|Real Name: Lauren Michael Holly|
|Birth Place: Bristol, Pennsylvania|
|Hair Color: Red|
A prominent and gifted leading lady and celebrity, Lauren Holly found success as an actress in both television and film. Acknowledged first as the hard-hitting deputy Maxine Stewart on the Emmy Award winning “Picket Fences” (1992-96), Holly gained praise for her great performance in “Dragon: The Bruce Lee Story” (1993), and received attention for her comedic skill opposite comedy super-star, Jim Carrey in the funny smash hit, “Dumb & Dumber” (1994). Carrey and Holly fell in love in real life.
The couples private relationship shot Lauren Holly to celebrity stardom almost overnight, with the tabloids and Hollywood press following their every move throughout their romance and marriage during the mid 1990's. The spotlight was firmly aimed at the Jim Carrey association or what hair color she would introduce next, that it was sometimes forgotten that the actress was an intelligent and charming leading player.
In 2006, Holly returned to television as NCIS Director Jenny Shepard on the CBS series “Navy NCIS” (2003- ), laying to rest any concerns that her past success was a coincidence.
Born Lauren Michael Holly on Oct. 28, 1963 in Bristol, Pennsylvania to parents Grant and Michael Ann, she grew up in Geneva, New York. The child of two University professors, Lauren grew up in an scholastic environment, with her father teaching English Literature at Hobart and William Smith Colleges, and her mother taught art history at the University of Rochester and served as chair of the department. After graduating from Geneva High School in 1981,she attended Sarah Lawrence College in Bronxville, New York, graduating in 1985 with a degree in English Literature. Instead of following in her parents footsteps, she relocated to Los Angeles after graduation, to chase her dream of acting.
Just a year after moving to L.A., Lauren Holly was hired for a role on the
daytime soap “All My Children” (1970- ). Playing Julie Rand Chandler on the series,
received a cult following and was nominated for a Daytime Emmy in 1987.
Next, Lauren appeared in a recurring role on "My Two Dads", before being cast in her first starring role playing Betty Cooper in the television movie “Archie: To Riverdale and Back Again” (1990). Hopeful to find success on the movie screen, she appeared opposite Andrew Dice Clay in “The Adventures of Ford Fairlane” (1990). While the film was not a huge box office hit, it helped lead to her breakout role on television.
as Deputy Maxine Stewart on the much-admired David E. Kelly drama
“Picket Fences” (1992-1996), Holly swiftly became a household name, so much so, that she
got her first leading feature role soon after appearing “Picket Fences.”
In the film “Dragon: The Bruce Lee Story” (1993) working with Jason Scott Lee, Holly gave a touching performance as Linda Lee, wife of the infamous, doomed martial artist. Well received by critics, this performance helped launch her big screen career.
Though Lauren had earlier turned down the Courtney Cox role in “Ace
Ventura, Pet Detective” (1994) she was offered another chance to work with rising star
Jim Carrey in the comedy “Dumb and Dumber” (1994). A box office
smash hit, “Dumb and Dumber” earned more than $400 million worldwide.
Lauren Holly was now a superstar!
In her personal life, Holly started a romance with Jim Carrey and the couple were married in 1996. Like many Hollywood marriages, however, Carrey's celebrity status complicated the couple's relationship leading to a divorce a year later.
Lauren continued to find work in films - she played the fiancée of playboy Greg Kinnear in the 1995 remake of “Sabrina,” directed by Sydney Pollack and starring Harrison Ford; she appeared in the Ted Demme drama “Beautiful Girls” (1996) working with such talent as Matt Dillon, Rosie O'Donnell, Natalie Portman and Uma Thurman; and starred opposite Kelsey Grammer in the comedy “Down Periscope” (1996).
Holly then worked with her “Sabrina” co-star Greg Kinnear again in 1997 to play a couple trying to have a baby in the romantic comedy “A Smile Like Yours” (1997). Playing against type in Edward Burns’ “No Looking Back” (1998) with Jennifer Esposito, Lauren drew from her skill as a waitress growing up to portray the character of Claudia, a small town waitress.
Lauren was next cast in a number of supporting roles; appearing in the Oliver Stone sports drama “Any Given Sunday” (1999) starring Al Pacino and Cameron Diaz, and in Nancy Meyers’ “What Women Want” (2000) with Mel Gibson and Helen Hunt, then joined the cast of “Chicago Hope” (1994-2000) in a returning role during the final season.
Marrying investment banker Francis Greco in 2001, the actress moved to Forrest Park, Illinois to to raise a family. She continued to work, starring in the television movies “Jackie, Ethel, Joan: The Women of Camelot” (2001), and “King of Texas,” (2002) a western variation of Shakespeare’s “King Lear” opposite Patrick Stewart. She also appeared in the independent film “The Chumscrubber” (2005) starring Glenn Close, and the political thriller “Fatwa” (2006). Coming back to series television in 2006, she joined the cast of the crime drama “Navy NCIS,” as NCIS Director Jenny Shepard.
In 2008, Lauren Holly appeared in the Mark Young comedy biography "The Least Among You", inspired by the true story about a black college graduate forced to serve probation after the 1965 Watts riots at an all-white seminary that wants black followers not leaders.
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