Sherilyn Fenn

Sherilyn Fenn

Infobox actor
name = Sherilyn Fenn

caption =
birthname = Sheryl Ann Fenn
birthdate = birth date and age|1965|2|1
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occupation = actress
yearsactive = 1983 - present
spouse = Toulouse Holliday (1994-1997)
domesticpartner = Johnny Depp (1985-1989)
Dylan Stewart (?-present)
influences = Roy London
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website =
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Sherilyn Fenn (born February 1, 1965) is an Emmy- and Golden Globe award-nominated American actress. She came to international attention for her performance on the 1990 cult TV series "Twin Peaks". She is also known for her roles in "Of Mice and Men", "Ruby", "Boxing Helena" and "Rude Awakening", and for portraying actress Elizabeth Taylor in "".

Early life

Fenn was born Sheryl Ann Fenn [Michael A. Lipton & Joyce Wagner. "Elizabethan Drama." "People". Volume 43: Issue 19. May 15, 1995. p.142-144.] in Detroit, Michigan. She comes from a family of musicians: her mother is keyboard player Arlene Quatro, her aunt is singer Suzi Quatro, her grandfather Art Quatro was a jazz musician, and her father, Leo Fenn, managed such rock bands as Suzi Quatro's The Pleasure Seekers, Alice Cooper, and The Billion Dollar Babies. Fenn is of Italian and Hungarian descent on her mother's side and of Irish and French descent on her father's. She frequently traveled with her mother and two older brothers before the family settled in Los Angeles when she was 17.Glenn O'Brien. "Fenn-Tastic! Meet Twin Peaks' Mysterious Siren Sherilyn Fenn." "Playboy". December 1990. p.82-91, 213-214.] Fenn, who claims to be demure, [Diana Rico. "Phenomenal Fenn." "Harper's Bazaar". December 1991. p.132-133, 156.] didn't want to start with a new school again, and soon enrolled at the Lee Strasberg Theatre Institute.

Acting career

Early career (1984-1989)

Sherilyn Fenn began her career with a number of B-movies including "The Wild Life" (1984, opposite Chris Penn), the 1986 skater film "Thrashin'" (opposite Josh Brolin and Pamela Gidley), the 1986 teen fantasy movie "The Wraith" (opposite Charlie Sheen and Nick Cassavetes), the 1987 horror film "Zombie High" (alongside Virginia Madsen), and the "Beauty and the Beast"-inspired erotic movie "". She had a memorable part in the 1985 cult teen-comedy "Just One of the Guys" in which she tries to seduce a teenage girl disguised as a boy, played by Joyce Hyser. Sherilyn starred alongside Johnny Depp in the 1985 short student film "Dummies", directed by Laurie Frank for the American Film Institute. Fenn and Depp dated for three and a half years, subsequently getting engaged. In 1987, she joined Depp in a season one episode of "21 Jump Street" called "Blindsided".

Fenn is the first to admit that she has appeared in many films that are worth forgetting, and that turned into sexploitation films "where directors tried to convince [her] to appear naked after the contract was signed."Sherilyn Fenn, quoted in "The Rise and Thrall of Sherilyn Fenn" by James Steranko "Prevue" (USA). March 1991. p.42-43, 53, 57.] "Still, I did a lot of movies instead of waitressing or that kind of thing at the beginning, and it wasn't as if I even took acting very seriously when I started," she says. "I was in California for the first time. I was going to clubs, I was going here, I was going there, I was skipping acting classes when I could. Luckily, I had an agent who really believed in me and she just kept pushing me, thinking something would happen."Sherilyn Fenn, quoted in "Five Feet of Heaven in a Ponytail" by Simon Banner "Premiere" (UK). July 1993. p.26-29.]

Fenn landed her first starring role, as an engaged heiress to an old Southern family who falls forcarnival worker Richard Tyson in Zalman King's erotic drama film "Two Moon Junction", after which she said she wanted to hide for a year. [Simon Banner. "Five Feet of Heaven in a Ponytail." "Premiere" (UK). July 1993. p.26-29.] "I was so embarrassed about how it turned out that I went into a cocoon for a year afterwards," she said.Sherilyn Fenn, quoted in "Everybody's Mad about Sherilyn Fenn" by Jessica Sully "Movie" (Australia). January 1993. p.18-20.] "Junction" was meant to be Fenn’s big break, but the film turned into another sexploitation film. "A lot of people said some really bad things about me for doing such a sexy movie. But I decided to do it because I "wasn't" comfortable with the material.Sherilyn Fenn, quoted in "Sherilyn Fenn: The "Twin Peaks" Temptress Is Back for Fall" by Henry Edwards "Details" (USA). September 1990. p.130-131.] I didn't want to make choices that would always put me in a place that was comfortable and secure. I thought interesting would happen and I would grow. Interesting things did happen. I cried at the end of all my love scenes."Sherilyn Fenn, quoted in "Fenn-Tastic! Meet Twin Peaks' Mysterious Siren Sherilyn Fenn" by Glenn O'Brien "Playboy". December 1990. p.82-91, 213-214.]

After these film experiences, Fenn decided to take control of her career. "I decided to be more myself and not to be pushed into what other people wanted me to be. It’s scary how little imagination many people in this business have."

