Mara Hobel is an American actress, best known for her role as the young Christina Crawford in the 1981 film “Mommie Dearest.”
Born on June 18, 1971, in New York City, Hobel knew from an early age that she wanted to be an actress. At the age of 3, she was singing and dancing, and listening to vaudeville routines and when she turned 5, she announced to her parents that nothing would stop her from pursuing her passion.
She would eventually catch the eye of a talent agent, who arranged for her to audition and win her first national television commercial with Dick Van Dyke. Before the age of 8 she would appear in over 150 commercials, ranging from fast food to toy products.
At the age of 8 she would make her motion picture film debut and land her most notable role.
In 1981 Hobel would land the role of young Christine Crawford in “Mommie Dearest”, a 1981 American biographical drama film directed by Frank Perry, based on the 1978 memoir of the same name by Christina Crawford.
The memoir recounts Christina’s abusive and tumultuous childhood with her adoptive mother, the famous Hollywood actress Joan Crawford, who was known for her roles in movies such as “Mildred Pierce” and “Whatever Happened to Baby Jane?”
The film stars Faye Dunaway as Joan Crawford and Mara Hobel, as the young Christina Crawford and Diana Scarwid as the adult Christina Crawford.
“Mommie Dearest” portrays the alleged physical, emotional, and psychological abuse that Christina and her brother Christopher experienced at the hands of their mother, who was allegedly obsessed with her career and image. The film has become a cult classic over the years, particularly due to Faye Dunaway’s over-the-top performance as Joan Crawford.
“Mommie Dearest” has been criticized for its melodramatic and campy style, but it remains a significant and controversial work that sheds light on the darker side of Hollywood’s golden age and the complex relationship between a famous mother and her children.
Hobel’s portrayal of the young Christina Crawford brought her critical acclaim and recognition in the industry, including a Young Artist Award and the notorious Razzie Award. On a side note, the organization behind the Razzie awards recently announced they will no longer be nominating anyone under the age of 18 for their award, after there was an uproar by the public when they nominated 12-year-old Firestarter star Ryan Kiera Armstrong for their Worst Actress award.
After Mommie Dearest Mara continued to work sporadically and appeared in television movies like The Wilder Summer and Doing Life.
Despite her early success, Hobel emphasizes that she had a normal childhood in Putnam Valley, New York. However, she had to balance her acting career with other activities, often missing out on typical school experiences to attend rehearsals and work with tutors.
Teaching the New Generation
At the age of 25, Hobel took a slight detour and served as a teacher and director at Rising Star Productions.
Hobel provided her expertise as a consultant to these students, offering guidance on finding agents, preparing for auditions, and selecting photographers for headshots.
She would buoy her acting career with small guest appearances in shows like Third Watch, The Jury and Law and Order.
After her appearnce in the 2008 movie, The Happening, Hobel would take a 7 year hiatus from acting.
Where is Mara Hobel Now?
It is unknown whether or not Hobel is still running her Rising Star Production business. Her website is not longer active and there are no social media profiles to indicate otherwise.
When it comes to acting, Hobel’s last role came in 2019, when she appeared in an episode of Blue Bloods, playing the character of Heidi Voorhees. Prior to that, she appeared as a jail receptionist in the 2015 movie True Story.
Hobel doesn’t maintain a social media presence and has not give any recent interviews. Little is known about her private life, except that she is married to a man named Mark Furrer and they have 2 sons and a daughter.