During the filming of The River Wild, the director called for one last take. Meryl declared she couldn't handle it, but after much persuasion, she went for it one more time. She was swept off the raft and was in very real danger of drowning before she was rescued. Upon exiting the river, she confronted her shaking director with the biting remark, "The next time I say I can't do something, I think we should believe me, don't you?"
While filming the scene in Out of Africa where she is introduced to her servants, she is wearing a close-cropped jacket. As soon as the take wrapped she yelled, "Get this thing off me!" and ripped off the jacket. A hand-sized beetle had crawled in soon after the cameras rolled, but Meryl, ever the professional, had continued filming the scene; much of that take remains in the final film.
She filmed the 'choice' in Sophie's Choice in one take and refused to reshoot it, saying it was too hard for her, as a mother, to go through that again. She later declared it to be the most difficult scene of her career and refused to watch it, ever - until Oprah had Meryl on her show and rolled the clip with no warning. Meryl was left devastated and shaking on national television. Funny enough, the appearance is not listed on Meryl's IMDb page and it is all but impossible to find the footage. It can only be seen, generally without applicable audio, in certain Meryl tributes on YouTube.
Not only has she broken nomination records for the Academy Awards, she has broken them for the Golden Globes (27 nominations, most recently for Hope Springs). With her win for Julie And Julia - against a category that included herself for her performance in It's Complicated - she now has the most Golden Globe wins ever, at eight.
She was referenced in the television show Castle: when Detective Beckett needed to gain the trust of some young witnesses, she claimed to have gone to a similar exclusive prep school. Castle believed her: when she revealed the truth, he said, "Well played, Ms. Streep!" to which she replied, "Which Meryl, Out of Africa or Mamma Mia!?" (highlighting the difference between Meryl's dramatic prowess and the fun she had as a Large Ham in the 2008 musical).
She has won the Triple Crown of the American (non-theatrical) acting awards (Oscar, Golden Globe, Emmy).
It is extremely rare for an actor and practically unheard of for an actress to stay married to their first spouse, yet Meryl Streep has been married only once, to sculptor Don Gummer, her husband for the past 33 years and counting - and, even more astonishingly, they have essentially remained out of the tabloids and kept their private life private.
Before marrying Gummer, she dated actor John Cazale. Their relationship was ended by his untimely death from cancer, but she stayed by his side until the very end.