Jennifer Beals

Born: 19/12/1963 (59 yo)
Birth place: Chicago, Illinois (USA)

Citizenship : USA

Occupation : Actress , Forme teen model


Jennifer Beals is an American actress and a former teen model. She played the role of Alexandra "Alex" Owens in the 1983 film Flashdance, and appeared as Bette Porter on the Showtime drama series The L Word. She earned an NAACP Image Award and a Golden Globe Award nomination for the former. She has appeared in more than 50 films.


Beals was born on the South Side of Chicago, the daughter of Jeanne (née Anderson), an elementary school teacher, and Alfred Beals, who owned grocery stores. She is multiracial; her father was African American, and her mother is Irish American. She has two brothers, Bobby and Gregory. Her father died when Beals was nine years old, and her mother married Edward Cohen in 1981. Beals has said her biracial heritage had some effect on her, as she "always lived sort of on the outside", with an idea "of being the other in society". She got her first job at age 13 at an ice cream store, using her height at the time (she is now nearly 5 ft 9 in (1.75 m)), to convince her boss she was 16.

Beals was inspired to become an actress by two events: doing a high school production of Fiddler on the Roof and seeing Balm in Gilead with Joan Allen while volunteer-ushering at the Steppenwolf Theatre.

Beals graduated from the progressive Francis W. Parker School. She also was chosen to attend the elite Goodman Theatre Young People's Drama Workshop. Beals attended Yale University, receiving a B.A. in American literature in 1987; she deferred a term so she could film Flashdance. While at Yale, Beals was a resident of Morse College.


Beals had a minor role in the 1980 film My Bodyguard, then came to fame with her starring part in Flashdance. The third-highest grossing U.S. film of 1983, Flashdance is the story of 18-year-old Alex, a welder by day and exotic dancer by night, whose dream is to be accepted someday at an illustrious school of dance. Beals was cast for this key role while still a student at Yale. She was nominated for a Golden Globe and the film received an Academy Award for Best Song. Many of Beals' elaborate dance moves were actually performed by stunt double Marine Jahan.

After she filmed Flashdance, Beals resumed her studies, making only one film during that time: playing the titular character The Bride with singer-actor Sting, a gothic horror film loosely based on the 1935 classic Bride of Frankenstein, shot during her summer break. She also appeared in the "Cinderella" episode of Faerie Tale Theatre. Beals was asked by Joel Schumacher to do St. Elmo's Fire but turned it down, preferring to stay at Yale.

Starring opposite Nicolas Cage, the actress portrays a lusty and thirsty vampire in 1989's Vampire's Kiss.

In 1995, Beals and Denzel Washington co-starred in Devil in a Blue Dress, a period film based on a Walter Mosley novel featuring L.A. private detective, Easy Rawlins. Beals plays a biracial woman passing for white. That same year she appeared with Tim Roth in two segments of the four-story anthology Four Rooms, one of which was directed by her then-husband, Alexandre Rockwell.

Rockwell had previously directed her in the 1992 independent film In the Soup, which was a Grand Prize winner at the Sundance Film Festival. In 2003, she played one of the sequestered jury members in the film adaptation of Runaway Jury.

She had a leading role in 2006's The Grudge 2, sequel to the hit horror film of two years earlier. In 2010, Beals reunited with Denzel Washington in the post-Apocalyptic action drama, The Book of Eli, where she played a blind woman who is the mother of Mila Kunis' character and a servant of Gary Oldman's.


In 1992, she appeared in 2000 Malibu Road as attorney Perry Quinn. It was her first ongoing television series; she said she had been leery as she previously had not "found a character I wanted to live with for several years".

In 2004, Beals made a brief cameo in the final episode of Frasier. In 2007, she appeared in the small TV drama My Name Is Sarah, in which she plays Sarah Winston, a sober woman who joins Alcoholics Anonymous to conduct research for her book but finds herself falling in love with a recovering alcoholic and - as a result - having to deal with her original deception in joining the group.

Beals starred in Showtime Network's The L Word, wherein she played Bette Porter, an Ivy League-educated lesbian. At Beals' request, Bette was made biracial, enabling Pam Grier's Kit Porter character to become Bette's half-sister. Beals' initial research for the part focused more on the woman's profession as an art museum director than on her life as a lesbian; "I was much more obsessed by the work that Bette did, because she was so obsessed by the work that she did." The series ran for six seasons and ended in March 2009.

She also appears alongside Tim Roth in Lie to Me, as Cal Lightman's ex-wife, Zoe Landau.

Beals is the female lead in Fox's TV drama The Chicago Code. Her character Teresa Colvin is Chicago's first female police superintendent. The series was canceled after its first season.