Rise to fame - "Twin Peaks" (1990-1991)

Fenn won her most outstanding role and made an indelible impression on the public when she was cast by David Lynch and Mark Frost as the tantalizing, reckless Audrey Horne, the high-school femme fatale from the critically acclaimed TV series "Twin Peaks". The series ran from 1990 to 1991, and the character of Audrey was one of the most popular with fans, in particular for her unrequited love for FBI Special Agent Dale Cooper (played by Kyle MacLachlan) and her style from the '50s (with her saddle shoes, plaid skirts, and tight sweaters). Sherilyn hit cult status with a scene in which Lynch filmed her dancing to Angelo Badalamenti's music and with another memorable scene in which her character knotted a cherry stem in her mouth. "With Sherilyn Fenn, Twin Peaks came on and effortlessly destroyed every other show’s sexuality", said co-star James Marshall. [James Marshall, quoted in "The James Marshall Interview" by Craig Miller and John Thorne. "Wrapped In Plastic". Issue 72. December 2004.] "Audrey is a woman-child who dresses like the girls in the '50s and shows her body", said Fenn. "But she's daddy's little girl at the same time." In the show's second season, when the idea of pairing Audrey with Cooper was abandoned, Audrey was paired with other characters like Bobby Briggs (played by Dana Ashbrook) and John Justice Wheeler (Billy Zane). About Audrey, Fenn said: cquote|Audrey’s been great for me. She has brought out a side of me that’s more mischievous and fun that I had suppressed, trying to be an adult. She has made it OK to use the power one has as a woman to be manipulative at times, to be precocious. She goes after what she wants vehemently and she takes it. I think that’s really admirable. I love that about her.

Shortly after shooting "Twin Peaks"' pilot episode, David Lynch gave her a small but impressive part in "Wild at Heart", as a girl injured in a car wreck, obsessed by the contents of her purse, opposite Nicolas Cage and Laura Dern, which won the Golden Palm Award at the 1990 Cannes Film Festival. "David’s direction was, ‘Only think of this: bobby pins, lipstick, wallet, comb, that’s it.’ It’s very abstract." [Sherilyn Fenn, quoted in "Babes in the Woods: Sharing Pie and Secrets With the Mystery Girls of Twin Peaks" by Bill Zehme. "Rolling Stone". Issue 588. October 4, 1990. p.68-71, 170.] "I just pictured her being able to do this", said Lynch of her scene, "she’s like a broken China doll." [David Lynch, quoted in "Babes in the Woods: Sharing Pie and Secrets with the Mystery Girls of Twin Peaks" by Bill Zehme. "Rolling Stone". Issue 588. October 4, 1990. p.68-71, 170.] David Lynch, who once described Sherilyn Fenn as "five feet of heaven in a ponytail", and said that she makes him think of a porcelain doll, said about her: cquote|She's a mysterious girl and I think that actresses like her who have a mystery - where there's something hiding beneath the surface - are the really interesting ones. [David Lynch, quoted in "Five Feet of Heaven in a Ponytail" by Simon Banner "Premiere" (UK). July 1993. p.26-29.] "He's very creative and unafraid of taking chances," she said of the director. "I really respect him. He's wonderful."Sherilyn Fenn, quoted in [ M.J. Simpson's Interview With Sherilyn Fenn] . October 1, 1997.]

She soon portrayed John Dillinger's girlfriend Billie Frechette in ABC's 1991 gangster TV movie "Dillinger" opposite Mark Harmon, and shot the neo-noir black comedy "Desire and Hell at Sunset Motel" in which she played a sultry, seductive femme fatale, opposite Whip Hubley and David Hewlett.After "Twin Peaks", Fenn chose to focus on widening her range of roles and was determined to avoid typecasting. "They’ve offered me every variation on Audrey Horne, none of which were as good or as much fun."Sherilyn Fenn, quoted in "Fenn de Siècle" by Joshua Mooney. "Movieline". July 1993. p.36-40, 80-82.] She turned down the Audrey Horne spin-off series that was offered to her, and unlike most of the cast, chose not to return for the 1992 prequel movie "", as she was then shooting "Of Mice and Men".Dennis Hensley. "Fenn & Now". "Movieline". June 1999. p.54-59.]

Post-"Peaks" roles (1992-1995)

After two nominations (Emmy and Golden Globe) for "Twin Peaks", and a pictorial in "Playboy" magazine (for which she chose her then boyfriend, Barry Hollywood, to photograph her), Fenn was propelled to stardom and became a major sex symbol, with her Old Hollywood looks. In October 1990, while promoting "Twin Peaks", Fenn made the cover of "Rolling Stone" magazine along with Mädchen Amick and Lara Flynn Boyle. In 1990 "Us Magazine" chose her as one of the "10 Most Beautiful Women in the World" and in 1991 "People" magazine chose her as one of the "50 Most Beautiful Women in the World". She posed for photographer Steven Meisel for the autumn-winter 1991-1992 Dolce & Gabbana campaign, for which he photographed her as a classical Hollywood femme fatale. In 1992 photographer George Hurrell took a series of photographs of Sherilyn Fenn, Sharon Stone, Julian Sands, Raquel Welch, Eric Roberts and Sean Penn. In these portraits he recreated his style of the 1930s, with Fenn posing in costumes, hairstyle and makeup of the period.

