“I don't think I'd have as thick a skin as an actress if I hadn't done the modeling. Because you get rejected seven times a day as a model and you're not even doing anything. That can either kill you in a month or, you know, build up a tolerance in you, and I think it helped me.” Christina Hendricks
American model turned actress Christina Hendricks is best known for playing Joan Holloway on the critically acclaimed series “Mad Men” (AMC, 2007-?), from which she was nominated for two Emmy nominations, shared two Screen Actors Guild Awards and won a Monte-Carlo TV Festival Award. She is also noticed for her roles in Showtime's “Beggars and Choosers” (2000-2001), NBC's “ER” (2002), UPN's “Kevin Hill” (2004-2005) and NBC's “Life” (2007-2008). Following her breakthrough role in “Mad Men,” the redhead actress appeared in a number of films like “ La cucina” (2007), “South of Pico” (2007), “Life as We Know It” (2010), “Detachment” (2011), “Drive” (2011), “The Family Tree” (2011) and “I Don't Know How She Does It” (2011). In 2011, Hendricks was ranked No. 82 on FHM's list of “100 Sexiest Women in the World.” The same year, she reached No. 33 on the FHM Australia list of “100 Sexiest Women in the World.”
Hendricks is married to actor Geoffrey Arend.
Childhood and Family:
Christina Rene Hendricks was born on May 3, 1975, in Knoxville, Tennessee, to Jackie Sue (née Raymond), who was a psychologist, and Robert Hendricks, who was an English born forester working for the US forestry service. When she was three, her family relocated to Twin Falls, Idaho, where she was involved in a community theater called J.U.M.P. Company: Junior Musical Playhouse and appeared in its productions of “Bye Bye Birdie,” “The Best Christmas Pageant Ever,” “Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat,” “All My Sons” and “Jesus Christ Superstar.” At age 14, she moved again with her family, this time to Fairfax, Virginia, in which she attended Fairfax High School. Toward the end of high school, at the urge of a friend, she entered a modeling competition to appear on the cover of “Seventeen” magazine, and though she did not win, the 19 year old stunning beauty decided to pursue modeling professionally. Christina is a natural blonde and started dyeing her hair red when she was 10 years old, after reading the book “Anne of Green Gables.”
After dating for two years, Christina was engaged to actor Geoffrey Arend (born February 28, 1978) in December 2008. The couple married on October 11, 2009 at Il Buco restaurant in New York.
At age 19, Christina Hendricks moved to New York and modeled professionally there and in London for the next two years before eventually heading to Los Angeles to make transformation from model to actress. In 1999, she made her professional acting debut as Fawn in the MTV made for television film “Sorority,” starring Monica Creel, Holly Towne and Sara Downing. Displaying a talent for her craft, she soon landed a small part as Rhiannon on the first season of MTV's “Undressed” (1999). In the following year, she had a recurring role as intern Kelly Kramer on Showtime's “Beggars and Choosers.”
After guest starring in the television series “Angel” (2000, as Bar Maid) and “Thieves” (2002, as Sunday), Hendricks' next prominent role arrived when she was cast as Joyce Westlake, a ill-treated housewife given solace and shelter by one of the female employees of Cook County Hospital, on the NBC hit medical series “ER” (2002). She appeared such episodes as “Beyond Repair” (January 10, 2002), “A River in Egypt” (January 17, 2002), “Damage Is Done” (January 31, 2002) and
“A Simple Twist of Fate” (February 7, 2002). She went on to star in the ABC television series “The Court” (2002), along with Sally Field, Tim Bagley, Robin Thomas and Alfred Dennis, among others. She also played Audrey Drummond in the TV film “The Big Time” (2002), opposite Dylan Baker, Molly Ringwald and Christopher Lloyd, and offered a memorable two episodic stint as seductive con artist Saffron on Fox's “Firefly” (2002-2003).
Next up for Hendricks, she made guest appearances in “Miss Match” (as Sarah), “Presidio Med” (as Claire) (both 2003) and “Tru Calling” (2004, as Alyssa), and starred with Barbara Hershey and Susan May Pratt in the made for television film “Hunger Point” (2003). She eventually landed her first regular role on the UPN legal drama series “Kevin Hill,” playing attorney Nicolette Raye. Created by Jorge A. Reyes, the show ran for a season of 22 episodes from September 29, 2004 to May 18, 2005. Co-stars in the series included Taye Diggs, Jon Seda, Patrick Breen, Kate Levering, Michael Michele and Meagan Good.
