Phoebe Tonkin

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Phoebe Tonkin
Phoebe Tonkin at PaleyFest 2014.jpg
Tonkin at PaleyFest 2014 for The Originals
Phoebe Jane Elizabeth Tonkin

(1989-07-12) 12 July 1989 (age 31)
  • Actress
  • model
Years active2006–present
Known for

Phoebe Jane Elizabeth Tonkin[1] (born 12 July 1989[1]) is an Australian actress and model. She is best known for portraying Cleo Sertori in H2O: Just Add Water, Fiona Maxwell in Tomorrow, When the War Began, Faye Chamberlain in The Secret Circle, and Hayley Marshall in The CW series The Vampire Diaries and its spin-off series The Originals.

Early life[edit]

Tonkin was born in Sydney, Australia. When she was four, she attended dance courses in classical ballet, hip hop, contemporary dance, and tap dance. At the age of 12, Tonkin began courses at the Australian Theatre for Young People (ATYP) at the Wharf Theatre. Tonkin graduated from Queenwood School for Girls.[citation needed]


In December 2005, Tonkin was cast in the role of Cleo Sertori on the Australian children’s television series H2O: Just Add Water which follows the lives of three teenage girls who turn into mermaids. Tonkin improved on her swimming abilities during the pre-production of the series. The series premiered on 7 July 2006 on Network Ten and has since gone on to be aired to a worldwide audience of more than 250 million. To promote the series she and her co-stars presented the best band award at the Nickelodeon UK Kids' Choice Awards in October 2007. In 2008, Tonkin was nominated for "Best Lead Actress in a Television Series" at the prestigious Australian Film Institute Awards.[2] The series ran for three seasons with the series finale airing on 16 April 2010.

Tonkin at the GQ Men of the Year Awards in 2012

Tonkin has also appeared on fellow Australian television shows Packed to the Rafters and Home and Away.[3][better source needed] In September 2010, Tonkin made her film debut starring in the Australian action ensemble film Tomorrow, When the War Began. In the film, which revolves around a group of teenagers waging a guerrilla war against an invading foreign power in their fictional hometown of Wirrawee, she played the role of the rich and uptight Fiona Maxwell. In December 2010, a sequel was announced with Tonkin expected to return,[4] though production of a sequel never came to fruition.

In January 2011, Tonkin moved to Los Angeles to pursue an international acting career.[5] She was cast in March 2011 as Faye Chamberlain on The CW supernatural drama series The Secret Circle[6] which premiered on 15 September 2011 to over 3.5 million viewers.[7][8] The series follows a group of young witches who are a part of a secret coven. For her performance, Tonkin has received critical acclaim, with critics referring to her as the break-out star of the series; she was featured on Variety's list of "new faces to watch"[9] and named one of 2011's break-out TV stars by E! Online.[10] The Secret Circle, however, had only one full season as it was cancelled on 11 May 2012.[11]

In August 2010, Tonkin was cast in the 3D horror film Bait 3D.[12] Filming took place on Australia's Gold Coast and follows a group of strangers who are trapped in a supermarket after a freak tsunami with a pack of great white sharks. She joined her H2O: Just Add Water co-star Cariba Heine in this film. The film was expected to be released in Australia in September 2012. In August 2012, Tonkin joined the cast of The CW television series, The Vampire Diaries, in the recurring role of Hayley, a friend of Tyler. She joined her co-star from H2O: Just Add Water, Claire Holt, who portrays Rebekah Mikaelson on the show.[13]

On 11 January 2013, The CW confirmed that a spin-off series to The Vampire Diaries was in the works, titled The Originals. The series revolves around the Original Vampire family members, and Tonkin would "be heavily featured in the prospective pilot" of the series.[14] The CW confirmed on 13 February that Claire Holt would also join the cast of The Originals, marking the third time Tonkin and Holt have starred together on a show.[15]

On 15 May 2017, SBS announced that Tonkin had been cast in their new four part drama Safe Harbour about a group of Australians who come across a boat of refugees whilst sailing on vacation.[16] Tonkin revealed the name of her character to be "Olivia" on Instagram.[17] In 2018, she appeared on an episode of The Affair as Delphine, the protégé of an art gallery owner who had an affair with Cole's father.[18][19]

