Summer Glau

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Summer Glau
Summer Glau by Gage Skidmore.jpg
BornSummer Lyn Glau
(1981-07-24) July 24, 1981 (age 32)
San Antonio, Texas
Years active2002–present
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Summer Glau
Summer Glau by Gage Skidmore.jpg
BornSummer Lyn Glau
(1981-07-24) July 24, 1981 (age 32)
San Antonio, Texas
Years active2002–present

Summer Lyn Glau (/ˈɡl/; born July 24, 1981) is an American actress best known for playing River Tam in the space western series Firefly and its film sequel Serenity, and Cameron in the science fiction series Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles. She currently recurs on The CW series Arrow as Isabel Rochev.

Early life[edit]

Glau was born in San Antonio, Texas, where she grew up with her two younger sisters Kaitlin and Christie. She is of Scots-Irish and German descent.[1] Her mother is a school teacher and her father a general contractor.[2]

Glau received a scholarship to a ballet company and was home-schooled from grades 3 to 12 to accommodate her ballet training.[3] Glau was classically trained as a ballet dancer and also studied tango and flamenco. After a broken toe ended her dancing career,[3] Glau later moved to Los Angeles in 2002 to pursue a more active acting career.


Glau's first television credit was a guest role as a ballerina on the 2002 episode "Waiting in the Wings" of the television series Angel. There she caught the eye of director Joss Whedon, who later cast her in his critically acclaimed but short-lived TV series Firefly as River Tam, a role she reprised for the show's feature film sequel, Serenity. Glau previously auditioned for the role of a Power Ranger in Power Rangers Wild Force before meeting Whedon.[4]

Glau at CollectorMania 2007

Glau appeared on the episode "Love Conquers Al" of the TV series Cold Case. She had a small role in the film Sleepover, in which she played a high school senior named Shelly. She also appeared in the CSI episode "What's Eating Gilbert Grissom?", and the second season of The Unit; portraying Crystal Burns, the girlfriend of Jeremy Erhart. In 2006, Glau played Tess Doerner, a paranoid schizophrenic returnee in the second season premiere of The 4400 (episode "Wake-Up Call"), and became a recurring character from season 3 onwards. She also starred in the science fiction film Mammoth. Glau was cast in the ABC Family TV movie The Initiation of Sarah.

In Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles, a series that debuted January 13, 2008, Glau played the role of Cameron Phillips, a Terminator infiltration unit sent back to protect John Connor and Sarah Connor from Skynet.[5] The seventh episode of the series, "The Demon Hand", included several scenes in which Glau (in character as Cameron) dances ballet. Glau also guest starred as herself in the 2009 episode "The Terminator Decoupling" from the second season of the CBS situation comedy The Big Bang Theory.[6]

On August 26, 2009, it was confirmed after much speculation that Glau would be joining the cast of Joss Whedon's Dollhouse for at least two episodes in the early part of the show's second season. She portrayed Bennett, the programmer for a rival Dollhouse.[7] On March 12, 2010, it was announced that she would be joining the cast of NBC's The Cape in a leading role.[8] In June 2010, she was confirmed as the female lead in the horror comedy film Knights of Badassdom.[9] On July 11, 2011, Glau was cast on Alphas as Skylar Adams, a recurring alpha and mother to Zoe Adams, and a former acquaintance of Dr. Rosen and Nina.[10] Glau voiced Kara Zor-El in the DC Comics original animated movie Superman/Batman: Apocalypse.[11]

Personal life[edit]

Glau has been involved in a number of charities, such as B.C. Women's Hospital & Health Centre[12] Glau is an animal lover and has shown support to the Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Los Angeles,[13] where she hand-painted a decorative pet bowl that was later sold on eBay to raise funds. She became a vegetarian in 1995, but in 2005 stated, "by the end of shooting [Serenity] I was eating steaks."[14] Glau has trained in multiple forms of martial arts, including kung fu and kickboxing.[14][15][16]



2004SleepoverTicket girl
2005SerenityRiver TamSaturn Award for Best Supporting Actress
2006MammothJack Abernathy
2006Initiation of Sarah, TheThe Initiation of SarahLindsey Goodwin
2010Superman/Batman: ApocalypseKara Zor-El / SupergirlVoice only
2010Deadly HoneymoonLindsey Ross Forrest
2011Legend of Hell's Gate: An American Conspiracy, TheThe Legend of Hell's Gate: An American ConspiracyMaggie Moon
2013Knights of Badassdom[17]Gwen
2013Peter Panzerfaust[18]WendyVoice Only


