Peter J. Kaplan
3 min readMar 31, 2020


Whew. Ooooh. Wow. Nah. Yeah. Really?

God was mighty good to Ellen Barkin.

Even in the aging department, but as we all know, time waits for no man, woman or beast.

But this woman’s hand holds trump cards galore.

She exudes sexiness somehow, no matter. No matter that she is not beautiful, not the most talented, not this and not that. She’s got it. Whatever it may be, Ellen Barkin has it in spades.

She’s sixty-two years old for chrissakes. 62.

Sometimes she may look it, sometimes not. I don’t know what it is.

Maybe it’s those narrow slotted eyes, a little too far apart. Or her longish, flattish slightly crooked nose. Or her magnetic smile which dramatically changes the contours of her face. Or even her body, surgically and cosmetically enhanced as it may be.

Some women — and men, I s’pose — have whatever this is and some simply do not.

I remember Ellen Barkin opposite Dennis Quaid in The Big Easy (1987).

Twenty-nine years ago she was 33 and played the role of State DA Anne Osborne to perfection. She was as steamy as the New Orleans climes — and then some.

In a movie career — including TV movies — beginning with an uncredited role in Up in Smoke (1978) and which spans parts of five decades, Barkin has received 8 industry-award nominations spiced with 4 wins: Sant Jordi Award — Best Foreign Actress, 1988-The Big Easy & Desert Bloom; Blockbuster Entertainment Award — Favorite Supporting Actress, 1997-The Fan; Primetime Emmy Award — Outstanding Lead Actress in a Miniseries or a Movie, 1998-Before Women Had Wings; and Golden Satellite Award — Best Actress in a Supporting Role in a Miniseries or a Motion Picture Made for Television, 1998-Before Women Had Wings.

In 2011 she received a Tony Award for Best Featured Actress in a Play celebrating her Broadway debut performance in The Normal Heart. Aaah.

The “big-time” at last, a Tony to go with her Emmy of 13 years prior.

The mother of 27- and 24-year-old sons from her first marriage to actor Gabriel Byrne, who interestingly was an invited guest attending her second wedding to multi-billionaire Ronald O. Perelman, marriage seemingly was not for her with both aforementioned unions ending in divorce.

Byrne of course remained a friend but not so with Perelman.

A touch of acrimony here perhaps? After receiving around $20 million from him in the 2006 settlement, Barkin turned around in 2007 and sued Ron O. for $3.4 million in investment funds he allegedly promised to pour into their film production company.

He was ordered to pay her $4.3 million.


So God not only made Ellen Barkin one of the sexiest women alive — from start to no doubt the finish — but also an unforgiving and brazen lioness who ruthlessly stalks her prey to the very end.

A pretty fair pair of character traits to boast.

A word to the wise?

Don’t get on her bad side.

Won’t work for you.

She’ll eat you alive.

[This piece was written by Mr. Kaplan in August 2016.]