Elisha Cuthbert

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Elisha Cuthbert
Elisha Cuthbert at 2015 TCA (cropped).jpg
Cuthbert at the 2015 Television Critics Association's Press Tour
Born (1982-11-30) November 30, 1982 (age 32)
Calgary, Alberta
Nationality Canadian
  • Actress
  • model
Years active 1996–present
Spouse(s) Dion Phaneuf (m. 2013)

Elisha Ann Cuthbert (born November 30, 1982) is a Canadian actress and model. She began her career as the host of the Canadian children's television series Popular Mechanics for Kids (1997–2000). Since then, her best known television roles have been Kim Bauer on the Fox action-thriller series 24 (2001–10) and Alex Kerkovich on the ABC comedy series Happy Endings (2011–13). She has appeared in such films as Airspeed (1998), Love Actually (2003), Old School (2003), The Girl Next Door (2004), House of Wax (2005), and Captivity (2007).

Early life[edit]

Elisha Ann Cuthbert was born November 30, 1982 in Calgary, Alberta, Canada, the daughter of Patricia, a housewife, and Kevin, an automotive design engineer.[1][2] She grew up in Greenfield Park, Quebec. She also lived in Toronto, Ontario, before moving onto acting. In 2000, she graduated from Centennial Regional High School and moved to Los Angeles at the age of 17.[3]


When she was nine, Cuthbert started modelling children's clothing and also became a foot model.[4] She made her first televised appearance as an extra in the horror-themed series for children, Are You Afraid of the Dark?; she later became a regular on the show. Cuthbert co-hosted Popular Mechanics for Kids with Jay Baruchel, filmed in Montreal. Her reporting captured the attention of Hillary Clinton, who invited her to the White House.[5]

Cuthbert landed a role in a feature film in the family drama Dancing on the Moon (1997). She appeared in other Canadian family movies and in an airplane thriller, Airspeed. In 2000, Cuthbert co-starred in Believe, a Canadian movie with Ricky Mabe. The following year, she starred in the Canadian television movie, Lucky Girl, in 2001 and was awarded a Gemini Award for her performance.[citation needed]

Soon after her move to Hollywood, she was cast as Kim Bauer, daughter of federal agent Jack Bauer, in the television series 24. She appeared in the show's first three seasons, but not in its fourth; she guest-starred in two episodes in the fifth season. She also reprised her role as Kim Bauer in 24: The Game and again guest-starred in five episodes of the seventh season and in two episodes of the eighth season.

She began her Hollywood film career with small roles in Old School and Love Actually in 2003.[2]

Cuthbert's next film, The Girl Next Door, was her first lead role. She played an ex–porn star, Danielle, opposite Emile Hirsch. She had reservations about the part, but was persuaded by director Luke Greenfield. She researched the role, speaking to adult actresses from Wicked Pictures and Vivid Entertainment.[6] The film was compared to Risky Business,[7][8] although Cuthbert said her character was not directly based on Rebecca De Mornay's. Critics were divided; some praised the film for boldness, others, notably Roger Ebert, called it gimmicky and exploitative.[9][10] Ebert wrote that he saw Cuthbert's character as "quite the most unpleasant character I have seen in some time."[11]

Cuthbert at the season finale screening of 24, May 2009

In her next film, Cuthbert starred with Paris Hilton and Chad Michael Murray in the 2005 remake of the horror film House of Wax. In one scene, her character was to attempt to open her mouth while her lips were sealed with glue. For realism, she used Superglue over prosthetics.[12] House of Wax was largely panned, critics citing a range of flaws. It was called "notable for having some of the most moronic protagonists ever to populate a horror film," though of those characters, critics tended to think Cuthbert "fares the best." Though receiving negative reviews the film was a box office success.[13] Others noted Cuthbert as an "exception," playing her role "earnestly" and "fine."[14][15]

Cuthbert's next film was the indie film The Quiet. She was co-star and co-producer. She played Nina, a temperamental 17-year-old cheerleader who suffers sexual abuse by her father. Cuthbert looked to her younger cousin as inspiration for how to play a teenager.[16] The Quiet, distributed by Sony Pictures Classics, premiered at the 2005 Toronto International Film Festival and received a limited release in Los Angeles and New York City on August 25, 2006,[17] before expanding regionally in the US on September 1.

