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Sarah Michelle Gellar
Facts about Sarah Michelle Gellar
Biography for Sarah Michelle GellarSarah Michelle Prinze, (born Apr. 14, 1977 (36 years ago)) better known by her birth name of Sarah Michelle Gellar is best known for her role as the character Buffy Summers in the TV series Buffy the Vampire Slayer, for which she won a total of six Teen Choice Awards, and the Saturn Award for Best Genre TV Actress and received a Golden Globe Award nomination. She won a Daytime Emmy Award for her role in All My Children as character Kendall Hart.
She is also well known as a movie actress, with starring roles in the drama Cruel Intentions (1999, 14 years ago); the slasher movie I Know What You Did Last Summer (1997, 16 years ago); another film, Scream 2 (1997, 16 years ago); the independent movie Harvard Man (2001, 12 years ago); the family movie Scooby-Doo (2002, 11 years ago) as Daphne Blake, and the American remake of Japanese horror movie The Grudge (2004, 9 years ago). Gellar played an ex-porn star in Richard Kelly's Southland Tales (2007, 6 years ago) and was part of an ensemble cast in The Air I Breathe (4 walls) (2008, 5 years ago).
Early yearsGellar was born in New York City, the only child of Rosellen (née Greenfield), a nursery school teacher, and Arthur Gellar, a garment worker. Both of her parents were Jewish, though Gellar's family had a Christmas tree during the holidays while she was growing up. In 1984 (29 years ago), her parents divorced and she was brought up by her mother on the Upper East Side. She was estranged from her father from this time until his death from liver cancer on Oct. 9, 2001 (12 years ago).
Gellar attended New York's Columbia Grammar & Preparatory School on a scholarship, and the Professional Children's School. Gellar held a straight-A average and became a competent figure skater. Her best friend was Melissa Joan Hart, who later was the star of the series Sabrina, the Teenage Witch. She also became close friends with Lindsay Sloane, who became Gellar's bridesmaid at her wedding in sep. 2002 (11 years ago).
Early careerAt the age of four, Gellar was spotted by an agent in a restaurant in Uptown Manhattan. Two weeks later, she auditioned for a part in An Invasion Of Privacy, a made-for-TV movie starring Valerie Harper, Carol Kane and Jeff Daniels. At the audition, Gellar read both her own lines and those of Harper, impressing the directors enough to cast her in the role. A short while later, she appeared in a controversial TV commercial for Burger King, in which she criticized McDonald's and claimed to eat only at Burger King. This led to a lawsuit by McDonalds against Burger King, ad agency J. Walter Thompson, and child-actress Gellar herself, who appeared in court as a witness for the defense. The dispute was eventually settled out of court. Gellar continued to make commercials while appearing in acting roles, including playing Emily in an episode of the TV series Spenser: For Hire, appearing in a minor role in the movie Funny Farm starring Chevy Chase and in the movie High Stakes, and filming in Europe for the TV series Crossbow. In 1991 (22 years ago), she played a young Jacqueline Bouvier in A Woman Named Jackie.
Gellar's first major break in 1992 (21 years ago), when she starred in the serial Swans Crossing and was subsequently cast in the soap opera All My Children, playing Kendall Hart, the long-lost daughter of character Erica Kane (Susan Lucci). In 1995 (18 years ago), at the age of eighteen, she won a Daytime Emmy Award for Outstanding Younger Leading Actress in a Drama Series for the role. It was on the set of this soap opera that she met Michelle Trachtenberg (25 walls) who would later join the Buffy the Vampire Slayer cast.
Breakthrough (1997–2003)Gellar left All My Children in 1995 (18 years ago) amid rumors of a strained working relationship with Lucci. Gellar stated that she was screen tested eleven times (originally auditioning for the role of Cordelia), before she landed the lead in the 1997 (16 years ago) TV series Buffy the Vampire Slayer, playing a teenager burdened with the responsibility of fighting a number of mystical foes, mostly vampires. The show was well received by critics and audiences alike, spawning a spin-off series (Angel), which featured two episodes in which she notably guest starred. Throughout its seven seasons and a total of 144 episodes, Buffy, and by extension Gellar, became cult icons in the United States, the UK and Australia, particularly as archetypes of "empowered" women. Gellar sang several of the songs during the Buffy the Vampire Slayer musical episode "Once More, with Feeling", which spawned an original cast album.
