Ashley Johnson

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Ashley Johnson
Johnson at Wondercon 2014
Born Ashley Suzanne Johnson
August 9, 1983 (age 32)
Camarillo, California, U.S.
Occupation Actress, voice actress, singer
Years active 1990 - present

Ashley Suzanne Johnson (born August 9, 1983)[1] is an American actress, singer, and voice actress. She is best known for her roles as Chrissy Seaver in the sitcom Growing Pains and for playing the daughter of Mel Gibson's character in What Women Want. As a voice actress she is well known for the part of Gretchen Grundler in Disney's Recess as well as for Gwen Tennyson in the series Ben 10: Alien Force, and its two successors Ben 10: Ultimate Alien and Ben 10: Omniverse, as well as Terra in Teen Titans and its sequel series, Teen Titans Go!.

In 2012, Johnson played a small role as the New York City waitress Beth who is saved by Captain America in The Avengers. In 2013, she played the role of Ellie in the video game The Last of Us and its DLC Left Behind, for which she won two BAFTA Awards for her critically acclaimed performance. Since September 2015, she is in the NBC drama Blindspot as FBI Forensic Specialist Patterson.

Early life[edit]

Johnson was born in Camarillo, California, the youngest daughter of Nancy Spruiell Johnson, an independent film producer; and Clifford Johnson (died in July 2000 from liver and lung cancer), who was the captain of an exploration ship. She is of Swedish, Danish, Irish, Scottish, and Native American descent. When Ashley was nine days old, her father's job took her to Michigan. The family settled in the village of Franklin, among Detroit's affluent northern suburbs. Ashley graduated from high school at 15.


Johnson had a prolific acting career at a young age. Before she was twenty-one years old, she had been in the casts of eight TV series. Her career began at age six, when she played the role of Chrissy Seaver on the sitcom Growing Pains from 1990 to 1992. The character's age was accelerated from a toddler between seasons for plotting purposes. In the one-season Phenom (1993–94), she played the mischievous younger sister of a rising teenage tennis star. Johnson appeared in the 1994 sitcom All-American Girl, which also lasted for only one season. She played DJ's girlfriend Lisa in the 1995 Roseanne episode "The Blaming of the Shrew", and played Alex Marshal, the daughter of Mel Gibson's character, in the 2000 comedy What Women Want. In 2008, she became a regular on the drama Dirt as Sharlee Cates. In 2009, Johnson appeared in "Omega", the season-one finale of Joss Whedon's Dollhouse.

In 2012, she appeared in The Avengers (also directed by Whedon) as a waitress who is saved by Captain America (Chris Evans). Though this was a minor role, the Blu-ray edition of The Avengers contains some deleted scenes that expand her role in the movie, and further her interactions with Captain America.[2] Her "small-but-pivotal role" may lead to her returning in future movies as a friend or love interest for Captain America.[3] The characters name 'Beth' may be a reference to the supporting character Golden Girl from the Captain America comics.

As a voice actress, she played Sean on the cartoon movie The First Snow of Winter in 1998. Gretchen Grundler on the Walt Disney TV animated series Recess, Terra in the Teen Titans animated series during the show's second season, Jinmay on Super Robot Monkey Team Hyperforce Go! and Gwen Tennyson on Ben 10: Alien Force and in future variations of the Ben 10 franchise. Four of her roles have love interests who are voiced by Greg Cipes (Chiro in Super Robot Monkey Team Hyperforce Go!, Kevin in Ben 10, Beast Boy in Teen Titans, and Michelangelo in Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles (2012 TV series)). She co-starred in the PlayStation exclusive The Last of Us as the character Ellie, which was released to critical acclaim and commercial success. She subsequently won a video game BAFTA for Best Performer and a VGX Award for Best Voice Actress for her role in the game. On March 12, 2015, Johnson won another BAFTA for Best Performer for the same role in the game's downloadable content, The Last of Us: Left Behind.[4]

Johnson appears in several Geek & Sundry shows, including playing occult specialist Morgan on the web series Spooked on Hulu, playing Alhambra and Dead of Winter on the web series TableTop,[5][6] and playing Pike in the series Critical Role.[7]

As of 2015, she plays FBI forensic specialist Patterson in the NBC drama series Blindspot.[8]

Personal life[edit]

Johnson studied violin and piano at the International School of Music; she also plays guitar and cello. When not acting or studying music, Johnson co-runs the photography company Infinity Pictures with her friend, production assistant Mila Shah.[9]

Johnson's older brother Chris worked on the television show The District. Her older sister Haylie Johnson is best known for her role as Haylie on Kids Incorporated. Haylie Johnson is married to Jonny Lang.[10]