After expressing a desire to continue working in Australia in interviews,[20] it was announced on 20 August 2018 that Tonkin was cast in Bloom, aired streaming platform Stan, as a younger version of the character Gwen Reid, the elder version who is portrayed by Jacki Weaver.[21] In 2019, Tonkin wrote and directed her first short film, titled Furlough, which was screened around the world in film festivals in 2020.[22] Since 2019, Tonkin has participated in the Tribeca Chanel Women's filmmaker program aimed at empowering female directors.[23]

In April 2021, it was announced that Tonkin would co-star in a horror film titled Night Shift, alongside Lamorne Morris and Madison Hu. The film will be directed by Paul and Benjamin China.[24]

Other projects[edit]

Tonkin has appeared in a number of advertisements which include Vauxhall Motors and was previously signed to Chic Management. Her modelling career includes shoots for Girlfriend, Teen Vogue, Elle Australia, Complex, Miss Vogue, Vogue Australia, Dolly and Free People.[citation needed]

Tonkin appeared in the music video for Miles Fisher's 2011 single "Don't Let Go".[25]

In 2012, Tonkin opened a website about health with friend Teresa Palmer called Your Zen Life. In June 2015, Tonkin announced she was stepping down from her involvement in the site due to work commitments.[26]

Tonkin has appeared as the face of New York-based stylist Ilona Hamer's swimwear line "Matteau Swim" from 2015 to 2017,[27] completing 3 seasons with the brand.[28][29][30] She supported the lifestyle clothing line for Witchery in 2015.[31]

In September 2017, Tonkin appeared in the ad campaign "Journey To The Wild Side" for Smythson to promote their latest product range.[32] In May 2018, she appeared in Jenni Kayne's "#findyouruniform" fashion campaign alongside Lara Bingle and TyLynn Nguyen.[33]

Tonkin is a Chanel brand ambassador.[34] For the April 2018 issue of Vogue Australia, Tonkin underwent another photoshoot in partnership with Chanel makeup director Lucia Pica.[35] She was revealed in September 2018 as one of nine women taking part in a digital campaign for Chanel's Gabrielle line of products.[36]

In October 2020, Tonkin launched her own clothing brand "Lesjour!", a sustainable loungewear brand which Tonkin describes as being inspired by the leisure suit of the 70's and California living. Tonkin cited that the clothing brand was the reason she relocated permanently from New York back to LA - where the brand was designed, manufactured using EcoVero, and ships from. Tonkin stated that she'd had the idea for a clothing brand for two years, and decided to launch it as her job as an actress was affected by the COVID-19 pandemic.[37][38][39]



Year Title Role Notes
2010 Tomorrow, When the War Began Fiona Maxwell
2012 Bait 3D Jaime
2014 The Ever After Mabel [40]
2016 Billionaire Ransom Amy Tilton Originally titled Take Down[41]
2016 Cul-de-Sac Mother Short film[42]
2018 Final Stop The Girl Short film[43][44]
2019 The Place of No Words Phoebe [45]
2020 Furlough N/A Short film; director, writer[46][47]


Year Title Role Notes
2006–2010 H2O: Just Add Water Cleo Sertori Main role
2009–2010 Packed to the Rafters Lexi 3 episodes
2010 Home and Away Adrian Hall Recurring role, 7 episodes
2011–2012 The Secret Circle Faye Chamberlain Main role
2012–2013 The Vampire Diaries Hayley Marshall Recurring role, 8 episodes
2013–2018 The Originals Hayley Marshall Main role
2015 Stalker Nicole Clark Episode: "My Hero"[48]
2017 Pillow Talk Sonja Episode: "Rabbit Hole"
2018 Safe Harbour Olivia Gallagher Miniseries[16][17]
2018 These New South Whales Herself Web series; episode: "Round The Twist"[49] (cameo)
2018 The Affair Delphine Episode: 405[18][19]
2019–2020 Bloom Young Gwen Reid Web series[21][50]
2020 Westworld Penny Episodes: "Parce Domine",[51] "The Mother of Exiles"[52]

Music videos[edit]

Awards and nominations[edit]

Year Award Category Work Result Refs
2008 AFI Awards Best Lead Actress in Television Drama H2O: Just Add Water Nominated [2]
2015 Maxim Hot 100 Readers' Choice N/A #52 [53]
2015 Maxim Hot 100 The Actresses N/A #5 [54]


