Hometown: Detroit and Los Angeles
Latest Gig: Plays 17-year-old Christina Nickson, unwitting daughter of Lucifer, on FOX’s Point Pleasant
• Kid stuff: Though Elisabeth Harnois began her acting career in commercials at age 3 and made two feature films by 5 (Disney’s One Magic Christmas and Where Are the Children), her childhood wasn’t filled with Hollywood glamor. “My life was spent dodging reptiles,” says Harnois, whose parents owned a flooring company to support her and her four younger brothers. “I was kind of like the third parent because I was 8 years old when the oldest one was born. I adore them – they’re good kids. They’re excited about watching me on TV, which is great.”
• A devil of a role: Is it a challenge for a woman who was raised Catholic to play the devil’s progeny? “I have certain family members who are turned off by the material,” says Harnois, with a laugh, “but only because they don’t really understand what it’s about. The show makes literal the choice people really have in life, between good and evil.” Not that everything is so heavy on the set of the dark drama, “We have a great time. I hit it off very quickly with the girl who plays my best friend (Aubrey Dollar) – our sisterly bond comes through really well in the show.”
• Most likely to …: Harnois, who graduated from Wesleyan in 2001 with a degree in film, directed three shorts as a student and wants to do more behind the camera. “I love acting, but it’s also a means to an end,” she says. “Sometimes when I’m working I have a hard time just shutting up and doing what I’m told. I definitely see myself continuing to direct, and hopefully I’ll be able to do it more professionally.” In the meantime, she’ll appear on the big screen in two upcoming indie films: Pretty Persuasion and Strangers with Candy.
• Board, not bored: When she isn’t working, Harnois says she’s “a big fan of snowboarding. I didn’t get to snowboard at Sundance, and I was really disappointed.” At home in L.A., she reads scripts, writes in her journal and spends time with her boyfriend of three years, whom she declines to name. “He works in TV production, and he’s a great guy – that’s all I’ll say. I’m very taken.”