Liza Lapira

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Liza Lapira
Born (1981-12-03) December 3, 1981 (age 41)
Years active1999–present

Liza Lapira (born December 3, 1981)[1][2] is an American actress. She played Kianna in the 2008 film 21, Special Agent Michelle Lee in the CBS police procedural series NCIS and Ivy, Topher Brink's assistant in Dollhouse. Lapira has also co-starred in the short-lived sitcoms Traffic Light, Don't Trust the B---- in Apartment 23, Super Fun Night and 9JKL. As of 2021, she currently stars in CBS's The Equalizer.

Personal life[edit]

Lapira was born in Queens, New York. She is of Filipino,[3] Spanish, and Chinese ancestry.[4] In New York, she acted on stage and in independent films. She moved to Los Angeles in 2004 to work in television.[5] Lapira is an avid supporter of LA's Best, which provides after school services to 28,000 children in 189 schools in the neighborhoods with the highest needs around Los Angeles. Also, she participates in the Children's Hospital Los Angeles Charity Triathlon each fall in Malibu. Currently, she is working with The Impact Theatre in Harlem, while living on the east coast.[6]



Lapira's New York stage credits include As You Like It, The School for Wives, The Odyssey, and Alexandra Cunningham's No. 11 Blue and White. Most recently, she played Suzanne in Steve Martin’s Picasso at the Lapin Agile at the Old Globe Theatre in San Diego.[7][8]


Early film credits include director Tony Scott's Domino and independent feature The Big Bad Swim, which premiered at the Tribeca Film Festival in 2006. Lapira appeared in J. J. Abrams' 2008 film Cloverfield as Heather and also appeared in Table for Three and 21. In 2009, she played Agent Sophie Trinh in the film Fast & Furious opposite Paul Walker, and in 2010, she played Alva in Repo Men. She portrayed Liz, the sharp-tongued friend of Hannah (Emma Stone) in the 2011 film Crazy, Stupid, Love. In 2021, she played Teresa in Dante Basco's directorial debut The Fabulous Filipino Brothers.


Lapira's first major role was a series regular spot on the Showtime TV series Huff. Lapira played neuroscientist Ivy in both seasons of Joss Whedon's series Dollhouse, appearing predominantly with Fran Kranz and Dichen Lachman.

Her TV credits include recurring roles in Dexter, ER, Monk, Grey's Anatomy, Law & Order: Special Victims Unit, The Parkers as Shaquan, Sex and the City, and The Sopranos.

Lapira had regular roles as: Agent Michelle Lee in NCIS, Lisa in Traffic Light, Robin in Don't Trust the B---- in Apartment 23, Detective Jacocks in Battle Creek, Leslie Barrett in Cooper Barrett's Guide to Surviving Life, and Eve in the CBS comedy 9JKL.[9]

In August 2018, Lapira joined the recurring cast of the Netflix limited-series Unbelievable.[10]

In 2020, Lapira was cast as a lead on CBS' The Equalizer reboot opposite Queen Latifah and Chris Noth.[11]