  1. ^ a b "16 Things You Didn't Know About Phoebe Tonkin from "The Originals"". Seventeen. Hearst Corporation. 17 October 2017. Retrieved 6 February 2020.
  2. ^ a b "L'Oréal Paris 2008 AFI Awards Nominees". Australian Film Institute. 2008. Archived from the original on 14 September 2009. Retrieved 29 August 2014.
  3. ^ "Away From the Bay". Yahoo!7. 10 August 2010. Archived from the original on 25 August 2010. Retrieved 10 August 2010.
  4. ^ "High hopes for Tomorrow sequel in Australia". Herald Sun. 28 February 2011. Retrieved 18 March 2011.
  5. ^ Moran, Jonathon (19 June 2011). "Phoebe Tonkin's prime time gig on new TV series The Secret Circle". The Daily Telegraph. Retrieved 10 May 2012.
  6. ^ Bricker, Tierney (15 March 2011). "'The Secret Circle' finds its Faye: Phoebe Tonkin". Zap2it. Archived from the original on 12 October 2013. Retrieved 10 May 2012.
  7. ^ Andreeva, Nellie (19 May 2011). "CW Announces 2011-2012 Primetime Sked: 'Ringer' Joins Lineup, 'OTH' To End Run". Deadline Hollywood. Retrieved 4 June 2011.
  8. ^ Kenneally, Tim (21 July 2011). "'Alcatraz,' 'Person of Interest' bow at Comic-Con". Reuters. Retrieved 29 July 2011.
  9. ^ Malcom, Shawna (9 September 2011). "Tonkin no fish out of water on CW's 'Secret Circle'". Variety. Retrieved 2 January 2012.
  10. ^ Bricker, Tierney (29 December 2011). "2011 Breakout TV Stars: The Secret Circle's Phoebe Tonkin Bares All (Thanks in Part to a Necklace Shirt)". E!. Retrieved 2 January 2012.
  11. ^ West, Kelly (11 May 2012). "The CW Cancels Ringer And Secret Circle, Orders Five Dramas Including Arrow And Carrie Diaries". Cinema Blend. Retrieved 12 May 2012.
  12. ^ "Bait (2011) Movie Trailer, Poster: Sharni Vinson, Julian McMahon". 9 June 2011. Retrieved 4 December 2011.
  13. ^ Bricker, Tierney (7 August 2012). "Vampire Diaries Scoop: The Secret Circle's Phoebe Tonkin Joins the Show". E!. Retrieved 11 August 2012.
  14. ^ Bricker, Tierney (11 January 2013). "The Vampire Diaries Spinoff The Originals, Starring Joseph Morgan, in the Works". E!. Retrieved 12 January 2013.
  15. ^ Goldberg, Lesley (13 February 2013). "'Vampire Diaries' Spinoff 'The Originals' Adds Claire Holt". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved 13 February 2013.
  16. ^ a b "SBS reveals the cast of new drama series Safe Harbour". SBS. 15 May 2017. Retrieved 22 October 2017.
  17. ^ a b Tonkin, Phoebe (4 June 2017). "Olivia ✨ I've accomplished..." Retrieved 22 October 2017.
  18. ^ a b Swift, Andy (15 December 2017). "Phoebe Tonkin to Appear in The Affair Season 4, Get Involved With Cole". TVLine. Retrieved 13 May 2018.
  19. ^ a b Collins, Sean T. (15 July 2018). "'The Affair' Season 4, Episode 5 Recap: Next Steps". The New York Times. Retrieved 24 October 2018.
  20. ^ "Aussie Phoebe Tonkin hopes latest role on Safe Harbour leads to more roles at home". The Daily Telegraph. 13 March 2018. Retrieved 24 March 2018.
  21. ^ a b Groves, Don (20 August 2018). "Jacki Weaver, Bryan Brown, Phoebe Tonkin and Ryan Corr star in Stan's 'Bloom'". Inside Film. Retrieved 24 September 2018.
  22. ^ "Phoebe gets directing bug".
  23. ^ "Yara Shahidi, Phoebe Tonkin Help Kick Off 2019 Tribeca Chanel Women's Filmmaker Program". The Hollywood Reporter.
  24. ^ N'Duka, Amanda (15 April 2021). "Phoebe Tonkin, Lamorne Morris & Madison Hu To Star In Horror Indie 'Night Shift' From Defiant Studios". New York, NY: Penske Media Corporation.
