"With guys in a uniform the reaction is more automatic. Men seem to love me in a uniform but are sometimes surprised what I look like out of the uniform, too. Sometimes when fans of the show see me looking sexy, they are like, `Wow, Catherine, I knew you were cute...but, wow!' I like that." Catherine Bell
London born actress Catherine Bell was best recognized while portraying David James Elliott's sexy partner, Marine Major Sarah "Mac" MacKenzie, on CBS's military court drama "JAG" from 1997 to 2005. First noticed as Isabella Rosellini/Meryl Streep's nude body double in Death Becomes Her (1992), Catherine could later be seen in such films as Black Thunder (1998), The Time Shifters (a.k.a. Thrill Seekers, 1999, TV) and Bruce Almighty (2003).
Catherine stands at 5' 10 inches tall and has a heart tattoo with the word "love" inside of it on her right ankle. She was listed as one of FHM's Sexiest Girls of 2001 and 2002 (American edition). She also became one of FHM's 100 Sexiest Women in the World in 2004.
Childhood and Family:
British actress Catherine Lisa Bell was born on August 14, 1968, in London, England. Daughter of a British father, Peter (architect) and Iranian mother Mina (nurse, Catherine's personal assistant), Catherine is fluent in the Persian language Farsi. When she was three, her parents divorced and three-year-old Catherine moved with her mother to California.
"Well, I've always been interested in math and biology, but I wasn't really into it for a career, so I decided to give modeling a try. I went to Japan for four months and it was crazy. I was 19 at the time." Catherine Bell
Growing up, Catherine was a tall and skinny girl who received good grades and wore glasses. She excelled in math and biology and programmed a computer video game in junior high. Desiring to be a surgeon or a biomedical engineer, she enrolled at the University of California at Los Angeles, majored in medicine. However, she dropped her studies to become a model in Japan and once took an acting class at The Beverly Hills Playhouse where she was introduced to Scientology.
On the set of Death Becomes Her (1992), Catherine met the director's assistant, Adam Beason. After having been together for two years, the couple tied the knot on May 8, 1994, and have one daughter named Gemma (born on April 16, 2003). A fan of outdoor and extreme sports like kickboxing, snowboarding, riding motorcycles and wakeboarding, the pair currently resides in their Hollywood Hills home with their daughter and two Italian Greyhounds, Leo and Zoe.
Life Changing Moment
"My husband and I were sitting at our dining room table looking at a stack of bills trying to work out a way we could pay them. We'd already borrowed money and I was thinking we'd have to borrow more. I'd been working two jobs and my husband had taken on another while I did acting classes. I got the call and my agent said, `You're not supposed to know this yet, but you've got the part.' I started crying and we went out and brought the cheapest bottle of champagne we could fine." Catherine Bell
Once appearing as a kid model in McDonald's, Jack in the Box and Baskin-Robbins commercials, Catherine Bell then received an unaccredited role as a singer in the 1982 film An Officer and a Gentleman. She originally dreamed of becoming a surgeon or a biomedical engineer while attended UCLA. Having been a part-time model while in college, Catherine left her studies to give a modeling career a try. She subsequently worked as a model in Japan and once experienced anorexia and bulimia. She recalled, "People were showing you how to throw up. You're taking diet pills. Everyone's partying, so you start drinking a lot, and drugs. A couple of years messed me up for a while."
Months later, Catherine flew back home. She studied acting at The Beverly Hills Playhouse with Milton Katselas and modeled for Amex Mexican advertisements. In 1992, she was noticed for her nude scene as Isabella Rossellini/Meryl Streep's body double in the movie Death Becomes Her. On her stripping scene in the film, Catherine admitted, "That was fun. I got to meet Bruce Willis and Meryl Streep. I don't mind nudity when it's done tasteful and not just gratuitous T and A. They showed my butt! It was fine, though. I think the female body is beautiful."
More film work followed. She landed roles in films like Mother of the Bride (1993, TV), Men of War (1994) and Alien Nation: Body and Soul (1995, TV). She was also spotted as a guest in the TV series "Dream On," "Vanishing Son," "Friends" and "Hot Line."
1997 was Catherine's breakaway year. After being brutally murdered on screen while guest starring on the military court drama series "JAG," Catherine eventually won the regular role of Marine Maj./Lt. Col. Sarah "Mac" MacKenzie in the CBS long-lived series. In the series, originally aired on NBC, Catherine played David James Elliott's sexy sidekick from 1997 to 2005. The series became a hit and was listed in the Nielsen's Top 20.
"It was a very unusual experience. I loved it though. I couldn't have been more thrilled that I was killed off in one episode and brought back as a series regular in the next." Catherine Bell
While working on "JAG," Catherine also acted in such films as Black Thunder (1998), Cab to Canada (1998, TV) and shared the screen with Casper Van Dien in The Time Shifters (1999, a.k.a. Thrill Seekers).
She also appeared as a guest on several TV series, notably "Hercules: The Legendary Journeys" in 1997 and had a reoccurring role on "Sin City Spectacular" in 1998.
2003 saw her costarring as Susan Ortega in the comedy Bruce Almighty.
After "Jag" was taken off television in 2005, Catherine kept busy on screen playing a role in 2005's Babak & Friends: A First Norooz.
Off screen, this athletic beauty supports charity organizations like the Children's Hospital in Los Angeles, California, and the Buoniconti Fund, which is trying to find a cure for paralysis.
"This huge life-changing moment of going from zero to 90 in two seconds!" Catherine Bell