Film roles
Year Title Role Notes
2000 Autumn in New York Charlotte's birthday friend
2002 Brown Sugar Hot 97 receptionist
2005 Domino Chinegro woman
2006 The Big Bad Swim Paula
2007 LA Blues Sandra
2008 Cloverfield Heather
2008 21 Kianna
2009 Fast & Furious Sophie Trinh
2009 Table for Three Nerissa Direct-to-video
2010 Repo Men Alva
2010 See You in September Monica
2010 Marmaduke Party dog #1 Voice
2011 Crazy, Stupid, Love. Liz
2012 The Happiest Person in America Lara Short film; also associate producer
2014 Someone Marry Barry Single mom at wedding
2017 All I Wish Darla
2018 The Samuel Project Nadia Akiyama
2021 The Fabulous Filipino Brothers Teresa
Television roles
Year Title Role Notes
1999 Law & Order: Special Victims Unit Waitress Episode: "Wanderlust"
2001 Law & Order Cheryl Treadwell Episode: "A Losing Season"
2001 Law & Order: Special Victims Unit Rebecca Chang Episode: "Scourge"
2001 The Education of Max Bickford Nia Sheppard Episode: "A Very Great Man"
2002 The Education of Max Bickford Student volunteer Episode: "Money Changes Everything"
2003 Sex and the City Pam Episode: "Pick-A-Little, Talk-A-Little"
2004 Without a Trace Layla Episode: "Legacy"
2004 The Sopranos Amanda Kim Episode: "Sentimental Education"
2004 The Parkers Shaquan Episode: "At Last"
2004–2006 Huff Maggie Del Rosario Main role; 21 episodes
2006–2008 NCIS Michelle Lee Recurring role; 12 episodes
2006 Grey's Anatomy Noelle Lavatte Episode: "Let the Angels Commit"
2007 Law & Order: Special Victims Unit Forensics technician 4 episodes
2007 Monk Dr. Souter Episode: "Mr. Monk Goes to the Hospital"
2007 Queens Supreme N/A Episode: "Mad About You" (unaired)
2008 ER Christine 2 episodes
2008 Dexter Yuki Amado Recurring role; 5 episodes
2009–2010 Dollhouse Ivy Recurring role; 10 episodes
2011 Traffic Light Lisa Reilly Main role; 13 episodes
2012 Psych Tina Episode: "Let's Doo-Wop It Again"
2012–2013 Don't Trust the B---- in Apartment 23 Robin Main role; 13 episodes
2012 Drop Dead Diva Abby Halstead Episode: "Winning Ugly"
2013 Royal Pains Erika Seelig Episode: "HankWatch"
2013–2014 Super Fun Night Helen-Alice Main role; 17 episodes
2014 Blue Bloods Skye Bishop Episode: "Insult to Injury"
2014 Power Grace Pak Episode: "Who You With?"
2015 Battle Creek Detective Jacocks Recurring role; 12 episodes
2015, 2017 Con Man Brenda White Web series; 5 episodes
2016 Cooper Barrett's Guide to Surviving Life Leslie Barrett Main role; 13 episodes
2016 Angel from Hell Jill Episode: Pilot
2017–2018 9JKL Eve Roberts Main role; 16 episodes
2018 Animal Kingdom Episode: Wolves
2018 The Good Doctor Nurse Ann Flores Episode: "36 Hours"
2019 NCIS: New Orleans Araminta Jax Episode: Crab Mentality
2019 Unbelievable Mia Recurring role; 8 episodes
2019 Nancy Drew Victoria Fan 3 episodes
2021–present The Equalizer Melody "Mel" Bayani Main role


  1. ^ "Liza Lapira". Retrieved 29 September 2017.
  2. ^ Staff, (8 February 2015). "Liza Lapira - Biography and Filmography - 1981". Retrieved 29 September 2017.
  3. ^ Torre, Nestor (May 16, 2008). "Exciting comers topbill new productions". Philippine Daily Inquirer. Archived from the original on October 12, 2012. Retrieved March 31, 2013.
  4. ^ "IMDb Bio". IMDb. Retrieved July 19, 2018.
  5. ^ " Bio". Archived from the original on November 9, 2019. Retrieved February 19, 2014.
  6. ^ Liza Lapira - The Equalizer Cast Member, retrieved 2022-03-13
  7. ^ Hebert, James (10 February 2017). "Steve Martin's 'Picasso' is artful comedy at Old Globe". Retrieved 29 September 2017.
  8. ^ "Press Release: Picasso at the Lapin Agile Cast Announcement - The Old Globe". Retrieved 29 September 2017.
  9. ^ Andreeva, Nellie (16 February 2017). "Liza Lapira Cast In Mark Feuerstein CBS Comedy Pilot '9J, 9K & 9L'". Deadline. Retrieved 29 September 2017.
  10. ^ Petski, Denise (August 14, 2018). "'Unbelievable': Elizabeth Marvel & Liza Lapira To Recur In Netflix Drama Series". Deadline. Retrieved 2018-08-19.
  11. ^ Petski, Denise (February 25, 2020). "Liza Lapira Joins Queen Latifah In 'The Equalizer' Reboot Pilot On CBS". Deadline. Retrieved June 23, 2020.

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