Gellar has also hosted Saturday Night Live a total of three times (1998, 1999 (14 years ago), and 2002 (11 years ago)), appearing in a number of comedy sketches. In 2000 (13 years ago), Gellar guest appeared as Debbie in the HBO series Sex and the City episode "Escape from New York". Gellar has lent her voice to animated TV series, The Simpsons (15 walls) (1 walls), King of the Hill, and several episodes of Robot Chicken.
Gellar built on her TV fame with a motion picture (wallpaper) career, and had intermittent commercial success. After roles in the popular thrillers I Know What You Did Last Summer and Scream 2 (both 1997 (16 years ago)), she starred in the 1999 (14 years ago) movie Simply Irresistible, a romantic comedy. Cruel Intentions (1999, 14 years ago), a modern-day retelling of Les Liaisons dangereuses featured a kiss between Gellar and co-star Selma Blair that won the two the "Best Kiss" award at the 2000 (13 years ago) MTV Movie Awards. This movie was a modest hit at the box office, grossing over $38 million in the United States and over $75 million worldwide, and earned several awards and nominations. Critic Roger Ebert stated that Gellar and co-star Ryan Phillippe "develop a convincing emotional charge" and that Gellar is "effective as a bright girl who knows exactly how to use her act as a tramp". Gellar’s role showed her versatility as an actress, and many were surprised to see her playing a brunette cocaine addict with an appetite for manipulating and using people. Her performance was praised by a number of critics, including Rob Blackwelder for SPLICEDwire, who wrote about the “dazzling performance by Sarah Michelle Gellar who plunges headlong into the lascivious malevolence that makes Kathryn so delightfully wicked. (Plus she looks great in a corset.)”.
Gellar next played a lead role in James Toback's critically unsuccessful independent Harvard Man (2001, 12 years ago), where she played the daughter of a mobster. The movie included two sex scenes with Gellar, helping her shed her good girl image (wallpaper) even more after 1999's Cruel Intentions.
Rolling Stone said, "Yes, that's our Buffy, Sarah Michelle Gellar, playing a cheerleader who is not above sneaking off to the woods with her boyfriend, hiking up her skirt, sitting on his dick and bumping and grinding without missing a beat in the conversation. Gellar is a long way here from Scooby-Doo – thank the gods – and James Toback's Harvard Man is an even longer way from the Hollywood drool that pretends to take on issues – sexual, ethical, criminal – that often come with a college education".
During her growing movie career Gellar continued work on the TV series Buffy the Vampire Slayer. However, during the show's later years, Gellar expressed dissatisfaction about certain aspects of the show. Shortly after the show's end, Gellar stated that she had no interest in appearing in a Buffy feature film, although since then she has said she will consider it if the script is good enough. She did not appear in the final season of Angel, causing the intended episode ("You're Welcome") to be rewritten for the character of Cordelia Chase. Gellar has said that she was willing to appear in the episode, but scheduling conflicts and family problems prevented it. Another actress voiced Buffy for an animated series based on the show, which never aired, and the various Buffy video games.
In her feature in Esquire magazine Gellar expressed her pride for her work on Buffy, "I truly believe that it is one of the greatest shows of all time and it will go down in history as that. And I don’t feel that that is a cocky statement. We changed the way that people looked at TV." Gellar's likeness is used in the comic continuation of the series.
Later career (2004–present)After the end of Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Gellar's next movie was the 2004 (9 years ago) horror movie The Grudge, which was a success at the box office. David Wirtschafter, the president of the William Morris Agency (which represented Gellar), subsequently told The New Yorker that the success of The Grudge "takes our client Sarah Michelle Gellar, who now is nothing at all, and...makes her a star, potentially. Suddenly, the Sarah Michelle Gellar space is meaningful". The remark led Gellar to terminate her association with the agency; Gellar is now represented by the Creative Artists Agency.
