Robyn Elaine Lively Johnson (born February 7, 1972)[1] is an American actress. She is known for her roles in the 1989 films Teen Witch and The Karate Kid Part III. She is also known for her roles in the TV shows Doogie Howser, M.D., Twin Peaks, Savannah, and Saving Grace.

Robyn Lively
Lively in November 2014
Robyn Elaine Lively

(1972-02-07) February 7, 1972 (age 52)
Years active1977–present
Height173 cm (5 ft 8 in)
(m. 1999)
RelativesJason Lively (brother)
Lori Lively (sister)
Eric Lively (half-brother)
Blake Lively (half-sister)
Ernie Lively (step-father)

Early life


Robyn Lively's mother, adoptive father, and all four siblings are or have been in the entertainment industry. She is the daughter of talent manager Elaine Lively (née McAlpin) and her first husband Ronald Otis (Ronnie) Lively.[2] Her siblings are sister Lori and brother Jason, and her half-siblings are Eric and Blake.[citation needed]



Lively began her career as a child actress: at age six, she made her screen debut in the television movie Summer of My German Soldier in 1978. Throughout the 1980s, she appeared in several television shows including Silver Spoons, Punky Brewster and Starman. She appeared in the feature films Wildcats, The Karate Kid Part III, Teen Witch, and Not Quite Human.

After she was cast as Jessica Andrews in The Karate Kid Part III in 1989, producers were forced to modify her role of protagonist Daniel LaRusso's new love interest because Lively was only 16 at the time of filming and still a minor while Ralph Macchio was 27 (although his character Daniel is 17). This situation caused romantic scenes between Jessica and Daniel to be rewritten so that the pair only developed a close friendship.[3] In 2022, Lively reprised her role as Jessica Andrews in the fifth season of Cobra Kai, where it is revealed that Daniel is married to her cousin, Amanda.

At 19, Lively was nominated for an Emmy Award for her performance as an insecure teen in the 1991 ABC Afterschool Special episode "Less Than Perfect Daughter".[citation needed] In the 1990s she had recurring roles on Twin Peaks, Doogie Howser, M.D., and Chicago Hope. In 1996 she appeared as Lane McKenzie, one of three lead characters in the short-lived WB drama Savannah.

In 2003 Lively played NCIS Special Agent Vivian Blackadder in the JAG episodes "Ice Queen" and "Meltdown" (the backdoor pilot for NCIS).

In 2008 Lively appeared alongside Holly Hunter in an episode of Saving Grace and also had a role in Cold Case. In 2010 she appeared alongside Twin Peaks costars in the Dual Spires episode of Psych and starred in the TV series Gortimer Gibbon's Life On Normal Street for Amazon Studios as Gortimer Gibbon's mother, Claire.

In 2020, Lively starred in the thriller Through the Glass Darkly which premiered at the Frameline Film Festival on September 19, 2020.

Personal life

Lively and her husband Bart Johnson in 2011

Lively married fellow actor Bart Johnson on September 25, 1999.[4] The couple have three children: Baylen, Kate, and Wyatt Blake. The family resides in the Hollywood Hills.[citation needed]