Year Title Role Notes
1990 Lionheart Nicole Gaultier
1995 Nine Months Shannon Dwyer
1995 Annie: A Royal Adventure! Annie
1998 Dancer, Texas Pop. 81 Josie Hemphill
1999 Marionette
1999 Anywhere but Here Sarah
2000 Indescribable Nth, TheThe Indescribable Nth Doris Short film; voice role
2000 What Women Want Alex Marshall
2001 Recess: School's Out Gretchen Grundler Voice role
2001 Rustin Lee Wolford
2003 Failures, TheThe Failures Lilly Kyle
2004 Killer Diller Angie
2004 King of the Corner Elena Spivak
2005 Nearing Grace Merna Ash
2006 Pity Card, TheThe Pity Card Gretel Short film
2006 Fast Food Nation Amber
2006 Grad Night Student
2007 Brothers Solomon, TheThe Brothers Solomon Patricia
2008 Pie'n Burger Holly Short film
2008 Otis Riley Lawson
2008 Columbus Day Alana
2009 Spread Eva
2009 Punching the Clown Tracy
2010 Alleged Rose Williams
2011 Help, TheThe Help Mary Beth Caldwell
2012 The Avengers Waitress Beth
2012 Much Ado About Nothing Margaret
2015 Paradox Sophie
2015 When Marnie Was There Additional Voices[11]


Year Title Role Notes
1990–92 Growing Pains Chrissy Seaver 47 episodes
1993 Men Don't Tell Cindy Movie
1993 In the Shadows, Someone's Watching Blind Girl Movie
1993 Town Santa Forgot, TheThe Town Santa Forgot Granddaughter (voice) Movie
1993–94 Phenom Mary Margaret Doolan 22 episodes
1994 All-American Girl Casey Emmerson 12 episodes
1995 Roseanne Lisa Episode: "The Blaming of the Shrew"
1995 Annie: A Royal Adventure! Annie Movie
1995–96 Maybe This Time Gracie Wallace 18 episodes
1996–98 Jumanji Peter Shepherd (voice) 21 episodes
1997 Moloney Katherine 'Kate' Moloney 3 episodes
1997 Wings Rebecca Episode: "Ms. Write"
1997–2001 Recess Gretchen Grundler (voice) 129 episodes
1998 Kelly Kelly Maureen Kelly 7 episodes
1998 ER Dana Ellis 2 episodes
1999 Partners Janie Movie
2000 Growing Pains Movie, TheThe Growing Pains Movie Chrissy Seaver Movie
2001 Recess Christmas: Miracle on Third Street Gretchen Grundler (voice) Video
2002 Lloyd in Space Violet (voice) Episode: "The Big Sleepover"
2002 Roswell Eileen Burrows 2 episodes
2002 Ally McBeal Serena Feldman Episode: "Heart and Soul"
2002 Providence Daphne Wallace 3 episodes
2002 Touched by an Angel Natalie Episode: "Bring on the Rain"
2002 Guardian, TheThe Guardian Betsy Fortunato Episode: "Sacrifice"
2003 Kidz History: The Revolutionary War Colonist Video
2003 Recess: All Growed Down Gretchen (voice) Video
2003 Recess: Taking the Fifth Grade Gretchen (voice) Video
2003 Married to the Kellys Shari Episode: "Lewis May Have a Girlfriend"
2004 Growing Pains: Return of the Seavers Chrissy Seaver
2004 Married to the Kellys Shari Episode: "Chris and Mary Fight"
2004 Growing Pains: Return of the Seavers Chrissy Seaver Movie
2004–05 Super Robot Monkey Team Hyperforce Go! Jinmay (voice) 6 episodes
2004–06 Teen Titans Terra (voice) 6 episodes
2004–10 King of the Hill Emily / Jamie 7 episodes
2006 Lilo & Stitch: The Series Gretchen Gundler (voice) Episode: "Lax: Experiment #285"
2007 Monk Susie the Maid Episode: "Mr. Monk Is at Your Service"
2007 CSI: Crime Scene Investigation Dreama Little Episode: "Ending Happy"
2007 Heartland Rebecca Colton Episode: "Mother & Child Reunion"
2008 Dirt Sharlee Cates 4 episodes
2008 Middleman, TheThe Middleman Eleanor Draper Episode: "The Ectoplasmic Panhellenic Investigation"
2008 Raising the Bar Elise Denton Episode: "Hang Time"
2008 Mentalist, TheThe Mentalist Clara Tennant Episode: "Seeing Red"
2008–10 Ben 10: Alien Force Gwen Tennyson / Carol Smith / Cicely / Various other voice characters 45 episodes
2009 Dollhouse Wendy / Caroline / Hayden Leeds 2 episodes
2009 Cold Case Grace Stearns Episode: "The Crossing"
2010 Funny or Die Presents... Girlfriend Episode: "1.1"
2010 Lie to Me Valerie Episode: "Beat the Devil"
2010 Drunk History Elizabeth Hamilton Episode: "Drunk History Vol. 1: Featuring Michael Cera"
2010 Christmas Cupid Jenny Movie
2010–12 Ben 10: Ultimate Alien Gwen Tennyson / Sunny / Various characters (voice) 52 episodes
2011 In Plain Sight Sarah Collins / Sarah Peterschwim Episode: "Something A-mish"
2011 Pound Puppies Toyoshiko Episode: "Toyoshiko! Bark Friend Machine"
2011 Killing, TheThe Killing Amber Ahmed 7 episodes
2012 Private Practice Kelly Episode: "The Time Has Come"
2012 Drop Dead Diva Veronica Kramer Episode: "Road Trip"
2012 Pound Puppies Gina Episode: "The Super Secret Pup Club"
2012 Ben 10: Omniverse 11 & 16-year old Gwen Tennyson / Margie (voice) 21 episodes
2013 The High Fructose Adventures of Annoying Orange Jenny Applesauce (voice)
2013 Pound Puppies Amelia, Giblet 2 episodes
2013 Teen Titans Go! Terra (voice) 3 episodes
2013 Masters of Sex Flora Banks Episode: "Fallout"
2014 Garfunkel & Oates Jane Episode: "Speechless"
2015 Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles Renet Episodes: "Turtles In Time" and "Tales of the Yokai"
2015 Stalker Stephanie Episode: "My Hero"
2015–present Blindspot Patterson Series Regular

