The Most Remarkable Roles of Kristen Johnston’s Acting Career and Facts About Her Family 

An insanely talented role-interpreter, American actress, Kristen Johnston has made a mark in Hollywood with mesmerizing displays onscreen. Having kickstarted her acting career in 1985, she has spent more than three decades in the industry during which time she starred in dozens of movies and TV series some of which are huge blockbusters. Some of her most notable roles include her work in 3rd Rock from the Sun – an ABC sitcom where she was cast as Sally Solomon.

Kristen Johnston has also had her own share of personal troubles. Like many celebrities in her industry, the actress found herself drowning in both hard substance and alcohol abuse at a very young age, consuming nothing less than two bottles of alcoholic wine on a daily basis. However, she was able to check herself into a rehabilitation center where she settled down to deal with the emotional aspects that pushed her into addiction.

How ‘3rd Rock from the Sun’ Announced Kristen Johnston to the World

Born in Washington DC on the 20th of November 1967, Kristen Johnston began her onscreen acting journey in 1985 with an appearance in the short film, The Orkly Kid. She moved quickly through the ranks, landing bigger roles in the early 1990s, however, it was her performance in the American sitcom, 3rd Rock from the Sun that changed the game for her.

Kristen Johnston
John Lithgow, Kristen Johnston, Joseph Gordon-Levitt, and French Stewart in 3rd Rock from the Sun (1996)

Kristen Johnston auditioned several times for 3rd Rock from the Sun before she was cast to play the main role of Sally Solomon in the series in 1996. The series, which is centered around four extraterrestrials on an expedition to Earth, became very successful and won many awards while it aired. In fact, in 1996, the show won five out of eight Primetime Emmy Award nominations which were the most for a television series.
Johnston’s performance in the series was lauded by many critics. In fact, her work on the show was so phenomenal that it earned her two Emmy Awards for Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Comedy Series. It also announced her to the world as a movie star of great renown who could compete at the highest level. The actress starred in the series from 1996 to 2001 and appeared in 139 episodes, winning lots of accolades and love from fans.

‘Austin Powers: The Spy Who Shagged Me’ Kept Kristen Johnston at the Top

Interestingly, while she was starring in 3rd Rock from the Sun, Kristen Johnston landed another remarkable role in yet another high-sounding onscreen production. In 1999, the actress was cast to play the role of Ivana Humpalot in Austin Powers: The Spy Who Shagged Me, an American spy comedy film.

Kristen Johnston and Mike Myers in Austin Powers: The Spy Who Shagged Me

Austin Powers: The Spy Who Shagged Me is actually the second installment in the Austin Powers film series. It became so successful that it raked more money during its opening weekend than the entire box office proceeds of its predecessor. The movie would eventually make a total of about $312 million.

Kristen Johnston was hailed by critics and it remains one of her significant roles in commercially successful movies. During this time, her fame skyrocketed especially because she was also on the very popular 3rd Rock from the Sun series at the same time.

After her performance in 3rd Rock from the Sun, Kristen Johnston went on to star in other popular series and feature movies. In 2002, she portrayed Sylvia Fowler in the TV movie Stage on Screen: The Women. In 2009, she was Irene Fox in Finding Bliss, and in 2011, she portrayed Francesca in Life Happens. She played Esmerelda in Thrill Ride in 2016 before landing the role of Anna Crouse in Daytime Divas.

Kristen Johnston Keeps the Fire Burning On ‘Mom’

In 2018, Kristen Johnston was cast to play Tammy in Mom is a top-notch signature comedy created by Gemma Baker, Eddie Gorodetsky, and Lorrie in September 2013. Kristen Johnston currently plays this role and is already well talked about by fans of the show.

Mom is a very successful show and has won several awards as a testament to this fact. The show has been received high ratings within its genre consistently since it premiered in 2013 and is reported to have an average viewership of 11.79 million.

Kristen Johnsto
Kristen Johnston on the set of Mom

Kristen Johnston’s appearance in Mom puts her on the lips of millions of people especially with her performance as a main character in the series.

Johnston comes from a well-to-do Family

It is noteworthy that Kristen Johnston comes from quite a well-to-family. The actress happens to be the daughter of a former Wisconsin Republican state senator Rod Johnston. Her father served as a senator while she was still a teenager. Apparently, she grew up surrounded by luxury and the limelight that comes from being a senator’s daughter.

During her formative years, Kristen Johnston’s family had to relocate to Fox Point, Wisconsin where she eventually completed her elementary education at St. Eugene’s Catholic Grade School before proceeding to Whitefish Bay High School. She would eventually study at the University of New York and the Tisch School of Arts, graduating with a degree in fine arts in 1989.

Kristen Johnston also has a younger sister called Julie Herschede with whom she grew up. She developed a strong bond with Julie as time went on and they became adults.

The Actress Suffered the Pain of Losing a Sister

Unfortunately, Kristen Johnston’s sister Julie Herschede died in August 2020, sending the actress into a deep mourning mood. Kristen Johnson shared the sad news on her Twitter page with her thousands of fans.

In her tweet, she revealed that her sisters and revealed that her sister passed away after a tough battle with addiction. She also paid tribute to Julie, explaining that she had the best belly laugh in the world.

Incidentally, Kristen Johnston also battled with addiction when she was much younger.

A Look into Johnston’s Battle with Addiction

Kristen Johnston has often talked about her struggle with addiction when she was much younger. The actress’ memoir titled ‘Guts: The Endless Follies and Tiny Triumphs of a Giant Disaster’ which came to light in 2012 talked about her teenage struggles with alcohol and hard substance. In her book, she recalled how she came very close to death as a result of substance and alcohol abuse but was able to overcome her shortcomings through sheer strong will and determination.

Kristen Johnston’s addiction was to a prescribed painkiller known as Vicodin and alcohol. According to the actress, her quota of daily alcoholic intake was a couple of bottles a day. She later took the conscious decision to get herself admitted into a rehab facility to seek the solution to her issues.

In one of her interviews, the actress confessed that she has remained sober for over ten years despite the difficulties she encountered from fighting her addiction. She is currently doing her possible best in encouraging people to voice out and seek help in dealing with their addictions.

Kristen Johnston was diagnosed with a medical condition known as lupus myelitis – a neurological disorder connected to inflammation of the spinal cord which demands prolonged hospitalization and treatment to recover.

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