Betty Thomas is an American director, actress, and producer of motion and TV pictures. She has played several notable roles throughout her career but is mainly famous for playing the role of Sergeant Lucy Bates in the popular TV series; Hill Street Blues. She even received an Emmy Award for that role as it was one of the best performances of her career. There are several female directors in Hollywood, but Betty is the only solo director and one of the two directors who have more than one film among the seventeen US highest-grossing films directed by a female. Two of the movies directed by Betty have made it to the top 25 highest-grossing female-directed films in the US. It is an outstanding achievement that only a few female directors have been able to achieve.
Betty Thomas was born on 27th July 1947 in St. Louis, Missouri. Her full name is Betty Lucille Nienhauser. Betty’s father’s name is William H. Nienhauser, and her mother is Nancy. She completed her graduation from Willoughby South High School, Willoughby, Ohio. She completed her higher education from the Ohio University, Athens, Ohio, and did her bachelor’s degree in Fine Arts. After completing graduation, Thomas started working as an artist and used to give lessons in a high school. After that, she joined the Second City Chicago premiere source for Improvisational theatre. Her outspoken natures, confidence, and other characteristics were highly appreciated, and it made her the first woman to direct a MainStage theatre production of ‘The Second City. She has also worked with the legendary actor Bill Murray. She shifted to the West after the Second City opened up a branch in Los Angeles.
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After shifting to Los Angeles, Betty’s acting career took off as she started getting minor roles in some films such as ‘Used Cards’ in 1980, ‘USN’ in 1976, and some comedy sketch films too, such as ‘Loose Shoes’ and ‘Tunnel Vision. She was also seen in ‘Troop Beverly Hills’ which was released in 1989. In the beginning, she was focused on building her career as a comedian but is shifted to becoming an actress when she got the role of Lucy Bates in ‘Hill Street Blues. It was an immensely successful TV series, and her role was highly appreciated all over the world. It also earned her several Emmy Award nominations for the Best Supporting Actress, and she also won the award in 1984-85.
Betty Thomas’s directing career started from ‘Hooperman’. She directed several episodes of the TV series, and after that, she also got a chance to direct some episodes of ‘Arresting Behaviour’ and ‘Dream On, which is an HBO series.
Betty Thomas is married to Douglas Thomas. There is no more information available about her husband or previous relationships. She has always kept her personal life away from the limelight, which is the reason that there are not more facts available about it.
Betty Thomas has earned a lot of money through her acting and directing actor, and she has a net worth of a whopping $10 million.