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Emilie de Ravin
The stunning blonde actress is best known for her role as "Claire Littleton" on ABC's drama "Lost." Additionally, she has starred on The WB's science fictional series "Roswell", as "Chris Hargensen" on the horror series "Carrie", and as "The Demon Curupira" on "Beast Master." Emilie was born on December 27, 1981, in Mount Eliza, Victoria, Australia. A native of Australia, born December 27 (Capricorn), spirited and charismatic young actress Emilie de Ravin joins the cast of "Roswell" after appearing in the last several episodes of first season as Tess Harding, the new girl in school who turns out to be the mysterious fourth alien who makes the special group complete. Impressively, Emilie landed the role within one month of relocating to Los Angeles. Emilie first garnered the attention of international audiences with her performance on the popular television series "Beastmaster: The Legend Continues" as the mischievous but powerful Curupira, Guardian of all Game Animals. Her rising stardom is based upon many years of performance experience and intensive training. She has studied ballet since the age of 9 and at the age of 15, Emilie was accepted into the prestigious and highly selective Australian Ballet School. She performed in productions of the Australian Ballet Company as well as Danceworld 301. Emilie studied acting at the National Institute of Dramatic Art in Australia, and with the Prime Time Actors Studio in Los Angeles.
She currently resides in Los Angeles with beau model/actor Josh Janowicz and dog Bella while commuting to Oahu, Hawaii, to film ABC series "Lost". Emilie recently finished shooting the lead role in the feature film, "Santa's Slay," produced by Brett Ratner. In addition she recently completed work on the film "Brick," opposite Joseph Gordon-Levitt. Emilie de Ravin also recurred on the series "The Handler," opposite Joe Pantoliano.
More fun stuff about Emilie de Ravin
While auditioning for "Lost", Emilie read for the role of Shannon (it went to Maggie Grace), but was casted as Claire instead.
Emilie's pregnant "Lost" character Claire is not the first time Emilie has played a mother-to-be. On "Roswell", her character Tess became pregnant before leaving Earth. A bulging stomach was never seen (as in "Lost") but Tess later came on the show with her baby son.
When hired to play Claire in the pilot episodes of "Lost", Emilie was meant to be a recurring guest-star. After "Lost" was picked up by ABC, she was hired by the creators to be a series regular.
Emilie is engaged to her beau of several years, model/actor Josh Janowicz
Emilie de Ravin: Flight path to glory
THERE'S only one problem with being a young unknown Australian actor suddenly shot to stardom in one of the world's most talked about shows.
Being in demand requires lots of air travel. And if the series that has made you a star is all about an aircraft crash ... well, it takes a little bit of the gloss off becoming a star in the year's biggest new buzz TV show, Lost.
"I mean, we had half a plane on a beach, literally," says 23-year-old Emilie de Ravin, who plays pregnant survivor Claire Littleton in Channel 7's hit.
"And they'd recreated the crash so vividly - you'd walk around it and see things the viewer would never see, but which made it all feel so real for the actors.
"There's all this rubbish from the plane like teddy bears and toothbrushes and a kid's shoe that's just sitting there.
"So I took one look at all that and decided I wouldn't be flying ever again. I'd be taking a boat."
However, the former Australian Ballet School student finally conquered her fears with the help of a new mantra.
"I just keep telling myself it's too cliched for any of us in the show to crash in real life," she laughs. "That's what I'm clinging to."
Fear of flying aside, Lost has been a dream come true for the Victorian-born actor. It's her debut on a show made by a major US free-to-air network rather than cable - and its huge success in the US and around the rest of the world has given her an international profile at just the right time.
She has two major movies due for release this year - Christmas comedy Santa's Slay and the darkly comic Brick, one of the biggest critical and audience favourites when it was screened in competition at last month's prestigious Sundance Film Festival.
It was appropriate then that de Ravin's year of living famously also kicked off last month with her first ever sashays down the red carpet at the People's Choice and Golden Globe Awards.
"It does look like it will be a big year, but for me it's not about getting to be a 'star'," she says. "For me acting just fits because I always need to be doing something different. I love having a new character to explore, new things to learn, all of that. The rest of it can be a bit strange, especially in Los Angeles.
