A familiar face from Fox's current hit series "O.C.". At the age of 8, Mischa and one of her two sisters were sent to summer camp. One of the activities involved the children writing their own monologues and performing them for their parents. Mischa wrote a piece about turtles and her delivery was so impressive that an agent who was scouting for talent told her parents they had a star on their hands. Her parents were thrilled of course, but at the same time wondered if it was an appropriate path for their daughter. When she was 9 and in the fifth grade, Mischa decided that it was something she definitely wanted to try. She got her start after auditioning for the lead role in Tony Kushner's play, Slavs!. Since the part required her to have a Russian accent, she got herself an acting coach to master it. Not only did she get the role but she also got to share the stage with future Oscar winner Marisa Tomei. Mischa's rave reviews led to other theatrical productions such as James Lapine's Twelve Dreams, which was produced at the celebrated Lincoln Center, and Where the Truth Lies and One Flea Spare, which were both part of the New York Shakespeare Festival. Doing theater was rewarding but Barton was hungry for more. In 1994, she became a recurring character on the long-running ABC soap opera All My Children, a job she held for a year. But in the meantime, her beauty was also attracting interest. Before she had entered her teens, Barton was signed to the Ford Modeling Agency. In that capacity, she modeled in a Calvin Klein campaign and worked for the likes of Gitano and Vogue. Mischa admits that the work is difficult but very rewarding, since "it's every teenager's dream."
But it was Barton's acting skills that gave her the most recognition. One of her first feature film roles was in 1997's Lawn Dogs, opposite Sam Rockwell. In 1999, she appeared in Pups, a modern take on Bonnie & Clyde; the summer hit Notting Hill, with Julia Roberts and Hugh Grant; and the internatio nal Bruce Willis blockbuster The Sixth Sense, in which she played a young ghost seeking reparation .For the next couple of years, Barton appeared with Jennifer Jason Leigh and Drew Barrymore in Skipped Parts (2000), co-starred with Jessica Alba in Paranoid (2000), starred alongside Melanie Griffith and Dominique Swain in Tart (2001), appeared with Courtney Love and Lili Taylor in Julie Johnson (2001), and starred in Lost and Delirious (2001), a film that explored lesbianism at a private boarding school. Barton demonstrated her talents once more as she returned to television with a recurring role in the critically-acclaimed ABC show Once and Again during its 2001-2002 season. In 2003, she acted with Madeleine Stowe in the horror thriller, Octane.
But what is sure to make her popular to millions for years to come, is her role in the new FOX television show, The O.C. In this primetime melodrama geared toward young adults -- a Beverly Hills, 90210 clone as some have branded it -- Mischa portrays a wealthy and popular Orange County high school student who has difficulty adjusting to her surroundings. Although she still attends Manhattan's Professional Children's School, the extraordinary popularity of her new TV show guarantees that we haven't seen the last of Mischa Barton. In addition to being the subject of magazine pictorials, she's currently appearing in Neutrogena print ads and the new Enrique Iglesias video "Addicted," which sure helps us get our fix. Barton was born on January 24, 1986, in London, England.
Mischa Barton: Rising Star
Don't call Mischa Barton an overnight success. The rising star of The O.C. has been a working actress since the age of eight--and credits her success not to lucky breaks or being part of the Hollywood scene, but to hard work and dedication.
We thought you'd have a British accent.
I did when I was very little, because I moved to New York when I was four. I was born in London, and so were my two sisters. My mother's Irish--she went to school in London when she was young--but she's full-on Irish, you can trace it back as far as you want. My father is from Manchester, England, with the accent.
But you grew up in America.
Yeah--I consider myself American, and so does my family. I have a British passport, an Irish passport, and an American green card.
And a Russian name.
My parents thought that Mischa was a cool name. Who knows what they were thinking? As a kid I hated it, but it works.
Did you think about acting or modeling, growing up in New York?
Not at all. My mom did some photography--she's a real free spirit--so she encouraged us to do what we wanted. She sent us off to camp in upstate New York one summer, when I was eight. We put on a play for our parents--I performed this monologue about turtles--and I was discovered. They tried to convince my mom that I had stage presence!
How did you get the part of Marissa?
I was going to school in New York, and I was booked on an episode of [O.C. executive producer] McG's [now cancelled] show Fastlane. I did one episode in Los Angeles, which took a week. Then McG brought it up that [series creator] Josh Schwartz was writing this script, and that I'd be perfect for it. I read for the part right there in the office, they took it to the network, and that was it--I had the role.
