Boston Legal Wiki
Meredith Eaton
406px-Meredith Eaton-Gilden 1
Meredith Eaton appears as dwarf attorney Bethany Horowitz on the series.
Personal Information
Gender/Sex: Female
Height: 4'0" (1.2 m)
Birth name: Meredith Hope Eaton
Also known as: Meredith Eaton-Gordon
Birthplace: Long Island, New York, U.S.
Years active: 1999–present
Spouse(s): Michael Gilden (2001-2006) (his death)
Brian S. Gordon (2008-present)
Character information
Appeared on: Boston Legal
Character played: Bethany Horowitz, who first appears in the Season 2 episode "New Kids on the Block"
Boston Legal Wiki

Meredith Hope Eaton (sometimes credited as Meredith Eaton-Gilden; born August 26, 1974)[1] appears as diminuitive, dwarf sized attorney Bethany Horowitz on Boston Legal in 18 episodes from Seasons 3-5. She is 4 feet tall[2] and refers to herself as a "short-stature actress".[1][3] She is best known for portraying the attorney Emily Resnick on the CBS television series Family Law (in which she was the first female dwarf to fill a regular role in an American prime time series), and for her recurring role as Bethany Horowitz on Boston Legal.

Early life[]

Eaton was born on Long Island, New York to a clinical psychiatrist mother and an administrative law judge father. She attended Hofstra University in nearby Hempstead, New York, where she was an active member of the Delta Phi Epsilon sorority; she graduated in 1996 with a degree in interdisciplinary studies, minoring in theater. In June 2007, she was named by Hofstra University as their Alumnus of the Month.

She later earned a master's degree in clinical psychology from the Derner Institute of Advanced Psychological Studies at Adelphi University, where she achieved a 4.0 grade point average. She would later credit her training in psychology for giving her a better ability to understand character dynamics in preparing for acting roles.

Professional career[]

Meredith's acting career began in 1999 when she attended an open casting call for the comedy film Unconditional Love. Despite it being her first audition, she won out over 500 women from Canada, the United States, and the United Kingdom to be cast in the role of Maudey Beasley.[4]

Unconditional Love was not released until 2002. Her performance was seen by Paul Haggis, who created the role of Emily Resnick for her on Family Law. Joining the cast in 2002, she continued with the series until its cancellation later that same year. She later had significant guest appearances on NYPD Blue, Dharma & Greg, CSI: Crime Scene Investigation, House and NCIS. She also appeared as herself in Standing Tall at Auschwitz, which was a History Channel documentary on the Ovitz family, and in No Bigger Than a Minute, an independent documentary on dwarfism which aired on the PBS program P.O.V.[5]

In 2006, she joined the cast of Boston Legal as Bethany Horowitz, a love interest to William Shatner's character Denny Crane. The role was written specifically for her by David E. Kelley.[6]

She has a dual career as both a mental health therapist and an actress, though she stated in 2007 that her acting career had priority. Finding difficulty in obtaining new roles following the cancellation of Family Law, and disliking the stereotypical parts frequently offered to little people in Hollywood,[7] she worked for a year at a locked, in-patient psychiatric unit in California, sometimes with dangerous patients. She has advised prospective professional actors to "(h)ave a backup plan" and has stated that her psychology degree is her "safety net".

Personal life[]

Eaton was married to Michael Gilden, also an actor, from May 20, 2001, until his death in Los Angeles on December 5, 2006. Eaton married Los Angeles photographer Brian S. Gordon on October 12, 2008. They have one child together.


Year Film Role Notes
2001 Dharma & Greg Kate Palmer "Pride & Prejudice"
NYPD Blue Stella Kensington "Family Ties"
2002 Unconditional Love Maudey Beasley
Family Law Emily Resnick (14 episodes)
CSI: Crime Scene Investigation Melanie Grace "A Little Murder"
2003 Mr. Ambassador Melody TV
2006 House Maddy "Merry Little Christmas"
P.O.V. Herself "No Bigger Than a Minute"
Boston Legal Bethany Horowitz (18 episodes, 2006–2008)
2007 Without a Trace Brenda Spivak "Claus and Effect"
(as Meredith Eaton-Gilden)
2008 Ball’s Out: The Gary Houseman Story Mrs. Tuttle
2009 NCIS Carol Wilson "Faith"
2011 NCIS Carol Wilson "Devil's Triangle"


External links[]

Template:Commons category

  • Template:IMDb name
  • Interview with Matthew Roloff of The Learning Channel (video)
  • Clip from the documentary No Bigger Than a Minute (video)