In 1991, veteran Hollywood acting coach Roy London chose her to star in his directorial debut "Diary of a Hitman" (nominated for the Critics Award at the 1991 Deauville Film Festival), in which she plays a young mother determined to protect her child from hit-man Forest Whitaker. According to Fenn, the turning point in her career was when she met London in 1990. She credits him with instilling confidence and newfound enthusiasm. cquote|I was disillusioned with acting after the pilot of "Twin Peaks". I'd been doing low-budget films. I didn't want to walk through movies being a pretty ornament. At 25 I didn't know if I had it. I questioned if there was depth, if there was integrity to me. I was longing to go inside, to do deeper work.Sherilyn Fenn, quoted in "Legendary Portrayal" by David Walstad. "The Philadelphia Inquirer TV Week" (USA). May 21, 1995. p.4-5.] She learned from her beloved teacher "to find the roles that you're passionate about, that speak to you on some level and which will help you grow on some level," [Fenn, quoted in [ Sherilyn Fenn's On-Line Showtime Interview] on November 27, 1999.] which has then become her line of conduct. "A lot of the sentiment that acting should be about an art form rather than mass entertainment and celebrity is at the core of Fenn’s attitude to the business," wrote Jessica Sully in Australian magazine "Movie". [Jessica Sully. "Everybody's Mad about Sherilyn Fenn". "Movie" (Australia). January 1993. p.18-20.] "I try to keep myself centered," Fenn said. "I don't go to parties and all that. I don't think being seen or being in the right place is going to make me a better actress. I care about my work and try to do what's right in my heart."Sherilyn Fenn, quoted in "Fenn Fatale" by Martha Frankel. "Exposure". September 1990. p.56-63.] As Mike Bygrave wrote in "Sky Magazine": "One of the keys to understanding Fenn is that when she talks about the characters she plays she's really talking about herself."Mike Bygrave. "Fenn Fatale." "Sky Magazine". July 1992. p.6-10.] Fenn was eager to play varied parts that could eclipse her sex-symbol image. "People who think they know me would be surprised that my whole life doesn't revolve around sex," she said. After "Twin Peaks", Fenn demanded a no-nudity clause in her contracts. She turned to the independent world, to manage to carve out a career on her own terms as a versatile actress. She worked intensely, choosing varied and unusual roles: cquote|The world has certain rules - Hollywood has certain rules - but it doesn't mean you have to play by them, and I don't, or I'd be a miserable person.Sherilyn Fenn, quoted in "Fenn Fatale" by Mike Bygrave. "Sky Magazine". July 1992. p.6-10.]

A highlight of Fenn's film career is Gary Sinise's film adaptation of "Of Mice and Men" (nominated for the Golden Palm at the 1992 Cannes Film Festival) in which she played a sad and lonely country wife, desperately in need to talk to somebody, opposite Sinise and John Malkovich. "Sherilyn’s one of the reasons we got such a great ovation at Cannes", said Sinise. [Gary Sinise, quoted in the DVD audio commentary of "Of Mice and Men".] "She’s like a terribly sad angel in this film. Sherilyn plays against just being a sexy and beautiful girl," he added. "Hopefully her performance in my film will show her deep talent because she certainly showed the right mix of innocence and seductiveness for the role. We needed a fresh face but also one who knew what she was doing." [Gary Sinise, quoted in "Everybody's Mad about Sherilyn Fenn" by Jessica Sully "Movie" (Australia). January 1993. p.18-20.] "Gary Sinise was one of the first people who didn’t see me like a lot of other people did,"Sherilyn Fenn, quoted in "Fenn & Now" by Dennis Hensley. "Movieline". June 1999. p.54-59.] she said. "It was a wonderful experience. Horton Foote adapted the novel and he fleshed out my character, and he made her much, much more."The same year saw her starring alongside Danny Aiello, Arliss Howard and Marc Lawrence in John Mackenzie's "Ruby", that attempts to unravel the mystery of who killed John F. Kennedy and why, and depicts the events that led Jack Ruby to shoot Lee Harvey Oswald. Fenn plays the part of ambitious stripper Sheryl Ann DuJean, a fictitious character who is a composite of several real-life women including stripper Candy Barr, Marilyn Monroe and Judith Campbell Exner. "She’s got a brain and all the right emotional instincts, and that’s a great combination," said Mackenzie of Fenn. [John Mackenzie, quoted in "Phenomenal Fenn" by Diana Rico. "Harper's Bazaar". December 1991. p.132-133, 156.]

In 1993 she starred in the romantic comedy "Three of Hearts" as Kelly Lynch and William Baldwin's love interest. During the shooting the relations between Fenn and director Yurek Bogayevicz became more and more strained as she refused to appear nude in the film.Joshua Mooney. "Fenn de Siècle." "Movieline". July 1993. p.36-40, 80-82.] Fenn was also considered for the title role in Roger Vadim's remake of his 1968 film "Barbarella" that ultimately didn't come off. [ [ "Barbarella" at] ]

Her most notable film role to date was in the controversial "Boxing Helena" (nominated for the Grand Jury Prize at the 1993 Sundance Film Festival), directed by David Lynch's daughter Jennifer Chambers Lynch. Fenn portrayed a narcissistic seductress amputated and imprisoned by Julian Sands, who makes her become his personal Venus de Milo in an effort to possess her. "Helena" was a way for Fenn to avoid being type-cast, with a radically different role from what she’d done in the past: cquote|I like taking risks and I decided to put every bit of me into the role. "Women do feel like they're in a box," she says of the subtext that attracted her to the role. "Society, Hollywood, some men... they want to wrap women up in a neat little package."Sherilyn Fenn, quoted in "Fenntastic" by Jill Daniel. "Orange Coast". January 1999.] Both Lynch and Fenn were proud of their work in it [Jim McClellan. "Crate Expectations." "The Face". Issue 57. June 1993. p.40-47.] but the film - which was overshadowed by the lawsuits against Kim Basinger after she dropped out - ultimately was a critical and commercial failure. However, both women enjoyed a lot their collaboration. "Sherilyn is an amazing actress, a total bundle of energy and a real powerhouse and I think people will see a side of her that we have never seen of Sherilyn anywhere else before," said Lynch of the actress. "I have with Sherilyn something I didn't think I'd ever find and that is the entire whole." [Jennifer Lynch, quoted in the "Boxing Helena" press kit. 1993.] "Jennifer’s one of the brightest person I know," said Fenn. "Boxing Helena was something that I think was pretty cool, but people judged it without even having seen it. It’s not perfect, but I think for the story that we were trying to tell, it turned out pretty good. What it signified was really powerful to me: how society puts us in boxes one way or another."