I went back to New York and I waited to find out if they'd found the boy. They had a lot of boys read for Ryan's character, and then when they found Ben McKenzie they called me, and we shot the pilot. Then I went back to New York and went to my prom.
Who did you go to prom with?
No one. I'd broken up with my boyfriend right before the prom. But I went with my best friend and we had SO much fun. Chanel gave me a dress! I was the most spoiled girl there.
You're really into fashion, aren't you?
I do love clothes--I get so obsessed with them. I don't have a stylist, I pick all my own clothes, and I collect Chanel bags. I have so many friends back in New York who are into clothes. I'd love to work in Manhattan, but I'm also so glad I don't in a way. You can't put The O.C.in Manhattan!
Did you have any idea that The O.C. would be so hot?
I don't think you can ever just assume. With [Swingers and Go director] Doug Liman and [Charlie's Angels director] McG as the executive producers, you know you're in good hands, but you can't ever know if the general public is gonna like the show.
The O.C. is a concept we had no idea anyone would accept. We knew everyone would go, "What's the O.C.? Thank God it was accepted into popular culture as easily as it was. If not, it would have been this horrible failed concept!
How do you have time to do the campaigns for Neutrogena and Dooney & Bourke?
I don't even know anymore! [laughs] I just do it on the weekends, here in Los Angeles. This weekend, I'll be doing a Neutrogena commercial, so I'll work all night Friday to Saturday morning, then I'll have an 11 A.M. call time.
Neutrogena always picks people with perfect skin to do its campaigns--as if your skin needed any help!
I don't have perfect skin--that's for sure! I'm always freaking out before we shoot the commercials. My skin's gotta be perfect and I get crazy about it. I'm totally the girl who sleeps in her makeup, so it's funny that I'm in a skincare campaign!
Despite your success, you're planning on going to college. Why?
Everyone in my family has done it, and it's something I don't want to miss out on.
You're just 18--how do you stay so focused? There are boys, friends....
I genuinely love my job. It's always been easy for me to shut off from my friends when I had to, because I love acting. It's interesting, and it's what I always felt the most comfortable doing.
We've heard that you love music and you go to lots of shows.
I love the White Stripes, and I'm also a fan of Black Rebel Motorcycle Club--they play amazing shows. OutKast has been around for so long; I've been a fan of theirs for such a long time. I really love music, and our show really supports a lot of different, young acts. McG is very in touch with that world, and when Josh writes scenes, and he'll write them around certain music.
We're all gonna try to go to Coachella [music festival] this year, as a group, the whole show. I hope I get to go--I could be working.
Mischa Barton Puts the 'O.C.' in Indie 'Ohio'
Mischa Barton, star of Fox's "The O.C.," is in final negotiations to join Parker Posey and Danny DeVito in the indie feature "The OH in Ohio."The film tells the story of a young woman (Posey) married to her childhood sweetheart and seemingly blessed with the perfect life, except that she has never had an orgasm. When she leaves her husband, he tries to regain his manhood by pursuing a young student, to be played by Barton.Principal photography begins this month in Cleveland and Los Angeles. Billy Kent is directing.
Mischa Barton says she hates being beautiful
The 'OC' beauty has confessed she can't stand the fact people judge her solely on the fact she has a pretty face and slim body - and feels she would be more liked if she had more flaws.
The 16-year-old star also says just because, looks-wise she fits the Hollywood stereotype, she has a life wracked with problems. She said in an interview with Cosmopolitan magazine: "It kind of irritates me that I'm seen as this pretty face. People also say I'm too thin. The truth is, pretty people aren't as accepted as other people. It comes with all these stigmas. It's like, 'She's pretty and thin, so she's got to have problems. She must be anorexic or depressed or bitchy'. "It doesn't help that my OC character is the pretty girl next door who looks like she has everything, but is totally f**ked up."
Mischa Bartons New Year Resolutions
THE OC star MISCHA BARTON has big plans for 2005 - she hopes to learn how to drive and buy her first home.
The pretty actress admits she's on the hunt for a "fixer upper" home in Los Angeles, so that renovating it can become her hobby when she's not working.
She says, "Every place my family and I have ever lived in is a fixer-upper and there's something rewarding about buying a place like that.
"In New York, we bought a loft space that was in a factory and converted it into a real loft. In London, we pretty much built the whole house."
And she plans to get her driving licence so that her mother doesn't have to taxi her around all the time.
She adds, "I know she's getting tired of it... It's something I know I have to do, but when I see how the paparazzi follow cars I'm in, I'm so glad I'm not driving because I know I'd get flustered."