Cuthbert appeared in the music video for Weezer's "Perfect Situation" in early 2006, playing the group's fictional original singer who threw a tantrum that led to Rivers Cuomo, the roadie, becoming frontman of the band.[18] She also had a small role in Paris Hilton's music video for the song "Nothing In This World".[19]

In 2007, Cuthbert appeared in Captivity, a thriller centered on a fashion model taunted by a psychopath who has imprisoned her in a cellar,[20][21] a role for which she was nominated for a Razzie award as "worst actress."[22]

In He Was a Quiet Man, Cuthbert played Vanessa, a quadriplegic, starring with Christian Slater. The film was in limited release in 2007, and it was released on DVD in early 2008.[23]

In 2008, Cuthbert appeared in My Sassy Girl, a remake of a Korean film, starring with Jesse Bradford. Her next film was the family comedy, The Six Wives of Henry Lefay, with Tim Allen, in which she played his daughter. She starred in the Canadian miniseries Guns. She was a judge in season two, episode two of Project Runway Canada, in which designers were challenged to create a "party dress" for her.[24]

Cuthbert reprised her character Kim Bauer in the seventh season of 24 for five episodes.[25] She was also to star in the CBS drama pilot Ny-Lon, playing a New York literacy teacher/record-store clerk who embarks on a transatlantic romance with a London stockbroker. The project, based on a British series starring Rashida Jones and Stephen Moyer, was canceled.[26]

In December 2009, ABC said Cuthbert had joined the cast of The Forgotten in a recurring role as Maxine Denver, a Chicago professional.[27]

From April 2011 to May 2013, Cuthbert starred as Alex Kerkovich for three seasons on the ABC ensemble comedy Happy Endings alongside Eliza Coupe, Zachary Knighton, Adam Pally, Damon Wayans Jr. and Casey Wilson.[28] Despite critical acclaim and having a cult following, the show was cancelled by ABC after the conclusion of its third season on May 3, 2013.

In October 2012, she appeared in The Gaslight Anthem's music video "Here Comes My Man," playing the girlfriend of a man who mistreats her, until she imagines a romantic relationship with a character in a movie and chooses to end her real relationship.[29]

In February 2014, Cuthbert signed to play the female lead role in Liz Feldman and Ellen DeGeneres' new NBC sitcom pilot One Big Happy (TV series). Cuthbert stars as Lizzy, a lesbian who gets pregnant just as her straight male best friend Luke (played by Nick Zano) meets and marries the love of his life, Prudence.[30] The pilot was ordered to 6 episodes on May 9, 2014 and debuted mid-season in early 2015. The series was canceled after one season.[31]

In September 2015, it was announced Cuthbert would be joining the cast of The Ranch (TV series), a multi-camera straight-to-series comedy on Netflix.[32]

Public image[edit]

In the past, Cuthbert regularly secured a place in FHM and Maxim's annual "hottest women" lists. Her highest ranking was No. 4 in the 2008 UK Edition of FHM's 100 Sexiest Women in the World list. She was ranked No. 14 in 2003, No. 10 in 2004,[33] No. 5 in 2005,[34] No. 22 in 2006, No. 10 in 2007[35] and No. 7 in 2009.[36] The U.S. Edition ranked her No. 53 in 2003, No. 63 in 2004, and No. 54 in 2006. She was not listed in the U.S. 2005 list. Cuthbert was ranked No. 10 by AskMen.com readers in the list "Top 99 Women of 2007."[37] In Maxim's Hot 100 list, she was ranked No. 84 in 2002,[38] No. 9 in 2003,[39] No. 21 in 2004,[40] No. 92 in 2006, No. 25 in 2007, No. 6 in 2008, No. 43 in 2009, No. 65 in 2011,[41] No. 34 in 2012,[42] and No. 10 in 2013.[43] The magazine also featured her in its Girls of Maxim Gallery. BuddyTV ranked her No. 33 on its TV's 100 Sexiest Women of 2011 list.[44]

Personal life[edit]

Cuthbert has two younger siblings, Jonathan and Lee-Ann. She is an avid ice hockey fan; in 2005, she maintained a blog on the NHL's website, though she did not post for most of the season.[45][46]

