Hercules: The Legendary Journeys
Former Ford model Sam Jenkins, sometimes credited as Sam Jenkins Sorbo and Sam Sorbo, is probably most popular among television audiences for playing Serena in several episodes of the syndication show “Hercules: The Legendary Journeys” (1997-1999), which starred her husband Kevin Sorbo. She also portrayed Dr. Caroline Eggert in the third season of the medical series “Chicago Hope” (1996) and appeared with her husband in “Andromeda” (2 episodes, 2000-2001) and the made for TV film “Avenging Angel” (2007). Other television shows she has worked in include “SeaQuest DSV,” “Diagnosis: Murder,” “JAG” and “The Sentinel.” Jenkins has also appeared in several movies, including “The Bonfire of the Vanities” (1990), “Twenty Bucks” (1993), “The Crew” (1994) and “In a Dark Place” (2005). In the late 1990s, she appeared in television commercials for MCI One and Kellogg's Special K cereal.
Jenkins and husband Kevin Sorbo have two sons and one daughter.
Childhood and Family:
Sam Jenkins was born Sandra Jenkins on October 18, 1966, in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. She graduated from Duke University in Durham, North Carolina, in 1985.
On January 5, 1998, Sam married actor Kevin Sorbo (born September 24, 1958). The couple welcomed their first child, son Braeden Cooper, on August 22, 2001, in Henderson, Nevada. Their second son, Shane Haaken Sorbo, was born on March 31, 2004. Daughter Octavia Flynn Sorbo followed on October 16, 2005.
Sam Jenkins was briefly signed to Ford Models before deciding to pursue a career in acting. Her first television job was on the 1987 miniseries “Napoleon and Josephine: A Love Story,” starring Armand Assante and Jacqueline Bisset. In the series she played Georgette. Three years later, in 1990, she resurfaced as Tuesday in the German TV series “Blaues Blut” (“Blue Blood”) and guest starred as Sherry on the short lived American drama series “Glory Days” that same year. “Glory Days” starred Spike Alexander, Brad Pitt, Evan Mirand and Nicholas Kallsen. Still in 1990, she made her feature film acting debut in “The Bonfire of the Vanities,” an adaptation of Tom Wolfe's novel of the same name. The movie was directed by Brian De Palma and starred Tom Hanks as Sherman McCoy, Bruce Willis as Peter Fallow, Melanie Griffith as Maria Ruskin, and Kim Cattrall as Judy McCoy and was considered a dud upon its release.
Jenkins was next featured as a hooker in “Night of the Warrior,” an action movie starring Lorenzo Lamas. It received a direct to video release in the U.S. on October 16, 1991. Her first significant role arrived when she was cast as Claire in the Italian movie “Obiettivo indiscreto” (“Hidden Lens”), opposite Luca Barbareschi as David. The film premiered at the 1991 Cannes Film Festival out of competition and played for the public in 1992. In 1993, the actress costarred with Linda Hunt, Brendan Fraser, Gladys Knight, Elisabeth Shue, Steve Buscemi, Christopher Lloyd, William H. Macy, David Schwimmer, Shohreh Aghdashloo and Spalding Gray in the drama “Twenty Bucks,” helmed by Keva Rosenfeld and written by Leslie and Endre Bohem. The film won an Independent Spirit Award for Best Supporting Male (Lloyd) and was nominated for the Critics Award at the 1993 Deauville Film Festival and the Grand Jury Prize in the dramatic category at the 1993 Sundance Film Festival. The same year, she was reunited with Buscemi for the horror comedy “Ed and His Dead Mother,” which received an International Fantasy Film Award nomination for Best Film at the 1994 Fantasporto. Other cast members in the film included Ned Beatty, Gary Farmer, Robert Harvey and Miriam Margolyes.
In “Fortunes of War” (1994), Jenkins costarred with Matt Salinger, Haing S. Ngor, Martin Sheen and Michael Ironside. It was released direct to video on December 7, 1994. She followed it up with a supporting role in the thriller “Fortunes of War” (also 1994), which starred Viggo Mortensen, Donal Logue and Jeremy Sisto and was directed and co-written by Carl Colpaert.
Back to the small screen, Jenkins portrayed Mariah in the NBC science fiction series “SeaQuest DSV” episodes “Daggers” (1994) and “Dagger Redux” (1995). She also appeared as Ellen Kingston in the “Diagnosis Murder” episode “Playing for Keeps” (1995), Private Whitley in the “JAG” episode “Boot” (1996) and Isabel Kane in the “The Sentinel” episode “Night Train” (1996). From September to November 1996, she played the recurring role of Dr. Caroline Eggert on the David E. Kelley created series “Chicago Hope.” The episodes in which she appeared in were “Out of Africa,” “Back to the Future,” “Papa's Got a Brand New Bag,” “Liver Let Die,” “Liar, Liar,” “A Time to Kill,” “A Day in the Life” and “Divided Loyalty.”
First playing Princess Kirin in a 1996 episode of “Hercules: The Legendary Journeys,” an adventure television series starring her future husband Kevin Sorbo as Hercules, Jenkins returned to the show to play Serena in three episodes in February 1997 and then in two additional episodes in 1999.
Jenkins was reunited with her husband in the new millennium when she guest starred as Dr. Sara Riley in two episodes of the Canadian/American science fiction series “Andromeda.” In 2001, she appeared as Esther in an episode of the long running German/Austrian series “Tatort” (“Crime Scene”) named “Nichts mehr im Griff” and supported Robert Martin Steinberg and Stephen Polk in the film “Resolution” for director/writer Jay Nuzum.
After taking a break for maternity purposes, Ms. Jenkins reprised her role of Paula in Nuzum's thriller “In a Dark Place” (2005). Two years later, she played Sarah in the television movie “Avenging Angel,” which starred her husband.