Sunday, May 13, 2007

Katherine Heigl

Katherine Marie Heigl (born November 24, 1978) is a Golden Globe-nominated American actress. Heigl is best known for her roles on the TV series Roswell and Grey's Anatomy.

Her birth name is Katherine Marie Heigl. Her nickname is Katie. Heigl was born in Washington, D.C. to Paul Heigl (a German-Irish American financial executive) and Nancy (a German American); she was raised a member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (Mormon). She is the youngest of five children (in addition to siblings Meg, Jason, Holt and John Heigl). Heigl lived in Virginia and then Denver before her family settled in Connecticut, where they moved into a large, old Victorian-style farmhouse in the wealthy town of New Canaan . It was there that Katherine was to spend the majority of her childhood.In 1986, her 15-year-old older brother Jason died of injuries suffered in a car accident, after being thrown from the back of a pickup truck. When doctors determined Jason was brain-dead following an 8-hour operation, the family made the difficult decision to donate his organs to help save others. The Heigl family was never in any doubt that Jason would have wanted his organs and tissues donated for transplant. Heigl is now a strong proponent of organ donation.

When Heigl was 9, an aunt visiting the family decided to take a number of photographs of the young Heigl. After returning to her home in New York, the aunt sent the photos to a number of modeling agencies, with the permission of Heigl's parents. Within a few weeks, Heigl was signed as a child model. Almost immediately, a client slated Heigl for use in a magazine advertisement. She made her debut in a magazine advertisement and was soon earning $75 an hour posing for Sears and Lord & Taylor catalogs. Television jobs soon followed, the first in a national spot for Cheerios cereal.

Her acting debut came with an appearance in the 1992 movie That Night. Heigl appeared as Christina Sebastian in Steven Soderbergh's Depression-era drama King of the Hill before being cast in her first leading role as Nicole in the 1994 comedy My Father the Hero. During this time, Heigl continued to attend New Canaan High School, balancing her film and modeling work with her academic studies.

She then appeared opposite Steven Seagal as Sarah in the 1995 action thriller Under Siege 2: Dark Territory. Despite an increased focus on acting, she still modeled extensively, appearing regularly in magazines such as Seventeen. She took the lead role in Disney's made-for-television film Wish Upon a Star in 1996. Also in 1996, Heigl's parents divorced and her mother was diagnosed with cancer. After her high school graduation in 1997, she moved with her mother into a 4-bedroom house in Malibu Canyon, Los Angeles, and her mother became her manager.

In 1998, she co-starred with Peter Fonda in a re-working of the classic Shakespearian play The Tempest, set during the American Civil War. Later that year, she starred in the horror film Bride of Chucky.

In 1999, Heigl turned her attention to television when she accepted the role of Isabel Evans on the science fiction TV drama Roswell, a role that was expanded in the show's second and third seasons. Heigl was frequently featured in photo essays in magazines such as Life, TV Guide, and Teen as well as FHM. She appeared in the FHM and Maxim calendars, FHM's annual 100 sexiest women in the world, and was featured in the Girls of Maxim Gallery. In May 2006, Maxim awarded her #12 on their annual Hot 100 List as well as voted the 19th "Sexiest Woman in the World" by readers of FHM magazine. While Roswell was in production, Heigl worked on several films, including 100 Girls, an independent 2001 film in which she played competitive tomboy Arlene, and Valentine, a horror film starring David Boreanaz and Denise Richards in which she played medical student Shelley Fisher, who was killed during the film's opening scene.

Heigl accepted a role in Ground Zero, a television thriller scheduled to be telecast that fall which was based on the bestselling James Mills novel The Seventh Power, in the spring of 2001. She co-starred as a brilliant and politically-concerned college student who helps to build a nuclear device to illustrate the need for a change in national priorities; the device ends up in the hands of a terrorist following betrayal by a fellow student. After the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks, however, the film was shelved when its plot was considered too inappropriate; it re-emerged in 2003 under the title Critical Assembly. After the terrorist attacks, Heigl recorded a passionate public service announcement for the American Red Cross in an effort to help raise money for victims.

In 2003, Heigl appeared in three television movies. She returned to the horror genre with Evil Never Dies, a modern-day variation on the Frankenstein story co-starring Thomas Gibson. Love Comes Softly, for Hallmark Entertainment, found Heigl starring as Marty Claridge, a young, pregnant newlywed traveling west. (She reprised the role of Marty in the sequel Love's Enduring Promise the next year.) And finally, Heigl played Isabella Linton in MTV's modern revamp of Emily Brontë's classic novel Wuthering Heights. In October 2003, Heigl was cast opposite Johnny Knoxville in The Ringer, a Farrelly brothers comedy that was released in December 2005. Heigl starred as Romy in the 2005 television movie Romy and Michele: In the Beginning, a prequel to the 1997 theatrical film Romy and Michele's High School Reunion.

2005 saw Heigl cast in what would become her most high-profile role, as intern Dr. Isobel "Izzie" Stevens on Grey's Anatomy, an ABC medical drama. The show, originally introduced as a midseason replacement, has become a huge ratings success. The same year, Heigl landed the starring role of Karly Hert in the independent film Side Effects, about marketing and the pharmaceutical industry. In late 2006, Heigl was nominated for a Golden Globe award in the category, Best Supporting Actress in a Series, Mini-series, or Motion Picture Made for Television for her work on Grey's.


1 comment:

Jeebus said...