CSI's Sara Sidle
Entering the showbiz in her teens as a model, Jorja Fox later turned to acting and made her feature film debut in the neo-noir The Kill-Off (1989). She subsequently transformed into TV star after playing a recurring role as an out lesbian medic, Dr. Maggie Doyle (1996-1999), on the popular NBC medical drama “ER,” and as Secret Service Agent Gina Tuscano (2000) on NBC's long-running serial drama “The West Wing.” She gains even more recognition as Sara Sidle (2000-Present), a materials and element analyst, on CBS hit forensic crime drama series “CSI: Crime Scene Investigation,” which won her a Screen Actors Guild Award. Her film credits include Dead Funny (1994), The Jerky Boys (1995), How to Make the Cruelest Month (1998), Forever Fabulous (1999), The Hungry Bachelors Club (1999) and Memento (2000).
The 5' 9" attractive brunette actress with Belgian, Canadian and Irish heritage is a dedicated vegetarian and has worked with PETA to help promote vegetarianism. She was nominated PETA’s “World’s Sexiest Vegetarian” (2006), and was listed on Stuff's “103 Sexiest Women” (2003). As of November 2006, Jorja has been featured as a cover story on TV Guide four times.
“Just to think about it gives me heart palpitations. It's like I can't breathe. It sends shivers down my spine! But I still believe in true love.” Jorja Fox (on marriage).
Childhood and Family:
“My mom made up Jorja. I spent the first 10 years of my life convincing people that I knew how to spell my name. Everyone tried to tell me I couldn't spell. I'm not a good talker. I'm not very verbal, so I don't have alternative names for most things. I'm lucky if I can get something out that's more than two syllables. In English.” Jorja Fox.
Born in New York City, New York on July 7, 1968, Jorja-An Fox (Jorja is pronounced Georgia (like the state in the U.S.)) moved to a narrow barrier island in Melbourne Beach, Florida where she spent her childhood. The youngest child of Montreal-born parents Mark Fox (Irish-Canadian; born in 1924) and Marilyn Fox (Belgian-Canadian; born in 1927; died in 1996), Jorja has has one older brother, Jeff Fox (born in 1957).
“Where I grew up, I wasn’t even close to being cool. My family lived in the smallest, most rural town in Florida, called Melbourne Beach, and it was an outdoors-y community where beauty was all about being tanned and blonde. But I was chubby, awkward and fair-skinned with dark hair - and a 10p-sized gap between my teeth.” Jorja Fox.
Young Jorja attended Hoover Junior High in Indialantic, Florida and continued her study at Melbourne High School in Melbourne, Florida. She also studied acting at the prestigious Lee Strasberg Theatre Institute in New York City, New York, from 1990 to 1991.
“I was having a meatball sub one day in Brooklyn, and it just clicked. I was in the middle of that sandwich, but I put it down—and I never ate meat again.” Jorja Fox.
Since she was 20 (some mention 18), Jorja has become a vegetarian. A dedicated vegetarian and an aspiring vegan, she has worked with PETA to help promote vegetarianism and was nominated in 2006 for PETA’s “World’s Sexiest Vegetarian.”
“If you just cut down (on meat) or tried (vegetarianism), you might find that you love it. And the list of things that you’d be doing positively to affect the planet and the next seven generations that come after you is humongous.” Jorja Fox.
She currently lives in Los Angeles with her female boxer dog, Ali, and two cats, Rumplestiltskin and Sid Poitier (formerly named Sid Vicious). She has been best friend with actress Amy Carlson since 1993 and is good friends with her CSI co-star actress, Emily Procter.
The Hungry Bachelors Club
“I worked at a kennel for a long time. That was probably one of the best jobs I've ever had but definitely one of the more obscure.” Jorja Fox.
Winning a model search contest at a local mall at age 16, Jorja Fox spent the following couple of years modeling both nationally and internationally. When she was modeling in New York City in the late 1980s, she was once roommates with Madonna's sister, Paula Ciccone.
“My life changed when, ironically, I won a modeling contest at the local shopping plaza. I was the most surprised at my win. I was laughed at when my picture appeared in the paper. At school the next day the other kids were asking, ‘what kind of contest was that, surely there’s a mistake?’” Jorja Fox.
At age 18, Jorja stopped modeling and returned to her birthplace of New York to pursue an acting career. She honed her acting skills at the prestigious Lee Strasberg Theatre Institute, under the supervision of veteran character actor William Hickey.
The aspiring actress made her feature acting debut in writer-director Maggie Greenwald's neo-noir The Kill-Off, an adaptation of Jim Thompson's novel which premiered at the Toronto Film Festival in 1989 and opened in a limited release in 1990. She followed it up with a featured role in the three-part “ABC Afterschool Special” presentation “Summer Stories: The Mall” (1992) and on ABC's short-lived crime-drama series “Missing Persons” (1993), playing a Chicago police investigator called Connie Karadzic. She was also seen in the HBO “Lifestories: Families in Crisis” special “Dead Drunk: The Kevin Tunell Story” (1993).
Jorja added to her acting resume with roles in John Feldman's dark romantic comedy Dead Funny (1994; starring Elizabeth Peña and Andrew McCarthy), James Melkonian's crime-comedy feature The Jerky Boys (1995; she played Alan Arkin's young lady) and the romantic TV-movie Alchemy (1996). From 1996 to 1999, she played the recurring role of an out lesbian medic, Dr. Maggie Doyle, on the NBC long-running, award-winning medical drama “ER.”
During her “ER” years, she also appeared as Felicity in the NBC miniseries “House of Frankenstein 1997,” had a cameo appearance as the attractive woman in the groundbreaking “coming out” episode of the ABC sitcom “Ellen,” and was featured in Kip Koenig's independent drama How to Make the Cruelest Month (1998; starring Clea DuVall). Additionally, she supported Jean Smart in the road movie Tiara Tango (1999; aka. Forever Fabulous), an independent feature screened at the Austin Film Festival, and played the lead role of Delmar Youngblood, an insurance adjuster and a single mom who wants to open up her own restaurant in the independent comedy The Hungry Bachelor's Club (1999), Gregory Ruzzin's film version of the novel by Lynn Scott Myers.
The new millennium proved to be Jorja's breakout moment. She landed the role of Sara Sidle, a materials and element analyst, on popular, Emmy Award-winning CBS forensic crime drama series “CSI: Crime Scene Investigation.” She has been working on the hit show since its first season in 2000 until its current seventh season (2007). During that time, she was once fired from the show because of a salary dispute and failure to report for work for a new season. However, she managed to go back on the set the following week after citing those incidents a “misunderstanding.” The show later won her a Screen Actors Guild Award for Outstanding Performance by an Ensemble in a Drama Series in 2005.
During her hefty stint on “CSI: Crime Scene Investigation,” Jorja played a recurring role as Secret Service Agent Gina Tuscano (2000) on NBC's long-running serial drama “The West Wing” and was cast as the murdered wife of Guy Pearce's amnesiac in writer-director Christopher Nolan's ambitious neo-noir–psychological thriller film, Memento, which premiered at the 2001 Sundance Film Festival to critical acclaim.
Behind the screen, Jorja is the co-founder of an experimental stage theater production company in Los Angeles called Honeypot Productions, in which she often writes plays. The company recently produced a musical called Dear Bernard, written by co-founder Heather Grody (Murmurs singer/guitarist). Jorja is also a musician and songwriter. In the short film Traveling Companion (1998), she was credited for writing and performing the song “Lullabye.”
Screen Actors Guild: Outstanding Performance by an Ensemble in a Drama Series, “CSI: Crime Scene Investigation,” 2005