Charisma Carpenter (born July 23, 1970) is an American actress. She is best known for her role as Cordelia Chase in the popular TV series Buffy the Vampire Slayer (1997–1999) and its spin-off series Angel (1999–2004). She has also starred as Kyra on Charmed (2004), Kendall Casablancas on Veronica Mars (2005–2006), Rebecca Sewell on The Lying Game (2012–2013) and Lacy in The Expendables film series (2010–2012).
Carpenter at the Phoenix Comicon in May 2015
(m. 2002; div. 2008)
Carpenter was born in Las Vegas, Nevada, the daughter of Christine, a bird sanctuary worker, and Don Carpenter, a salesman. She has two older brothers, Ken and Troy, and two nieces, Chrissy and Mackenzie. She is of Spanish (from her maternal grandfather), French, and German descent. Carpenter attended Bishop Gorman High School in Las Vegas; she was also a part of a song-and-dance troupe which performed in the Las Vegas area beginning when she was nine.
When she was 15, her family moved to Rosarito, Mexico and then to San Diego where she attended Bonita Vista High School and Chula Vista School of the Creative and Performing Arts. After graduation, Carpenter traveled throughout Europe. Once she returned to San Diego again, she worked as a video store clerk, an aerobics instructor, and in property management. In 1991, she worked as a San Diego Charger cheerleader. In 1992, she moved to Los Angeles.
While swimming in San Diego in 1991, she and two friends were attacked by Henry Hubbard Jr., a former San Diego police officer and serial rapist who attempted to subdue her two male friends at gunpoint. During the struggle, her two friends and Hubbard were all shot, forcing him to flee the scene. Her friends survived. Hubbard was arrested, convicted and sentenced to 56 years in prison for a series of rapes and robberies. Carpenter brought Hubbard's police-issue flashlight from the beach, which he had left at the scene, and the flashlight became a key piece of evidence against him.
Carpenter was discovered by a commercial agent while waiting tables in Los Angeles to save money for her college education. This led to her role on theatrical productions and more than twenty commercials. She made her first television role in 1994 by appearing in an episode of Baywatch. Shortly after that, she landed a starring role on Aaron Spelling's short-lived soap opera Malibu Shores.
In 1996, Carpenter auditioned for the title role in the TV series Buffy the Vampire Slayer but instead was cast as Cordelia Chase, a snobby and popular high school student. After three seasons on Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Carpenter was offered an even larger role as the same character on the spin-off series Angel along with David Boreanaz. She played Cordelia Chase for four seasons on Angel, as well as Jasmine for most of the fourth season. Although her character leaves the series during Angel's fourth season, Carpenter returned for the 100th episode in the fifth and final season because she felt the character's fans deserved closure.
In 2004, Carpenter had a three episode guest appearance on the TV series Charmed as a psychic demon called Kyra and played a recurring role on NBC's Miss Match, appearing in four episodes. She also had a recurring role as Kendall Casablancas in the TV series Veronica Mars for the 2005–2006 season, appearing in 11 episodes. Carpenter guest-starred in the first-season finale of the ABC Family comedy-drama series Greek and reprised her role in two episodes of Season 2. According to TV Guide in September 2007, she was set to join the cast of The Apprentice: Celebrity Edition, but instead chose to do a guest appearance on the show Back to You as well as a 2 episode role on the short-lived series Big Shots. Carpenter also had a guest appearance in an April 2009 episode of CSI: Crime Scene Investigation.
On March 20, 2008, Paley Fest hosted a Buffy the Vampire Slayer reunion. Carpenter attended the event alongside Buffy creator Joss Whedon, producers Marti Noxon and David Greenwalt, and other Buffy alumni including Sarah Michelle Gellar, Nicholas Brendon, James Marsters, Emma Caulfield, Amber Benson, Seth Green and Michelle Trachtenberg.
Carpenter has starred in an assortment of made-for-TV and direct-to-video movies including the sex comedy What Boys Like, the horror film Voodoo Moon, and the romantic comedies See Jane Date and Relative Chaos on ABC Family (the latter of which co-starred fellow Buffy alum Nicholas Brendon). She also appeared in the mysteries Flirting with Danger and Cheaters' Club on Lifetime and the Syfy movie House of Bones broadcast in 2010, around the same time as her guest spot in Legend of the Seeker.
Also in 2009, Carpenter starred in production company Red Sparrow's first film, Psychosis, which was released in early 2011. In August 2010, she had a supporting role in Sylvester Stallone's The Expendables. After the success of The Expendables, Carpenter was cast in Human Factor and in the indie thriller Crash Site. She appeared in an episode of the seventh season of Supernatural alongside Buffy co-star James Marsters. In 2012, Carpenter landed a recurring role as Rebecca Sewell in the first season of ABC Family's drama The Lying Game. She was upgraded to a series regular for the second season. Later, Carpenter reprised her role as Lacy in The Expendables 2.
On August 28, 2013, Surviving Evil (original working title: I Survived Evil) debuted on Investigation Discovery, with Carpenter as host; in the premiere episode, Carpenter herself was featured as a crime survivor, revisiting the horrific attack she and two friends suffered at the hands of violent serial rapist and police officer Henry Hubbard, Jr. on San Diego's Torrey Pines State Beach in 1991. She starred in the 2015 erotic film Bound, opposite Morgan Obenreder, which received a lukewarm reception. She later led the television film Mommy's Secret.
