Saturday, October 12, 2013

Minka Kelly |

Minka Dumont Kelly was born Minka Dumont Dufay on June 24, 1980, in Los Angeles, California, the only child of former Aerosmith guitarist Rick Dufay and former Las Vegas showgirl Maureen Kelly. Kelly boasts family roots in acting, including grandfather Richard Ney, who appeared in films such as The Fan (1949) and The Lovable Cheat (1949), and grandmother Greer Garson, who won an Academy Award for her performance in the 1942 film Mrs. Miniver (in which Ney, her husband, also appeared).

Kelly’s mother made up her unique name, though kids used it as fodder for teasing, calling her “Minka Smelly.” Her mother raised her alone after Kelly’s father abandoned the family. Kelly attended Valley High School in Albuquerque, New Mexico, and during this time, she reconciled with her estranged father. She followed him to Los Angeles a couple years later, at age 19. While there, she briefly attended school to become a surgical technician and took an acting class, subsequently finding her calling.

Minka Kelly began landing small roles on TV shows when she was in her early 20s, including Nickelodeon’s Drake & Josh (2004), NBC’s American Dreams (2005) and The WB’s What I Like About You (2005). Then, in 2006, Kelly landed her breakout role as a high school cheerleader on the acclaimed football drama Friday Night Lights (2006-09), which raised her visibility in the eye of the public as well as the acting community. Impressed with her performance, the creator of the series, Peter Berg, offered Kelly a role in his feature film, The Kingdom (2007), alongside Jamie Foxx, Chris Cooper and Jennifer Garner. Two years later, in 2009, she played a small role in the romantic film 500 Days of Summer, starring Joseph Gordon-Levitt and Zooey Deschanel.

In the meantime, Minka Kelly’s model looks have not gone unnoticed by men’s magazines. She was named on Maxim magazine’s annual “Hot 100″ list in both 2007 and 2008, and was Esquire magazine’s “Sexiest Woman Alive” in 2010. After her role on Friday Night Lights ended, Kelly appeared on the NBC series Parenthood (2010-11), on an adapted version of the ABC show Charlie’s Angels (2011) and in the film thriller The Roommate (2011). The actress later earned a part in the 2013 film The Butler alongside Terrence Howard, James Marsden, Melissa Leo, Oprah Winfrey and Forest Whitaker, among several other stars of the big screen. Kelly has clearly found her path to success.



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