She then starred in Carl Reiner's neo-noir parody "Fatal Instinct" as Armand Assante's devoted secretary and Sean Young and Kate Nelligan’s rival. She was asked to read for the femme fatale Lola (eventually played by Young), but opted for Assante's lovesick secretary. [David Walstad. "Legendary Portrayal". "The Philadelphia Inquirer TV Week" (USA). May 21, 1995. p.4-5.]

Fenn afterward portrayed Potiphar's wife Zulaikha in Showtime's Biblical TV movie "Slave of Dreams" (released in 1995) opposite Adrian Pasdar and Edward James Olmos. The film was directed by multi-award winning Robert M. Young and produced by Martha and Dino De Laurentiis.

In 1995, she starred in an episode of "Tales from the Crypt" directed by Robert Zemeckis, alongside Isabella Rossellini and John Lithgow, in which she played the lover of Humphrey Bogart, who appeared in the episode via CGI special effects. "It was wonderful working with Bob Zemeckis and Isabella, and everybody was really nice."

After a short break during which she married and gave birth to a son, Fenn was chosen among more than 100 actresses to portray legendary actress Elizabeth Taylor in NBC's 1995 telemovie "". cquote|Playing Elizabeth Taylor was probably the hardest job I’ve ever done."Director Kevin Connor and I arranged a lunch, not an audition," said executive producer Lester Persky. "We knew 10 minutes into our meeting that Sherilyn was it. She has the same striking beauty, and because of that she's experienced some of the things in life and in this business that make Elizabeth such a fascinating person." [Lester Perky, quoted in "Legendary Portrayal" by David Walstad. "The Philadelphia Inquirer TV Week" (USA). May 21, 1995. p.4-5.] When she accepted the part, Fenn was unaware that Taylor was suing to stop both broadcast of the film and the unauthorized biography that it is based on. But that didn't let her distract from her work. "I am somebody who doesn't make choices lightly at this point of my life. I'm not somebody who wants to exploit another's woman story or life in any way." [Sherilyn Fenn, quoted in "Elizabeth Taylor television film to be shown over her objections". "Reading Eagle TV Times" (USA). May 21, 1995. p.31.] Some parallels with her life made it important for Fenn to do the biography. Like Taylor, Fenn's mother married several times. "It's remarkable, to be married so many times. How do you say 'I do' yet again and again and mean it? Maybe she lives her life in the moment, and ferociously believe in love. My mother getting married over and over definitely had an effect on me." Also, Fenn and Taylor both encountered similar experiences in the film business. "There are stereotypes of what a beautiful woman is. She struggled with that. A certain part of her life she went on that calling card. I certainly know I've come into contact with that. ‘You are too pretty,’ I'm told." During the shooting, Fenn fought to keep integrity in the script. Her priority was to respectfully and accurately portray Taylor, and she supported the original screenwriter's effort to concentrate on Taylor the person, not the legend. cquote|I fought to keep the integrity of the story because the producer was bringing in a writer that was making it very soapy. They wanted many scenes of her when she was very overweight. I said, ‘I'm not doing that. I'll do one. That's not this woman's life.’ For me it was just: I didn't want to make an impression. I just tried to play the truth of the woman. Not the legend, not the stories that we hear about her. Because even when she was a child, you were seeing a version of her that was manipulated by the studios, so you didn't really see her. I thought the closest she ever came to revealing herself was "Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf?", and she lost herself in that role. It was cathartic for her to do that in a lot of ways, to let herself be that wild.

lowdown in her career (1996-1998)

In the late 1990s, Fenn's career took a downturn. The discrepancies between her vision of the profession of actress and the Hollywood-centred commercial fixation led to her lack of enthusiasm in traditional Hollywood films."I didn't like anything," she admits. "It was crazy, I was very picky. In other words, I didn't take advantage of what was happening necessarily then. But they also have a way of putting you in a category. I wasn't into playing the Hollywood game. I only responded to certain things." [Sherilyn Fenn, quoted in "Fenn Shui" by Rob Hill. "Bikini". Issue 37. October 1998.] Also, she herself has attributed her failure to adapt to the Hollywood system to her frankness and her dislike for the "Hollywood game".

She then began to alternate TV movies and independent films. In 1996 she joined the winning ensemble cast in the romantic comedy "Lovelife" as a waitress who attempts to become a writer and has to rebuild her life. The film was written and directed by "Tru Calling"'s creator Jon Harmon Feldman and costarred Matt Letscher, Jon Tenney, Bruce Davison, Saffron Burrows and Carla Gugino.

Fenn also appeared in the 1997 romantic comedy "Just Write", along with Jeremy Piven as the dream actress of a Hollywood tour bus driver, who mistakes him for a famous screenwriter. Both films have been well-received on the festival circuit.

In a 1997 episode of "Friends", Fenn guest-starred as Matthew Perry's wooden-legged girlfriend. "Matthew Perry was darling and very funny. All my scenes were with Matthew, basically, so it was fun. I like the show. I was happy to be a part of it."

The same year she was cast as the female lead in ABC's show "Prey" (originally entitled "Hungry for Survival") and starred in the unaired original pilot episode. However, the pilot was reshot and Fenn was replaced by Debra Messing.

