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Shannen Doherty


Birth name:

Shannen Maria Doherty






Memphis, Tennessee, USA



Race or Ethnicity:


Sexual orientation:





United States

Executive summary:

Brenda Walsh on Beverly Hills 90210


5' 3" (1.60 m)


Shannen Doherty - Pictures

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Additional Free Pictures of Shannen Doherty


Shannen Doherty - Biography


Shannen Maria Doherty (born April 12, 1971) is an American actress and television director, known for her work as Heather Duke in Heathers (1989), as Brenda Walsh in Beverly Hills, 90210 (1990–1994) and its spinoff series 90210 and as Prue Halliwell in Charmed (1998–2001).

Doherty was born in Memphis, Tennessee, the daughter of Rosa, a beauty parlor owner, and Tom Doherty, a mortgage consultant. Doherty has Irish Catholic ancestry, though was raised in her mother's Southern Baptist religion. At the age of seven (in 1978) her family moved to Los Angeles, and she immediately announced that she wanted to be an actress.
In an interview in the December 2006 issue of Glamour, she said:
“ When I was nine, my mother developed an excruciating headache and had to be hospitalized - she was diagnosed with a brain aneurysm. She came through it but the experience was terrifying. The following year my father had a massive stroke. In a single year I nearly lost both my parents. I felt my classmates couldn't relate to what I was going through, so I closed myself off.”
Success began early, with guest spots on TV series including Voyagers!, Father Murphy, and Airwolf starting in 1981. When a casting notice was released in Hollywood for a regular role on the popular Little House on the Prairie she jumped at the opportunity and eventually won the role of Jenny Wilder at the age of eleven, thanks in part to actor/producer Michael Landon seeing her guest spot on Father Murphy, which he also produced.
Doherty stayed in the series until the show's cancellation in 1983.

Doherty was cast as the oldest Witherspoon sibling, Kris, on the family drama Our House, which ran from 1986 to 1988. A role which garnered her several Young Artist Award nominations. She then went on to appear in an episode of Magnum, P.I. followed by an episode of Airwolf Doherty's first major motion picture role was in Heathers, released in 1989 where she played Heather Duke. In 2006, the film was ranked #5 on Entertainment Weekly's list of the 50 Best High School Movies.

Doherty's breakout role came when she was cast to star as Brenda Walsh in the Aaron Spelling-produced TV series Beverly Hills, 90210 in 1990. In 1991 and 1992 her portrayal of Brenda earned her a Young Artist Award nomination for Best Young Actress Starring in a Television Series. In 2004, E! placed Brenda at number ten on their list of the 50 Most Wicked Women of Prime Time. Following reported on-set friction with her co-stars as well as bad publicity generated by her off-screen behaviour, Doherty was fired from the show and left at the end of the fourth season in 1994. Doherty's character, Brenda, was written off the show as moving to London to attend school at the Royal Academy for Dramatic Arts.
While the character's absence was originally described as only being for a year, she never actually returned to the original series despite being mentioned from time to time during the show's remaining seasons (though she would reprise the role of Brenda later in the The CW's updated version of the show in 2008). She was replaced with former Saved by the Bell star Tiffani Thiessen, who played bad girl character Valerie Malone. Her departure from the series was reportedly acrimonious, however, and her career afterward was somewhat spotty, marked for the most part by made-for-TV movies, though she also had a lead role in Kevin Smith's 1995 film Mallrats.
In 1998, Spelling cast her in another TV series, Charmed, in which she played lead character Prue Halliwell, the oldest of three sisters who discover they are witches. Doherty also directed several episodes. At the end of the third season, Doherty left the show in 2001, resulting in her character's death, and the introduction of Rose McGowan's replacement lead character Paige Matthews. Reportedly, the reason for her departure was because of tensions between Doherty and co-star Alyssa Milano. Though she had left the show long before it ended, she continued to own five percent of the rights to the series.
Doherty was also twice nominated for the Saturn Award, Best Genre TV Actress for her portrayal of the character Prue, in 1999 and 2000 respectively. In 2007, AOL named Prue Halliwell the 10th greatest witch in television history.

