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Bethany Joy Lenz Actress

Bethany Joy Lenz

The talented and beautiful actress and musician stars on WB's drama "One Tree Hill" as "Haley", and returns for a successful second season. Born in Florida, Lenz moved to Texas at age 4. She landed her first role at 7 as a Munchkin in an adaptation of The Wizard of Oz and by age 10 she had been cast in the role of Scout in To Kill a Mockingbird at the Irving Community Theater in Texas. While on a class trip to Los Angeles, Lenz landed her first professional job in a commercial for Swans Crossing, a teen series. Bethany loved to perform, and in 1992 her family moved again, this time to New Jersey, which enabled her to pursue acting in New York City. She began auditioning and booked several commercials, including Eggos Waffles and Dr. Pepper. In her sophomore year of high school, Lenz's talent caught the eye of a casting director. Bethany was hired to play Linda Halleck in the Stephen King feature Thinner. In March of 1998, she landed a nine-episode stint on the daytime drama Guiding Light as Reva Shayne's teenaged clone. Lenz's performance as the spunky and vulnerable clone earned her raves from viewers and critics alike. Soon after she was offered a contract role playing Michelle Bauer. In 1999, while still appearing on the show, she was cast as Rose Cronin in Mary and Rhoda, playing the daughter of Mary Tyler Moore's character in the TV movie based on the popular 1970s TV show. After two successful years on the soap opera, Lenz headed to the West Coast and into prime time. She booked roles on Felicity , Charmed, The Guardian, the Weitz brothers comedy Off Center, Maybe It's Me and the pilot Destiny for Jerry Bruckheimer Productions. Later that year, she starred in the comedy Bring It On, Again, a sequel to the Universal feature. Lenz is a triple threat and was vocally trained by the Director of The Brooklyn College of Opera. She still considers herself a "musical theatre baby" and spends much of her free time with her guitar or piano, writing new music. Her stage credits include working with director Garry Marshall and Carole King on a new musical and with director Arthur Allan Seidelman on a production of The Outsiders. Her hobbies include cooking, horseback riding, knitting, fashion and of course music. Bethany was born on April 2, 1981, in Hollywood Florida. Until 2003, Bethany Joy used Joie Lenz as her stage name. The unusual spelling of her name was adopted in her early teens. Today she is simply Bethany Joy.

At four, her father, Bob, a history teacher and therapist, and her mother, Cathie, a personnel manager and entrepreneur, moved to Arlington, Texas. It was in Texas, while attending Pope Elementary, that Bethany Joy began acting. In March of 1998, at 17, Bethany Joy began the role that would rocket her into stardom. While working on the demanding daytime serial Guiding Light, Bethany Joy graduated from Eastern Christian School in New Jersey in 1999 and landed the much coveted role of "Rose Cronin" in the highly anticipated ABC TV-movie return of 70's favorite "Mary & Rhoda." She also appeared in the off-Broadway musical "Foxy Ladies Love/Boogie 70's Explosion." In October of 2000, at the end of her two year contract with Guiding Light, Bethany Joy chose to leave her popular role and decided it was time to move on and pursue her dreams. Not only has she proved herself as an actress, Bethany Joy is also a talented musician and singer with a four-octave range. Since leaving Guiding Light Bethany Joy has completed a demo of original music and continues to writing screenplays.

Bethany Joy is currently starring in WB's drama "One Tree Hill." Bethany Joy loves photography, painting, and her dog, Scout, a Springer spaniel. She has many dreams that include attending college, movie roles, her own music, Broadway, and training at London's prestigious Royal Academy of Dramatic Arts.

Bethany's long climb to the top

Bethany Joy Lenz says the hard work leading up to her role in One Tree Hill has been worthwhile.
ONE Tree Hill's Bethany Joy Lenz is the first to admit she has not considered what her life would be like without acting.

When asked what alternative career paths she has considered, she laughs and suggests "sheep farming in Australia", not because it is a job she has always dreamed of doing but because she has family "down under".

"I started on the audition circuit at the age of seven and it just went from there," Lenz says. "I really love acting and feel it's a gift to be given the opportunity to do whatever I want to do."

She landed her first role as a munchkin in the adaptation of The Wizard of Oz when she was seven years old and by the age of 10 was cast in the role of Scout in To Kill a Mockingbird at the Irving Community Theatre in Texas.

