Piper Perabo

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Piper Perabo
Piper Perabo Comic-Con 2, 2011.jpg
Perabo at the San Diego Comic-Con International in July 2011
BornPiper Lisa Perabo
(1976-10-31) October 31, 1976 (age 37)
Dallas, Texas, U.S.
Years active1997–present
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Piper Perabo
Piper Perabo Comic-Con 2, 2011.jpg
Perabo at the San Diego Comic-Con International in July 2011
BornPiper Lisa Perabo
(1976-10-31) October 31, 1976 (age 37)
Dallas, Texas, U.S.
Years active1997–present

Piper Lisa Perabo (born October 31, 1976)[1] is an American stage, film and television actress. Since her breakthrough role in Coyote Ugly (2000), her subsequent films have included Lost and Delirious (2001), Cheaper by the Dozen (2003), Cheaper by the Dozen 2 (2005), The Prestige (2006), Beverly Hills Chihuahua (2008) and Looper (2012). Since 2010, she has played Annie Walker, the lead role on the USA Network series Covert Affairs, for which she has been nominated for a Golden Globe Award for Best Actress.

Early life[edit]

Perabo was born in Dallas, Texas[2] and grew up in Toms River, New Jersey, the daughter of Mary Charlotte (née Ulland), a physical therapist, and George William Perabo, a professor of poetry at Ocean County College.[3] Her father is of Portuguese ancestry, and her mother is of Norwegian descent. [4] Her parents named her after actress Piper Laurie[3] and she has two younger brothers: Noah (born May 1979), and Adam (born August 1981). Perabo graduated from high school at Toms River High School North[5] and graduated summa cum laude from Honors Tutorial College at Ohio University in Athens, Ohio in 1998 with a bachelor's degree in theater,[6] also studying physics, poetry and Latin in her final year.[7][8][9]

Perabo was first noticed a year before she graduated from university. She was in New York City, visiting her then-boyfriend and accompanied him to an audition. Casting director Denise Fitzgerald spotted her and asked her to read for a part. Perabo wasn't cast but when Fitzgerald found out that she didn't have any representation, she made phone calls on Perabo's behalf and found her a manager, who still represents her.[10][11]


1997–2000: Coyote Ugly and career beginnings[edit]

After graduating, Perabo moved to New York City, where she worked as a waitress.[12][13] She also studied acting at the La MaMa Experimental Theatre Club and had roles in various plays.[10] She was cast in her first feature film just a month after moving to the city, Marc Levin's comedy Whiteboyz.[13] In 2000 Perabo was cast in The Adventures of Rocky and Bullwinkle as FBI agent Karen Sympathy. Her next film role was in Coyote Ugly as Violet "Jersey" Sanford, for which she won an MTV Movie Award for Best Music Moment for "One Way or Another".[14]

2001–2009: Subsequent work[edit]

After the success of Coyote Ugly, Perabo made a conscious decision to move away from Blockbusters and focused on independent films.[15] In 2001, she starred in an independent Canadian drama called Lost and Delirious, playing a boarding school student who falls in love with a female classmate (played by Jessica Paré). The film was met with mixed reviews, but the performances of Perabo, Paré and co-star Mischa Barton were, however, widely praised.[16] Perabo's performance in particular received critical acclaim, which Loren King of the Chicago Tribune remarked was her "breakout performance".[17] Entertainment Weekly's Owen Gleiberman called her "an actress of glittering ferocity" and her performance "a geyser of emotion".[18] Jim Lane of the Sacramento News & Review said that "Perabo is a revelation, wild and fiery — it’s a breakthrough performance, astonishing in its fervency"[19] and Roger Ebert praised her performance for its sincerity and "wonderful abandon and conviction".[20]

The next year she starred as a French exchange student in the independent comedy Slap Her... She's French, which was shelved in North America for two years, then released under the new title She Gets What She Wants. The film was released under its original title in Europe. In 2003 she had a role as the eldest Baker child, Nora, in Cheaper by the Dozen (2003), a role she reprised in the film's 2005 sequel.

Her other films include The I Inside (2003), Perfect Opposites (2004), George and the Dragon (2004), The Cave (2005), Imagine Me & You (2005), Edison (2005), The Prestige (2006), and Beverly Hills Chihuahua (2008). She appeared as a nutritionist on the Fox TV show House.

