New York City
Claim to Fame
Valene Ewing on Dallas
Profile Bio Text
Joan Martha Van Ark (born June 16, 1943) is an American actress, most notable for her role as Valene Ewing, which she originated on the CBS hit series Dallas and continued for thirteen seasons on its long-running spin-off, Knots Landing. Van Ark has also received a Theatre World Award and been nominated for a Tony Award for her stage work. Van Ark was born in New York City, the daughter of Dorothy Jean (née Hemenway), a writer, and Carroll Van Ark.
After receiving a contract with Universal Studios, Van Ark co-starred with Bette Davis in The Judge and Jake Wyler, a 1972 television pilot that failed to be picked up by NBC. After working for several years in a variety of guest roles on television, she gained her best-known role as Valene Ewing (originally as a one-time guest appearance on Dallas) in 1978. However, writers later worked the character into a couple of additional episodes; she then carried the character over into the long-running spin-off Knots Landing in 1979. She remained with Knots Landing for thirteen of the show`s fourteen seasons, leaving in 1992 (although she did return for the series` final episode in May 1993). In the story line she was married three times to husband Gary Ewing played in the series by Ted Shackelford. During her thirteen seasons on Knots Landing, Van Ark earned six nominations and two Soap Opera Digest Awards for Best Actress. During the series` run, Van Ark became best friends with co-star Michele Lee, mirroring their characters` on-screen relationship. Van Ark also starred in the TV comedies, Temperatures Rising and We`ve Got Each Other. After leaving Knots Landing, she starred in an ill-fated pilot called Spin Doctors, a sitcom for NBC that was not picked up. In May 1997, she reprised her role of Valene Ewing in the CBS mini-series, Knots Landing: Back to the Cul-de-sac, while in December 2005, Van Ark appeared in the non-fiction reunion Knots Landing: Together Again in which she reminisced with the other cast members of the long running CBS television show. In addition, she originated the role of Gloria Fisher/Abbott on CBS television`s The Young and the Restless from 2004 - 2005, then decided to leave the role and was replaced by Judith Chapman.
In 2008, Van Ark was reunited with her Knots Landing co-star Donna Mills in an episode of the FX drama series Nip/Tuck. She also appeared at the TV Land awards in April 2009 where Knots Landing was being honoured on its 30 year anniversary. Other Knots Landing actors that appeared with her include Kevin Dobson, Lisa Hartman Black, Michele Lee, Constance McCashin, Donna Mills, Don Murray, Michelle Phillips, and Ted Shackelford, along with Dallas and Knots Landing creator David Jacobs. Joan Van Ark has been married to husband John Marshall, a former reporter with KNBC-TV, since February 1, 1966. They have one child, voice actress/performer Vanessa Marshall (born October 19, 1969).
Couple Profile Source
Drama, Yale University
Full Name at Birth
Joan Martha Van Ark
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Joan Van Ark (born June 16, 1943) is an American actress, most notable for her role as Valene Ewing, which she originated on the CBS series Dallas and continued for thirteen seasons on its spin-off, Knots Landing. A life member of The Actors Studio, Van Ark has also received a Theatre World Award and been nominated for a Tony Award for her stage work.
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1963 - present
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