Jack & Jill
American actress Amanda Peet rose to fame with the success of WB's romantic "Jack & Jill" (1999-2001), portraying the title character Jacqueline 'Jack' Barrett who falls for neighbor David "Jill" Jillefsky (played by Ivan Sergei). Peet's career gradually skyrocketed after playing sexy dental hygienist Jill St. Claire, opposite Bruce Willis, Natasha Henstridge and Matthew Perry, in the comedy film The Whole Nine Yards (2000). She gained even more credit for playing roles in such star-filled films as Saving Silverman (2001, with Jason Biggs, Steve Zahn and Jack Black), High Crimes (2002, opposite Ashley Judd, Jim Caviezel, Amanda Pudd and Morgan Freeman), Changing Lines (2002, along side Ben Afflect and Samuel L. Jackson), and Something's Gotta Give (2003, opposite veteran actors Diane Keaton and Jack Nicholson).
Off screen, Peet, whose trade mark is her large teeth and smile, was named one of People Magazine's 50 Most Beautiful People in the World in 2000 and was voted 44th in Stuff magazine's 102 Sexiest Women in the World in 2002. As for her romantic life, Amanda was previously linked to actor Brian Van Holt (dated in 2001) before having an on-off relationship with Troy screenwriter David Benioff (born in 1970). The couple reportedly became engaged in July 2005 following the rumor of their separation in May. Commenting about her on-off relationship, Peet said, "The thing about dating is, I am not good at it. I am a relationship person. Some people are comfortable being alone.
Whatever the opposite of that is, I am. I'm not meant to be on my own. "
Moviegoers can catch Peet in the more recent and upcoming movies A Lot Like Love (2005, also starring Ashton Kutcher), The Martian Child (2005, along side Bobby Coleman and John Cusack), Syriana (2005, opposite George Clooney and Matt Damon), The Night of the White Pants (2006, starring Selma Blair, Frances Fisher and Laura Jordan), Ed Sone's Griffin and Phoenix (2006, with Dermot Mulroney), Fast Track (2006, opposite Jason Bateman and Zach Braff) and Snow Angels (2006).
Awake and Sing
Childhood and Family:
New York native actress Amanda Peet was born on January 11, 1972.
Her father is Charles Peet (divorced from Peet's mother in 1990), a lawyer, and her mother is Penny Peet, a social worker. The youngest of the family, Amanda has an older sister with whom she spent her childhood with in New York. At age 3, a scrupulously uninvited Amanda made a bizarre stage debut when she jumped onto a stage in the middle of a play.
As a child, Amanda attended an all-girls' prep school in London. She continued her studies at New York's Friends Seminary High School where she shared the same school with actor Liev Schreiber. Amanda next attended and graduated from Columbia University in New York, majoring in history. While in college, she was encouraged by her drama professor to join an audition for popular acting teacher Uta Hagen.
Upon graduation in 1994, she studied acting with him for a four-year period. In the meantime, she gained stage exposure in the off-Broadway revival of Clifford Odets' "Awake and Sing."
Having an unconventional stage debut by jumping on stage during the middle of a play when she was 3, Amanda Peet studied acting seriously under Broadway great Uta Hagen. During her early years pursuing an acting career, Amanda worked as a waitress and once appeared in a Skittles candy commercial. Peet got her start in 1995 when she had her film debut in Craig Singer's Animal Room (1995), and next played regular Robyn Gainer in the television series "Central Park West" (1995). She also landed a guest role in "Law & Order" (1995), playing kidnapped and distressed young woman Leslie Harlan who is forced to commit robbery.
Peet continued to pick up small roles in Virginity (1996), portrayed the supporting role of Jennifer Aniston's sister Molly in Edward Burns' comedy She's the One (1996) and appeared in the romantic comedy One Fine Day (1996, starring George Clooney and Michelle Pfeiffer).
After a performance in Sex and Violins (1997), Peet gained exposure by playing roles in the independent features Grind (1997, starring Billy Crudup) and the AIDS drama Touch Me (1997, opposite Michael Vartans).
She made her TV movie debut in Ellen Foster (1997), portraying the Bohemian young teacher who gives special attention to the titular abused child.
