Tuesday, April 13, 2010
You want sexy? Two words: Poppy Montgomery. While she's not the leggiest actress -- standing at an average 5'5" -- her looks, curves and freewheeling attitude make up for it. She has a sultry look about her that would make a man chase a dingo across a thousand miles of Australian outback just to feast his eyes on her.
Poppy has tantalizing red lips, a mane of wild, blonde hair that symbolizes her untamed nature, cleavage we'd want to get lost in... and oh yes, a killer sexual pout that melts the belt buckle on our jeans.
While she has appeared in many projects, nobody is going to confuse Poppy Montgomery with the likes of fellow Aussie actresses Nicole Kidman and Naomi Watts. Many people still don't know who Poppy Montgomery is -- and that is something she'll have to address if she wants to climb her way to Hollywood's A-list.
To be fair, she is off to a good start. Despite some failed TV shows like Relativity and The Beat, Poppy struck gold when she was cast as Samantha Spade in the CBS hit show Without a Trace.
While the show is still enjoying high ratings, and has done so since its 2002 debut, Poppy has kept busy with roles in small-time films such as 50 Ways to Leave Your Lover (2004) and Between, which was screened at 2005's Sundance Film Festival. Besides Without a Trace, Poppy is best known for portraying screen legend Marilyn Monroe in the 2001 made-for-TV biopic, Blonde.
Born on June 19, 1972, in Sydney, Australia, Poppy's full name is Poppy Petal Emma Elizabeth Deveraux Donahue. Her mother, Nicola, is in marketing and her father, Phil, is a restaurateur.
Her parents divorced when she was young, and each eventually remarried; as a result, Poppy has eight siblings, four of which are also named after flowers; Rosie Thorn, Lily Belle, Daisy Yellow, and Marigold Sun (the fifth one is named Tara). Her brothers are named Jethro Tull (after the rock musician), Sean and Patrick.
Due to her unusual name, Poppy was mercilessly taunted by her schoolmates as a child. She was called names like "Floppy Poppy," "Sloppy Poppy" and "Poopy Poppy," and she was miserable because of it.
However, Poppy kept herself busy idolizing Marilyn Monroe, and reading any book she could get her hands on about the legendary American icon. She decided to leave school when she was 14 and worked at one of her father's restaurants until he fired her for being a bad waitress.
Poppy left Australia at 16 and traveled for two years. At 18, she ended up in the U.S. after chasing an American exchange student she developed a crush on. That relationship petered out and Poppy ended up traveling to Los Angeles from Florida by Greyhound bus to seek her fortune as an actress. On the way, she decided to adopt her mother's maiden name, "Montgomery."
Once in L.A., Poppy purchased the book, How to Make it in Hollywood. Inspired by the book and its references, she spent her days driving to auditions, perfecting her American accent and sending headshots of herself to Julia Roberts' former manager, Bob McGowan.
Though reluctant to give her a break at first, McGowan eventually referred Poppy to some agent friends. This led to her first acting job in a commercial for Carl's Jr., but it never aired.
Yet this was the break she needed. She landed a bit role in the Denzel Washington film, Devil in a Blue Dress (1995), and then got TV guest spots on both Party of Five and NYPD Blue in 1996.
Between these appearances, Poppy worked at the Gap. Another break came in 1996, when she was cast as a regular on the TV series Relativity. Though it was canceled the following year, Poppy was on her way.
She went on to appear in her first big screen role in Dead Man on Campus (1998), with Tom Everett Scott and Mark-Paul Gosselaar. The next year she appeared alongside Eddie Murphy in Life (1999), followed by This Space Between Us (2000).
Poppy landed her ultimate role in 2001, playing Marilyn Monroe in the TV miniseries, Blonde. Poppy quit exercising so she could gain 12 pounds to portray her role model.
Then in 2002, she was cast as one of the leads in the CBS hit series Without a Trace. Because of her impressive performance in Blonde, Poppy didn't even have to audition for the role.
Recent projects include the 2004 made-for-TV movie Raising Waylon, a role in the 2004 film 50 Ways to Leave Your Lover (with Tori Spelling) and the 2005 feature Between, which premiered at the Sundance Film Festival. Poppy is currently seeing Adam Kaufman, whom she met on the set of Between. She has his initials tattooed on her wrist.
Aside from acting, Poppy enjoys playing board games, horseback riding, photography, snowboarding, traveling, and practicing yoga.
"To me, they sound like porno star names. I'm like, 'Good God, Poppy Petal?'" -Poppy Montgomery, on her real name.