Fenn starred in the 1998 British psychological drama and huis-clos "Darkness Falls" as a wealthy and neglected wife, who is sequestered with her husband (played by Tim Dutton) by a man (Ray Winstone) determined to understand the events that led to his wife ending up in a coma. "I loved the script when I read it; it's a wonderful character piece. I saw Ray's work, like "Nil by Mouth", and I saw Tim's work, and I just was really excited to be a part of it." While shooting the film in the Isle of Man in late 1997, Fenn hesitated to settle in London in order to start a European career, and eventually decided to stay in the U.S. [M.J. Simpson. [ Interview With Sherilyn Fenn] . October 1, 1997.]

She subsequently starred opposite Jon Tenney in the pilot for a remake of ABC's "Love, American Style", for the 1998-1999 television season. The pilot, that also featured Melissa Joan Hart, Matt Letscher and Mariska Hargitay was not ordered into a series. Nevertheless, ABC aired it on February 20, 1999.

Return to television - "Rude Awakening" (1998-2001)

Fenn gained newfound enthusiasm with the lead role in Showtime's sitcom "Rude Awakening" as Billie Frank, an alcoholic ex-soap opera actress, based upon executive producer/creator Claudia Lonow's experience, who tries to go sober and become a writer but continues to struggle with her self-destructive habits. The series ran from 1998 to 2001 and co-starred Lynn Redgrave, Jonathan Penner and Mario Van Peebles. cquote|I liked the hard-core truth of "Rude Awakening". But when I first read it, I was scared of it. Part of me was, like, it’s so unattractive! But I liked that it didn't glamorize alcohol. And what's admirable about Billie is that she's a straight shooter. She doesn't have a lot of pretense. It's like, ‘Take me as I am. You like me, fine! You don't, I don't give a damn!’ There's something quite empowering about somebody who doesn't care what other people think. Billie is learning about herself. She's recognized that she has a problem with drugs and alcohol, and she's trying to straighten it out.

Fenn joined again Jeremy Piven in a 1998 episode of "Cupid", as Piven's love interest.In 1999 she reteamed with Chris Penn and Adrian Pasdar for Pasdar's art-house directorial debut, the neo-noir "Cement", a contemporary re-telling of "Othello", in which she played a tempting but imprudent femme fatale, the wife of jealous corrupt cop Chris Penn. "I play a character who's selfish and sloppy with her sexual energy. I saw the film and I was really happy with it. It's got a lot of soul." The film, which won Best Picture awards on the festival circuit, was written by "Farscape"’s screenwriter Justin Monjo and also starred Jeffrey Wright and Henry Czerny.She also reteamed with actor/director Bruce Davison for his 2001 award-winning [ [ Awards for "Off Season"] ] family comedy, Showtime's "Off Season" alongside Rory Culkin, Hume Cronyn and Adam Arkin.

Recent roles and directing (2001-present)

Following "Rude Awakening", Fenn's work consisted of a lot of episodic TV work. In the middle of the 2000s, she failed to find a role that could re-ignite her career as she got involved into many projects, that went unrealized.

In 2001, she starred in the episode "Replica" of "The Outer Limits", playing a scientist who volunteered to be cloned. She also appeared in "Night Visions". She was cast as a kindergarten teacher for the pilot of the 2001 American version of the British TV show "Blind Men", alongside French Stewart. However, the pilot was not ordered into a series.

In 2002, Fenn was one of several former "Twin Peaks" stars, such as Dana Ashbrook and Mädchen Amick, to have a recurring role on The WB's "Dawson's Creek". She guest-starred in three episodes from the fifth season, as Alex Pearl, the seductive manager of the restaurant where Joshua Jackson works.Fenn was afterwards cast as madcap villain Harley Quinn in The WB's "Birds of Prey" but was replaced by Mia Sara before the series began. Fenn starred in the original pilot episode but dropped out, due to scheduling conflicts, as the show's creators realized that the character of Harley Quinn would need to be a bigger part of the show, for which Fenn was unavailable. [Rick Porter. [,1002,271|76964|1|,00.html "Sherilyn Fenn Off "Birds of Prey"."] "Zap2it". July 12, 2002. "Entertainment news". "TV Guide". July 19, 2002.] She also played a manipulative character who may be a statutory rapist in a season 4 episode of "" opposite Christopher Meloni and Mariska Hargitay. This episode was titled "Deception" and aired in 2002. Fenn also appeared in "Watching Ellie".

Fenn played a crime boss in the 2002 film "Swindle" opposite Tom Sizemore. She had a small role in the critically acclaimed "The United States of Leland" (2003).

In 2003, Fenn appeared on The WB's "Gilmore Girls" as Sasha, the girlfriend of Jess Mariano's estranged father (played by Rob Estes) in the season three episode "Here Comes the Son", which was the backdoor pilot for a California-set spin-off titled "Windward Circle", that was to have starred Milo Ventimiglia, Estes and Fenn. [ [,1002,271|80335|1|,00.html "Estes and Fenn Join "Gilmore" Spin-off."] "Zap2it". February 25, 2003.] The network dropped the project citing cost issues due to filming on location in Venice, California.

She then played the recurring part of Violet Montgomery on Fox's "Boston Public" (2003-2004), [ [,1002,271|83658|1|,00.html "Fenn Enrolls on "Boston Public"."] "Zap2it". September 22, 2003.] and appeared in Showtime's "Cavedweller" (2004) opposite Kyra Sedgwick.In 2004, Fenn joined former co-star Mark Harmon in an episode of "NCIS". She was afterwards cast for the 2004 remake of "Mister Ed", planned for the Fox network. However, after the pilot was shot, the show's writer/producer Drake Sather committed suicide, and the pilot was not aired. She then co-starred in the action film "Lesser of Three Evils" (also known as "Blood Money") [ "Lesser of Three Evils" at CatchLight Films] ] [ "Lesser of Three Evils" at Fabrication Films] ] [ "Blood Money" at Boll AG] ] alongside Ho Sung Pak, Roger Guenveur Smith and Peter Greene.