Mischa Barton's surreal life
Mischa Barton still can't believe how famous she is. "It's been surreal," she muses. "It's one of those things you don't think about until people start stopping you in the street!"
Mischa Barton on sex, drugs and the O.C.
With the second season of The O.C. in full swing and shoots running as long as 12 hours, the 18-year-old London- born Barton is tired! But the actress still found a few minutes to chat about the show, her fame and how she's taking it in stride (or at least trying to).
Q:So what's the deal with Marissa this year? She's going crazy!
A: This season Marissa rebels against everything! I'm really excited. She has so much pent-up anger. She starts drinking again -- anything to piss her parents off.
Q:But isn't it really Ryan's [Benjamin McKenzie] fault?
A: Ryan was her first real love. She was so afraid of losing him that she got really weak. I don't think I would be so passive in a similar situation.
Q:So you're not like Marissa?
A: I was always introverted and not that cool as a kid. I was painfully shy. When I moved from London to New York, I was an outsider.
Q:But you come from a privileged background like Marissa's --your dad's a banker and your mom's a photographer.
A: I wouldn't say it was glamorous, but my parents are very intelligent and interesting. I've been lucky to grow up in that kind of family.
Q:Have your parents moved to L.A. now?
A: My mother came with me when I was 16. It would have been easy to get sucked into hanging out with the wrong people. You may think you've found people who support you, then you discover [they're] not real.
Q:Why do you think The O.C. hit so big?
A: There have been lots of prime-time soaps, but they certainly didn't deal with drugs to the same extent. We were doing episodes involving drugs and alcohol, and I was thinking, "This show's not like any of the shows I saw when I was growing up!"
Q:Are sex and drugs the big attraction?
A: I think it goes beyond that. People love the idea of seeing rich people being miserable and having their lives fall apart.
Q:Do your fans really know you?
A: Because my character is a bit of a rich snob, there's probably suspicion that maybe I'm like that. But I hope if people read some of the interviews I've given, they'll realize I'm not that kind of girl.
Mischa Barton's steamy girl-on-girl kiss
Mischa Barton, 18, is scheduled to lock lips in a lesbian kiss with an undisclosed actress on an episode of The O.C. later this season, says show creator Josh Schwartz. But Star has learned it won't be her first onscreen samesex smooch. It will be at least her second! In 2002, Barton made out with actress Evan Rachel Wood, then just 14, on ABC's Once and Again. Barton played a closeted gay high-schooler. In addition, Barton had a supporting role in 2001's Lost and Delirious, a movie about boardingschool girls in Manhattan who experiment with lesbian sex. Barton's reps had no comment.
'O.C.' stars Mischa Barton and Adam Brody inspire dedicated followers (of fashion)
For the fashion obsessed, TV just hasn't been the same since Carrie Bradshaw was mugged for her Manolo Blahniks. But that hasn't stopped us from looking for the next "Sex and the City." Channel surfing for trendsetting TV is leading many viewers to ABC's "Desperate Housewives" and Fox's "The O.C.," both evening soap operas about stylish suburban subcultures.
On the other end of the age spectrum is teen dream "The O.C." Now in its second season, the show has been buoyed by the personal style of its young stars Mischa Barton, whose relationship with the fashion house Chanel (they dress her for public appearances) translates into costumes for the show, and Adam Brody, whose signature geek chic (sweater vests over polo shirts) has even trickled down to the racks at Target.
A new subscription-based website (theocinsider.com) and a companion magazine launched last month offer fashion and makeup tips written by the show's staff, among other things. The site also sells clothes that the characters could wear. A bestseller is the "Mrs. Seth Cohen boy-beater" tank top, a riff on celebrity-wife T-shirts that refers to Brody's character.
" 'The O.C.' has a lot of impact on our readers," says Amy Astley, editor in chief of Teen Vogue. "After Mischa Barton carried a Chanel tote as her school bag, it was considered highly desirable. Of course, not everyone can afford Chanel, but the trend went away from the backpack to the tote anyway. It's also the impact of the actors themselves, like Adam Brody, with his Mr. Rogers cardigans. When we shot him for the cover of the magazine, we didn't change the way he was dressed at all."
Down at Raleigh Studios in Manhattan Beach, Calif., where "The O.C." is filmed, costume designer Karla Stevens is on an eight-day shooting schedule that begins with a shopping spree. She travels with her cheat sheet of actor sizes and her corporate card, though much of the merchandise will be returned within days. Continued...
