Famke Beumer Janssen, born 5
November 1964) is a Dutch actress and former fashion model. She is best
known for her roles in GoldenEye, Nip/Tuck and as Dr. Jean Grey/Phoenix in
the X-Men movies. Janssen is also a UNODC Goodwill Ambassador for
Famke Beumer Janssen was born in Amstelveen, the Netherlands. The first
name means little girl in West Frisian, the native language of the Dutch
province Friesland. Besides her native Dutch, Janssen speaks English,
French, and also learned German but has not kept it up. She has two
sisters, director Antoinette Beumer and actress Marjolein Beumer.
Before coming to America, Janssen studied economics for a year at the
University of Amsterdam calling it "the stupidest idea I ever had."
Janssen moved to the United States in 1984 and began her professional
career as a fashion model. She was signed with Elite Model Management and
worked for Yves Saint Laurent, Chanel and Victoria's Secret. After
retiring from modeling in the early 1990s, she enrolled at Columbia
University to study creative writing and literature and also took up
acting. Several years later she moved to Los Angeles to establish her
acting career. Janessen is noted for being taller than average at 5 feet
11 inches (1.80 m) and her beauty has been compared to Hedy Lamarr and
films stars of the 1940's.
Upon moving to Los Angeles, Janssen obtained her first parts, appearing in
guest roles on TV series. She starred in a 1988 commercial for exclamation
perfume. One of her first appearances was in 1992, when she starred in the
Star Trek: The Next Generation episode "The Perfect Mate" as empathic
metamorph Kamala, opposite Patrick Stewart (who would later star with her
in the X-Men film series). Then, in that same year, Janssen was offered
the role of Jadzia Dax of Star Trek: Deep Space Nine, but turned it down
to pursue film roles.
Janssen's first film role was with Jeff Goldblum in the 1992 film Fathers
& Sons. In 1995, she appeared in the first Pierce Brosnan James Bond film,
GoldenEye, as femme fatale Xenia Onatopp.
Janssen played superheroine Dr. Jean Grey/Phoenix in X-Men, X2 and X-Men:
The Last Stand. She won a Saturn Award for the role in X-Men: The Last
Stand. She also starred in the movies Lord of Illusions, The Faculty,
House on Haunted Hill, I Spy, Rounders, Deep Rising, Hide and Seek, and
Taken (film). In addition, Janssen had a prominent role in the second
season of the popular TV show, Nip/Tuck, as the seductive and manipulative
transsexual life coach, Ava Moore. She will reprise her role in the final
two episodes of the series.
Janssen tried to fight against typecasting, seeking out more intriguing
support roles, appearing in Woody Allen's Celebrity, Robert Altman's The
Gingerbread Man, John Irvin's City of Industry and Ted Demme's Monument
Ave. Denis Leary her co-star in Monument Ave. was impressed by how easily
she blended in, initially not recognizing her as she was already in
character. She was awarded the Special Jury Best Actress Award at the 2007
Hamptons International Film Festival for her role as a female pool hustler
in Chris Eigeman's Turn the River.
Janssen provides the Dutch-language narration for the Studio Tram Tour at
all Disney parks.
In December 2008 Janssen filmed a 20 minute presentation for Showtime that
serves as a pilot for a spinoff of The L Word set in a women's Prison.
Janssen plays one of the prisoners starring alongside Melissa Leo, Leisha
Hailey and Laurie Metcalf.
Janssen lives in West Village in New York City. She was married to writer,
director Tod Culpan Williams, son of architect Tod Williams, from 1995 to
Janssen has a brindle Boston Terrier named Licorice, with which she
frequently travels. Alongside her dog, she starred as a PETA spokeswoman
to raise awareness for animal rights with the slogan "Be an Angel for
"I felt different born into a
family with two sisters who are blonde and blue-eyed, with me being
the only brunette". In an interview to People Weekly magazine, July
31, 2000. Volume 54, Number 5.
"I would rather not work than play in a movie that nobody watches."
"We've always been ready for female superheroes. Because women want
to be them and men want to do them."
I don't want to be exploited. That of course, as an actress, is a
real challenge, not to be exploited. So I'm just going to keep
looking for as many different types of roles as I can find in
different genre movies. That's my goal, my aim. I like doing that.
I've had a pretty varied career so far."
I don't even like talking about dating. It's like having a stamp on
your forehead: 'I'm available and I'm looking'.