In 2008 Perabo made her Off-Broadway debut in the Neil LaBute play Reasons to Be Pretty.[10][21]

2010–present: Covert Affairs and recent work[edit]

As the play's run was coming to an end, Perabo read the script for the USA Network television spy series Covert Affairs: "I was reading movie scripts and I wasn't finding anything that was really speaking to me and my agent suggested that I read [the Covert Affairs script]. And I hadn't thought about doing television, but when I read it, it kind of changed everything for me. She's such a powerful character, she's so smart, the action is so intense, and I really thought it would be fun to do."[22][23] The following year, she was officially cast as CIA agent Annie Walker, the lead character in Covert Affairs.[24][25]

In August 2010, Perabo injured her knee filming an episode of Covert Affairs.[26] After the finale of the first season it was announced that the second season would begin in summer of 2011. For her work on Covert Affairs, she received a nomination for the 2010 Golden Globe Award for Best Actress – Television Series Drama.[27] Perabo broke her leg the day before shooting finished for the second season finale of Covert Affairs.[28]

In September 2012, Perabo had a supporting role in the time travel thriller Looper alongside Joseph Gordon-Levitt and Bruce Willis. In December 2012, Perabo was cast as a recurring character on Matthew Perry's new television series, the sitcom Go On. Perabo's character, Simone, is a former member of the support group that Perry's character is a member of, returning to the group and becoming a love interest of his. Perabo was originally scheduled to appear in three episodes, but her arc was increased to four.[29]

Perabo next has a starring role alongside James Marsden, Thomas Jane and Billy Bob Thornton in David Hackl's thriller Red Machine, which is scheduled for release in 2013.[30]

Personal life[edit]

Perabo is close friends with actress Lena Headey, and has been since they starred together in two films in 2005, The Cave and Imagine Me & You.[31] Perabo speaks fluent French[15] and is an advocate of LGBT rights.[32] As of 2013, she is engaged to Stephen Kay, a director and executive producer of Covert Affairs.[33]

Perabo is part-owner of two businesses based in New York City: the prohibition-themed bar Employees Only in West Village, Manhattan, which opened in 2005 and the restaurant Jack's Wife Freda in SoHo, Lower Manhattan, which opened in 2012.[34][35]



1997Single SpacedThe DameShort film
1999Knuckleface JonesThat GirlShort film
2000The Adventures of Rocky and BullwinkleKaren Sympathy
2000Coyote UglyViolet "Jersey" Sanford
2000FollowersGirl at Party
2001Lost and DeliriousPauline "Paulie" Oster
2002Slap Her... She's FrenchGenevieve Le PlouffRelease in America as She Gets What She Wants
2003Cheaper by the DozenNora Baker
2004Perfect OppositesJulia Bishop
2004The I InsideAnna
2004George and the DragonPrincess Luma
2005Karas: The ProphecyYurine (voice)Video
2005The CaveCharlie
2005Imagine Me & YouRachel
2005EdisonWillowReleased in America as Edison Force
2005Good Morning BabyGabriellaShort film
2005Cheaper by the Dozen 2Nora Baker-McNulty
200610th & WolfBrandy
2006First SnowDeirdre
2006The PrestigeJulia McCullough
2007Because I Said SoMae
2007In Vivid DetailLeslieShort film
2008The Prince of Motor CityMeg RileyTV film
2008Beverly Hills ChihuahuaRachel
2008The Lazarus ProjectLisa Garvey
2009Sordid ThingsTabitha White
2013EndangeredMichelleIn post-production; also known as Red Machine

Television series[edit]

2007HouseHoneyEpisode: "Resignation"
2008Backdrop NYCLeslieSegment: "In Vivid Detail"
2009Law & Order: Criminal IntentCalista HaslumEpisode: "Folie à Deux"
2010–presentCovert AffairsAnnie WalkerMain Cast; 52 episodes
2013Go OnSimone4 episodes


2008reasons to be prettyCarlyLucille Lortel Theatre


2001NominatedBlockbuster Entertainment AwardFavorite Female - NewcomerCoyote Ugly
2001WonMTV Movie AwardBest Music MomentCoyote Ugly
2001NominatedMTV Movie AwardBreakthrough Female PerformanceCoyote Ugly
2004NominatedTeen Choice AwardChoice Movie LiplockCheaper by the Dozen (shared with Ashton Kutcher)
2006NominatedYoung Artist AwardBest Performance in a Feature Film - Young Ensemble CastCheaper by the Dozen 2
2011NominatedGolden GlobeBest Performance by an Actress in a TV Series - DramaCovert Affairs
2011WonGracieOutstanding Female Actor in a Breakthrough RoleCovert Affairs

Video games[edit]

