Julia Sugarbaker, Mary Jo Shively, Charlene Frazier-Stillfield, and Suzanne Sugarbaker are associates at their design firm, Sugarbaker and Associates. Julia is the owner of and is very outspoken and strong-willed. Mary Jo Shively is a divorced single-parent who is just as strong-willed as Julia, but isn't as self-confident. Charlene is a naive and trusting farm girl from Poplar Bluff, Missouri. Suzanne Sugarbaker is a self-centered ex-beauty queen who has a number of wealthy ex-husbands.
Runtime: 30 minutes
Designing Women - Jean Smart - Netflix
Jean Elizabeth Smart (born September 13, 1951) is an American actress. After beginning her career in regional theater in the Pacific Northwest, she appeared on Broadway as Marlene Dietrich in Piaf in 1981. Smart was later cast in a lead role as Charlene Frazier Stillfield on the CBS sitcom Designing Women, which she played from 1986 to 1991. She was nominated for the Tony Award for Best Actress in a Play for the 2000 Broadway revival of The Man Who Came to Dinner, and would go on to win two Emmy Awards for her role as Lana Gardener on the NBC sitcom Frasier (2000–01), and a third Emmy in 2008 for her role as Regina Newley on the ABC sitcom Samantha Who? (2007–09). Her film credits include The Brady Bunch Movie (1995), Guinevere (1999), Sweet Home Alabama (2002), I Heart Huckabees (2004), and The Accountant (2016). Between 2006 and 2007, she portrayed Martha Logan on the series 24, and later starred as Floyd Gerhardt on Noah Hawley's FX series Fargo (2015), which earned her a Critics' Choice Television Award as well as an Emmy Award nomination. Since 2017, she stars in the FX series Legion, also by Hawley.
Designing Women - 1975–1984: Early work; theater - Netflix
After graduating from college, Smart began her career appearing in regional theater throughout the Pacific Northwest, including in Washington, Alaska, and Oregon. She performed with the Seattle Repertory Theater as well as the Oregon Shakespeare Festival in Ashland, Oregon. In the mid-1970s, she moved to New York City with college friend and fellow actress, Elizabeth Wingate (Lavery), and began working in Off-Broadway and professional regional productions. In 1980 she appeared as Lady Macbeth at the Pittsburgh Public Theater opposite Tom Atkins as Macbeth and Keith Fowler as Macduff. In 1981, Smart was nominated for a Drama Desk Award for her performance in the Off-Broadway play Last Summer at Bluefish Cove. In February 1981, Smart appeared in a Broadway production of Piaf playing Marlene Dietrich, a role which she would later reprise for the 1984 television version. In addition to theater, Smart began working in television in several smaller to mid-size guest parts in the late 1970s and early 1980s, appearing on The Facts of Life, Alice, and Remington Steele among several others. According to Smart, after roles on the short-lived series Teachers Only and Reggie in 1983, “casting directors just decided I was funny. When that happens, you usually get pigeonholed, but I was fortunate. I got to move back and forth.” The following year, she had a supporting part in the thriller Flashpoint (1984).
Designing Women - References - Netflix