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I want a divorce.
~ Miranda to Daniel

Miranda Hillard is the deuteragonist of Mrs. Doubtfire. She is Daniel's ex-wife and Lydia, Chris, and Natalie Hillard's mother.

She is played by Sally Field.


Miranda lives in San Francisco with her husband of 14 years Daniel and their three children Lydia, Chris and Natalie. Miranda has become irritated by Daniel's carefree attitude and finds him unreliable.

On Chris' 12th birthday, Miranda refuses to allow him to have a party due to his bad report card. After returning home from work and finds the place trashed due to Daniel hiring a petting zoo for Chris' birthday party. This leds to Miranda arguing with Daniel over throwing Chris a party behind her back and ends with Miranda telling Daniel that they have grown apart and that she wants to divorce him. The court grants sole custody of the children to Miranda; shared custody is contingent on whether Daniel finds a steady job and a suitable residence within three months.

Miranda later picks up the children from Daniel's new home and tells him that she's intending to hire a housekeeper.

Miranda later gets various phone calls from potential housekeepers before finally getting a call from an elderly Scottish woman named Mrs. Euphegenia Doubtfire, who says that she has years of experience. Impressed, Miranda invites Mrs. Doubtfire over for an interview. Miranda is further impressed by Mrs. Doubtfire at the interview and decides to hire her as her housekeeper.

During Mrs. Doubtfire's time there, Miranda becomes good friends with her and is able to have a better relationship with her children.

Miranda later tells Daniel, who had asked to look after the children, that she cannot bare to dismiss Mrs. Doubtfire, who has made her family's life much better.

Miranda later invites Mrs. Doubtfire to her birthday party at Bridge's Restaurant, which was arranged by Miranda's new boyfriend Stuart "Stu" Dunmire.

At the party, Stu begins to choke on jambalaya spiked with powered pepper (which Stu is allergic to), Mrs. Doubtfire performs the heimlich manoeuvre to save him. She manages to save Stu, but her face peels away in the process, causing Miranda to discover that Mrs. Doubtfire was actually Daniel in disguise. Horrified and disgusted at this, Miranda storms out of the restaurant with the children.

At a later court hearing, the judge, displeased by Daniel's ruse, grants full custody of the children to Miranda with Daniel having supervised meetings with the children once a week.

Miranda and the children become depressed without Mrs. Doubtfire as she improved her lives. They watch an episode of Daniel's new show Euphegenia's House, which depicts him as Mrs. Doubtfire. Miranda visits Daniel on set and congratulates him on the success of the programme. She admits to Daniel that things were better with him involved.

Miranda later overrules the court ruling, allowing her and Daniel joint custody of the children. Sometime later, Miranda watches the children leave to be with Daniel before watching another episode of Euphegenia's House, where Mrs. Doubtfire discusses a letter sent into her by a girl, whose parents have divorced.


In contrast to Daniel, Miranda is a strict and serious parent, always setting and following the rules. She often gets frustrated with Daniel's antics, eventually leading to their divorce.


  • Catherine O'Hara, Laura Dern, the late Carrie Fisher, Kim Basinger, Geena Davis and Jennifer Aniston were all considered for the role of Miranda Hillard before Sally Field was cast.
  • The original ending to film involved Miranda and Daniel getting remarried. However, this idea was scrapped by recommendation of the characters portrayers Sally Field and Robin Williams, who did not wish to give children of divorced couples false hope, thus the film ended with Miranda and Daniel still divorced but on better terms.
    • It's also possible that the ending in which they remarried was originally considered because, in an early draft of the script, Stuart Dunmeyer was going to be actually a manipulative jerkish love interest who wanted to marry Miranda and send Lydia, Chris and Natalie to a boarding school, whereas in the finished film, Stuart is presumed to keep dating Miranda and is nice and kind-hearted.


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