Cuthbert dated NHL player Sean Avery for nearly two years; they broke up in August 2007.[47] Cuthbert began dating NHL player Dion Phaneuf in May 2008.[48] She was the subject of media attention over these relationships in December 2008, when Avery told reporters that "it's become like a common thing in the NHL for guys to fall in love with my sloppy seconds". He was subsequently suspended for the comment.[49][50][51]

Cuthbert and Phaneuf announced their engagement in September 2012,[48][52] and they married on July 6, 2013 at St. James Catholic Church in Summerfield, Prince Edward Island.[53] Living in Toronto during the hockey season, Cuthbert and Phaneuf spend their summers at Phaneuf's waterfront estate outside of New London, Prince Edward Island, in his parents' home province.[53][54][55]



Year Title Role
1997 Dancing on the Moon Sarah
1997 Nico the Unicorn Carolyn Price
1998 Airspeed Nicole Stone
1999 Believe Katherine Winslowe
1999 Time at the Top Susan Shawson
2000 Who Gets the House? Emily Reece
2003 Love Actually American Goddess Carol
2003 Old School Darcie Goldberg
2004 Girl Next Door, TheThe Girl Next Door Danielle
2005 House of Wax Carly Jones
2005 Quiet, TheThe Quiet Nina Deer
2007 Captivity Jennifer Tree
2007 He Was a Quiet Man Vanessa
2008 My Sassy Girl Jordan Roark
2008 Tim and Eric Awesome Show, Great Job! Herself
2008 Guns Frances Dett
2009 Six Wives of Henry Lefay, TheThe Six Wives of Henry Lefay Barbara "Barby" Lefay
2014 Just Before I Go Penny Morgan
2016 Goon: Last of the Enforcers Mary


Year Title Role Notes
1997–2000 Popular Mechanics for Kids Herself Host
1999–2000 Are You Afraid of the Dark? Megan Main role, 24 episodes
2000 Mail to the Chief Madison Osgood Television movie
2001 Largo Winch Abby Episode: "Dear Abby"
2001 Lucky Girl Katlin Palmerson Television movie; also known as My Daughter's Secret Life
2001–10 24 Kim Bauer Main role, 79 episodes
2004 MADtv Herself / Kim Bauer 1 episode: 24 parody
2008 NY-LON Edie Failed television pilot[56]
2010 Forgotten, TheThe Forgotten Maxine Denver Recurring role, 6 episodes
2011–13 Happy Endings Alex Kerkovich Main role, 57 episodes
2013 24/7 Winter Classic: Toronto Maple Leafs vs. Detroit Red Wings Herself
2015 One Big Happy Lizzy Main role, 6 episodes


Year Title Role Notes
2012 Happy Endings: Happy Rides Alex Kerkovich Directed 1 episode

Music videos[edit]

Year Title Artist Role
2005 "Perfect Situation" Weezer Lead Singer of "Weeze"
2006 "Nothing in This World" Paris Hilton Popular Girl
2012 "Here Comes My Man" The Gaslight Anthem Girlfriend[29]
2015 "Make Our Own Way Little Brutes


Year Award Category Work Result
2001 Gemini Awards Best Performance by an Actress in a Leading Role in a Dramatic Program or Mini-Series Lucky Girl Won
2008 Golden Raspberry Awards Worst Actress Captivity Nominated
2003 Teen Choice Awards Choice TV Breakout Star – Female 24 Nominated
2003 Washington D.C. Area Film Critics Association Award Best Ensemble Love Actually Won
2003 Phoenix Film Critics Society Award Best Cast Love Actually Won
2005 Teen Choice Awards Choice Movie Actress: Action/Adventure/Thriller House of Wax Nominated
2005 Teen Choice Awards Choice Movie Rumble House of Wax Nominated
2007 Teen Choice Awards Choice Movie Actress: Horror/Thriller Captivity Nominated
2003 Screen Actors Guild Awards Outstanding Performance by an Ensemble in a Drama Series 24 Nominated
2005 Screen Actors Guild Awards Outstanding Performance by an Ensemble in a Drama Series 24 Nominated
2005 MTV Movie Awards Best Breakthrough Performance, Female Girl Next Door, TheThe Girl Next Door Nominated
2005 MTV Movie Awards Best Kiss Girl Next Door, TheThe Girl Next Door Nominated


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