Gellar appeared in the sequel The Grudge 2, which opened in Oct. 2006; in the film, she has a minor role reprising her character from the first film. Gellar next appeared in the thriller The Return, which was released the following month. Sarah played a businesswoman haunted by memories of her childhood and the mysterious death of a young woman. The movie was marketed as a horror movie and many including critics were surprised to find The Return was, as Rafe Telsch said, "just a murder mystery with a few supernatural elements". The movie pulled in a disappointing $4,800,000 weekend gross with little promotion.
Gellar then lent her voice to two animated films: the animated fairy tale Happily N'Ever After, and Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles. She followed those with a string of movies including Southland Tales, The Air I Breathe (4 walls), Suburban Girl (earlier known as "A Girl's Guide to Hunting and Fishing"), and Possession (a supernatural thriller based on the South Korean movie Jungdok known to English language audiences as Addicted). Southland Tales opened at the Cannes movie Festival in May 2006 (7 years ago) and was released in the US in Nov. 2007 (6 years ago).
Suburban Girl and The Air I Breathe (4 walls) were screened at the 2007 (6 years ago) Tribeca movie Festival. Suburban Girl eventually went straight to video in early 2008 (5 years ago), much to fans' disappointment. It was described as "a blend of Sex and the City and The Devil Wears Prada" and a "pseudo-sophisticated romantic comedy" according to Variety.com Her on screen chemistry with Alec Baldwin was either criticised or praised, with Eye For movie commenting, "The movie works best when Baldwin and Gellar are together - aside from the fact that Gellar seriously needs to eat a bun or two". movie website moviepictirefilm.com stated "Gellar and Baldwin both give wonderful performances and make their chemistry incredibly real and ultimately, quite heartbreaking. Containing a ton of laughs and killer fashion that could give "The Devil Wears Prada" a run for its money, this movie has something uncommon in most romantic comedies, tons of style and a huge heart."
The Air I Breathe (4 walls) was released theatrically the same month to generally poor reviews. The New York Times called it a "gangster movie with delusions of grandeur." However, Gellar's performance was praised by a number of critics, DVD (Digital Versatile Disc) Talk Review noted that "her character here has the deepest emotional arc, and she hits all the right notes."
Gellar was offered a role in Stardust (20 walls) but turned it down to spend more time with her husband. Other roles she turned down include the role of Juliet in Romeo + Juliet (having had to turn it down due to scheduling conflicts with All My Children) and an undisclosed role in The Faculty. She was also offered the role of Brittany Foster in The In Crowd, but turned it down. The part later went to Susan Ward.
The movie Possession, starring Gellar, has had a range of release dates - starting with Feb. 2008 (5 years ago). The movie was finally set to be released in theatres in Jan. 2009 (4 years ago), but due to financial problems at YARI movie Group, the release was yet again pushed forward. In Mar. 2009 (4 years ago) it was announced that the movie would skip theatrical release altogether, and go straight to DVD/Blu-Ray. It was set to be released on May 12, 2009 (4 years ago). However, the movie was not released on DVD/Blu-Ray as scheduled.
Gellar will also star in Veronika Decides to Die (2009, 4 years ago). The movie tells the story of a young woman suffering from severe depression who rediscovers the joy in life when she finds out that she only has days to live following a suicide attempt. Filming of the movie began on May 12, 2008 (5 years ago), in New York City and finished in late June. It was reported that Kate Bosworth (17 walls) was previously attached to the project. On Jun. 25, 2008 (5 years ago), it was announced she is no longer attached to the movie version of the video game American McGee's Alice.
It was reported on sep. 25, 2008 (5 years ago) that Gellar would return to TV in the HBO series The Wonderful Maladys. The show is about three dysfunctional adult siblings living in New York and struggling to deal with the loss of their parents years ago. Creator Charles Randolph told Variety that he wrote the part with Gellar in mind, and described Gellar's character as having "a kind of zealous immaturity – like a drug addict with a to-do list." Gellar and Randolph will serve as executive producers. HBO shot the pilot in May 2009 (4 years ago).