In 2005, Fenn made a notable appearance on "The 4400", playing Jean DeLynn Baker, a 4400 who has the ability to grow toxin-emitting spores on her hands. She also guest-starred in the final episode of "Judging Amy".

In 2006, Fenn starred in Geretta Geretta's "Whitepaddy" [ [ "Whitepaddy" official site] ] alongside Lisa Bonet and Hill Harper, and appeared in Emily Skopov's "Novel Romance", [ [ "Novel Romance" official site] ] along with Traci Lords and Paul Johansson. She then starred in the Canadian psychological thriller "Presumed Dead", opposite Duncan Regehr, as Mary Anne Cooper, a detective working on a missing person case, who has to outwit a crime novelist in order to get to the truth.She was cast as the female lead in ABC's "Three Moons Over Milford" [ [ Marilyn Beck and Stacy Jenel Smith. "The End is Here". LA Daily News. April 10, 2006.] ] [ [ of Sam Murphy, Sherilyn Fenn and Jill Schackner on the set of the "Three Moons Over Milford" unaired pilot episode] ] but was replaced by Elizabeth McGovern.

After finishing the feature film "Treasure Raiders" in Russia with David Carradine, Fenn reteamed with Amy Sherman-Palladino and reappeared in the sixth and seventh seasons of "Gilmore Girls" (2006-2007), as a different character, Anna Nardini, the ex-girlfriend of Luke Danes (played by Scott Patterson) and protective mother to his daughter April. After the 2003 "Gilmore Girls" spin-off project, Sherman-Palladino wanted to work with Fenn again ever since, and wrote the character of Anna with her in mind. When asked why she cast Fenn for two different roles on "Gilmore Girls", Sherman-Palladino said: "I love Sherilyn so much and I don't care. One thing about the show is I just want the best people. I've just been looking constantly for a time to work with Sherilyn, and I'm getting very old and I could just get hit by a truck at any minute. I just simply can't put it off that long, so I'd just rather get her in and have her part of my world." [Amy Sherman-Palladino, quoted in [{D7D2F056-B24A-41E1-9E8D-247CBF0AC117} "Marion Ross, Sherilyn Fenn, "Gilmore Girls", Amy Sherman-Palladino - Ask Ausiello"] by Michael Ausiello. "TV Guide". January 18, 2006.] However, after Sherman-Palladino left the show, the direction for the character changed as the producers decided to make her character a villain in a custody battle.

Fenn was slated for a recurring role on CBS' 2006 crime drama "Smith", but the show was quickly-canceled. Other television appearances include "".

She appeared in the in the 2007 "Dukes of Hazzard" prequel, "" as Lulu Hogg. "It's just a fun silly role," she said, but Fenn who had already worked with director Robert Berlinger on "Rude Awakening", wanted to do so again. [Monica Haynes. "Sherilyn's Dukes." "". July 21, 2006.]

Shortly after shooting "The Dukes of Hazzard" prequel, Fenn stepped behind the camera for the first time and directed in Pittsburgh a documentary film about child enrichment program "CosmiKids" and its founder Judy Julin. [* [ "Child enrichment center may open here"] , by Monica Haynes & Cristina Rouvalis. "Pittsburgh Post-Gazette". "". July 21, 2006] She subsequently joined its executive team in 2007 as executive director of the film and television division.

In July 2008, Fenn filmed "The Scenesters", a black comedy made by comedic film group The Vacationeers.

Personal quotes

* "I've never wanted to do the same thing twice. If a script doesn't surprise me in some way, I simply can't commit to the project."
* "My acting has always been about doing things that I can grow from, that say something, or should be heard."
* "I'm honest. I say what I feel. I try to be tactful, but I can't not say what I feel. I have a really big problem with that."

Personal life

Fenn lives in Los Angeles. She practices kundalini yoga. Fenn dated Prince and was linked to Dweezil Zappa. She briefly dated Hollywood agent Jay Moloney. Fenn also dated photographer Barry Hollywood, whom she chose to photograph her for the December 1990 issue of "Playboy".

Fenn was engaged to actor Johnny Depp, whom she refers to as her first true love. Depp and Fenn met on the set of the 1985 short film "Dummies". "It was just so gorgeous, and their eyes locked and that was it," said director Laurie Frank. "But the minute we finished shooting, she had this red Chevrolet Corvette. And they would get into the Corvette and the windows would steam up and we’d see this Corvette rocking away and then they wouldn’t come out again until it was time to do the next shot. They really fell madly in love." [Laurie Frank quoted in [ "E True Hollywood Story: Johnny Depp"] . 11/23/03.] Dating for three and a half years, Fenn and Depp subsequently got engaged. He later signed a contract to become a series regular on "21 Jump Street", which went into production in Vancouver. In pursuit of their different careers in Los Angeles and Vancouver, the two parted ways. [ [ "E True Hollywood Story: Johnny Depp"] . 11/23/03.]

In 1994, Fenn married guitarist/songwriter Toulouse Holliday, [R. Daniel Foster. "Sherilyn Fenn, Taylor Made." "Los Angeles". May 1995. p.64-67.] whom she met on the set of "Three of Hearts", and gave birth to a son, Myles, in late 1993. The marriage came to an end in 1997.

