 1954) is an American actress and former model. Russo was born in Burbank, California, the daughter of Shirley (ne Balocca), a factory worker and barmaid, and Nino Russo, a sculptor and car mechanic who left the family when Rene was two. Her father and maternal grandfather were of Italian descent. Russo grew up with her sister, Toni, and their single mother. She attended Burroughs High School (where her classmates included director Ron Howard), but eventually dropped out in the tenth grade. To help her family, she began taking a variety of part-time jobs including working in an eyeglass factory, and as a movie cashier. Russo started a modeling career after allegedly being spotted at a 1972 Rolling Stones concert by John Crosby, an agent from International Creative Management.
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