As one of the stars of the 1999 summer smash American Pie, Tara Reid experienced an almost meteoric ascent into overnight celebrity. Possessing the kind of buxom blond good looks that ensure future employment and Internet shrines, Reid was best-known for her role as The Big Lebowski's trophy wife, Bunny Lebowski, before being cast in Pie.
A native of Wyckoff, New Jersey, where she was born on November 8, 1975, Reid broke into acting at the age of six, when she was a contestant on the CBS children's game show, Child's Play. She went on to study at New York's Professional Children's School, where her classmates included Sarah Michelle Gellar, Jerry O'Connell, and Macaulay Culkin. After appearing in commercials for such products as Jell-O and Crayola, Reid landed a role on the sitcom Saved by the Bell: the New Class in 1994 and then had a recurring role on the daytime drama Days of Our Lives the following year.
She got her first substantial film roles in 1998, appearing in the Ed Wood-scripted I Woke Up Early the Day I Died, The Big Lebowski, the independent film Around the Fire, and Urban Legend, the latest in a long line of teen slasher flicks. Reid won some amount of recognition for the last film, which featured a Who's-Who line-up of post-pubescent stars and cast her as a campus radio talk show host. The following year, Reid earned a form of screen immortality with her role as the girlfriend of one of four high school guys who make a pact to lose their virginity in American Pie. She also appeared in more low-profile roles in the independent film Girl and in Cruel Intentions, which featured her as one of Ryan Phillippe's more unfortunate conquests. Later that year, she had a starring role in Body Shots, playing one of a group of twenty-something friends on the prowl for love and/or sex in Los Angeles.
Edging ever closer to leading woman status, Reid's star continued to rise as the vibrant young actress took on roles in such high profile efforts as Dr. T and the Women (2000), Josie and the Pussycats (2001) and, of course, American Pie 2 (also 2001). After taming the savage party animal in the lowbrow comedy Van Wilder, Reid gave screen heartthrob Ashton Kutcher the runaround in the romantic comedy My Boss's Daughter.
Sadly, Reid's star dwindled throughout the 2000s with a series of critical and commerical flops that failed in comparison to her highly publicized personal troubles. Reid was able to find some success when she rejoined the original cast of American Pie for American Reunion in 2012.