Jenna Elfman

 

Date Of Birth

September 30, 1971
 

Biography

Actress Jenna Elfman was born on September 30, 1971 in Los Angeles, California. Already somewhat exposed to the performing industry as a kid—her uncle is Tony Butala, who formed part of the singing group the Lettermen—she was first attracted to dancing, eventually graduating from the Los Angeles County High School of the Arts in 1989 as a dance major. She first worked as a dancer, mostly appearing with different musical groups—for instance, she toured as a dancer with band ZZ Top, and also danced in a music video for Depeche Mode. She switched to acting in the early 1990s, doing mostly commercial work.

Elfman’s first television acting work came during that time, eventually progressing to guest spots in shows such as Almost Perfect, NYPD Blue and Roseanne. In 1996, she took her first regular television role, in the comedy series Townies. While it didn’t last a season, it was enough to raise her profile; network executives were impressed with her work, and later gave her a new project. That project would turn out to be Dharma & Greg, a much more successful comedy which premiered in 1997. Her portrayal of the free-spirited Dharma Montgomery endeared her to viewers and critics alike; it earned her a Golden Globe and two Emmy nominations. The series ended its run in 2002.

Her success on Dharma & Greg led to her pursuing a movie career. Highlights include Edtv and Looney Tunes: Back in Action, as well as a voice role in Doctor Doolittle. It would take four years until she returned to television in a regular capacity: the sitcom Courting Alex premiered in 2006, but was cancelled before it could finish its run. She then had a guest run on Two and a Half Men, from the same creator of Dharma & Greg.

In 2009, Elfman joined the cast of the TV series Accidentally on Purpose. She also became part of shows like Shameless and Damages, as well as the film Friends with Benefits. In 2012, Elfman was cast on the comedy 1600 Penn, premiering 2013. After the cancellation of the series, she moved on to star on the NBC series Growing Up Fisher.
 

Place of Birth

Los Angeles, California, USA
 

Birth Name

Jennifer Mary Butala
 

Gender

Female
 

Fun Facts

-She's a classically-trained ballet dancer.
 

Awards

Dharma & Greg:
-Golden Globe Award for Best Actress – Television Series Musical or Comedy (1999)
-TV Guide Award for Favorite Actress in a Comedy (1999, 2000)
 

Filmography

2014 Growing Up Fisher (TV series)
2013 1600 Penn (TV series)
2012 Damages (TV series)
2012 Shameless (TV series)
2011 Matumbo Goldberg (TV series)
2004-2011 Two and a Half Men (TV series)
2011 Friends with Benefits
2011 Bad Mom (TV movie)
2009-2010 Accidentally on Purpose (TV series)
2009/I Love Hurts
2009 The Six Wives of Henry Lefay
2009 Special Agent Oso (TV series)
2008 My Name Is Earl (TV series)
2008 Struck (short)
2007 Brothers & Sisters (TV series)
2006 Courting Alex (TV series)
2006 Best of Chris Isaak (video)
2005/I Touched
2004 Clifford's Really Big Movie
2003 Looney Tunes: Back in Action
2002 Obsessed (TV movie)
1997-2002 Dharma & Greg (TV series)
2001 Town & Country
2000 CyberWorld (short)
2000 Keeping the Faith
1999 Edtv
1999 Anthrax: Return of the Killer A's: Video
1999 Venus
1998 Doctor Dolittle
1998 Can't Hardly Wait
1998 Krippendorf's Tribe
1997 Grosse Pointe Blank
1997 The Single Guy (TV series)
1996 Townies (TV series)
1996 Her Last Chance (TV movie)
1996 Murder One (TV series)
1996 Almost Perfect (TV series)
1996 NYPD Blue (TV series)
1995 Roseanne (TV series)
1995 The Monroes (TV series)
1995 Pointman (TV series)
1994 The George Carlin Show (TV series)
1993 Double Deception (TV movie)
1992 Freshman Dorm (TV series)
1992 Murder, She Wrote (TV series)
1990 Strange Too (video short)
 

Nickname

Jenna
 

Height

5' 10" (1.78 m)
 

Quotes

"Creatively, you need to go live life. As an artist, you are representing life. So you have to rub elbows and be out in it."

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