SHANNYN SOSSAMON Biography - Theater, Opera and Movie personalities


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Hollywood has mirrored the Camelot in which Shannyn Sossamon found herself in her breakthrough role as the leading lady in Knight’s Tale, A (2001). Shannyn, who credits her striking looks to an eclectic mix of French, Hawaiin, Dutch, Irish, Filipino and German was born Shannon Marie Kahoolani Sossamon in Honolulu, Hawaii. At the age of three, Shannyn and her family moved to a new exotic locale: Reno, Nevada. At 17, promptly after high school graduation, she left her small town life for a career in dance in Los Angeles.


While attending Dance Unlimited, Shannyn began her alternate career as a D.J. in local clubs. Acting was not high on the young dancer’s priority list, aside from a series of commercials, not for lack of interest but for the fact that she was content with her life in L.A. as it was. It was in 1999, when Shannyn was helping a friend D.J. at a birthday party for Gwyneth Paltrow that a new chapter began in her fairy tale life. Francine Maisler, a casting director known for such films as Usual Suspects, The (1995), spotted Shannyn.


Shortly thereafter Shannyn found herself with the backing of an influential Hollywood name and a slew of auditions. Many offers had no appeal to the established D.J. until Knight’s Tale, A (2001) came along; she determined she wanted the lead role and after six call backs, beat out the competition. Admittedly, the dancer turned actress knew little of her Australian costar Heath Ledger but the two became friends during filming. Shannyn continues to D.J. every Tuesday night at a local club in L.A., but the rest of her time is filled with filming and travel.