Her second son, Christian, with boyfriend Dylan Stewart, was born in August 2007. [ [ CBB Exclusive: Sherilyn Fenn welcomes second son : Celebrity Baby Blog ] ]

After directing a documentary film about child enrichment program CosmiKids, Fenn joined its executive team in 2007 as executive director of the film and television division. [ [ CosmiKids executive team] ]

Sherilyn Fenn has worked twice with David Lynch ("Twin Peaks", "Wild at Heart"), Adrian Pasdar ("Slave of Dreams", "Cement"), Chris Penn ("The Wild Life", "Cement"), Bruce Davison ("Lovelife", "Off Season"), Amy Sherman-Palladino (the "Gilmore Girls" spin-off project "Windward Circle", "Gilmore Girls"), Johnny Depp ("Dummies", "21 Jump Street"), Jeremy Piven ("Just Write", "Cupid"), Isabella Rossellini ("Wild at Heart", "Tales from the Crypt"), Virginia Madsen ("Zombie High", "Smith"), Mark Harmon ("Dillinger", "NCIS"), Robert Berlinger ("Rude Awakening", "The Dukes of Hazzard: The Beginning"), Costas Mandylor ("Just Write", "Scent of Murder"), and David Carradine ("Crime Zone", "Treasure Raiders").

Awards & nominations

;Emmy Awards
*1990: nominated for Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Drama Series -- "Twin Peaks"

;Golden Globe Awards
*1991: nominated for Best Performance by an Actress in a Supporting Role in a Series, Mini-Series or Motion Picture Made for TV -- "Twin Peaks"

Other recognition

* Fenn made the cover of such magazines as "New York", "Rolling Stone" (along with Mädchen Amick and Lara Flynn Boyle), "In Fashion" (along with Billy Idol), "Playboy", "Entertainment Weekly", "The Face", "Details", "Sky", and "Harper's Bazaar".

* In 1990 "Us Magazine" chose her as one of the "10 Most Beautiful Women in the World".

* In 1991 "People" chose her as one of the "50 Most Beautiful Women in the World".

* Fenn posed for photographer Steven Meisel for the autumn-winter 1991-1992 Dolce & Gabbana campaign.

* In 1992, Fenn posed for photographer George Hurrell.

* Singer and composer Screamin' Jay Hawkins wrote and recorded the 1993 song entitled "Sherilyn Fenn", featured on his album "Stone Crazy". The song is an ode to Fenn, who worked with Hawkins in "Two Moon Junction".

* Fenn is mentioned in the song "Razor Burn" by the punk band "Lagwagon" on their 1995 album entitled "Hoss".

* In 1995 "FHM" chose her as one of the "100 sexiest women in the world".

* In 1996, "The Daily Mirror" chose her as one of the "World's 100 Most Beautiful Women", and "Femme Fatales" chose her as one of the "50 sexiest sci-fi actresses".

* Fenn inspired Norwegian hard rock band Audrey Horne, formed in 2002, named after her character in "Twin Peaks".

* In 2006, Australian men magazine "Zoo Weekly" chose her as one of the "Top 50 Hottest Babes Ever".