2002AngelPrima BallerinaEpisode: "Waiting in the Wings"
2002–2003FireflyRiver TamMain role (14 episodes)
2003Cold CasePaige PrattEpisode: "Love Conquers Al"
2004CSI: Crime Scene InvestigationMandy CooperEpisode: "What's Eating Gilbert Grissom?"
2005–20074400, TheThe 4400Tess DoernerRecurring role (8 episodes)
2006–2007Unit, TheThe UnitCrystal BurnsRecurring role (7 episodes)
2008–2009Terminator: The Sarah Connor ChroniclesCameronMain role (31 episodes)
2009Big Bang Theory, TheThe Big Bang TheoryHerselfEpisode: "The Terminator Decoupling"
2009–2010DollhouseBennett HalversonRecurring role (4 episodes)
2010ChuckGretaEpisode: "Chuck Versus the Fear of Death"
2011Cape, TheThe CapeJamie Fleming / OrwellMain role (10 episodes)
2011–2012AlphasSkylar AdamsRecurring role (4 episodes)
2012Grey's AnatomyNurse Emily KovachEpisodes: "If Only You Were Lonely", "One Step Too Far"
2012Help for the HolidaysChristine PrancerTV film
2013Hawaii Five-0Maggie HoapiliEpisode: "Kekoa"
2013[19]NTSF:SD:SUV::Olivia FramptonEpisode: "Comic-Con Air"
2013–presentArrow[20]Isabel RochevRecurring role (Season 2)


Awards and nominations
2005SFX AwardBest ActressSerenityWon
2006SyFy Genre AwardsBest Actress/MovieSerenityNominated[21]
2006Saturn AwardBest Supporting ActressSerenityWon[22]
2008Saturn AwardBest Supporting Actress on TelevisionTerminator: The Sarah Connor ChroniclesWon (tied with Elizabeth Mitchell)[23]
2008Scream AwardBest Actress in a Science Fiction Movie or TV ShowTerminator: The Sarah Connor ChroniclesNominated[24]
2008Teen Choice AwardChoice TV Actress: Action AdventureTerminator: The Sarah Connor ChroniclesNominated
2008Teen Choice AwardChoice TV Breakout Female StarTerminator: The Sarah Connor ChroniclesNominated
2009Saturn AwardBest Supporting Actress in TelevisionTerminator: The Sarah Connor ChroniclesNominated
2009Teen Choice AwardChoice TV Actress: Action/AdventureTerminator: The Sarah Connor ChroniclesNominated


  1. ^ "Summer Glau – About her career – Interview". April 16, 2007. Retrieved July 7, 2013. 
  2. ^ "Summer Glau Biography". Film Reference. Retrieved July 7, 2013. 
  3. ^ a b Robinson, Tasha (February 24, 2008). "Summer Glau Interview". The A.V. Club. Retrieved July 7, 2013. 
  4. ^ Huvane, Chris. "Hot Summer". GQ. Retrieved July 7, 2013. 
  5. ^ Goldman, Eric (February 8, 2007). "Serenity Comes to Sarah Connor". IGN. Retrieved July 7, 2013. 
  6. ^ Johnston, Rich (June 11, 2010). "SCOOP! Summer Glau Plays A LARPer In Joe Lynch’s Knights Of Badassdom". Retrieved July 7, 2013. 
  7. ^ Official - Summer Glau joins Dollhouse season two! at the Wayback Machine (archived August 30, 2009)
  8. ^ Porter, Rick (March 12, 2010). "Summer Glau joins NBC's 'The Cape'". Zap2it. Retrieved July 7, 2013. 
  9. ^ "'Terminator' Hottie Summer Glau Battles Heavy Metal Demons in 'Knights of Badassdom'!". June 11, 2010. Retrieved July 7, 2013. 
  10. ^ "Alphas – 1×07 – Catch and Release". August 2, 2011. Retrieved August 3, 2011. 
  11. ^ Sands, Rich (June 28, 2010). "First Look: Summer Glau Takes Off As Supergirl". TV Guide. Retrieved July 7, 2013. 
  12. ^ Online Auction – Bears that Care at the Wayback Machine (archived March 10, 2007)
  13. ^ "Supported Causes". Retrieved July 7, 2013. 
  14. ^ a b "Dance of the telepathic space assassin". October 1, 2005. Retrieved July 7, 2013. 
  15. ^ Murray, Rebecca. "Summer Glau Talks About "Serenity"". Retrieved July 7, 2013. 
  16. ^ "Summer Glau: Serenity's psychic reveals all". Retrieved July 7, 2013. 
  17. ^ Movie held hostage: 'Knights of Badassdom' at the Wayback Machine (archived March 24, 2013)
  18. ^ PETER PANZERFAUST IS ON THE MOVE at the Wayback Machine (archived April 30, 2013)
  19. ^ "NTSF:SD:SUV – 3.01 Sneak Peek And Synopsis". July 25, 2013. Retrieved July 25, 2013. 
  20. ^ Ng, Philiana (July 10, 2013). "'Arrow' Recruits Summer Glau for Major Season 2 Role". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved July 10, 2013. 
  21. ^ "Firefly, Harry Potter Sweep Genre Awards". Airlock Alpha. October 1, 2006. Retrieved July 7, 2013. 
  22. ^ "Past Saturn Awards: Film Awards: Best Supporting Actress". Saturn Awards. Retrieved July 7, 2013. 
  23. ^ "Past Saturn Awards: Television Awards: Best Supporting Actress". Saturn Awards. Retrieved July 7, 2013. 
  24. ^ "Scream Awards 2008 Nominees". October 15, 2008. Retrieved July 7, 2013. 

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