'Top Gun' actress Kelly McGillis working for N.J. rehab, enjoying life | Movies | NewJerseyNewsroom.com -- Your State. Your News.


Jul 01st
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'Top Gun' actress Kelly McGillis working for N.J. rehab, enjoying life

mcgillisKelly052311_optBY ALICIA CRUZ

Actress Kelly McGillis left Florida behind to become a resident of New Jersey where she enjoys a comfortable, semi-private life in suburban South Jersey, and other than wanting to take a spiritual pilgrimage to India, and spend more time with her grandchildren, she says she is perfectly happy and content, she told CNN.

The Golden Globe nominated actress who starred in hit movies such as "Witness," "Top Gun" and "The Accused," attended the Julliard School of music, dance and drama. She graduated in 1983 and starred in her first film, “Reuben, Reuben” the same year.

Her second high profile film role came in 1986 as "Charlotte 'Charlie' Blackwood," the flight instructor who stole Tom Cruise's heart in “Top Gun.” A 1982 tragedy in her life encouraged McGillis to take the role of A.D.A. Kathryn Murphy in "The Accused."

While studying acting in New York City, two men broke into her apartment. One of the assailants was a 15-year-old boy, later convicted of raping McGillis. He apologized to the actress through his attorney following a separate conviction in two other rapes, the Associated Press reported.

Following her role in "The Monkey's Mask," in 2000, she took some time away from the Hollywood scene in order to raise her children and deal with an addiction to alcohol and drugs. Though she told the Star-Ledger that she's never seen a horror film, that didn't stop her from starring as a vampire-fleeing nun in "Stake Land," and doesn't seem to be a hindrance to her starring in another horror flick, "The Innkeepers." The film tells the story of two employees at the haunted Yankee Pedlar Hotel, and has a 2011 release date.

During her time away from acting, McGillis and her second husband, Fred Tillman, who divorced in 2002 after 13 years of marriage, settled in Key West, Florida where they opened a restaurant, Kelly’s.

McGillis surfaced in news headlines when, during a 2009 interview with SheWired vlogger Jennifer Corday, she announced she was, “done with the man thing.” The California-born actress told Corday her journey to accepting her sexuality as a lesbian had been an ongoing process for her since age 12.

In 2010, she and partner, Melanie Leis entered into a civil union at a ceremony in Collingswood. Leis met McGillis in 2000 when the sales executive was a bartender at Kelly’s.


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