With chameleon-like abilities to transform from a bubbly blonde to a tortured brunette, Julie Benz captivates any room she walks into with her radiant beauty and infectious energy. In 2006, she won a Golden Satellite Award for Best Supporting TV Actress for her role as beloved ‘Rita Bennett’ on Showtime’s award-winning series “Dexter.” After four years on the show, Benz made headlines around the globe when her character met a shocking and tragic death.
This fall, Benz will recur on the CBS medical drama “A Gifted Man,” opposite Patrick Wilson. In addition, she will star in the TNT movie “Ricochet,” opposite John Corbett, due out November 30th. Based on the book by Sandra Brown, this is the second entry of the network’s new Tuesday Night Mystery movie franchise.
On the big screen, Benz can be seen in “Answers to Nothing,” with Dane Cook. This film will be released by Roadside Attractions on December 2, 2011.
Benz most recently starred in the ABC series “No Ordinary Family,” opposite Michael Chiklis. The series, which was nominated for a People’s Choice Awards, centered on a seemingly normal American family who one day finds that they have developed extraordinary abilities.
In 2010, Benz starred on ABC’s smash hit “Desperate Housewives” for a multi-episode arc as ‘Robin,’ a stripper with a heart of gold and a master’s degree in education. Throughout her career, Benz has won the hearts of many devoted fans starring in an array of cult classics including “Buffy the Vampire Slayer,” “Angel,” and “Roswell,” as well as the Steven Spielberg produced alien abduction miniseries “Taken.” In addition, she has guest starred on many hit TV shows, among them “Supernatural,” “CSI” and “Law and Order”.
Benz recently appeared in BOONDOCK SAINTS II: ALL SAINTS DAY, reuniting herself with the original cast, returning as ‘Eunice Bloom,’ the only female lead in the sequel to BOONDOCK SAINTS.
In 2008, she starred opposite Sylvester Stallone in the action film, RAMBO IV, and darkened her hair to play the vengeful blue-collar wife of a murdered cop in THE PUNISHER: WAR ZONE. That same year, she met an untimely demise as one of ‘Jigsaw’s’ victims in “SAW 5,” the most recent installment of the hit horror franchise.
Benz also had a great turn with Jack Nicholson in AS GOOD AS IT GETS and starred with Rose McGowan, Pam Grier, Judy Greer and Rebecca Gayheart in JAWBREAKER, the first of many cult-hits that would soon follow.
Born and raised in Pennsylvania to a general vascular surgeon and a homemaker, Julie is the youngest of three children, all of whom are accomplished ice skaters. Born a natural performer, Benz competed in the 1988 U.S. Championships in junior ice dancing with her partner David Schilling, coming in 13th. When Julie was 14, she suffered a crippling stress fracture, which led her to the stage. She earned a whirlwind of attention starring in numerous community theater productions.
Benz’s first major role came at 16 when she was cast in the Black Cat episode of the Dario Argento and George A. Romero horror film, TWO EVIL EYES, where she shared a notable scene with Harvey Keitel. Next came a recurring role on the first ever ABC and Nick at Night collaborative TV series, “Hi Honey, I’m Home,” about a 1950’s sitcom family put in a sitcom family relocation program.
Benz took a break from her budding career to attend New York University, where she received a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Acting. While attending, she graduated in three years with honors and studied abroad in Moscow, enriching her appreciation for the Stanislavski acting method.
With a flourishing career as diverse as she is, Benz resides in Los Angeles with her Maltese/Poodle mix Bamboo and her Havanese Sugar. She enjoys running and weight training. She’s also involved with the charity “U.S. Campaign for Burma” thanks to her life-changing experiences shooting RAMBO.