Virginia Elizabeth "Geena" Davis (born January 21, 1956) is an Oscar-winning American actress, film producer, writer, and a women's Olympics archery team semi-finalist.
|This and many of the following pictures are from Geena's days as a Victoria's Secret model.|
With all of those accomplishments, many people may not realize that Geena Davis began her rise to fame with Victoria's Secret, the lingerie company. Geena began her career as a model, not an actress.
Geena's big acting break came in the early 1980s, when she already was a top Victoria's Secret model. A movie was being cast in New York City, where she lived.
"There was a part as Dustin's dressing roommate for someone that's going to be in their underwear a lot of times," she says. "So the casting director thought, 'Let's call model agencies and see if they have any models who can act.' "
Geena went to the audition and did fine. The casting director liked her, but when Geena got a callback, she was in Paris walking the runway. Rather than go to the callback, she used another method to snag the part that other actresses can only dream of using:
"My good fortune at that moment was that I had been in the Victoria's Secret catalog," Davis says. "So they sent over the catalog with these perfectly lit, airbrushed, wind-blowing-in-your-hair photos."
Geena snagged the part of April in "Tootsie," but that was only the beginning.
"At that time, the big models like Christie Brinkley and Lauren Hutton were getting parts in movies. I thought, 'Oh, well, all I have to do is become a successful model and then maybe I'll get hired for movies,' " she says, laughing at her idea that becoming a supermodel would be a breeze.
Well, becoming a big star did turn out to be a breeze for Geena. "Tootsie" got her all sorts of follow-up roles, and she became a leading lady. However, she did not give up modelling, at least right away. Even when her signature role, "Thelma and Louise," was in production in 1992, she was modelling for Versace in Paris. Other important leading roles soon came along after "Thelma & Louise" became a cultural touchstone, such as her appearance as a baseball player in "A League of Their Own."
Geena Davis remains a top Hollywood star to this day. She had her own show, "The Geena Davis Show," in 2000-2001, and has had continuing roles in shows such as "Grey's Anatomy" and "Commander in Chief" (for which Geena won a Golden Globe in 2006).
|Geena Davis in "Beetlejuice."|
Geena's major film credits include starring roles in "Thelma & Louise" (nominated for Leading Actress), "Beetlejuice," "The Accidental Tourist" (for which Geena won the Oscar as Best Supporting Actress) and "The Long Kiss Goodnight."
Geena Davis' journey goes to show that dreams do come true.
"My big break was getting cast in Tootsie as my very first acting job and as a result of my very first audition. That's a ridiculous, ridiculous break to get. But that is exactly what happened."
|Geena Davis with her costar from "Thelma & Louise," Susan Sarandon.|
|Geena Davis in a promo shot from "Commander In Chief."|
|Geena with Tom Hanks in "A League of Their Own."|
|Geena Davis in "Cutthroat Island."|