Articles and interviews

*"Summer Pleasures". "New York" (USA). Volume 23: Issue 26. July 2-July 9, 1990. p.20-21.
*"Fenn Fatale", by Martha Frankel. "Exposure" (USA). Volume 3: Issue 3. September 1990. p.56-63.
*"Sherilyn Fenn: The" Twin Peaks "Temptress Is Back for Fall", by Henry Edwards. "Details" (USA). September 1990. p.130-131.
*"Babes in the Woods: Sharing Pie and Secrets with the Mystery Girls of" Twin Peaks", by Bill Zehme. "Rolling Stone" (USA). Issue 588. October 4, 1990. p.68-71, 170.
*"Fire Starters", by Lisa Bernhard. "US". Issue 140. October 29, 1990. p.140.
*"Fenn-Tastic! Meet" Twin Peaks' "Mysterious Siren Sherilyn Fenn", by Glenn O'Brien. "Playboy" (USA). December 1990. p.82-91, 213-214.
*"Sherilyn Fenn: Is She the Sexiest Woman on Television?", by Steven Daly. "The Face" (UK). Issue 27. December 1990. p.52-57.
*"Malizia", by Luca Neri. "Lei" (Italy). Issue 159. February 1991. p.92-97.
*"Le Ragazze di" Twin Peaks", by Marco Bacci. "Max" (Italy). March 1991. p.84-91.
*"The Rise and Thrall of Sherilyn Fenn", by James Steranko. "Prevue" (USA). Volume 2: Issue 43. March-May 1991. p.42-43, 53, 57.
*"Fenn & Games", by Erik Hedegaard. "Details" (USA). December 1991. p.76-81, 154-155.
*"Phenomenal Fenn", by Diana Rico. "Harper's Bazaar" (USA). December 1991. p.132-133, 156.
*"Fenn Peaks", by Erin Culley. "Detour" (USA). December 1991. p.16-22.
*"Fenn Fatale", by Ulrike Zeitlinger. "Esquire" (Germany). February 1992. p.108-111.
*"Red Hot Right Now: Saucy Sexpot Sherilyn Fenn", by Jamie Diamond. "Cosmopolitan" (USA). Volume 212: Issue 4. April 1992. p.46-50.
*"Sur la Croisette: Arrêts sur Images sur Quarante-Cinq Acteurs", by Michel Rebichon. "Studio" (France). Issue 62: Spécial Cannes 1992. May 1992. p.138.
* [,6115,310562_7_0_,00.html "Unarmed And Dangerous: Jennifer Lynch loses Madonna, Basinger, gains Fenn for" Boxing Helena"] . "Entertainment Weekly". Issue 119. May 22, 1992.
*"Now and Fenn". "GQ" (UK). June 1992. p.98-99.
*"Ruby: "Sherilyn Fenn's Shot at Fame", by Dave Reeder. "Film Monthly" (UK). Volume 4: Issue 3. June 1992. p.8-9.
*"Sherilyn Fenn", by Silvia Bizio. "Max" (Italy). July 1992. p.136-141.
*"Fenn Fatale", by Mike Bygrave. "Sky Magazine" (UK). July 1992. p.6-10. "Cosmopolitan" (Australia). September 1992. p.94-97.
*"Everybody's Mad About Sherilyn Fenn", by Jessica Sully. "Movie" (Australia). January 1993. p.18-20.
* [ "Three of Hearts "may be Fenn's winning card"] , by Nancy Mills. "Boston Herald". April 25, 1993. p.41.
*"Crate Expectations:" Boxing Helena", by Jim McClellan. "The Face" (UK). Issue 57. June 1993. p.40-47.
*"Fenn de Siècle", by Joshua Mooney. "Movieline" (USA). July 1993. p.36-40, 80-82.
*"Five Feet of Heaven in a Ponytail", by Simon Banner. "Premiere" (UK). July 1993. p.26-29.
*"Fenn Fatale". "Esquire" (UK). Volume 3: Issue 6. July/August 1993. p.86-87.
* [ Sherilyn Fenn's On-Line Interview] on AOL. January 6, 1995.
*"Elizabethan Drama", by Michael A. Lipton & Joyce Wagner. "People Weekly" (USA). Volume 43: Issue 19. May 15, 1995. p.142-144.
*"Sherilyn and Sherilyn Alike", by Dale Brasel. "Detour" (USA). May 1995. p.46-50.
*"Sherilyn Fenn, Taylor Made", by R. Daniel Foster. "Los Angeles" (USA). May 1995. p.64-67.
*"Legendary Portrayal", by David Walstad. "The Philadelphia Inquirer TV Week" (USA). May 21, 1995. p.4-5.
* [ "What becomes a legend most? Sherilyn Fenn struggled to stay true-to-life in NBC's unauthorized portrait of screen star Liz Taylor"] , by Bart Mills. "Boston Herald". May 21, 1995. p.6
*"I'm at my Peak", by Angela Hagan. "The Daily Mirror". October 29, 1996. p.3.
* [ "Interview with Sherilyn Fenn"] by M.J. Simpson. October 1, 1997.
* [,6115,281957_2_0_,00.html "There's No Killing Laura Palmer: The Unstoppable" Twin Peaks "Ingenues"] , by Troy Patterson. "Entertainment Weekly". February 13, 1998.
* [ "Three Women, One Peek: Sheryl Lee, Sherilyn Fenn and Lara Flynn Boyle Finally Leave David Lynch's World. Almost"] , by Ted Allen. "Esquire". October 1998.
*"Fenn Shui", by Rob Hill. "Bikini" (USA). Issue 37. October 1998.
*"Fenntastic", by Jill Daniel. "Orange Coast" (USA). January 1999.
*"Fenn & Now", by Dennis Hensley. "Movieline" (USA). June 1999. p.54-59.
* [ "Awakening "Offers Laughs, Ray of Hope"] , by Joanne Weintraub. "Milwaukee Journal Sentinel". June 24, 1999.
* [ Sherilyn Fenn's On-Line Interview] on Showtime's November 27, 1999.
*"California Sweet", by Honor Brodie. "In Style" (USA). Volume 7: Issue 7. July 2000. p.234-240.
* [,1002,271|74190|1|,00.html "Sherilyn Fenn Vamps over to" Dawson's Creek"] . "Zap2it". February 26, 2002.
*"Rude Awakening: Boire et Déboires", by Marc Toullec. "Ciné Live" (France). Issue 55. March 2002. p.128.
* [,1002,271|76964|1|,00.html "Sherilyn Fenn off" Birds of Prey"] , by Rick Porter. "Zap2it". July 12, 2002.
* [,1002,271|83658|1|,00.html "Fenn Enrolls on" Boston Public"] . "Zap2it". September 22, 2003.
*"Schoolboy Crush", by Ed Grenby. "Maxim" (UK). Issue 96. April 2003.
*"Qui Sont les 4400?", by Romain Nigita. "Mad Movies" (France). Hors-série: Les Séries Cultes. March 2006. p.16-17.
* [ "Sherilyn's" Dukes"] , by Monica Haynes. "". July 21, 2006.
* [ "Child enrichment center may open here"] , by Monica Haynes & Cristina Rouvalis. "Pittsburgh Post-Gazette". "". July 21, 2006.
* [,CNT-News-cover_15.article "Welcome to the" TP "Time Warp. Where Are They Now? Fire Walk with the Cast of" Twin Peaks"] , by Paige Wiser. "Chicago Sun-Times". April 15, 2007.

External links

*imdb name|id=0000145|name=Sherilyn Fenn
* [ Sherilyn Fenn] at
* [ Sherilyn Fenn interview with M.J. Simpson]
* [ Sherilyn Fenn's On-Line Interview] on Showtime's
* [ Sherilyn Fenn's On-Line Interview] on AOL.
* [ Sherilyn Fenn articles] at
* [ Sherilyn Fenn pictures and articles] at
* [ Sherilyn Fenn biography] at All Movie Guide
* [ Sherilyn Fenn] at Any Old Actress
* [ Sherilyn Fenn biography] at Yahoo!Movies
* [ Sherilyn Fenn - The Film Guide]

NAME= Fenn, Sherilyn
DATE OF BIRTH= 1965-2-1

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