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ELISABETH SHUE, Academy Award® nominee for "Leaving Las Vegas," was born in Wilmington, Delaware, and raised primarily in South Orange, New Jersey. She enrolled at Wellesley College in Massachusetts and studied government, aiming for a career as an attorney. A friend suggested she audition for work in TV commercials in order to help pay college expenses.

She landed a series of commercials and began studying acting at New York's Showcase Theatre.

An ABC talent scout spotted one of her commercials and the result was her professional acting debut in the acclaimed "Call To Glory" series starring Craig T. Nelson and Cindy Pickett. She soon won the top female role with Ralph Macchio in the popular feature film "The Karate Kid."

Early in her career, she earned admission to Harvard University and continues to work towards completion of a degree between projects.

Her other film roles include "Adventures In Babysitting," "Cocktail," opposite Tom Cruise; "The Marrying Man," with Kim Basinger and Alec Baldwin; and "Soapdish," with Sally Field, Kevin Kline and Whoopi Goldberg. Subsequently, she starred in "Radio Inside," "Twenty Bucks" "Heart And Souls" and Steven Soderbergh's "Underneath."

It was her extraordinary performance in the 1995 film "Leaving Las Vegas" that brought Shue worldwide stardom. Her performance was singled out for a number of honors, among them an Academy Award® nomination as Best Actress. She was named Best Actress by the Los Angeles Film Critics, National Society Of Film Critics, Dallas Film Critics and South Florida Film Critics, and won the Independent Sprit Award. She also received Golden Globe and Screen Actor's Guild award nominations for her work in the picture.

Her most recent credits include "The Trigger Effect," "The Saint," "Deconstructing Harry," "Cousin Bette," "Palmetto" and "Molly."

In the mid-'90s, she made an impressive New York theatrical debut in "Some Americans Abroad" at Lincoln Center. Other stage credits include "Birth And After Birth," which led to her participation in the development of a new theatre group called The Cooperative.

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