Eventually she moved to New York and, in 1999, she won the role of Rose Cronin in Mary and Rhoda. She since has had guest roles on Felicity, Charmed and The Guardian.

Not that the road to her full-time job on One Tree Hill has been easy – there has been plenty of rejection along the way.

"But you have to take that out of it and not get worried by it because it's part of the job."

"If I wasn't doing this maybe I would live in Australia, I have a ton of family down there, and maybe be a sheep farmer or something."

Lenz plays Haley James on Channel 10's summer drama One Tree Hill, a show which tells the story of two half brothers.

Nathan Scott is the star of the high school basketball team and hails from a wealthy family while Lucas Scott is the only child of single working mum Deb.

Lenz's character Haley is Lucas's best friend, who captures the attention of Nathan.

Lenz has moved from her base on the West Coast to Wilmington, North Carolina, to film the series and says the lifestyle suits her.

"There's a combination of the beach and country out here which I really enjoy.

"It really was a big move because I'd just begun to form some of the best friendships of my life in LA. But the cool things about it is that a lot of my friends are in Washington so I visit them."

As for her days off, Lenz spends them watching repeats of I Love Lucy.

"I've got a ton of them on my TV and whenever I have a lazy day I watch them. I've always grown up loving the glamour days of Hollywood."

She says working on One Tree Hill is like being part of a big family, but the cast do their own thing when the filming stops.

"We really enjoy each other's company but a lot of us don't hang out together on the set because I like space to myself. It makes it pleasant coming in to work."

Her work on the show is often physically demanding, with her character Haley being involved in many emotional scenes.

"I do cry a lot on the show. I used to find it really difficult because I grew up not being comfortable crying in front of anyone but I learnt to cry in front of other people when I was about 20 so it's been a whole new world of emotion."

Bethany Joy Lenz's beauty ideas

Bethany Joy Lenz has been acting since the age of seven, so it’s no surprise that she cites film and TV as sources of aesthetic inspiration. “Totally,” she says. “You should have seen me after The Royal Tenenbaums came out – I wore raccoon eye makeup everyday.”

That flair for the dramatic has served the actress – known as Joy to all her friends – very well in her tenure on the soapy WB series One Tree Hill . Though the 23-year-old insists she’s really more the type to go with the flow, as good-girl-gone-wild Haley she gets to make waves.

Much like her naturally “unruly” hair. “It’s deliberately rebellious,” she says with a laugh. When she’s not working, Joy likes to let her tresses by, saturating the ends with Kerastase, "my absolute favorite can’t live-without conditioner,” and John Frieda’s Frizz-Ease. “I scrunch, scrunch, scrunch and let it air-dry,” she explains. Her skin, it seems, shares her hair’s diva like demeanor, at least when it comes to foundation: “It’s just snobby! It wasn’t until I started using Christian Dior and Shu Uemura that my face was like, ‘Oh yes, fabulous.'” Speaking of fabulous, her favorite big-night beauty trick is “blood-red 1940’s lips and a cat eye.” A little theatrical maybe, but it’s pure Joy.

"Joy likes to be alone, to do her own thing," Mr. Schwahn said. "Being a star is the biggest challenge. She doesn't have to be the center of attention."

Bethany "En-JOY-ing Life"


Bethany Joy Lenz (ex-Michelle) loves playing a primetime teen.

If you happen to catch The WB's ONE TREE HILL - airing Tuesday nights at 9 EST - you'll see primetime's newest teen star, GUIDING LIGHT alumna Joie Lenz (ex-Michelle). Sure, the natural blonde is now a brunette, and she goes by her birth name of Bethany Joy, but the actress behind the bright smile is one and the same.

"Haley is an odd bird," laughs Lenz of her current alter ego. "She is one of many children, but has always been an outsider. Haley is dating her best friend Lucas' half brother, Nathan, and has also formed an unlikely friendship with Nathan's ex-girlfriend, Peyton, as well."

Believe it or not, Lenz nearly missed out on the role she's now enjoying so much. "Haley was just another random audition that I went in for last July," she recalls. "There was someone else who filmed the pilot, but the show just wanted to take [the character] in a different direction."

That decision proved fortuitous, because the chemistry between Lenz and her castmates has catapulted them to teen-idol status. When they appeared on MTV's TRL last fall, the overwhelming crowd outside the Manhattan studio nearly caused them to miss their flight! But Lenz remains modest about the success she and her colleagues have achieved. "It's a show about teenagers," she laughs. "Those always do well!"

