Leighton Meester's first experience in acting came when she was 11, while she was growing up in Marco Island, Florida. After appearing in local productions, she and her mother moved to New York, where she pursued a modeling career, and made her TV debut in an episode of Law & Order.
Meester then moved to Los Angeles, where she took other acting roles while finishing her studies. Her first major break came in 2003, through the film Hangman's Curse. She held recurring roles in 24, Veronica Mars and the short-lived Tarzan, before joining the cast of another short-lived series, Surface.
Meester's biggest break came in 2007, when she was cast as socialite Blair Waldorf in the CW series Gossip Girl. The series, which catapulted her to stardom, led to roles in major films such as Date Night (alongside Steve Carell and Tina Fey) and Country Strong (alongside Gwyneth Paltrow).
Her popularity on Gossip Girl also allowed her to launch a music career. She released two singles in 2009: "Somebody to Love", featuring Robin Thicke, and "Your Love's A Drug". She also contributed vocals to Cobra Starship's breakout hit "Good Girls Go Bad". Her debut studio album is slated for a 2011 release.
Leighton Marissa Claire Meester
- Leighton was born while her mother was serving time in prison for involvement in a drug ring. She was able to take care of her for three months in a halfway house before finishing the rest of her sentence, during which her grandmother took over.
- She is one of the few people who refers to Ed Westwick as "Eddy".
- Her surname Meester is Dutch for "master" or "teacher".
- She is naturally blonde but dyed her hair brown for the role of Blair Waldorf on Gossip Girl.
- Her favorite song is "Out On The Weekend" by Neil Young.
- She was educated at Beverly Hills High School in Beverly Hills, California.
- She speaks fluent French and enjoys creative writing.
- Teen Choice Award, Choice TV Actress: Drama, 2009 (for Gossip Girl)
- Teen Choice Award, Choice TV Actress: Drama, 2010 (for Gossip Girl)
2011: The Roommate - Rebecca
2011: The Oranges - Nina Ostroff
2011: Monte Carlo - Meg
2007-2011: Gossip Girl (TV series) - Blair Waldorf
2010: Country Strong - Chiles Stanton
2010: Going the Distance - Amy
2010: Date Night - Katy
2004-2008: Entourage (TV series) - Justine Chapin
2008: Killer Movie - Jaynie Hansen
2007: The Haunting of Sorority Row (TV movie) - Samantha Willows
2007: The Beautiful Ordinary - Tori
2007: Shark (TV series) - Megan
2007: Drive Thru - Mackenzie Carpenter
2007: CSI: Miami (TV series) - Heather Crowley
2006: House (TV series) - Ali
2006: Numb3rs (TV series) - Karen Camden
2006: Inside - Josie
2006: Flourish - Lucy Covner
2005-2006: Surface (TV series) - Savannah Barnett
2006: Secrets of a Small Town (TV series) - Kayla Rhodes
2006: Monster Allergy (TV series) - Poppy
2005: Veronica Mars (TV series) - Carrie Bishop
2005: 8 Simple Rules... for Dating My Teenage Daughter (TV series) - Nikki
2005: 24 (TV series) - Debbie Pendleton
2004: North Shore (TV series) - Veronica Farrell
2004: 7th Heaven (TV series) - Kendall
2004: Crossing Jordan (TV series) - Marie Strand
2004: Hollywood Division (TV movie) - Michelle
2003: Tarzan (TV series) - Nicki Porter
2003: Hangman's Curse - Elisha Springfield
2003: The Jackalope (short) - Lorraine
2003: The Big Wide World of Carl Laemke (TV movie) - Tanni
2002: Family Affair (TV series) - Irene
2002: Once and Again (TV series) - Amanda
2001: Boston Public (TV series) - Sarah Breen
1999: Law & Order (TV series) - Alyssa Turner
"I think the biggest thing to know is things aren't as bad as they seem. Your boyfriend seems like the last one you'll ever have and the love of your life, your friends and their drama seems so important - but it's not."
"I dyed it every color. I dyed it fire engine red and that didn't work out. It also had it black and red streaks."