Two years after her departure from Charmed, Doherty hosted the Sci Fi Channel candid camera show Scare Tactics during its initial season. After her stint on Scare Tactics Doherty, in a return to her prime-time soap roots, starred as a regular on the short-lived TV series North Shore. She starred as Alexandra Hudson from 2004–2005. Later in 2005, Doherty was cast in the new TV comedy Love Inc. Although she filmed the original pilot, she was dropped from the show just months before its television debut.
Doherty later went on to produce and star in her own reality show, Breaking Up With Shannen Doherty, which premiered on the Oxygen network in 2006. In the show Doherty goes around doing "dirty work" for members of the public, including dumping boyfriends or telling people what their friends really think about them. The show was canceled after one season due to a small audience. She also starred in the popular British sitcom Bo! in the USA, a brain child of Leigh Francis. In the show, she plays herself, being randomly harassed by Avid Merrion (Francis) who claims they are lovers. The show aired in October 2006 on the British channel 4, and she appeared in several episodes.
In 2007, Doherty appeared in two television projects. First up was the pilot Kiss Me Deadly: A Jacob Keane Assignment for the here! network, and then the holiday picture Christmas Caper for ABC Family. That same year Doherty also set up a production company called "No Apologies" where she’s developing a TV-drama for herself. In 2007 Doherty was also ranked as number 96 on Entertainment Weekly's list of the 100 Greatest Television Icons. In 2008, Doherty was featured on the Swedish television show High Chaparall, appearing in the second episode of the show’s fourth season.
After fourteen years since her last television appearance as Brenda Walsh, it was confirmed in June 2008 that Doherty would join the cast of the Beverly Hills, 90210 spin off for The CW Television Network, for a reported $40,000–50,000 an episode. She returned as a guest star, reprising her old role of Brenda Walsh in four of the new series' initial six episodes. Her character, now a successful theater actress and stage director, returned as the guest director of the high school musical. After her initial guest spot was completed, Doherty stated she was open to returning to the series later in the season and eventually agreed to appear in three additional episodes with her most recent appearance airing in May 2009.
The writers were eager to have her share scenes with Jennie Garth who also reprised her 90210 role of Kelly Taylor. It was reported that Doherty and Garth's characters would both have a romantic interest in the character Ryan Matthews (Ryan Eggold), reminiscent of their old rivalry for former bad boy character Dylan McKay (Luke Perry). Doherty and Garth later confirmed that the reports about the love triangle between their characters were false.
Doherty was featured in a lead role in the SciFi Channel’s adventure film, The Lost Treasure of the Grand Canyon as Susan Jordan opposite Michael Shanks and Bianca Owens. The film premiered on the cable network on December 20, 2008.

Doherty has been in the process of pitching a new television show to networks. On October 30, 2008, TV Guide reported that Doherty is due to co-star alongside Dylan McDermott in the indie film Burning Palms, a satire based on Los Angeles stereotypes told through five intertwining storylines. She will also be starring in the upcoming TV movie thriller Encounter with Danger with Mark Humphrey. Doherty will play the lead in the upcoming British independent film The Beautiful Outsiders. Filming will commence in September. She also announced she's currently writing a book though 'it's not an autobiography' but it contains some of her life experiences.

Doherty was married briefly to Ashley Hamilton, son of actor George Hamilton. She was also married to Rick Salomon, and was briefly engaged to actor Judd Nelson. Doherty was once sentenced to either ten days in jail or twenty days of work-release duty, three years probation, and ordered to pay a $1,500 fine for drunk driving charges in 2001. She has appeared several times, nude, in Playboy magazine. Her first appearance was in December 1993, followed by a spread in March 1994. Later she posed for the magazine again in December 2003, and has been featured in a 10-page pictorial.
Doherty is a fan of the TV series 24, and on the show's Season 4 DVD set, she provides audio commentary on "3:00 PM - 4:00 PM" with episode writer Evan Katz. As of date, she lives in Malibu, California. She also has a horse ranch in Ventura County, California and owns seven horses and two dogs.