Between 2005 and 2006, Hendricks could be seen making guest appearances in “Cold Case” (1 episode, as Esther 'Legs' Davis – 1945), “ Jake in Progress” (3 episodes, as Tanya), “Without a Trace” (1 episode, as Rachel Gibson), “Las Vegas” (1 episode, as Connie).
Hendricks's big break came in 2007 when she was cast as Joan Harris/ Joan Holloway, Office manager and head of the secretarial pool at Sterling Cooper, on the period drama series “Mad Men,” opposite Jon Hamm as Don Draper, Elisabeth Moss as Peggy Olsen, Vincent Kartheiser as Pete Campbell and January Jones as Betty Francis, among others. The show premiered on the American cable network AMC on July 19, 2007, and has since received critical acclaim and has won several awards, including fifteen Emmys and four Golden Globes. For her work, Hendricks has earned two Screen Actors Guilds for Outstanding Performance by an Ensemble in a Drama Series (2009 and 2010) and a Golden Nymph for Outstanding Actress - Drama Series at the Monte-Carlo TV Festival (2009). She was nominated for Emmy Award in the category of Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Drama Series twice in 2010 and 2011. Commenting about her character on the series, she said, “I have women coming up to me and saying: 'I love your character! She's so empowered. She takes control; she gets what she wants.' That's another side of her. And I respect that in Joan. She says and does things that I would never allow myself to do.”
While working on the series, Hendricks also took other acting projects. She starred with Joaquim de Almeida, Leisha Hailey and Rachel Hunter in the film “ La cucina,” which premiered at the Hollywood Film Festival on October 19, 2007 and later was shown on Showtime on December 4, 2009. She portrayed Angela in Ernst Gossner's character driven drama film, “South of Pico” (2007), opposite Kip Pardue, Henry Simmons and Gina Torres, and guest starred in an episode of “Notes from the Underbelly” (2007). From 2007 to 2008, she had a recurring role as Olivia Canton on the NBC crime/drama series “Life,” starring Damian Lewis. In 2010, Hendricks starred with Emily Mortimer and Shidô Nakamura on “ Leonie,” a drama film directed Hisako Matsui, and worked with Katherine Heigl, Josh Duhamel, Josh Lucas, Jean Smart and Melissa McCarthy in Greg Berlanti's comedy/drama film, “Life as We Know It.”
In 2011, Hendricks was cast in the musical film “Company,” starring Craig Bierko, Callie Carter and Stephen Colbert, provided the voice of Lois Lane in the animated direct to video film “All-Star Superman,” helmed by Sam Liu, and guest starred in an episode of “ Body of Proof” (as Jessica/Karen Archer). She portrayed Ms. Madison in “Detachment,” a drama about the high school education system starring Adrien Brody. The film premiered at the Tribeca Film Festival in April 2011 and is set to be released theatrically in February 2012. She co-starred with Ryan Gosling, Carey Mulligan and Bryan Cranston in Nicolas Winding Refn's crime neo-noir drama film “Drive,” which premiered on may 20, 2011 at the Cannes Film Festival, starred with Dermot Mulroney in the comedy/drama film “The Family Tree” (2011), directed by Vivi Friedman and written by Mark Lisson, and appeared with Sarah Jessica Parker, Pierce Brosnan and Kelsey Grammer in the comedy film “I Don't Know How She Does It” (2011).
Hendricks will star as April in the upcoming coming-of-age comedy film “Struck by Lightning” (2012), written by and starring Chris Colfer and directed by Brian Dannelly. Besides, she will act with Brendan Fraser and Julia Stiles in the forthcoming drama “Seconds of Pleasure” (2012), directed by Mike Figgis.
Screen Actors Guild: Outstanding Performance by an Ensemble in a Drama Series, “Mad Men,” 2010
Screen Actors Guild: Outstanding Performance by an Ensemble in a Drama Series, “Mad Men,” 2009
Monte-Carlo TV Festival: Golden Nymph, Outstanding Actress - Drama Series, “Mad Men,” 2009