In 1998, Peet's career began to take flight when she joined the star-filled cast of Sean Connery and Gillian Anderson in Playing by Heart (1998). She followed it up with the independent film Origin of the Species (1998), was part of the ensemble in the comedy film 1999 (1998) and worked with Rose McGowan and Donnie Wahlberg in the South Boston crime drama Southie (1998).
The actress received her big break with the starring role of Jacqueline 'Jack' Barrett in the WB short-lived romantic drama "Jack & Jill" (1999-2001). In the show, she portrayed a bride-to-be who moves to New York and falls for neighbor David "Jill" Jillefsky (played by Ivan Sergei). Jack & Jill won the heart of critics and audiences alike.
The same year, Peet was cast as Beth Harmon in the short-lived "Partners" (1999), played Sean Patrick Flanery's fiancé Chris in Simply Irresistible (1999, also starring Sarah Michelle Gellar), portrayed Lisa in Jump (1999), starred as Nina Harris in director Neil Turitz's debut Two Ninas (1999) and rejoined Sean Patrick Flanery as his bedmate Jane Bannister in Body Shots (1999).
"I think she is extraordinary. She has a tremendous flair. It's a wonderful comedy performance. She has a real sort of immediacy, an extraordinary presence." Director Jonathan Lynn (My Cousin Vinny) on Peet's role in The Whole Nine Yards (2000).
Playing the minor role of Debbie, opposite Bette Midler and Nathan Lane, in the Jacqueline Susann biopic Isn't She Great (2000) was Peet's opening film in the new millennium. She then scored success when she portrayed dental hygienist Jill St. Claire in the uproarious comedy The Whole Nine Yards (2000). Through her cute, yet sexy, nice, but sizzling performance, Peet gained recognition from critics as well as audiences and immediately became one of the most-talked-about stars of the new millennium. The film also starred Bruce Willis, Natasha Henstridge and Matthew Perry. Being asked about her wacky role in the film, she said, "When I read The Whole Nine Yards I was like, 'Okay, this is a G-spot role.'"
Amanda ended the year 2000 with two more films. First she portrayed Karen in Takedown (2000) and next costarred with former boyfriend Brian Van Holt in Peter M. Cohen's independent comedy Whipped (2000).
After taking part in the made-for-television film Date Squad (2001), Peet found herself acting opposite American Pie star Jason Biggs and comedic actors Steve Zahn and Jack Black in Saving Silverman (2001).
She went on to play roles in the high-profile movies High Crimes (2002), along side Ashley Judd, Jim Caviezel, Amanda Pudd and Morgan Freeman, and Changing Lines (2002), joining the star-studded cast of Ben Afflect and Samuel L. Jackson. She was also seen as Rachel in Igby Goes Down (2002).
In 2003 and 2004, Peet added to her impressive resume five big screen movies. She first played Patty in Whatever We Do (2003), and costarred with John Cusack in James Mangold's psychological thriller Identity (2003). Amanda also starred with film veterans Diane Keaton and Jack Nicholson in director Nancy Meyers' Something's Gotta Give (2003. She also reprised the character of Jill St. Claire for The Whole Ten Yards (2004) and portrayed the wife of actor Will Ferrell in Woody Allen`s Melinda and Melinda (2004).
Thirty three year old Peet recently played the lead role of Ashton Kutcher's girlfriend Emily Friehl in Nigel Cole's A Lot Like Love (2005) and will be seen alongside Bobby Coleman and John Cusack in The Martian Child (2005). In 2005, Amanda will also be featured opposite George Clooney and Matt Damon in the Cold War thriller Syriana (2005) and with Selma Blair, Frances Fisher and Laura Jordan in The Night of the White Pants (2006). Peet currently has two films in pre-production: Ed Sone's Griffin and Phoenix (2006, with Dermot Mulroney) and the comedy romance Fast Track (2006, opposite Jason Bateman and Zach Braff). She is also set to star in the wide screen adaptation of Stewart O'Nan's novel Snow Angels (2006).
- Young Hollywood: Best New Style Maker, 2000