Who is Joan Van Ark?
Joan Van Ark was born on 16 June 1943, in New York City, USA, and is an actress, best known for her role of Valene Ewing in the soap opera “Knots Landing”. She also had a Tony Award-nominated role for her performance in “The School for Wives” revival.
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The Riches of Joan Van Ark
How rich is Joan Van Ark? As of late-2018, sources estimate a net worth that is at $10 million, earned through a successful career in acting. She’s received numerous awards and award nominations throughout her career, and assuming she continues her endeavors, it is expected that her wealth will also continue to increase.
Early Life, Education, and Acting Beginnings
Joan is of Dutch ancestry; her parents worked as writers with her father also working as a public relations consultant. She grew up with three siblings, and the family moved to Boulder, Colorado, settling there. During high school, she served as a student reporter and interviewed actress Julie Harris who recommended that she attend the Yale School of Drama. This led her to attend the school on the scholarship, and she became one of the few students to reach the graduate program without earning an undergraduate degree. She enrolled in Yale for one year, and then began a professional career on stage, appearing in “The Miser” opposite Zoe Caldwell, then working on a production of “Death of a Salesman” alongside Jessica Tandy before being cast in the national touring party of “Barefoot in the Park”. In 1972, she earned a Tony nomination and a Theatre World Award for her performance in a production of “The School of Wives”, which led to a contract with Universal Studios.
After signing with Universal, Van Ark was cast in the television pilot for “The Judge and Jae Wyler”, but which wasn’t picked up by a network. She then became a regular cast member for several short-lived sitcoms, including “Temperatures Rising”. She mainly appeared in guest roles for the next few years, but gained a notable role as Valene Ewing in “Dallas”, a character she would later carry into the spin-off “Knots Landing” in 1979, and play the character for 13 seasons which saw three marriages during the show’s run. Her character’s mother was played by former mentor Julie Harris. For her work in “Knots Landing”, she earned two Soap Opera Digest Awards for Best Actress, and received six more nominations.
She tried her hand at directing work while a part of the show, and despite leaving in 1992, she returned for the show finale. She also reprised her role in the mini-series “Knots Landing: Back to the Cul-de-Sac”, and the non-fiction “Knots Landing Reunion: Together Again”. Some of her later projects included originating the role of Gloria Fisher Abbott in “The Young and The Restless”, which would be picked up later by Judith Chapman.
Joan returned to theatre, appearing in the off-Broadway production of “Love Letters”, and a production of the play “Three Tail Women”. Other projects included “As You Like It”, “Chemin de Fer”, and “Ring Around the Moon”, andshe continued winning awards thanks to her theatrical work, also appearing in numerous festivals in productions of “Macbeth” and “The Night of the Iguana”. She continued her television work too, mainly in guest roles in shows such as “The Six Million Dollar Man”, “Bonanza”, and “The Rockford Files”, plus some voice-acting work in the short-lived animated series “Spider-Woman”. In 2001, she was featured in an episode of the show “Son of the Beach” as Ima Cummings, and then reunited with co-star Donna Mills in an episode of the series “Nip/Tuck”.
She was honored as one of the cast members of “Knots Landing” during its 30-year anniversary, with other actors present during the event being Don Murray, Lisa Hartman Black, Kevin Dobson and Michele Lee. A few of her latest projects include a guest role in the revival of “Dallas”, a voice role in the video game “Fallout 4”, and another voice role in the animated series “Archer”.
For her personal life, it is known that Van Ark has been married to former KNBC-TV reporter John Marshall since 1966, and they have a daughter together. Joan has lessened her work in recent years mainly due to her age. Their daughter is singer, model, and voice actress Vanessa Marshall. Her daughter has worked on numerous animated series, films, and video games. Some of her most notable works include “Injustice 2”, Diablo III”, “Justice League: the Flashpoint Paradox”, and “Star Wars Rebels”. She’s also had a few live action roles mainly as a guest in shows such as “Jane the Virgin”, “The Bold and the Beautiful”, and “Scrubs”.