Catherine Bell was born on August 14, 1968 in London, England. She moved to Los Angeles when she was three years old, after her parents divorced; by age 12, she became a naturalized United States citizen. She began appearing on television since her childhood, appearing initially in television commercials while maintaining good grades in school. She eventually entered the University of California, Los Angeles, intending to pursue a career as an engineer or a physicist, but she dropped out to pursue a modeling career.
Bell went around the world modeling, but she eventually returned to Los Angeles to train as an actress under Milton Katselas. She started acting in 1990, with a one-liner in the television comedy Sugar and Spice. Her first film was in 1992, when she became a body double for Isabella Rossellini in the dark comedy Death Becomes Her. Her initial credits revolved around television guest roles and roles in late night adult programming.
In 1996, Bell broke out to the mainstream with her role in the legal drama JAG. She played one of the main characters, Sarah MacKenzie, a Marine officer who works as a lawyer. She first appeared in the final episode of the first season as a guest, and only became a regular in the second season; she would stay in the program until its conclusion in 2005. That same year, she joined the cast of the science fiction miniseries The Triangle, where she played smart and strong-willed yet beleaguered ocean engineer Emily Patterson.
In 2007, Bell signed on to play a main role in the drama Army Wives. Unlike in JAG, where she played a soldier, this time she played a soldier’s wife: Denise Sherwood, the wife of Major Frank Sherwood (Terry Serpico) who is dealing with her son’s (Richard Bryant) anger management issues.
- She married Adam Beason on May 8, 1994. They have two children together.
- She is fluent in the Persian language.
- Some of her hobbies include kick-boxing, skiing, and snowboarding.
- On her right ankle, she has a tattoo with the word "love".
- She originally wanted to become a surgeon or a biomedical engineer.
2011: Close Quarters (TV movie) - Abby Collins
2007-2011: Army Wives (TV series) - Denise Sherwood
2010: The Good Witch's Gift (TV movie) - Cassandra Nightingale
2009: The Good Witch's Garden (TV movie) - Cassandra Nightingale
2008: The Good Witch (TV movie) - Cassandra Nightingale
2007: Evan Almighty - Susan Ortega - News Anchor
2007: Still Small Voices (TV movie) - Michael Summer
2006: Law & Order: Special Victims Unit (TV series) - Naomi Cheales
2006: Threshold (TV series) - Daphne Larson
2006: Company Town (TV movie) - Maggie Shaunessy
2005: Sci Fi Inside: 'The Triangle' (TV movie) - Emily Patterson
2005: The Triangle (TV mini-series) - Emily Patterson
1996-2005: JAG (TV series) - Lt. Col. Sarah 'Mac' MacKenzie
2005: Babak & Friends: A First Norooz (video short) - Layla (English)
2003: Waking the Dead (TV series) - Sam James
2003: Bruce Almighty - Susan Ortega
1999: The Time Shifters (TV movie) - Elizabeth Wintern
1998: Cab to Canada (TV movie) - Sandy
1998: Black Thunder - Lisa
1998: Sin City Spectacular (TV series)
1997: Crash Dive (video) - Lt. Cmdr. Lisa Stark
1997: Hercules: The Legendary Journeys (TV series) - Cynea
1996: Hotline Volume 3 (video)
1996: Hot Line (TV series) - Cat
1995: The Naked Truth (TV series)
1995: Friends (TV series) - Robin
1995: Alien Nation: Body and Soul (TV movie) - Cop
1995: Vanishing Son (TV series) - Kelly/Rachel
1994: Men of War - Grace Lashield
1994: Dream On (TV series) - Kay Meadows
1993: Mother of the Bride (TV movie) - Chastity
1991: True Colors (TV series) - Donna