Fans of TV shows The Good Wife and ER know Julianna Margulies well. She’s played her fair share of strong women – Alicia Florrick, we’re talking about you. But how many of her fans know she was (and still is) horse-crazy?
Now the Emmy, Golden Globe and Screen Actors Guild award winner has written her memoir, Sunshine Girl: An Unexpected Life , which is being published by Penguin Random House. In an excerpt published by The Financial Times, Margulies recounts her love of horses and riding, writing, “There is a connection I feel with horses that is unlike anything I have ever experienced.”
She goes on to share how a pony named Baronet that she found wild and scruffy on an English marsh helped her cope when she was uprooted by her mother from the United States. Away from her father (her parents were divorced) she felt adrift, but as she puts it, “Baronet saved me that year.”
It’s a sentiment any horse lover and owner can relate to. Caring for the pony, spending time grooming and training it, helped her heal emotionally. She adds, “In some magical way I found Baronet when I needed him most.”
Margulies returned with her mother and sister to America, where she competed until she was 16 years old, but she had to give up the sport to focus on her studies and getting into college. Money at that stage in her life was an issue, and as we all know, horses are an expensive passion.
But she writes about landing the role in the TV mini-series Mists of Avalon, where she got to ride for the first time in 15 years. The stuntmen on set appreciated her expertise in the saddle and the actress was permitted to do her own stunt riding. During the battle scenes the horses were so well-trained that all she had to do was drop the reins and the animal would halt; she could fight with her sword, pick up the reins and gallop off without any leg aids.
Margulies has never owned her own horse, but she appears to be thinking about pursuing riding again, mentioning discussing the idea with her husband. We hope she mounts up soon.
Follow Julianna out on her official Instagram.