Blessed with an attractive look and a rare charisma which make her easily noticeable among any other actresses, Amanda Peet certainly has emerged as one of the bright movie stars Hollywood ever has. Although the road to success has been quite a rough path for her to undergo, she amazingly stayed on the track with an incredible perseverance to finally come into the world's recognition.
Raised in New York City, New York from the day she was born on January 11, 1972, Amanda grew up with her older sister under the nurture of her parents, Charles and Penny, before they decided to divorce in 1990. Her interest in acting was barely visible since the age of three when the little girl jumped on a stage in the middle of the play she was attending. Still, she considered it as a mere hobby and had never thought to pursue a career in this field until she entered Columbia University to study history following her graduation from Friends Seminary High School in Manhattan.
It was during her time at the university that a drama professor, who noticed the talent she possesses, convinced her to join the audition for a renowned acting teacher, Uta Hagen. Heeded the advice, Amanda afterwards spent four years of her life under the guidance of this substantial Broadway actress while also garnered acting experience through the off-Broadway revival of Clifford Odets' "Awake and Sing!" (1935). As her love for performing arts increasingly deepened, she eventually concluded to be an actress, thus started to accomplish her goal after her graduation from Columbia University in 1994.
Moving into her own apartment at the age of 22, Amanda tirelessly entered one audition after another and quickly obtained her first film role in an independent feature entitled “Grind.” However, the movie's release later was delayed until the year 1997, so many people assumed it was through her next project, “Animal Room” (1995), that she made her big screen debut. She then managed to appear in several major motion pictures, like “She's the One” and “One Fine Day” which both came up in 1996, but apparently her enactments had not yet drawn much attention she expected.
Throughout 1997-1999, Amanda was more involved in independent films which were barely able to raise her name to the surface. A promising opportunity approached when she was cast as Jacqueline 'Jack' Barrett in Warner Bros' romantic series of “Jack & Jill” (1999-2001), replacing Amelia Heinle who previously had appeared in the pilot season. To her delight, the show earned positive response, therefore prompted more people's notice on her during its two-seasons running. This good result undoubtedly led to more major roles, such as in “Body Shots” (1999) opposite Jerry O'Connell and “Isn't She Great” (2000) alongside Bette Midler.
With her growing status, Amanda made her way to impress director Jonathan Lynn who then gave the role of Jill St. Claire to her in his mob comedy flick, “The Whole Nine Yards” (2000). “I think she is extraordinary,” Lynn commented. “She has a tremendous flair. She has a real sort of immediacy, an extraordinary presence.” Also starred by Bruce Willis, Matthew Perry, and Rosanna Arquette, this box-office movie gloriously brought Amanda to finally embrace wide recognition she aimed for, propelling her to reach a considerable fame across the country as well as opening the way to land a leading role in her next big screen production, “Saving Silverman” (2001).
After the success of “The Whole Nine Yards,” Amanda's career went on steadily and smoothly, looking on the hectic schedule she had to undergo in the following years. Included in the cast of “High Crimes”, “Changing Lanes”, and “Igby Goes Down” which all were released in 2002, she received huge praise for her portrayal of Rachel, a mistress of the title character's slimy godfather, in the latter movie. Considered to be a high-profile actress, she kept exploring various characters while also consistently displayed excellent performances as seen in “Identity” (2003), “Something's Gotta Give” (2003), and “Melinda and Melinda” (2004).
Reunited with the cast of “The Whole Nine Yards” to film its sequel, “The Whole Ten Yards” (2004), Amanda has really become an actress in-demand as she was involved in three projects slated to come up by 2005. Playing opposite Ashton Kutcher in “A Lot Like Love,” she afterwards was billed to be the leading actress of “Syriana” before joined Ben Stiller and Jeffrey Wright to perform Neil LaBute's play, “This Is How It Goes” which ended its run at New York's Public Theater on April 17. Her star delightfully kept displaying brilliant shine for she then landed role in the 2006 “Griffin and Phoenix” plus 2007's “The Ex” and “The Martian Child” while lending her voice to animated flick “Terra” (2008).
As for her private life, Amanda formerly dated Brian Van Holt, her co-star in “Whipped” (2000), but the relationship, which had started in 2001, unfortunately did not last long. Finding a new love in a screenwriter named David Benioff, she ultimately proclaimed their engagement on July 22, 2005. After a brief period, rumor had it that the beauty was pregnant with her first child with Benioff, such fact that prompted the couple to finally tie the knot on September 30th, 2006 in New York. On February 20th the following year, the couple happily welcomed the arrival of their first child, a baby girl named Frances Pen.