Cybill Shepherd (Actress) - Moonlighting
Cybill Shepherd 1
Updated: 10/26/23

Name: Cybill Shepherd

Birth Name: Cybill Lynne Shepherd

Born: February 18, 1950 in Memphis, Tennessee, USA

Claim To Fame: Cybill Shepherd is an American actress and former model best known for playing Madeline Hayes on the detective comedy-drama Moonlighting (1985-1989) opposite Bruce Willis, for which she won two Golden Globes for Best Actress in a Comedy/Musical TV Series.

Family Life: In 1978, Shepard married David M. Ford. They have a daughter, Clementine Ford, born in 1979. The marriage ended in divorce in 1982. In 1987, Shepherd became pregnant and then married Bruce Oppenheim. They had twins named Ariel and Zachariah Shepherd Oppenheim born during the fourth season of Moonlighting. The couple divorced in 1990.

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Info: The daughter of Patty and Bill Shepherd.

She is the second of three children. She had an older sister, Terry, and has a younger brother, William.

Cybill was named with a blend of her grandfather Cy and her father Bill's names.

While attending East High School, Shepherd won the "Miss Teenage Memphis" title and represented the city at the 1966 Miss Teenage America pageant at age 16, where she won the congeniality award.

She competed at the 1968 "Model of the Year" contest at age 18, resulting in fashion model assignments through high school and afterwards.

Alumna of Stella Adler Studio of Acting.

Was in a relationship with filmmaker Peter Bogdanovich from 1971 to 1978. She gave him a signed photograph in which she addresses him as "Sven", short for "Svengali".

She had a relationship with author Larry McMurtry, whom she once called the love of her life.

She has actively fought against racism and received a plaque from the National Civil Rights Museum in her hometown of Memphis, Tennessee in 1992.

Inducted into the Texas Film Hall of Fame on March 10, 2006. The other inductees were Matthew McConaughey, Kris Kristofferson, JoBeth Williams and Lyle Lovett.

In June 2012, Shepherd became engaged to psychologist Andrei Nikolajevic, but called off the engagement three years later.

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Trivia: A 1970 Glamour magazine cover featuring Shepard caught the eye of film director Peter Bogdanovich which led to her getting casting in The Last Picture Show (1971). The film became a critical and box office hit, earning eight Academy Awards nominations and winning two. Shepherd was nominated for a Golden Globe.

In 1972, Shepherd was cast opposite Charles Grodin in The Heartbreak Kid. She played Kelly, a young woman for whom Grodin's character falls while on his honeymoon in Miami. Directed by Elaine May and written by Neil Simon, it was another critical and box office hit.

Shepherd posed as a Kodak Girl for the camera manufacturer's ad campaign and was seen on cardboard store poster displays.

In 1974, she launched a singing career, releasing a studio album Cybill Does It...To Cole Porter for MCA Records.

Shepherd received good reviews for her work in Martin Scorsese's Taxi Driver (1976). According to Shepherd, Scorsese had requested a "Cybill Shepherd type" for the role. She portrayed Betsy, a volunteer for a presidential candidate with whom Robert De Niro's character, Travis Bickle, becomes infatuated.

In 1982, Shepherd returned to New York and to the stage when she played alongside James MacArthur in a theatre tour of Lunch Hour by Jean Kerr.

Director John Glen talked to Cybill about the possibility of her playing the title role in the James Bond film Octopussy (1983), but the role eventually went to Maud Adams.

The following year, Shepherd went back to Los Angeles and was cast as Colleen Champion in the NBC television drama The Yellow Rose (1983), opposite Sam Elliott. It was critically acclaimed, but lasted only one season.

In 1985, Shepherd was cast as Maddie Hayes on Moonlighting (1985-1989), a role that defined her career. The producers knew that her role depended on having "chemistry" with her co-star, and involved her in the selection of Bruce Willis. A lighthearted combination of mystery and comedy, the series won Shepherd two Golden Globe Awards.

Originally she wanted Harley Venton to play the role of David Addison Jr. on Moonlighting (1985). The role eventually went to Bruce Willis.

During an appearance at the Emmy Awards, she wore orange Reebok Freestyle hi-top sneakers. This appearance gained her some fashion criticism for wearing orange Reeboks with a black formal strapless gown. Even on the set of Moonlighting (1985), Cybill would switch from pumps into comfortable Reebok sneakers. Sometimes the sneakers would get caught in scenes during filming.

She was awarded a Star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame for Television at 7000 Hollywood Boulevard in Hollywood, California on January 21, 1988.

In the documentary Picture This: The Times of Peter Bogdanovich in Archer City, Texas (1991), Shepard said she had affairs with four other members that she met on the set: co-star Jeff Bridges; director Peter Bogdanovich; writer Larry McMurtry; and producer Frank Marshall.

Turned down the role of Mrs. Mott/Peyton Flanders in The Hand That Rocks the Cradle (1992).

In 1997, she won her third Golden Globe award for Cybill (1995-1998), a television sitcom in which the title character, Cybill Sheridan, an actress struggling with hammy roles in B movies and bad soap operas, was loosely modeled on herself (including portrayals of her two ex-husbands).

Larry McMurtry's novel, "Texasville" (1987), is dedicated to her. "Texasville" is the sequel to "The Last Picture Show", the film version of which Shepherd made her acting debut as Jacy Farrow. She would reprise the role in the sequel's 1999 film adaptation.

In 2000, Shepherd's bestselling autobiography, Cybill Disobedience: How I Survived Beauty Pageants, Elvis, Sex, Bruce Willis, Lies, Marriage, Motherhood, Hollywood, and the Irrepressible Urge to Say What I Think, written in collaboration with Aimee Lee Ball, was published.

That same year, Shepherd hosted a short-lived syndicated talk show version of the book Men Are from Mars, Women Are from Venus, but left the show in early 2001.

From 2007 until the end of the series, Shepherd appeared on The L Word as Phyllis Kroll for the show's final three seasons.

In 2008, she joined the cast of Psych as main character Shawn Spencer's mother, Madeleine Spencer.

In July 2012, Shepherd made her Broadway debut in the revival of Gore Vidal's The Best Man at the Gerald Schoenfeld Theatre alongside James Earl Jones, John Stamos, John Larroquette, Kristin Davis, and Elizabeth Ashley.

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Where Are They Now: Earlier this year, In 2023, Shepherd starred in the Lifetime film How to Murder Your Husband: The Nancy Brophy Story. She portrayed Nancy Brophy, opposite Steve Guttenberg as Daniel Brophy.

Recently, all 67 episodes of the classic comedy series 'Moonlighting', starring Bruce Willis and Cybill Shepherd, has become available to stream on the service Hulu. I love that show!

It's always wonderful to see Shepherd on the screen. Hopefully, we will see her again soon. Maybe it'll be in another Lifetime movie or on a new series. Here's hoping!


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