Jessica Capshaw

Recent Role:

Dr. Arizona Robbins on Grey's Anatomy


Columbia, Missouri, USA

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  • Credits
  • Biography
  • Known for her roles as Jamie Stringer on The Practice and Dr. Arizona Robbins on Grey's Anatomy, American actress Jessica Capshaw established a steady acting career on her own when she could have easily capitalized on her family name and connections. Jessica, daughter of film actress Kate Capshaw and stepdaughter of Hollywood producer Steven Spielberg, was exposed to the entertainment business as she was raised primarily by her mother after her divorce with Jessica's father, Robert Capshaw, a business executive and high school principal, when she was only three years old. Even as a child, Jessica displayed a keen interest for the performing arts. She used to tell herself stories in front of the bathroom mirror and entertain her family by staging short plays during reunions and holiday gatherings.

    During her years in Harvard-Westlake High School, Brown University, and the Royal Academy of Dramatic Arts in London, her acting skills were honed as she performed in various stage productions under the schools' theater arts programs. She also studied under renowned New York acting coach Harold Guskin. Her first big break on television was a series regular spot on the ABC teen comedy Odd Man Out in the Fall of 1999. Although the show didn't last long on air, Capshaw gained some recognition as a budding actress and won herself roles in popular movies such as Valentine (2001), Minority Report (2002), and View from the Top (2003).

    In 2002, Jessica joined the cast of ABC's long-running legal drama The Practice as a high-strung Harvard graduate who is hired as an associate by the Donnell, Young, Dole, & Frutt law firm after the murder conviction of Lindsay Dole. She was a regular for the show's penultimate and final seasons. Afterwards, Capshaw became part of the rich and talented cast of the Western action-drama miniseries Into the West (2005). Her other guest appearances on other shows include ones in Bones (2006) and The L Word (2007). During the fifth season of the ABC medical drama Grey's Anatomy, Jessica was brought in as the new pediatric surgeon of Seattle Grace, with a chipper attitude and optimistic outlook, who eventually becomes a love interest for Dr. Callie Torres.moreless



    Birth Place:

    Columbia, Missouri, USA

  • Photos (4)
  • Trivia & Quotes
  • Quotes (10)

    • Jessica: I'm a Midwesterner! Not being able to have a cheeseburger once in a while would be torture! A lot of the way you eat depends on how you were brought up. But obviously, I know the reasons to become vegetarian and the more I think about them I know I need to stop eating red meat.

    • Jessica: (on helping with preserving the environment) Do the best that you can. You can't completely change everything at once. We kind of find the little ways we can change things. And any step towards the better is, obviously, better.

    • Jessica: (after becoming a series regular on the show) I personally was a fan of Grey's before I went there so I run the risk of sounding - now that I get to be a part of the cast - braggy because I think it's awesome!

    • Jessica: (her mother being actress Kate Capshaw) Part of what made my mother so hungry and ambitious was that she didn't have a safety net... That's why I didn't go to them for an agent. I didn't go to them for a manager. And I certainly never said, 'Can you get me a job?'

    • Jessica: (playing the chubby Dorothy in "Valentine") That resonated with me, because I was a chubby little kid myself. It meant I had to cultivate other sensibilities -- intelligence and humor -- instead.

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    Trivia (17)

    • On May 22, 2004, Jessica married Healthy Child, Healthy World CEO Christopher Gavigan in East Hampton, Suffolk County, New York. On September 8, 2007, they welcomed their first child, Luke Gavigan.

    • During the Washington premiere of Steven Spielberg's Schindler's List, Jessica was able to spend the night at the White House with her mother and stepfather.

    • As a child, Jessica went to school wherever her mom worked. She was in Italy for three months, Sri Lanka for a month, and London for another three months.

    • Her theatrical credits include A Midsummer Nights Dream while attending the Royal Academy of Dramatic Ars in London and Arcadia and Cat on a Hot Tin Roof while studying at Brown University.

    • Jessica is a distinguished alumna of the Summer Arts Conservatory of Choate Rosemary Hall in Connecticut.

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