Kate Mara was born in the town of Bedfast, New York. Her younger sister Patricia Mara (credited as Rooney Mara) is also an actress. Kate all grew up with two brothers, Daniel and Conor. Mara's family have stakes in the ownership of NFL's Pittsburgh Steelers and New York Giants teams.
Mara first began acting at the age of nine, when she performed in a school musical. Her love of acting continued throughout the rest of her childhood, and she enrolled and performed with a number of youth theatre companies.
In addition to her role on American Horror Story, Mara has also had major roles in a number of major motion picture productions. Some of these include Brokeback Mountain (2005), The Open Road (2009), The Martian (2015), and the remake of Fantastic Four (2015).
- Before landing the part of antagonist Hayden McClaine on American Horror Story, Mara had previously worked with series creator Ryan Murphy on Nip/Tuck.