"I think acting is just like that. There is something childish and
fun about it."
"I love darkness. I am attracted to the dark side of life! I thought
it was really interesting that Jean Grey went through some changes
in this film." - About her character's change in X2 (2003) (aka
"Looking back, boy, has there ever been a stigma in being a Bond
Girl. That's what my mission in life is, just to prove them wrong.
That's why I have such an urge to keep going and proving that. It's
so silly. What on earth does the way you look have anything to do
with whether you can act or not."
I'm a firm believer in taking risks in life, because you'll never
get anywhere unless you do, and the more risk involved the greater
the outcome - or the worse, but you never know so you've got to go
The Chameleon (2010) ....
... aka Le caméléon (France)
Kiddie Ride (2009) .... Mary
"Nip/Tuck" .... Ava Moore (11 episodes, 2004-2010)
- Episode #6.19 (2010) TV episode .... Ava Moore
- Walter & Edith Krieger (2010) TV episode .... Ava Moore
- KiKi (2005) TV episode .... Ava Moore
- Joan Rivers (2004) TV episode .... Ava Moore
- Trudy Nye (2004) TV episode .... Ava Moore
The Farm (2009) (TV) .... Valentina Galindo
Puppy Love (2008) .... Maya
100 Feet (2008) .... Marnie Watson
Taken (2008/I) .... Lenore
The Wackness (2008) .... Kristin Squires
Turn the River (2007) .... Kailey Sullivan
... aka T.T.R. (USA: informal short title)
The Ten (2007) .... Gretchen Reigert
Alibi (2007) (TV) .... Christie Winters
X-Men: The Last Stand (2006) .... Jean Grey / Phoenix
... aka X-Men 3 (Singapore: English title) (USA: working title)
... aka X3 (International: English title: informal short title)
(USA: promotional abbreviation)
... aka X-men - L'engagement ultime (Canada: French title)
The Treatment (2006) .... Allegra Marshall
Hide and Seek (2005) .... Katherine
Eulogy (2004) .... Judy Arnolds
X2 (2003) .... Jean Grey / Phoenix
... aka X-Men 2 (Singapore: English title) (USA: working title)
... aka X-2 (USA: poster title)
... aka X-Men 2: X-Men United (USA: promotional title)
... aka X2: X-Men United (USA: promotional title)
... aka X2: X-Men unis (Canada: French title)
I Spy (2002) .... Rachel
... aka I-Spy (USA: promotional title)
Don't Say a Word (2001) .... Aggie Conrad
Made (2001) .... Jessica
"Ally McBeal" .... Jamie (2 episodes, 2000-2001)
- The Ex-Files (2001) TV episode .... Jamie
- The Man with the Bag (2000) TV episode .... Jamie
X-Men (2000) .... Jean Grey
... aka X-Men 1.5 (USA: DVD box title)
Circus (2000) .... Lily
Love & Sex (2000) .... Kate Welles
House on Haunted Hill (1999) .... Evelyn Stockard-Price
The Faculty (1998) .... Miss Elizabeth Burke
The Adventures of Sebastian Cole (1998) .... Fiona
Celebrity (1998) .... Bonnie
Rounders (1998) .... Petra
RPM (1998) .... Claudia Haggs
Deep Rising (1998) .... Trillian
The Gingerbread Man (1998) .... Leeanne Magruder
Snitch (1998) .... Katy
... aka Noose (Australia: DVD title) (USA: working title)
... aka Monument Ave. (USA: new title)
City of Industry (1997) .... Rachel Montana
Dead Girl (1996) .... Treasure
GoldenEye (1995) .... Xenia Onatopp
Lord of Illusions (1995) .... Dorothea Swann
... aka Clive Barker's Lord of Illusions
Relentless IV: Ashes to Ashes (1994) (V) .... Dr. Sara Lee Jaffee
"The Untouchables" .... Cleo (1 episode, 1994)
- Voyeur (1994) TV episode .... Cleo
Model by Day (1994) (TV) .... Lady X
"Melrose Place" .... Diane Adamson (1 episode, 1994)
- Michael's Game (1994) TV episode .... Diane Adamson
"Star Trek: The Next Generation" .... Kamala (1 episode, 1992)
... aka Star Trek: TNG (USA: promotional abbreviation)
- The Perfect Mate (1992) TV episode .... Kamala
Fathers & Sons (1992) .... Kyle Christian