Shannen Doherty - Personal Quotes


"Let me start by saying it wasn't like I walked out one day and said, 'I quit.' It was a very long process of quitting the show. Aaron got as fed up with me as I was with the show, and I think it was because the notoriety was too much. People were hating the character and I couldn't take the abuse that came with that. People couldn't separate me from her and I got sick of people assuming that I was as naughty and bad as Brenda was. It was all very hurtful." - Cleo Magazine, August 2000

(On the tabloid articles) "You know, as far as I'm concerned, whatever they write, um, is so-- it's consisted of so many different lies that it's not even worth justifying it."

"Even when I'm called in for an audition or anything, and even when I have to meet other actors/tresses, or be in front of the camera, I get goosebumps."

"I've been very, very, very happily single since October - I ended my previous relationship, and it thrills me to no end. I'm just sort of hanging out and being a single girl and enjoying the moment. I think to just be a girl and have fun is so incredibly important." - commenting on the state of her life, February 2005


Shannen Doherty - Filmography


Burning Palms (2010) .... Dr. Shelly
Growing the Big One (2010) (TV) .... Emma Silver
Encounter with Danger (2009) (TV) .... Lori
"90210" .... Brenda Walsh (8 episodes, 2008-2009)
- One Party Can Ruin Your Whole Summer (2009) TV episode .... Brenda Walsh
- Hello, Goodbye, Amen (2009) TV episode .... Brenda Walsh
- That Which We Destroy (2008) TV episode .... Brenda Walsh
- Model Behavior (2008) TV episode .... Brenda Walsh
- Wide Awake and Dreaming (2008) TV episode .... Brenda Walsh
(3 more)
The Lost Treasure of the Grand Canyon (2008) (TV) .... Susan Jordan
Kiss Me Deadly (2008) (TV) .... Marta
... aka The Delphi Effect (Australia: DVD title) (USA: working title)
Defunct (2008) .... Fanny
Christmas Caper (2007) (TV) .... Kate Dove
Category 7: The End of the World (2005) (TV) .... Faith Clavell
"Love, Inc." .... Denise Johnson (1 episode, 2005)
- Pilot (2005) TV episode (uncredited) .... Denise Johnson
"North Shore" .... Alexandra Hudson (11 episodes, 2004-2005)
- The End (2005) TV episode .... Alexandra Hudson
- The Ex-Games (2005) TV episode .... Alexandra Hudson
- Shark (2005) TV episode .... Alexandra Hudson
- Catwalk (2004) TV episode .... Alexandra Hudson
- Sucker Punch (2004) TV episode .... Alexandra Hudson
(6 more)
Glitterati (2004) .... Jaime Fields
Nightlight (2003) (TV) .... Celeste Timmerman
... aka View of Terror (Canada: English title: cable TV title) (UK: DVD title) (USA)
... aka Une vue terrifiante (Canada: French title)
Hell on Heels: The Battle of Mary Kay (2002) (TV) .... Lexi Wilcox
... aka L'empire de Mary Kay (Canada: French title)
... aka The Battle of Mary Kay (UK)
The Rendering (2002) .... Sarah Reynolds
... aka Portrait macabre (Canada: French title)
... aka Portrait of a Murder (USA: TV title)
Another Day (2001) (TV) .... Kate
... aka Passion impossible (Canada: French title)
"Charmed" .... Prue Halliwell (67 episodes, 1998-2001)
- All Hell Breaks Loose (2001) TV episode .... Prue Halliwell
- Look Who's Barking (2001) TV episode .... Prue Halliwell
- Exit Strategy (2001) TV episode .... Prue Halliwell
- The Demon Who Came in from the Cold (2001) TV episode .... Prue Halliwell
- Sin Francisco (2001) TV episode .... Prue Halliwell
(62 more)
Satan's School for Girls (2000) (TV) .... Beth Hammersmith/Karen Oxford
Striking Poses (1999) .... Gage Sullivan
The Ticket (1997) (TV) .... CeeCee Reicker
Nowhere (1997) .... Valley Chick #2
Sleeping with the Devil (1997) (TV) .... Rebecca Dubrovich
