Eliza Dushku

Eliza Dushku

Active - 1993 - 2018  |   Born - Dec 30, 1980 in Boston, Massachusetts, United States  |   Genres - Drama, Action, Adventure

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Biography by AllMovie

Best known to TV audiences for her role as Faith on the WB Network's Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Eliza Dushku also has a number of films to her name. Dushku, who made her film debut starring opposite Juliette Lewis in the 1992 period drama That Night, began acting professionally when she was barely in her teens.

Born of Albanian-Danish descent in Boston, MA, on December 30, 1980, Dushku grew up the youngest sibling of three older brothers. Following her debut in That Night, which cast her as a young girl who becomes infatuated with the rebellious teen who lives across the street, the young actress did supporting work in This Boy's Life (1993) and played the daughter of Arnold Schwarzenegger and Jamie Lee Curtis in True Lies (1994). In 1998 Dushku got one of her biggest breaks to date when she was cast as troubled slayer Faith on Buffy. Although Faith was only meant to appear in a handful of episodes, the show's creators liked Dushku enough to make Faith a recurring character, and also featured her on Angel, Buffy's spin-off.

Dushku had perhaps her most successful big-screen role to date in Bring It On (2000), a high-school comedy that cast her as Kirsten Dunst's reluctant but tough fellow cheerleader. The film was one of the summer's biggest money-earners, and Dushku, unsurprisingly, was soon busy with a number of new film projects. Included amongst them were Soul Survivor (2001), a teen horror movie that also featured Casey Affleck and Wes Bentley, and The New Guy (2001), another comedy about the horrors of high school life.

She starred in the TV series Tru Calling beginning in 2003, and continued to try and make headway into a movie career with projects like Wrong Turn, Nobel Son, and Bottle Shock.

In 2009 she reteamed with Joss Whedon for the TV series Dollhouse, but it failed to build the same devoted audience as Buffy.

Once Dollhouse ended, Dushku worked extensively doing voice-over work in animated series (including the role of Catwoman in Batman: Year One) and guest starring on shows like White Collar and The Big Bang Theory.

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  • While accompanying her actor brother to an audition when she was 10, she tripped on a flight of stairs and sustained a bloody nose; her dramatic reaction to the injury caught a casting agent's eye.
  • Beat out thousands of other hopefuls in a nationwide search to win a lead role in 1992 drama That Night; it was her film debut.
  • Her mother briefly put a stop to her acting career—which included roles in True Lies and This Boy's Life—because she didn't like the way her teenage daughter was behaving.
  • After finishing high school, returned to acting with the horror-drama series Buffy the Vampire Slayer, on which she played misfit slayer Faith. 
  • In honor of her father's Albanian heritage, she has a tattoo on her back of the double-headed eagle from the country's flag.