Shawnee Smith Biography

Shawnee Smith photo

Born: July 03, 1970


Date of Birth: July 3, 1970

Born in South Carolina, Shawnee Smith moved to Van Nuys, California when she was eight years old with her mother, who was getting married to a Californian. She began tap dancing at three, and performing in community theater when she was nine. Her first professional job was a McDonald's commercial, and her movie debut came at age 11 in the musical Annie (1982), playing a dancing/singing orphan.

She then starred opposite Richard Dreyfuss in The Hands of Its Enemy at Los Angeles' Huntington Hartford Theater and in To Gillian On Her 37th Birthday at the Matrix, for which she won a 1985 Los Angeles DramaLogue Critics Award.

Her first onscreen starring role was in the NBC movie-of-the-week Crime of Innocence (1985) opposite Diane Ladd and Andy Griffith, for which she won a Youth in Film Award for Best Actress. Moving back to features, she appeared in Iron Eagle (1986) with Louis Gossett Jr., Summer School (1987) with Mark Harmon, the horror film The Blob (1988), Who's Harry Crumb? (1989) with John Candy and Leaving Las Vegas (1995) with Nicholas Cage.

At 19, Shawnee's music began to take off, and she formed a folk/blues band, Miriam Fay, named after her great-great aunt. They played Hollywood venues such as the Viper Room and Billboard Live. Later, she formed a rock band called Fydolla Ho and toured America and the U.K.

In 2002, she returned to films with the indie flick Never Get Outta the Boat, followed by a role as Amanda in the major motion picture Saw (2004). She then reprised her role in the next four Saw movies.


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