"In fact I'd like to use all this to come back and do something Australian, which I've never done - it's difficult though because at the moment I don't even have an agent here. It all happened over there."
De Ravin's overnight success in Hollywood actually began five years ago, when at 18 she found herself there almost by accident.
Trained as a classical dancer since the age of nine and accepted into the demanding, highly-competitive and exalted Australian Ballet School at 15, she had long focused on just one dream: to be a prima ballerina.
"That's a lot of work, a lot of work," de Ravin says. "It's your whole life, really. So when I began to realise that I didn't know if dancing was really everything I hoped it would be, when I started asking, 'Will all this really be my whole career?' and I wasn't quite sure what the answer was, I guess I started thinking about other things I'd like to do for the first time.
"And I knew I liked performing and thinking about different roles so I thought I might just look into the acting side. And NIDA tours Australia once a year to do weekly workshops, so I did one when they came to Melbourne.
"And I really enjoyed it, and I thought 'Let's do that again'.
"At that stage I was still dancing - I just thought, 'OK, I'm just going to give it a go, just to try'. I didn't want to look back and be like, 'Wow, I wish I'd given that a shot, it might have really worked out'."
It really did work out. After just a one-week course, de Ravin - more immune than most young actors to the rigours of the audition process because of her years of dance - started auditioning. Straight away, she found herself with a role in BeastMaster, a series made for the US Sci-Fi Channel, set in ancient times and following the adventures of a hero who talks to the animals.
The series was shot on the Gold Coast, where de Ravin found herself at the age of just 17, playing the mischievous and all-powerful Curupira, guardian of all game animals.
"It was fantastic. I was running around the jungle in this elf outfit, I thought, 'You know, this is fun'."
De Ravin had not in any way sought out a career in America - it just so happened that this first role was on a US production and required an American accent. That accent, she says, turned out to be the smartest career move that she could have made.
"I was doing the American accent in an American show - so in America's mindset, I was American. So the issue of being Australian never came up.
"Next thing, 20th Century Fox casting called to see if I could audition for [alien series] Roswell, just to see if I could come and read.
"So you know, I went over and while I was there I thought I might do a few other auditions and got an agent and all that sort of thing, and Roswell ended up working out."
Originally just a special guest alien in six episodes, de Ravin's dastardly character Tess quickly captured attention and a big fanbase in the sci-fi world. She was brought in as a series regular and found herself living between LA and Vancouver, where the series for US cable network WB (and shown here on Seven) was shot.
"That was when I could really start to feel comfortable with the accent," she says. "It was when I could really start listening to people. I mean originally I bought one of those tapes - you know, How to Speak American. I was just like 'No, bugger this, this is horrible'. It's not the right way to learn, you've really got to listen to people."
After two seasons as an alien, de Ravin wanted to try something new - but, frustratingly, found her alien tag had followed her. This time, however, it was her US immigration status at issue.
"This is why I sort of sigh a bit when people talk about how quickly everything happened for me," she says. "Everything did happen quite quickly and I've been very lucky, but I had a bit of downtime because I had such a hard visa situation.
"It made it feel like everything really slowed down.
"I'd book jobs but couldn't work them as the way it works is each job you get you have to have a different work visa for that company, and that takes three weeks.
"So I wasn't even able to audition for guest roles on TV shows, because you'll audition on that day and they want you to work that job the next day. So that was pretty frustrating, until last year when I finally got my green card."
That was when de Ravin auditioned for a role in Lost. She originally read - in her American accent - for the part of Shannon, the spoiled, lazy survivor who sees the crash on a tropical island as a chance to catch up on her tan while she waits for rescue.
That part went to Maggie Grace but de Ravin so impressed the show's creators that they offered her the role of Claire, which was at the time meant to be a recurring guest role. But as with Roswell, the creators realised she had something special and the part was upgraded to regular.
Claire is the thoughtful young crash survivor who is heavily pregnant. In fact she is the only Australian of the 48 survivors from the doomed Sydney-LA flight.
"Most interviewers I talk to here in the US assume I'm an American doing an Australian accent for the role," she laughs.