An actress who never quite reached the ranks of stardom but who has given some extremely moving and capable performances, especially in the films written and directed by her late husband, John Cassavetes. After achieving success on Broadway in the late 1950s, Rowlands went to Hollywood and starred in such films as The High Cost of Loving (1958), Lonely Are the Brave, The Spiral Road (both 1962), and A Child Is Waiting (1963, an early "mainstream" movie directed by Cassavetes). She also worked in Tony Rome (1967), Two Minute Warning (1976), and The Brink's Job (1978). But it was her later work in Cassavetes' filmsincluding Faces (1968), Minnie and Moskowitz (1971), Opening Night (1977), and Love Streams (1984)-that attracted critics and audiences to this strong, attractive actress and her raw, no-holds-barred performances. Rowlands' work as a woman suffering a nervous breakdown in A Woman Under the Influence (1974) and an exmobster's girlfriend in Gloria (1980) earned her Best Actress Oscar nominations.