Video games[edit]

Year Title Role Notes
2005 Teen Titans Terra
2008 Ben 10: Alien Force Gwen Tennyson
2009 FusionFall Gwen Tennyson
2009 Ben 10 Alien Force: Vilgax Attacks Gwen Tennyson
2010 Ben 10 Alien Force: The Rise of Hex Gwen Tennyson
2010 Ben 10 Ultimate Alien: Cosmic Destruction Gwen Tennyson
2011 Cartoon Network: Punch Time Explosion Gwen Tennyson
2013 Last of Us, TheThe Last of Us Ellie VGX Award for Best Voice Actress
BAFTA Award for Best Voice Actress (along with another one for the Left Behind downloadable content)[12]
2014 Infamous First Light Jenny
2015 Tales from the Borderlands Gortys
2015 Skylanders: SuperChargers Gadfly Glades Collector [13]
2015 Minecraft: Story Mode Petra
2016 Lego Marvel's Avengers Beth the Waitress [14]
2016 The Witness [15]

Web series[edit]

Year Title Role Notes
2013–15 Tabletop Herself 2 episodes
2014 Spooked Morgan 4 episodes
2015–present Critical Role Herself/Pike


  1. ^ Ashley Johnson
  2. ^ "The Avengers deleted scene sees Captain America as a man out of time". August 30, 2012. Retrieved February 2, 2013. 
  3. ^ "Former ‘Growing Pains’ child star has small-but-important ‘Avengers’ role". May 4, 2012. Retrieved February 2, 2013. 
  4. ^ Harradence, Michael (March 13, 2015). "The Last of Us voice actress Ashley Johnson's BAFTA speech in full". Retrieved March 14, 2015. 
  5. ^ "TableTop: Alhambra". 
  6. ^ "TableTop: Dead of Winter". 
  7. ^ Salud, April (May 22, 2015). "Critical Role: Episode 11 – The Temple Showdown". Geek & Sundry. Retrieved October 8, 2015. 
  8. ^ Petski, Denise (March 10, 2015). "Rachel DiPillo To Star In NBC Pilot ‘Cuckoo’; Ashley Johnson Joins ‘Blindspot’". Deadline Hollywood. Retrieved October 14, 2015. 
  9. ^ Dransfeldt, Jeffrey (July 2, 2008). "Local actress has far outgrown her 'Growing Pains' start". Ventura County Star. Retrieved October 3, 2015. 
  10. ^ Jonny Lang Recalls Debilitating Demons on ‘Fight For My Soul’
  11. ^ When Marnie Was There (film). 2015. 
  12. ^ "2015 Games Performer – BAFTA Awards". BAFTA. Retrieved May 2, 2015. 
  13. ^ Vicarious Visions. Skylanders: SuperChargers. Activision. Scene: Closing credits, 7:13 in, Voice Actors. 
  14. ^ Four Reasons Lego Marvel’s Avengers Might Be The Best Lego Game Yet
  15. ^ Blow, Jonathan (January 14, 2016). "Meet the Voice Actors of The Witness". PlayStation Blog. Retrieved 15 January 2016. 

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