"What's great about a show like 'The O.C.' is that it's a whole lifestyle we're selling," she says. "With a rich community, everyone looks beautiful, drives beautiful cars, lives in beautiful homes, and wears beautiful clothes. We have the opportunity, unlike other shows, to go over the top. We can look at what's coming off the runways and translate it into the characters."
The operative word may be "selling." When "Sex and the City" costume designer Pat Field put an enormous flower pin on Sarah Jessica Parker's lapel, it wasn't because she was partnering with a jewelry designer. But that kind of scenario could be coming to a TV near you soon.
"Sex and the City" didn't take advantage of licensed apparel and products until the last couple of seasons. But Lisa Gregorian, senior vice president of TV creative services for Warner Bros. Television, isn't going to make the same mistake. She's making "The O.C." into a brand, with interactive games, soundtracks, and high-end apparel.
Stevens puts together 60 to 100 costumes per episode. She also writes a weekly column for theocinsider.com, which begins, "Hello fans and fashionistas!" A recent missive discussed accessorizing with pearls, round-toe pumps, tweed caps, and Coach clutch bags.
"Desperate Housewives" has fashion potential too, says Teen Vogue's Astley. "I think their hotness may have hit them by surprise. But the leading ladies are attractive, and they are already somewhat identified by their clothes." The influential LA boutique Kitson has decorated its windows in the campy style of Wisteria Lane and will soon sell "Desperate Housewives" T-shirts.
Adair's schedule begins on Sunday afternoon, when she shops with each character in mind.
"I try to think what they would buy if they were out shopping," says the designer, who works with a team of nine. By the end of the eight-day shooting cycle, she has shopped for, altered, and fit 50 to 100 costumes, not counting the ones for extras. "A lot of pieces I re-dye or cut up. It is design because it's how you mix and match things, and that's what women do in real life."
Bree, the consummate perfectionist, always has to match. Gabrielle is more fashion-forward.
"There's a lovely line in an upcoming episode where she complains that her shoe shopping has been curtailed by Carlos's antics," Adair says.
"The O.C." star Mischa Barton, who's of half English and half Irish descent, is eyeing an Italian role.
The 18-year-old starlet is in talks to star in the film version of the 14th century literary classic "The Decameron" for Dino De Laurentiis, according to The Hollywood Reporter.
The novel by Giovanni Boccaccio centers on a group of ten young Florentines who escape from the Black Plague to the Italian countryside of Fiesole and spend their time telling stories to each other. Each day, they elect one of their own as the king or queen of the day who dictates the theme of the 10 stories to be told. The tales revolve around love, lust, relationships and adventure. Barton will play Pampinea, one of the seven women in the group.
Mischa Barton urges America to ease up on young stars
The OC star MISCHA BARTON is disgusted young celebrities always suffer a punishing backlash if they choose to share their strong opinions with the public.
The actress has slammed recent reports trendy Hollywood store FRED SEGAL banned her after she criticised their fashion offerings, but admits the consequences of teenage stars who speak openly are often too harsh.
And she's amazed a country that's supposed to encourage free speech is becoming so intolerant.
She tells the ACCESS HOLLYWOOD website, "I think these days there's a very negative like weird twist on young people in the public eye. It's gotten to the point where you're supposed to speak your mind, you're doing interviews and you're just opinionated.
"Young people are opinionated. Everyone my age is and so you say things and you don't ever consider trying to hurt someone. I'm definitely not that kind of person and then I get really upset about it afterwards if there's a backlash.
"It's just that there's no tolerance level there anymore. People take stuff out of context all the time. And they just love to use it against you. It's literally impossible to watch everything you say. I'm going to say something stupid at some point because that's just the way I am. I'll get talking and I'll say something silly that you can use against me if you try."
How to get the look of "The O.C.' star actress Mischa Barton
Southern California's favorite rich kids are back for a new season of Fox's "The O.C.," and they have a closet full of hot designer purchases to show off.
Focused on a group of wealthy high school students in Orange County, "The O.C." gives viewers a chance to dissect the teens' love lives as well as their luxury label wardrobes. Style-watchers zeroed in on Marissa's (Mischa Barton) Marc Jacobs and Missoni dresses and the Chanel tote that she carries instead of a backpack. Her trophy wife mom (Melinda Clarke) and friend Summer (Rachel Bilson) seem to have a penchant for Juicy Couture velour track suits and tube dresses. The guys, meanwhile, choose a mix of grunge slacker wear such as vintage-look T-shirts and polos, or popular prepster pieces by Abercrombie & Fitch and Ben Sherman.