Spending so much time together at the secluded Wilmington, NC, set that was once home to Dawson's Creek has contributed to the bond between Lenz and her co-stars. And she's grown rather fond of her new hometown, as well. "I love Wilmington. It's very country and very beachy, too. I don't miss Los Angeles; I just miss my friends there. And sometimes," she laughs, "I miss my favorite restaurants!"

Since exiting Springfield in 2000, the actress has kept herself plenty busy with guest spots on Charmed and Felicity, a recurring role on The Guardian and a lead role in the 2004 direct-to-video/DVD cheerleading flick Bring It On Again. Yet despite her busy schedule, Lenz still manages to keep in touch with those she left behind in Springfield. "I love stopping by the GL set to say hello," she smiles. "I talk to Paul Anthony Stewart (Danny) and Tammy Blanchard (ex-Drew) consistently."

Although HILL's success has landed Lenz and the gang on the pages of nearly every teen 'zine around, the actress says she has not closed the door on daytime. She concludes with a smile, "I never say never."

Joie Lenz visits Ainsley Harriet Cooking Show


AINSLEY HARRIET: Come sit down Joie!

JOIE LENZ: Wonderful to meet you!

AINSLEY HARRIET: Lovely to meet you too! Oh, fantastic. Hey, were you watching me cook with the firefighters?

JOIE LENZ: I was! Those guys can cook, huh?

AINSLEY HARRIET: I know, they’re wonderful! Are you one of those people too that kind of look… anybody in uniform? I think, men have it with nurses, and stuff like that, women have it with firemen and policemen, and men have it with police women too… it’s something about a uniform…

JOIE LENZ: Absolutely!

AINSLEY HARRIET: It’s wonderful. I kind of like that type of thing. Now, I’ve gotta say, you know, there am I, sort of looking at my notes and I was trying to think… now, how does she say her name? Because you spell it so unusually… you spell it J-o-i-e.

JOIE LENZ: Yes, it is the French spelling, English pronunciation.

AINSLEY HARRIET: Right, now how did that come about? Were your parents a little bit, sort of wild, did they conceive you in a French resort? In gay Paris or something like that?

JOIE LENZ: No, no, no, nothing torrid like that. I was, actually, when I was 13 I just changed it to J-o-i-e. My name was originally Bethany Joy, “J-o-y” and I changed it to “J-o-i-e” when I was 13 because I liked writing “ie”s and everybody I knew was “J-o-y,” I had to be different!

AINSLEY HARRIET: I know, I know, kinda looked a little bit cool. My wife’s Claire, and of course you can’t abbreviate that. You know, it’s Claire, there’s no way. For Ainsley you can say “Ains” or you can say “Lee,” or you can do, you know, “mm,” depending on it, you know what I mean?

JOIE LENZ: Depending on it.

AINSLEY HARRIET: But you know, it’s kind of unusual, there’s sort of a… J-o-i-e, just Joie.

JOIE LENZ: I get “Jwah” a lot, “Jolie,” “Joey.”

AINSLEY HARRIET: But I’ve gotta say, congratulations on getting that part on “Mary and Rhoda.” That’d be exciting, isn’t it?

JOIE LENZ: Oh, yeah, that was thrilling, really great.

AINSLEY HARRIET: Did you know the series before that? Were you familiar with it on sort of Nick at Nite? Did you ever sort of catch up on it…

JOIE LENZ: Uh, I was familiar with it in the sense that Mary Tyler Moore’s really a household name, so everybody kind of… I mean, I grew up knowing about Laura Petrie and the character there. Um, but I actually grew up without cable, horribly deprived. No, I’m kidding.

AINSLEY HARRIET: No, but it’s something that’s changed, isn’t it.

JOIE LENZ: No, it was great… yeah. It was, I actually just sort of watched reruns, and tapes that I was given. From-- I was doing a cabaret in Manhattan, downtown. And I was… the cabaret, we did little skits, it was like a revue of the 70s. We did little skits and one of them was the Mart Tyler Moore thing, and our director gave me, because I was playing Mary at the time. This was before I even auditioned for movie.

AINSLEY HARRIET: We used to get it in London, you know. We had the sort of MTM show--we had sort of Rhoda too, even though it was a little... so it was a little bit more briefer. Because Mary Tyler Moore was an institution here, wasn’t it?

JOIE LENZ: Oh, absolutely. It was historical.

