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Erica Leerhsen Biography
- Erica Leerhsen was born February 14, 1976 in New York City, New York, where she was raised along with her two sisters, Nora and Debbie, by their father Charles Leerhsen, a long time editor of celebrity publication US Magazine (which became US Weekly in March 2000). She attended St. Augustines School and Ossining High School (where she sang in the choir) and graduated from Boston University College of Fine Arts in 1998. She earned B.F.A (summa cum laude) in acting the same year. After graduation, Ericas first role was as Sarah in a 1999 short film Junior Creative (2000), which received several good reviews. During its production, she got the lead role of a practicing witch in the controversial Horror sequel Book of Shadows: Blair Witch 2 (2000), though she originally auditioned for the part that eventually went to Kim Director. She went to the audition with short blond hair, and, as director Joe Berlinger described it, "completely Gothed-out", but ultimately was given the role of Erica. It was Berlinger who decided to make her character a long-haired redhead. Following Blair Witch 2, she appeared in the third season of "The Sopranos" (1999), where she played a lesbian tennis instructor who falls for Drea de Matteo s character. She would also have part in the well-acclaimed TV show "The Guardian" (2001), where her character got written out after several episodes. In the same year she had a supporting role in Woody Allen s Hollywood Ending (2002). Erica was honored with the title "Arrow in the Heads Mistress of the Year 2003". That year saw the release of the very successful Horror remake The Texas Chainsaw Massacre (2003), in which she had a prominent role as one of the doomed teens. During her screen test for the film, her screams were so loud that people on other floors of the building called the police to report that a young woman was being attacked. The same year she returned to acting on television with a guest appearance on "Alias" (2001), and then reunited with Allen in his new film, Anything Else (2003). In 2004, Erica starred in an independent Thriller The Warrior Class (2007) , where she played Anson Mount s love interest. Months later, she started acting in theaters, and appeared in Allens A Second Hand Memory, which attracted attention from a wider adult audience and received good reviews. A year later, Erica starred in an independently-made Toronto Film Festival-smash Little Athens (2005), had a guest appearance on Jennifer Love Hewitt s television show "Ghost Whisperer" (2005), and starred in Mozart and the Whale (2005). The year 2006 opened with Ericas guest appearance on "CSI: Miami" (2002). Shortly after she was landed a starring role in the well-acclaimed sequel Wrong Turn 2: Dead End (2007) , where she did a lot of her own stunts. Before filming Wrong Turn 2, she shot a Horror/Thriller Living Hell (2008) , and starred in an independent Thriller film Lonely Joe (2009), as well as a lead in a Horror film Slaughter (2009/I), which is set to film in late 2008. She currently lives in Los Angeles.
Erica Leerhsen Filmography
- (2014) Mischief Night as Kim
- (2012) Phobia as Dr. Lesley Parker
- (2012) The Butterfly Room as Claudia
- (2012) The Message as Anna
- (2011) Person of Interest as Amy
- (2010) First Dates as Clara
- (2009) Lonely Joe as Michele Connelly
- (2009) Slaughter as Jenny Young
- (2009) The Fury as Angel
- (2009) The Good Wife as Dana Briglio
- (2009) The Help as
- (2008) Living Hell as Carrie Freeborn
- (2007) More Blood, More Guts: The Making of 'Wrong Turn 2' as Herself/Nina Papas
- (2007) The Warrior Class as Annie Sullivan
- (2007) Wrong Turn 2: Dead End as Nina Papas
- (2005) Ghost Whisperer as Hope Paulson
- (2005) Little Athens as Heather
- (2005) Mozart and the Whale as Bronwin
- (2004) Chainsaw Redux: Making a Massacre as Herself/Pepper Harrington
- (2003) Anything Else as Connie
- (2003) The Texas Chainsaw Massacre as Pepper
- (2002) CSI: Miami as Brenda Sanders
- (2002) Hollywood Ending as Actress
- (2001) Alias as Kaya
- (2001) The Guardian as Amanda Bowles
- (2000) Book of Shadows: Blair Witch 2 as Erica Geerson
- (2000) Junior Creative as Sarah
- (1999) The Sopranos as Birgit Olafsdottir
Erica Leerhsen Trivia and Facts
- Attended St. Augustines School in Ossining, NY.
- Graduated from Boston Universitys School of Fine Arts, 1998.
- Attended Ossining High School in Ossining, New York.
- Sang in choir in high school.
- Her father, Charles Leerhsen, was the longtime editor of celebrity publication US Magazine (which became US Weekly in March 2000), until he quit in 2002 after never being promoted to editor-in-chief.
- Enjoys running, playing Basketball and Yoga.
- Found out that she had won the role of "Erica" in Book of Shadows: Blair Witch 2 (2000) on her birthday (which is coincidentally Valentines Day).
- Originally auditioned for Kim Director s role in Book of Shadows: Blair Witch 2 (2000). She went to the audition with short blonde hair and as director Joe Berlinger described "completely Gothed-out", but ultimately was given the supporting role of "Erica". It was Joe Berlinger who decided to make her a longhaired redhead.
- Was honored with the title "Arrow in the Heads Mistress of the Year 2003".
- During her screen test for The Texas Chainsaw Massacre (2003) , her screams were so loud that people on other floors of the building called the police to report that a woman was being attacked.
- Earned B.F.A (summa cum laude) in acting in 1998.
- Born on Valentines day.
- Was voted #96 in 2001s Maxim Hot 100.
- Is good friends with actress Emily Deschanel. They both went to the same college.
- Did a lot of her own stunts in Wrong Turn 2: Dead End (2007) .
- Was nearly hit by a train while filming Lonely Joe (2009). Her scene was shot with her only 12 inches from the side of the train as it passed by at 30 miles per hour. Unshaken, she insisted on shooting the scene again.
- Has two younger sisters, Nora and Debbie.
- Her former husband is a professional cyclist.
- Daughter of Charles Leerhsen and Barbara Leerhsen.
Erica Leerhsen Quotes
- "Its weird because I always seem to be dead. Im gonna have to change that because I wouldnt want to be typecast." Erica commenting on the fates of the characters she plays.
Erica Leerhsen Photoshoots
- "Ingenue Magazine" (USA), October 2003, Vol. 1, Iss. 1, pg. 106-111, by: Andy Jones, "Erica Leerhsen"
- "Maxim" (USA), May 2001, Iss. special, pg. 3, by: Craig De Christo, "Maxim Hot 100 2001: #96"
- "Playboy" (USA), December 2000, Vol. 47, Iss. 12, pg. 122, by: n/a, "Blair Witch Bombshell"
- "Maxim" (USA), November 2000, Iss. 35, pg. 48, by: Craig DeChristo, "Witchy Woman"
Erica Leerhsen Other Works
- Played "Anna" in elementary school production of "The King and I."