  25. ^ "Phoebe Tonkin in Miles Fisher's Video "Don't Let Go"". 8 December 2011. Archived from the original on 26 April 2012.
  26. ^ Tonkin, Phoebe (9 June 2015). "A Letter From Phoebe..." Your Zen Life. Retrieved 22 October 2017.
  27. ^ Izzo, Alison (10 September 2015). "In the Swim: Matteau Swim". Harper's Bazaar. Retrieved 22 October 2017.
  28. ^ "Summer 2016". Matteau Swim. Archived from the original on 15 October 2017. Retrieved 22 October 2017.
  29. ^ "Resort 2016/17". Matteau Swim. Archived from the original on 15 October 2017. Retrieved 22 October 2017.
  30. ^ "Summer 2017". Matteau Swim. Archived from the original on 15 October 2017. Retrieved 22 October 2017.
  31. ^ O'Neill, Grace (17 August 2015). "Bazaar Exclusive: Phoebe Tonkin X Witchery". Harper's Bazaar. Retrieved 23 November 2017.
  32. ^ Pentelow, Orla (5 September 2017). "Smythson takes a walk on the wild side". The Telegraph. Retrieved 22 October 2017.
  33. ^ "#Find Your Uniform". Jenni Kayne. 2018. Retrieved 24 October 2018.
  34. ^ Marriner, Cosima (23 March 2018). "'Australian drama is unparalleled': Why Phoebe Tonkin came home for her latest role". The Sydney Morning Herald. Retrieved 24 April 2018.
  35. ^ Rippon, Remy (28 March 2018). "Phoebe Tonkin shows us how to do modern make-up with Chanel Beauty". Vogue Australia. Retrieved 24 April 2018.
  36. ^ Schott Ledes, Christine (10 September 2018). "Gabrielle Chanel - The New Digital Campaign". The Beauty Influencers. Retrieved 24 September 2018.
  37. ^ "This Hollywood actress used quarantine to create a line of next-level loungewear". Los Angeles Times. 29 October 2020.
  38. ^ Samaha, Barry (29 October 2020). "Phoebe Tonkin Launches Lesjour!, a Fashion Brand Born in the Era of Biz-Leisure". Harper's Bazaar.
  39. ^ "Meet your sustainable, WFH uniform". Lesjour.
  40. ^ Yamato, Jen (22 January 2015). "Teresa Palmer, Mark Webber Star In Self-Distributed 'The Ever After' – Trailer". Deadline Hollywood. Retrieved 23 January 2015.
  41. ^ McNarry, Dave (6 February 2014). "Berlin: Jeremy Sumpter, Phoebe Tonkin Starring in 'Take Down'". Variety. Retrieved 19 April 2020.
  42. ^ "Cul-de-Sac". Toronto International Film Festival. Retrieved 17 August 2016.
  43. ^ Boozer Sterling, Alexis. "Nightshooting Nightstalkers" – via Instagram.
  44. ^ "FrightFest 2018 announces record-breaking 19th year line-up". Realm of Horror. 28 June 2018. Retrieved 26 August 2019.
  45. ^ Busch, Anita (8 March 2018). "'Flesh And Blood's Mark Webber Goes Reality Film Route Again With 'Freeka Reeka Sheeka Deeka'". Deadline Hollywood. Retrieved 24 July 2018.
  46. ^ "Phoebe Tonkin makes directorial film debut for 'Furlough'". 22 January 2021.
  47. ^ "Raindance Film Festival 2020". Raindance Film Festival – via
  48. ^ Bucksbaum, Sydney (10 December 2014). "Stalker Is Staging a Dawson's Creek Reunion!". E!. Retrieved 18 December 2014.
  49. ^ "203: "Round the Twist"". These New South Whales. Comedy Central. 2018. Retrieved 24 October 2018.
  50. ^ Spira, Madison (7 November 2018). "A first look at Stan's new series, Bloom". Who. Retrieved 22 November 2018.
  51. ^ Dube Dwilson, Stephanie (16 March 2020). "'Westworld' Season 3 Episode 1 Cast: Who Are the Special Guests?".
  52. ^ "Westworld - Episode 3x04 publicity still of John Gallagher Jr. & Rafi Gavron". Retrieved 8 April 2020.
  53. ^ "2015 Hot 100 Readers' Choice". Maxim. 21 May 2015. Retrieved 24 July 2015.
  54. ^ "2015 Hot 100: The Actresses". Maxim. 20 May 2015. Retrieved 24 July 2015.

External links[edit]