Box office statusAs of sep. 2008 (5 years ago), Gellar's movies have grossed $627.3 million, putting her on par with other actresses such as Reese Witherspoon (11 walls), and Jennifer Lopez. Gellar's most successful starring role is in The Grudge, which opened with $39.1 million opening weekend and grossed over $110 million in the US alone.
Personal lifeGellar met future husband Freddie Prinze, Jr., during filming of the 1997 (16 years ago) teen horror movie I Know What You Did Last Summer but the two did not begin dating until 2000 (13 years ago). They were engaged in Apr. 2001 (12 years ago) and married in Mexico on sep. 1, 2002 (11 years ago) in a ceremony officiated by Adam Shankman, a movie director and choreographer with whom Gellar had worked on Buffy the Vampire Slayer. Gellar's bridesmaid was her closest friend of many years, Lindsay Sloane. In 2007 (6 years ago), Gellar legally changed her name to Sarah Michelle Prinze in honor of the couple's fifth year of marriage. In 2004 (9 years ago), while filming The Grudge in Japan, Gellar visited the famous Japanese swordsmith Shoji Yoshihara (Kuniie III) and bought a Katana from him as a birthday present for her husband. Gellar realized that she needed clearance from the government to remove the sword from the country, and after eventually succeeding, stated that it was "incredibly difficult" to do.
Gellar has also reflected on her choices as an actress; she frequently mentions how "proud" she is of Buffy the Vampire Slayer. She has also been her own critic, talking about movie roles she has taken, saying, "Simply Irresistible was just a bad choice - and for that, it was a great learning experience. I wasn't ready to make that movie. I was too young. The script was not ready. I knew in my heart before I left to make it that I should back out."
During her 2006 (7 years ago) interview with Marie Claire, Gellar spoke about her thoughts on the movie industry for women. She spoke about her views on the roles of women in movies saying, "You realize it's a very tough market for women. For me it's about getting roles where women get to do something active, not the girlfriend, not the wife. There are mainly two types of roles for us, women in-jeopardy movies and romantic movies." Gellar has been praised by fans and critics alike for being a strong role model for young girls and women. Gellar went on to speak about how the business has changed and about magazine-cover attention-seeking Hollywood-starlets. Gellar said (when the interviewer said she was shocked at how many actresses seem to 'need' to be on the cover of a magazine like Us Weekly), "Can I interrupt you? Do you think those actresses strive to be on those covers? Because I don't, I think it's people striving to get that celebrity position, but I think you'll find that most 'actors' don't want that. Because when you know too much about them, it takes away the illusion that a movie creates."
Gellar is also an active advocate for various charities, including breast cancer research, Project Angel Food, Habitat for Humanity and CARE, a leading humanitarian organization fighting global poverty, all of which she says you get to "physically do something". She says, "I started because my mother taught me a long time ago that even when you have nothing, there's ways to give back. And what you get in return for that is tenfold. But it was always hard because I couldn't do a lot. I couldn't do much more than just donate money when I was on the show because there wasn't time. And now that I have the time, it's amazing."
Gellar has said in interviews that she believes in God, but does not belong to an organized religion. Gellar has said in interviews that she collects rare editions of classic children's literature. Gellar has four tattoos. She has a symbol for integrity on her lower back; a heart, a dagger and a cherry blossom on her ankle and two dragonflies on her back. Gellar has revealed that she suffers from a phobia of being buried alive. She has said "I really fear graveyards and I have a big phobia of being buried alive. It was really hard being an ass-kicking vampire slayer when you are afraid of graves."
It was reported by People magazine that Gellar and husband Prinze, Jr. are expecting their first child which is due in Fall 2009 (4 years ago).
TV voice acting
Awards and nominations
External links to Sarah Michelle Gellar
Linked to Sarah Michelle Gellar
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