Friends 'Til the End (1997) (TV) .... Heather Romley
Gone in the Night (1996) (TV) .... Cindi Dowaliby
Mallrats (1995) .... Rene
A Burning Passion: The Margaret Mitchell Story (1994) (TV) .... Margaret
Jailbreakers (1994) (TV) .... Angel
"Beverly Hills, 90210" .... Brenda Walsh / ... (111 episodes, 1990-1994)
... aka Class of Beverly Hills (USA: teaser title)
- Mr. Walsh Goes to Washington (1994) TV episode .... Brenda Walsh
- Vital Signs (1994) TV episode .... Brenda Walsh
- Truth and Consequences (1994) TV episode .... Brenda Walsh
- Acting Out (1994) TV episode .... Brenda Walsh
- Divas (1994) TV episode .... Brenda Walsh
(106 more)
Blindfold: Acts of Obsession (1994) (TV) .... Madeleine Dalton
... aka Blindfold
Almost Dead (1994) .... Doctor Katherine Roshak
Freeze Frame (1993) (V) .... Lindsay Scott
... aka The Homeroom News
Obsessed (1992) (TV) .... Lorie Brindel
"The Secret of Lost Creek" (1992) TV series .... Jennie Fogel
Forever Young (1991) (TV) .... Party Girl
"Life Goes On" .... Ginny Green (1 episode, 1990)
- Corky's Crush (1990) TV episode .... Ginny Green
"21 Jump Street" .... Janine DeGray (1 episode, 1989)
- Things We Said Today (1989) TV episode .... Janine DeGray
Heathers (1988) .... Heather (Duke)
"Our House" .... Kris Witherspoon (46 episodes, 1986-1988)
- Artful Dodging (1988) TV episode .... Kris Witherspoon
- Neighborhood Watch (1988) TV episode .... Kris Witherspoon
- The Fifth Beatle (1988) TV episode .... Kris Witherspoon
- The Ashton Street Gang (1988) TV episode .... Kris Witherspoon
- Out of Step (1988) TV episode .... Kris Witherspoon
(41 more)
Alf Loves a Mystery (1987) (TV) .... The Lady in Red
"Outlaws" .... Young Girl (1 episode, 1986)
- Outlaws (1986) TV episode .... Young Girl
"Highway to Heaven" .... Shelley Fowler (1 episode, 1985)
- The Secret (1985) TV episode .... Shelley Fowler
The Other Lover (1985) (TV) .... Alson Fielding
Girls Just Want to Have Fun (1985) .... Maggie Malene
"Robert Kennedy & His Times" (1985) TV mini-series .... Kathleen Kennedy (unknown episodes)
"Still the Beaver" .... Laurie (1 episode, 1985)
... aka The New Leave It to Beaver (USA: new title)
- Steppin' Out (1985) TV episode .... Laurie
Little House: Bless All the Dear Children (1984) (TV) .... Jenny Wilder
Little House: The Last Farewell (1984) (TV) .... Jenny Wilder
"Airwolf" .... Phoebe Danner (1 episode, 1984)
... aka Lobo del aire (USA: Spanish title)
- Bite of the Jackal (1984) TV episode .... Phoebe Danner
Little House: Look Back to Yesterday (1983) (TV) .... Jenny Wilder
"Magnum, P.I." .... Ima Platt (1 episode, 1983)
- A Sense of Debt (1983) TV episode .... Ima Platt
"Little House on the Prairie" .... Jenny Wilder (18 episodes, 1982-1983)
... aka Little House: A New Beginning (USA: last season title)
- Hello and Goodbye (1983) TV episode .... Jenny Wilder
- May I Have This Dance (1983) TV episode .... Jenny Wilder
- For the Love of Blanche (1983) TV episode .... Jenny Wilder
- The Last Summer (1983) TV episode .... Jenny Wilder
- A Child with No Name (1983) TV episode .... Jenny Wilder
(13 more)
"Voyagers!" .... Betty Parris (1 episode, 1982)
- Agents of Satan (1982) TV episode .... Betty Parris
Night Shift (1982) .... Bluebird
The Secret of NIMH (1982) (voice) .... Teresa
"The Phoenix" .... Little Girl (1 episode, 1982)
- One of Them (1982) TV episode (uncredited) .... Little Girl
"Father Murphy" .... Drusilla Shannon (2 episodes, 1981)
- By the Bear That Bit Me: Part 2 (1981) TV episode .... Drusilla Shannon
- By the Bear That Bit Me: Part 1 (1981) TV episode .... Drusilla Shannon


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