In the June 2004 issue of Playboy magazine, Carpenter appeared on the cover and in a ten-page nude layout. When asked by People magazine in 2005 about her nude pictorial and whether she would ever pose for Playboy again, she replied, "I don't know. I did Playboy for a very specific reason. Not only was it a good financial move, but it was about the place I was at in my life. I had just had my son and I'd gained 50 pounds during pregnancy. I wanted to get back to my old self. I wanted to feel desirable and sexy. So I thought, 'What if I went full throttle?'""
Carpenter married Damian Hardy on October 5, 2002, in Las Vegas. On March 24, 2003, Carpenter gave birth to a son named Donovan Charles Hardy. In late 2007, the couple separated and their divorce was finalized in July 2008.
|1995||Josh Kirby... Time Warrior: Chapter 1, Planet of the Dino-Knights||Beth Sullivan||Direct-to-video film|
|1995||Josh Kirby... Time Warrior: Chapter 2, the Human Pets||Beth Sullivan||Direct-to-video film|
|1996||Josh Kirby... Time Warrior: Chapter 6, Last Battle for the Universe||Beth Sullivan||Direct-to-video film|
|2003||What Boys Like||Kim|
|2012||The Expendables 2||Lacy|
|2015||A Horse Tail||Samantha|
|2016||Girl in Woods||Momma|
|2018||Mail Order Monster||Sydney Hart|
|2018||The Griddle House||Mae-Bee|
|2019||Pegasus: Pony with a Broken Wing||Melanie Killian|
|1994||Baywatch||Wendie Sanders||Episode: "Air Buchannon"|
|1995||Boy Meets World||Caterer||Episode: "Train of Fools"|
|1996||Malibu Shores||Ashley Green||Main role|
|1997–1999||Buffy the Vampire Slayer||Cordelia Chase||Main role (seasons 1–3)|
|1999–2004||Angel||Cordelia Chase||Main role|
|1999||Hey Arnold!||Simone||Voice role; episode: "Dinner for Four/Phoebe Skips"|
|2001||Strange Frequency||Jules||Episode: "Don't Fear the Reaper"|
|2003||See Jane Date||Jane Grant||Television film|
|2003||Miss Match||Serena Lockner||4 episodes|
|2004||The Division||Emma Campbell||Episode: "Now I Lay Me Down to Sleep"|
|2004||Like Cats and Dogs||Sarah Hayes||Television film|
|2004||LAX||Julie Random||Episode: "Thanksgiving"|
|2004||Charmed||Kyra||Episodes: "Cheaper by the Coven", "Styx Feet Under", "Witchness Protection"|
|2005–2006||Veronica Mars||Kendall Casablancas||Recurring role, 11 episodes|
|2006||Flirting with Danger||Laura Clifford||Television film|
|2006||Voodoo Moon||Heather||Television film|
|2006||Cheaters' Club||Linda Stern||Television film|
|2006||Relative Chaos||Katherine||Television film|
|2007||Back to You||Brooke Schimmel||Episode: "Gracie's Bully"|
|2007–2009||Greek||Tegan Walker||Episodes: "Black & White and Read All Over", "Brothers & Sisters", "See You Next Time, Sisters!"|
|2008||Big Shots||Janelle Johns||Episodes: "The Better Man", "Who's the Boss?"|
|2009||CSI: Crime Scene Investigation||Mink||Episode: "The Descent of Man"|
|2009||Legend of the Seeker||Triana||Episode: "Marked"|
|2009||House of Bones||Heather Burton||Television film|
|2011||Crash Site: A Family in Danger||Rita Saunders||Television film|
|2011||Greek||Tegan Walker||Episode: "Fools Rush In"|
|2011||Deadly Sibling Rivalry||Janna / Callie||Television film|
|2011||Burn Notice||Nicki Skyler||Episode: "Better Halves"|
|2011||A Trusted Man||Sonia Paston||Television film|
|2011||Supernatural||Maggie Stark||Episode: "Shut Up, Dr. Phil"|
|2012||Haunted High||Persia the Librarian||Television film|
|2012–2013||The Lying Game||Rebecca Sewell||Main role|
|2013–2016||Surviving Evil||Herself||Series host; also episode: "Terror Beach"|
|2013||Blue Bloods||Maryanne||Episode: "Growing Boys"|
|2014||Sons of Anarchy||Carol||Episode: "Red Rose"|
|2015||A Horse Tail||Samantha Harrison||Television film; also known as A Christmas Promise|
|2015||Scream Queens||Mrs. Herfmann||Episode: "Chainsaw"|
|2016||Chicago P.D.||Brianna Logan||Episode: "A Night Owl"|
|2016||Lucifer||Jamie Lee Adrienne||Episode: "Weaponizer"|
|2016||Mommy's Secret||Anne Harding||Television film|
|2017||Criminal Minds: Beyond Borders||Miss Gates||Episode: "Abominable"|
|2019||9-1-1||Maude||Episode: This Life We Choose|
- Buffy the Vampire Slayer (2002); as Cordelia Chase (voice role)
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