Beals turned down an offer to appear on Dancing with the Stars, saying: "I am not a dancer. They asked me and I said 'no.' You could back up a truck to my door filled with cash and I wouldn't do it."

In 2013, Beals signed on for the main role of the ABC drama pilot Westside produced by McG and developed by Ilene Chaiken.

Web series

Beals is also well known for her support of women's rights and for her strong feminist character. In August 2012, she appeared alongside Troian Bellisario in the web series Lauren on the YouTube channel, WIGS. Its first season is a three episode arc featuring the stories of women in the army being abused, predominantly by more powerful superior. The stories focused on the frequently reported cases on sexual abuse and how and why most of the cases went unreported or unsettled. Beals has also appeared in two interviews, discussing her views in relation to Lauren.

In January 2013, Troian Bellisario confirmed on her twitter and instagram, that she and Beals were filming more Lauren web episodes. Lauren returned on May 3, 2013 and with a second season of 12 episodes.

Personal life

Beals was married to Alexandre Rockwell from 1986 to 1996. In 1998, she married Ken Dixon, a Canadian entrepreneur. On October 18, 2005, Beals gave birth to their daughter. Her husband also has two children from a previous marriage.

Beals has described herself as a "spiritual person". She has expressed interest in the Holy Bible and Catholicism, and is a practicing Buddhist

She has been a vocal advocate for gay rights saying, "I think after playing Bette Porter on The L Word for six years I felt like an honorary member of the community." Beals was a Celebrity Grand Marshal at the 2006 San Francisco Pride Parade. In October 2012, she received the Human Rights Campaign's Ally For Equality Award, in recognition of her outstanding support to the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender community.

Beals is a photographer, who has had shows of her work under her married name, Dixon. She has a book about her time on The L Word featuring her own photographs. In 1989, she spent some time in Haiti photographing the elections.

In 2010, Beals served as the Grand Marshal of the McDonald's Thanksgiving Parade in Chicago, during which she spoke of the two charities important to her, the Matthew Shepard Foundation and The Pablove Foundation.

Websites & Social Networks


  • 1980      My Bodyguard
  • 1983      Flashdance
  • 1985      The Bride
  • 1988      The Gamble
  • 1988      Split Decisions
  • 1989      Vampire's Kiss
  • 1989      Sons
  • 1990      Dr. M
  • 1991      Blood and Concrete
  • 1992      In the Soup
  • 1992      Day of Atonement
  • 1992      Indecency
  • 1992      Terror Stalks the Class Reunion
  • 1993      Caro diario
  • 1993      The Princess and the Cobbler
  • 1993      Night Owl
  • 1994      Dead on Sight
  • 1994      Mrs. Parker and the Vicious Circle
  • 1994      The Search for One-eye Jimmy
  • 1995      Four Rooms
  • 1995      Let It Be Me
  • 1995      Devil in a Blue Dress
  • 1995      Arabian Knight
  • 1997      Wishful Thinking
  • 1997      The Twilight of the Golds
  • 1998      Body and Soul
  • 1998      The Prophecy II
  • 1998      The Last Days of Disco
  • 1998      The Spree
  • 1999      Something More
  • 1999      Turbulence 2: Fear of Flying
  • 2000      Militia
  • 2000      Without Malice
  • 2000      A House Divided
  • 2001      Out of Line


  • 2001      The Anniversary Party
  • 2001      The Big House
  • 2001      After the Storm
  • 2001      The Feast of All Saints
  • 2002      13 Moons
  • 2002      Roger Dodger
  • 2002      They Shoot Divas, Don't They?
  • 2003      Runaway Jury
  • 2004      Catch That Kid
  • 2005      Break a Leg
  • 2005      Desolation Sound
  • 2006      The Grudge 2
  • 2006      Troubled Waters
  • 2007      My Name Is Sarah
  • 2009      Queen to Play
  • 2010      The Book of Eli
  • 2010      A Night for Dying Tigers
  • 2010      The Night Before the Night Before Christmas
  • 2013      Cinemanovels

Serie TV:

  • 1985      Faerie Tale Theatre
  • 1990      Tinikling ou 'La madonne et le dragon
  • 1992      2000 Malibu Road
  • 1997      The Outer Limits
  • 1997–1998          Nothing Sacred
  • 1999      The Hunger
  • 2001      The Feast of All Saints
  • 2004–2009          The L Word
  • 2004      Frasier
  • 2007      Law & Order
  • 2009–2011          Lie to Me
  • 2011      The Chicago Code
  • 2012      Castle
  • 2012      Lauren
  • 2012      The Mob Doctor
  • 2013      Westside