Year Title Role Notes
1978 Summer of My German Soldier Sharon Bergen TV movie
1983 Boone Amanda Episode: "Words and Music"
1984 Knight Rider Becky Phillips Episode: "Race for Life"
1984 Punky Brewster Lisa Episodes: "Punky Finds a Home: Part 2", "… Part 3"
1985 The New Leave It to Beaver Tracy 2 episodes
1986 The Best of Times Jaki Feature film
1986 Wildcats Alice Needham Feature film
1986 Fuzzbucket Stevie Gerber TV movie
1986 Silver Spoons Tammy Episode: "The Beach House"
1986 Starman Beth McGovern Episode: "Like Father, Like Son"
1986 Amazing Stories Kate Episode: "Welcome to My Nightmare"
1987 Not Quite Human Becky Carson TV movie
1988 The Dictator Reggie Domino Episode: "1.1"
1988 Buckeye and Blue Buckeye Thatcher Feature film
1989 Teen Witch Louise Miller Feature film (as Robyn Elaine Lively)
1989 21 Jump Street Helen Ackerly Episode: "Mike's P.O.V."
1989 The Karate Kid Part III Jessica Andrews Feature film
1989 Not Quite Human II Becky Carson TV movie
1990 Teen Angel Returns Cindy Main cast (as Robyn Elaine Lively)
1990 Parker Lewis Can't Lose Tracy Lee Summers Episode: "G.A.G. Dance"
1990–91 Twin Peaks Lana Budding Milford Recurring role (season 2)
1991 ABC Afterschool Special Melissa Harmon Episode: "The Less Than Perfect Daughter"
1991 Crazy from the Heart Franny Peyton TV movie
1991–93 Doogie Howser, M.D. Nurse Michele Farber Recurring role (seasons 2, 4)
1992 In Sickness and in Health Holly TV movie
1992 Freshman Dorm Molly Flynn Main cast
1993 Quantum Leap Annie Wilkins Episode: "Dr. Ruth"
1993 The Young Indiana Jones Chronicles Nancy Stratemeyer Episode: "Princeton, February 1916"
1993 Precious Victims Wendy McBride TV movie
1993 Against the Grain Jill Clemons Recurring role
1994–95 Chicago Hope Nurse Maggie Atkisson 8 episodes
1995 Dream a Little Dream 2 Rachel Holfield Direct-to-video
1996 The Adventures of Young Indiana Jones: Travels with Father Nancy Stratemeyer TV movie
1996–97 Savannah Lane McKenzie Collins Main cast
1997 Early Edition Jenny Sloane Episode: "Jenny Sloane"
1997–98 George and Leo Casey Wagonman #2 Main cast replacement
1998 Love Boat: The Next Wave Penelope Michaels Episode: "How Long Has This Been Going On?"
1999 The Adventures of Young Indiana Jones: Spring Break Adventure Nancy Stratemeyer TV movie (episode ""Princeton, February 1916" with new connecting segment)
1999 The X-Files Angela Schiff Episode: "Field Trip"
1999 Sam Churchill: Search for a Homeless Man Laura Anders TV movie
2000 Chicken Soup for the Soul Sophie Calloway Episode: "Thinking of You/Mama's Soup Pot/The Letter"
2000 Santa Who? Claire Dreyer TV movie
2002 The District Jodi Episode: "The Greenhouse Effect"
2002 Another Pretty Face Andrea 'Andie' Chase TV movie
2003 Crossing Jordan Connie Episode: "Pandora's Trunk: Part 1"
2003 JAG NCIS Special Agent Vivian Blackadder 2-part episode: "Ice Queen" / "Meltdown"
2003 The Drew Carey Show Erin Episode: "A Speedy Recovery"
2003 American Dreams Sister Grace 2 episodes
2004 Strong Medicine Connie Episode: "Positive Results"
2005 Mystery Woman: Snapshot Madeline TV movie
2005 CSI: NY Sarah Myers Episode: "Manhattan Manhunt"
2006 Simon Says Leanne Feature film
2006 Nip/Tuck Miss Hudson Episode: "Willy Ward"
2007 7-10 Split Diane Burke Feature film
2007 Johnny Kapahala: Back on Board Carla TV movie
2007 A Dance for Bethany Abbey Feature film
2007 Cold Case Miriam Gunden Episode: "Running Around"
2007 Saving Grace Darlene Dewey Episode: "And You Wonder Why I Lie"
2008 The Adventures of Young Indiana Jones: Winds of Change Nancy Stratemeyer Direct-to-video (uncredited)
2008 Murder.Com Lauren Direct-to-video
2008 Criminal Minds Abby Corbin Episode: "Paradise"
2008 30 Rock Kelsey Winthrop Episode: "Reunion"
2008 Saving Grace Darlene Dewey 2 episodes
2009 Alligator Point Gina TV movie
2010 The Mentalist Sadie Harrington Episode: "Red All Over"
2010 Letters to God Maddy Doherty Feature film
2010 Psych Michelle Barker Episode: "Dual Spires"
2011 Who Is Simon Miller? Meredith Miller TV movie
2011 Sironia Barbara Feature film
2011 Brother's Keeper Macaire Leemaster Feature film
2012 Longmire Connie Mallery Episode: "A Good Death is Hard to Find"
2013 It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia Kerry Episode: "Gun Fever Too: Still Hot"
2014 Ouija Mrs. Galardi Feature film
2014 Gortimer Gibbon's Life on Normal Street Claire Gibbon Main cast
2015 Chasing Ghosts Lydia Simmons Direct-to-video
2017 Small Town Crime Deborah Nevile Feature film
2018 Hawaii Five-0 Helen Meech Episode: "O na hoku o ka lani wale no kai 'ike i kahi o Pae"
2018 Code Black Pamela Kessler Episode: "Home Stays Home"
2019 The Good Doctor Diane Monroe Episode: "Risk and Reward”
2019 Dwight in Shining Armor Lady Ermingarde Episode: "Dragon"
2019 Into the Dark Val Episode: "They Come Knocking"
2019 The Affair Lauren Episode: #5.2
2019 Light as a Feather Deb Brady Recurring role (season 2)
2020 The Rookie Mrs. Dayton Episode: "Now and Then"
2020 All Rise Nancy Frost 2 episodes
2020 Through the Glass Darkly Charlie Feature film
2021 9-1-1: Lone Star Marlene Harris Recurring role (season 3)
2022 Cobra Kai Jessica Andrews Episode: "Extreme Measures"
2023 National Anthem Fiona
2023 Best Clowns Donna
2024 Someone Like You Dr. Jenny Allen
Video games
Year Title Role
1993 Return to Zork Fairy

Award nominations

Year Award Result Category Film or series
1984 Young Artist Award Nominated Best Young Actress in a New Television Series Boone
1985 Best Young Actress - Guest in a Television Series Knight Rider
1987 Exceptional Performance by a Young Actress Starring in a Feature Film - Comedy or Drama Wildcats
1989 Best Young Actress Starring in a Motion Picture Teen Witch
1991 Daytime Emmy Awards Outstanding Performer in a Children's Special ABC Afterschool Special (Episode: "The Less Than Perfect Daughter")


  1. ^ "Lively, Robyn 1972–". Cengage. Retrieved June 2, 2022.
  2. ^ McAlpin Russell, Doris (1990). McAlpin(e) genealogies, 1730-1990: Alexander McAlpin of South Carolina and Georgia and his descendants, plus other McAlpin(e) families of North America. Gateway Press. Ronald Otis Lively.
  3. ^ Below the Belt Show (October 25, 2017). "Below the Belt Show: Interview: Actress Robyn Lively from Teen Witch and Karate Kid III (10/25/17)". Player FM. Retrieved October 21, 2019.
  4. ^ "Happy Anniversary (Instagram)". September 26, 2017. Retrieved January 7, 2024.