2010Grand Theft Auto: The Ballad of Gay TonyMargotVoice


  1. ^ "Piper Perabo News, Piper Perabo Bio and Photos". TVGuide.com. Retrieved April 30, 2012. 
  2. ^ According to the State of Texas. Texas Birth Index, 1903–1997. At Ancestry.com
  3. ^ a b Curiel, Jonathan (September 8, 2002). "Putting the right accent on a career / "Coyote Ugly's' Piper Perabo switches genres with "Slap Her ... She's French'". The San Francisco Chronicle. 
  4. ^ "Piper Perabo interviewed on Craig Ferguson Show". 
  5. ^ O'Sullivan, Eleanor. "COYOTE BEAUTIFUL Toms River's Piper Perabo finds herself in `Lost and Delirous'", Asbury Park Press, July 8, 2001. Accessed February 3, 2011. "Perabo, who grew up in Toms River and graduated in 1994 from Toms River High School North, stars in Lost and Delirious, a gritty drama about the love affair between two adolescent schoolmates at a posh Canadian boarding school."
  6. ^ "Hollywood actress returns to OHIO for guest lecture". Outlook. January 11, 2010. Retrieved April 13, 2012. 
  7. ^ "Alumna Piper Perabo nominated for Golden Globe". Oio.edu h. 20 December 2010. Retrieved 6 April 2013. 
  8. ^ "Alumna Piper Perabo nominated for Golden Globe". Oio.edu. 20 December 2010. Retrieved 6 April 2013. 
  9. ^ Jae-Ha Kim (September 2002). "Piper Perabo". Chicago Sun-Times. Retrieved 6 April 2013. 
  10. ^ a b c "Piper Perabo". Broadway.com. 19 June 2008. Retrieved 6 April 2013. 
  11. ^ "Piper Perabo, 'Covert Affairs' Star, On The Biggest Misconception About Women In Hollywood". The Huffington Post. 4 April 2013. Retrieved 6 April 2013. 
  12. ^ Elizabeth Gilbert (July 2000). "Piper Pours a Pint". GQ. Retrieved 6 April 2013. 
  13. ^ a b Melissa Kory (1 March 2010). "The Blast Interview: Piper Perabo". Blast Magazine. Retrieved 6 April 2013. 
  14. ^ "MTV Movie Awards". Mtv. June 2, 2001. Retrieved April 30, 2012. 
  15. ^ a b "Exclusive Interview: Piper Perabo for "Slap Her, She's French"". DarkHorizons.com. 29 August 2001. Retrieved 6 April 2013. 
  16. ^ "Lost and Delirious". murphysmoviereviews. 21 December 2001. Retrieved 26 May 2013. 
  17. ^ "`Lost' a welcome break from summer's light fare". Chicago Tribune. 13 July 2001. Retrieved 26 May 2013. 
  18. ^ "Lost and Delirious (2001)". Entertainment Weekly. 3 August 2001. Retrieved 26 May 2013. 
  19. ^ "Lost and Delirious". Sacramento News & Review. 23 August 2001. Retrieved 26 May 2013. 
  20. ^ "LOST AND DELIRIOUS". RogerEbert.com. 13 July 2001. Retrieved 26 May 2013. 
  21. ^ Antrim, Taylor. "Staging Around". style.com. Retrieved July 3, 2009. 
  22. ^ Brian Gallagher (12 July 2010). "Piper Perabo Takes Us Inside the Spy World of Covert Affairs". Movieweb.com. Retrieved 6 April 2013. 
  23. ^ Emma Brown (25 June 2010). "In Between Scenes with Covert Affairs’ Piper Perabo". RTVW. Retrieved 6 April 2013. 
  24. ^ "Development Update: Thursday, July 2". The Futon Critic. July 2, 2009. Retrieved May 8, 2010. 
  25. ^ "Covert Affairs". USA Network. Retrieved August 13, 2010. 
  26. ^ Natalie Finn (August 19, 2010). "Piper Perabo's Not So Covert Knee Injury". E!Online. Retrieved April 13, 2012. 
  27. ^ "The 68th Annual Golden Globe Awards NOMINATIONS | OFFICIAL WEBSITE of the HFPA and the GOLDEN GLOBE AWARDS". Goldenglobes.org. December 14, 2010. Retrieved April 30, 2012. 
  28. ^ "Actress Piper Perabo Breaks Leg In TV Show Stunt". Cinemablend.com. 21 January 2011. Retrieved 6 April 2013. 
  29. ^ "'Covert Affairs' Star Piper Perabo Books Arc on NBC's 'Go On'". Hollywood Reporter. 3 December 2012. Retrieved 6 April 2013. 
  30. ^ "Piper Perabo Joins Thomas Jane And Billy Bob Thornton In Red Machine". Cinemablend. 1 February 2012. Retrieved 6 April 2013. 
  31. ^ Lee, Michael J (22 March 2007). "Piper Perabo". Interview. Radio Free Entertainment. 
  32. ^ "NEW GIVE A DAMN PSAs PREMIERE ON THE USA NETWORK TODAY!". Give a Damn Campaign. 21 October 2010. 
  33. ^ Leonard, Elizabeth (September 6, 2013). "Piper Perabo Engaged to Stephen Kay". People. 
  34. ^ Emma Brown. "PIPER PERABO'S CULINARY AFFAIRS". Interview Magazine. Retrieved 6 April 2013. 
  35. ^ Emma Brown (January 27 2006). "Piper Perabo From "Coyote Ugly"". ClubPlanet. Retrieved 6 April 2013. 

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