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July 2, 2008

Michelle Trachtenberg, 5

Michelle Trachtenberg was born on October 11th, 1985, in New York City. She started acting at age 3, after telling her mother Lana, a former actress and puppeteer, that she wanted to be on TV.

Michelle's first job came in a commercial for Wisk: "I was a daughter who had to throw fake cranberry juice on my father," Michelle later explained. In the years that followed, she appeared in over 100 commercials.

Michelle made an early appearance on a 1991 episode of Law & Order. Then, from 1994 to 1996, Michelle had her first major dramatic role, playing an autistic child, Lilly Benton Montgomery, on the long-running soap All My Children. One of her All My Children co-stars was Sarah Michelle Gellar, who would go on to star in Buffy the Vampire Slayer. In the meantime, however, Michelle was cast in the title role in Harriet the Spy (1996), based on the beloved children's book by Louise Fitzhugh.

Following a few more television appearances, including the award-winning children's show Reading Rainbow, Michelle was seen on the big screen again, this time as precocious Penny in the live-action film version of Inspector Gadget (1999). Some could say that karma played a part in her landing the role: It's rumored that Michelle had been considered for the lead in a remake of The Parent Trap, but passed so that her friend, Lindsay Lohan, could have the part. In return, Lohan offered her the role of Penny in Inspector Gadget.

Trachtenberg's career took a darker turn when she moved to Los Angeles to join the cast of the cult favorite, Buffy the Vampire Slayer, in 2000. Michelle played Dawn, the sister of the eponymous Buffy -- it was Sarah Michelle Gellar, her former co-star, who had recommended Michelle for the part. Trachtenberg remained on Buffy until the show came to an end in 2003.

Michelle's next project was the teen comedy Eurotrip (2004), in which, as the bikini-clad Jenny, she put to rest any doubts that she, now 18, had grown up. She also has parts in the upcoming movies Mysterious Skin (2004), Odd Girl Out (2005) and Ice Princess (2005).

In between roles, Trachtenberg does charity work and pursues her hobbies, which include swimming, rollerblading, ice skating, bicycling, and writing short stories.

In spite of her busy work schedule, Michelle still makes education a top priority. While filming, she was always tutored on the set. When not working, she attended regular school, whether it was elementary school in Brooklyn, New York, or high school in Sherman Oaks, California. Her older sister Irene is a recent college graduate, and Michelle plans to follow in her footsteps. Her plan is to go to school, but still do movies in the summer. One thing is certain, though -- she's not keen on math. "What do you use it for?" Michelle jokes. "'I'll have eggs and a Pythagorean theorem, please.'"


Having turned 18 not too long ago, Michelle has passed the jailbait phase, so we can thankfully evaluate her sex appeal without any moral qualms. And the sex appeal is there, all right: anyone who saw her in a skimpy bikini in Eurotrip knows what we're talking about.

Michelle Trachtenberg's sunny look and youthful verve are now gelling with her blooming womanhood, and her sexiness continues to develop as a result. But even though she's already thoughtful and mature, some may still think that Michelle needs a few more years to become a really sexy young woman.


Going from adolescence to adulthood is hard enough, but doing so in the middle of an acting career is even harder. Michelle Trachtenberg has successfully spanned child stardom and is still in demand. Trachtenberg even won two Young Artist Awards along the way, one for her starring role in Harriet the Spy, and another for her work on the television show Meego.

Michelle is still best known for her work as a child star in Harriet the Spy and Inspector Gadget, as well as Buffy the Vampire Slayer, which has given her a cult following, as well as a third Young Artist Award.

With Eurotrip and future projects like Mysterious Skin and Odd Girl Out, Michelle is sure to reach a broader audience and establish herself as an adult.

Birth name: Michelle Christine Trachtenberg
Born: October 11, 1985
Origin: New York City, New York, U.S.A.
Occupation: Actress
Years active: 1991 – present

Michelle Trachtenberg

Michelle Trachtenberg

Michelle Trachtenberg

Michelle Trachtenberg

Michelle Trachtenberg

Michelle Trachtenberg

Michelle Trachtenberg

Michelle Trachtenberg

Michelle Trachtenberg


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