As in "Sex and the City," the clothes have become a character of sorts on the show. Several sites are now devoted to the fashions worn on each episode, telling Web surfers where to buy either the real thing or something like it.
For a style breakdown of "The O.C.," check out www.reel-style.com, www.tvwear.com and www.theocshow.com. The official site, www.fox.com/oc, features a "Newport Beach Fashion Report" link that tells you how to get the look, but it doesn't mention the actual clothing worn.
Among the labels seen on the show: Marc Jacobs, Theory, BCBG, Seven for all Mankind, Diane von Furstenberg and Missoni; Los Angeles designers Trina Turk, Corey Lynn Coulter, Catherine Malandrino, Chip & Pepper and Petro Zillia; Paul Frank, Ben Sherman, Abercrombie & Fitch, Tara Jarmon and Sass & Bide.
Mischa Barton has her own style
Most days, Mischa Barton won't walk out of the house without a Chanel bag over her shoulder. So why did she choose ripped jeans and a messy ponytail to wear to a recent charity event sponsored by Elara Diamonds ?
You only have to read Teen Vogue to know that Barton -- one of the first hot young things to pair flats with fancy frocks on the red carpet -- is an arbiter of "new-school cool." The class rules? Mix the new with the old (preferably vintage) and the formal with the casual as unexpectedly as possible. Diamonds, in other words, are beat-up denim's best friend.
Mischa Barton has a way of making trends her own. Here, a gold sequin cardigan is dressed down with a plain black tank, while a long necklace worn alone is classier than the Olsen twins' trendy gypsy-boho style of layering many at once. And leave it to "The O.C." star to be one of the first celebs to go out on a limb with brown, winter's hottest nail color.
Mischa Barton unsure of her 'O.C.' future
Mischa Barton has hinted that she does not want to star in hit US drama, The O.C., forever.
The actress, who has appeared in films such as Notting Hill and The Sixth Sense has claimed that her heart belongs to the big screen, according to the Female First website.
"I'm going back to film," Barton said. "It could go against me to be in a long-running show." The second season of the show has recently premiered in the US.
Mischa Barton and other Celebrities Raise Money for Beslan Children Victimized by Terrorism
Photos available of cast of Fox's hit show, The O.C., Topher Grace, Heather Graham, Rachel Bilson, Mischa Barton and others at the Los Angeles hot spot, Tokio for Movieline's Hollywood Life magazine's party co-sponsored by Chris Weitz, the director of American Pie and About a Boy all for the cause of the Beslan school children.
This past Sunday evening, Rachel Bilson, Mischa Barton, and Melinda Clarke of Fox's hit television series, The O.C. joined Heather Graham, Topher Grace and Natalia Vodianova at the Los Angeles hot spot, Tokio, for The O.C.'s DVD Release party organized by Anne Volokh of Movieline's Hollywood Life magazine and Chris Weitz, the director of American Pie and About a Boy.
The event served as a fundraiser for The International Foundation for Terror Act Victims, a unique American charity solely dedicated to providing vital financial aid to victims of terrorism around the world. The Foundation disburses 100% of every personal donation to the victims of terrorism.
The Foundation's current project is helping the children of Beslan who were victims of last month's brutal hostage crisis which ended in hundreds of children killed and hundreds more severely injured and handicapped.
"We feel that there is no such thing as 'other people's children' and it is all of our duty to help." said Andrew Mogilyansky, the Foundation's President and one of its Founders.
The group is seeking money which will be distributed to the families of an estimated 600 injured and orphaned children, providing them with the means to pay for long term medical care and other vital expenses. "Beslan represents the most horrific act of terrorism since 9/11." said Chris Weitz. Chris Weitz joined the Foundation's Board of Trustees and management team after donating $100,000 to the cause.
"One million dollars has already been raised, but the need is much greater." said Gleb Klioner, a volunteer coordinator involved with the effort.
"Because our staff consists entirely of unpaid volunteers, we are able to operate virtually without administrative expenses and distribute 100% of every personal donation to the victims." said Foundation's Vice-President, Michael Ratner.
The Foundation has already begun vital financial distribution to the families of over 150 children, making it the first major international charity to do so on a large scale.
"Nothing can replace these childrens' health or the parents they lost on September 3, 2004, but we can try to alleviate the tremendous financial burden many of them will face the rest of their lives." said Mogilyansky.
Celebrity photos from the event are located at http://briefcase.yahoo.com/klionerg
Funds raised from The O.C. party will go towards children like Anna Kadalaeva who is being flown to New York City from Russia to undergo eye implant surgery this week.