AINSLEY HARRIET: How did you feel when you went for your first reading then, with Mary and seeing all of those icons of American television all standing there with the script… how did you feel?

JOIE LENZ: Mary has a very non intimidating presence, she’s so down to earth… and she was so welcoming, and warm when I walked into the audition… It was great, I mean, reading with her, it was like reading with any other actor, you give and take--it worked, and it really, I guess that’s why I got the job, we just played off each other.

AINSLEY HARRIET: Definitely why you got the job, because you fitted the part. These people--people who have been in television for a while--have this quality, don’t they. It’s amazing, they do know how to help you feel at ease… and it’s just fantastic.

JOIE LENZ: And even just watching her, you learn so much. She was so… she could take just an ordinary line and make it one of the funniest things you had ever heard. It was... it was amazing.

AINSLEY HARRIET: Timing, isn’t it. Timing’s everything.

JOIE LENZ: It’s intuitive.

AINSLEY HARRIET: You brought a clip along, haven’t you, eh?

JOIE LENZ: I did! And I think this one’s where we’re all sitting around at the dinner table, and I’m telling my mother what I’ve decided to do with my life.

AINSLEY HARRIET: Oh, that sounds good.

JOIE LENZ: It’ll be interesting.

AINSLEY HARRIET: Let’s just have a look.

{rolls clip}

JOIE LENZ: I haven’t seen any of it yet! I haven’t seen anything.

AINSLEY HARRIET: I know! Of course, it didn’t air yet, it should be airing next week. What about other careers? You’ve got yourself acting, you’re in Guiding Light… Is there anything else that interests you, any sort of goal that you want to achieve?

JOIE LENZ: Well, I love singing, I’ve been doing that since I was really little. I guess I’ve sort of always wanted to be an actress, except when I was five, which, I did want to be the Queen of England. Everybody always asked me, “What do you to be and I’d say, “The Queen of England,” so…

AINSLEY HARRIET: Well, a little (exact wording is hard to understand) and I don’t know if you’d like that…

JOIE LENZ: Well, I am Scottish royalty, I’m related to King Malcolm from MacBeth, which is actually a fictional story, but I mean it’s based on actual…

AINSLEY HARRIET: Well, no wonder you changed your name! You see, there was something in there! Princess Joie! Well, ladies and gentlemen, you can see Princess Joie on Guiding Light on CBS, and you can catch the Princess on Monday on Mary and Rhoda at 8PM on ABC. Thanks to my guest, of course, it’s Joie!

Later, while sitting with Robin Givens:

AINSLEY HARRIET: Also joining me here, of course, as you saw, is Joie, Joie from Guiding Light. Now Joie, if you think if you really had to work with someone, who is the person you’d look and think (inhales air on a “sss”) oh yes, my favorite actor would be...

JOIE LENZ: All my friends think I’m crazy when I tell them this, but I think John Malkovich is the sexiest man ALIVE! So sexy. And he’s a great actor. He’s brilliant.

Bethany says "Bring It On Again"

Joie Lenz, you are the master. Years from now film scholars will look upon your role of Marni in Bring It On Again and see a star born. Playing the # 2 Evil Girl henchwoman role, you shine in this dopey cheerleader sequel to Bring it On.

The film may lack the fun brought out by the original’s screenwriter Jessica Bendinger, and certainly you would expect there to be a letdown with Anne Judson-Yager and Faune Chambers taking over for Kirsten Dunst and Gabrielle Union. But this straight to video picture truly suffers behind the camera. BIOA’s Damon Santostefano is no BIO’s Peyton Reed. Where Reed’s energetic, shiny direction enhanced the cheering world, Santostefano is apparently constrained with a much smaller budget that necessitates shooting everything in close up in order to obscure the lack of facilities and people in his shots.

The story for this 85-minute opus kicks in around the 45-minute mark, with freshman cheerleader Whittier (Judson-Yager) buckling under dictatorial squad leader Tina (Bree Turner). Splitting off from the varsity team, Whittier and her pal Monica seek to assemble a ragtag band of renegade cheerleaders to challenge for the right to go to the National Cheerleading Competition. Where the original moved with grace and speed, this sub-par follow-up ambles and plods. Kudos, though, to the sound editor for putting crows “ca-caw”ing behind Tina’s metaphorical attempt to seduce Whittier. Not counting the delicious turn by Ms. Joie (sometimes billed as Bethany Joy) Lenz, it’s the best part of the movie.


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