Stowe was born in Portland, Oregon and raised in Eagle Rock, a suburb of Los Angeles. She is the first of three children born to Mireya (née Mora) who had come from a prominent family in Costa Rica, and Robert Stowe, a civil engineer who was a native of Oregon. Stowe's father suffered from multiple sclerosis.
Between the ages of 10 and 18, Stowe took piano lessons. She originally aspired to become a concert pianist. Stowe would later explain that piano was an escape of not having to socialize with other children her age. She also accompanied her father on medical treatments. Her Russian-born music teacher Sergei Tarnowsky had faith in Stowe, even teaching her from his deathbed. Following his death at the age of 96, she quit. She later commented: "I just felt it was time to not be by myself anymore." Subsequently, Stowe went on her first date at the age of 18. She then studied cinema and journalism at the University of Southern California. Not overly interested in her classes, Stowe volunteered to do performances at the Solaris, a Beverly Hills theater, where a movie agent saw her in a play and got her several offers of appearances in TV and films .
For nearly fifteen years, Stowe appeared mostly in minor or supporting roles in movies and on TV. A few of her performances from this period are Stakeout, where she played with Richard Dreyfuss, and Revenge, which co-starred Kevin Costner. In 1992, she appeared in a supporting role as the wife of Kurt Russell in the gritty crime drama, Unlawful Entry. Also that year, Stowe played Cora Munro in The Last of the Mohicans, which also starred Daniel Day-Lewis.
The next year, director Robert Altman cast Stowe in Short Cuts, in which she gave one of her most acclaimed screen performances as the wife of a compulsive lying and adulterous police officer played by Tim Robbins. The following year, Madeleine played a blind musician in the thriller Blink, co-starring Aidan Quinn. The year after that, she was a sympathetic psychiatrist in the science-fiction movie Twelve Monkeys.
In 1995, Stowe was chosen by Empire as one of the "100 Sexiest Stars in film history". Stowe postponed her acting career in 1996 to concentrate on motherhood. In 1998, she came back with The Proposition, then The General's Daughter in 1999.
In 2001 she starred in the box office bomb science fiction film Impostor. In 2002 she starred in the movies We Were Soldiers with Mel Gibson and Avenging Angelo with Sylvester Stallone. In 2003 she starred in the thriller Octane.
In 2007 she appeared in the Jeff Goldblum detective drama Raines on NBC, a 2007 mid-season replacement. The series was canceled after two months. In 2009 she starred in the Lifetime movie The Christmas Hope. As of 2011, she stars as Victoria Grayson on the ABC's television drama series Revenge.
In 1982, Stowe married Brian Benben, whom she met on the set of a television movie the previous year. The couple have a son and daughter.
In 2008, Stowe travelled to Haiti and helped found Artists For Peace And Justice. She is on the advisory board of this foundation.
Madeleine Stowe - filmography
Madeleine Stowe facts
5 most recent filmsRevenge - Series 2 - 4.0 stars
Revenge - Series 1 - Complete - 4.0 stars
Revenge - S01 E16 - Scandal - 4.5 stars
Revenge - S01 E09 - Suspicion - 4.5 stars
Revenge - S01 E11 - Duress - 4.5 stars
5 highest-rated filmsRevenge - Series 1 - Complete - 4.0 stars
Revenge - Series 2 - 4.0 stars
Revenge - 3.0 stars
The Two Jakes - 3.0 stars
The Gangster Chronicles - The Roaring 20's - 2.5 stars
5 lowest-rated filmsThe Gangster Chronicles - Crime Incorporated - 1.0 stars
The Gangster Chronicles - The Violent Years - 1.0 stars
The Gangster Chronicles - 2.5 stars
The Gangster Chronicles - The Gangster Chronicles - 3.0 stars
The Proposition - 3.0 stars
Most frequent co-starsHenry Czerny - 46 times - show films
Gabriel Mann - 46 times - show films
Emily VanCamp - 45 times - show films
Josh Bowman - 45 times - show films
Nick Wechsler - 45 times - show films
Most frequent directorsMatt Earl Beasley - 9 times - show films
Sanford Bookstaver - 9 times - show films
Phillip Noyce - 7 times - show films
Bobby Roth - 6 times - show films
Ken Fink - 6 times - show films