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Leading lady of film and TV who gained notice with her role as a waitress hunted by a robotic Arnold Schwarzenegger in James Cameron's successful and influential sci-fi adventure, "The Terminator" (1984). Her previous film credits include her feature debut "TAG: The Assassination Game" (1982) and a supporting role in "The Stone Boy" (1983), a drama starring Robert Duvall.

Hamilton acquired a devoted cult following with a part written expressly for her: the spunky New York lawyer who falls in love with an underground-dwelling freakish outcast on TV's wildly romantic "Beauty and the Beast" (CBS, 1987-90). She fared less well with other forgettable big-screen assignments, such as "Black Moon Rising" (1986), "King Kong Lives" (1986) and "Mr. Destiny" (1990).

Her greatest success came with "Terminator 2: Judgment Day" (1991), an awesomely popular sequel that depicted the relationship between a young John Connor (Edward Furlong) and the Terminator (Arnold Schwarzenegger) sent to protect him. Between installments, Hamilton’s character had metamorphosed from a wan waitress to a feisty warrior woman.

After a supporting role in the dramatic feature “Smile” (2005), about an American teenager (Mika Boorem) who travels to China as part of a charitable organization to meet her Chinese counterpart who receives corrective facial surgery, Hamilton made an appearance in “The Kid & I” (2005), about a down-and-out actor (Tom Arnold) hired to write a sequel to the action movie that made him famous over a decade ago.