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Shane West
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Birthdate: June 10, 1978
Birthplace: Baton Rouge, LA
Occupations: Actor, Musician
Quote: West on his audition for Once and Again: "I thought for some reason the show was a sitcom. I went in going over the top, and Marshall [one of the series creators] stopped me and said, 'You obviously haven't seen our work.' I just sat there and froze." --People magazine, November 15, 1999
Shane West Photo

Claim to Fame: Angel in the Mark Taper Forum production of The Cider House Rules

Significant Other(s):
Rachael Leigh Cook, actress; dated in 1998; no longer together

Father: Don West, drugstore manager; divorced from Scott's mom in 1982
Mother: Catherine West, lawyer; divorced

Young sandy-haired actor Shane West got his start with guest roles on the small screen that made the most of his boy-next-door good looks and unimposing presence. He quickly worked his way up the television ladder to series regular on the surprise hit ABC drama "Once and Again" in 1999. West played Eli, the teenage son of a man (Billy Campbell) who gets involved with a divorced mother (Sela Ward) following his own divorce. The actor capably handled the part's emotional range, with a role as a burdened young man struggling with a learning disability and carrying on a teen romance while trying to fill the void left in his household by looking out for his younger sister (Evan Rachel Wood) and shielding his mother (Susanna Thompson) from her ex-husband's new relationship. 5 Deciding to pursue an acting career at age 15, West did some local stage work before a 1995 move to Los Angeles in the hopes of securing acting jobs in film and television. That year he landed a guest role in CBS' "Picket Fences" and went on to appear on the series "Boy Meets World" (ABC) and "The Crew" (Fox) in 1996. In 1997 West made his TV-movie debut playing speech impaired computer whiz kid Christopher Theodorakis in Showtime's original "The Westing Game", a thriller based on Ellen Raskin's popular children's mystery novel. The ambitious performer made his Los Angeles stage debut soon after, playing Angel, the illegitimate son of primary character Homer in the Mark Taper Forum's six hour production of John Irving's "The Cider House Rules" (1998). More television work followed, including guest stints on "The Closer" and "To Have and To Hold" on CBS, Sci-Fi Channel's "Sliders" and The WB's "Buffy the Vampire Slayer". A familiar face to audiences for his work on the highly-rated "Once and Again", West made his film debut with a role in Barry Levinson's "Liberty Heights" (1999), a look at a Jewish family in 1954 Baltimore. Early the following year he starred as a brainy unpopular high schooler who teams up with an inarticulate jock in a ploy to win the respective girls of their dreams in "Whatever It Takes", a modern teen reworking of "Cyrano de Bergerac".

League of Extraordinary Gentlemen, The (2003) - Tom Sawyer
Walk to Remember, A (2002) - Landon Rolands Carter
Ocean's Eleven (2001) (uncredited) - Himself
Get Over It (2001) - Bentley 'Stryker' Lawrence/Demetrius
Time for Dancing, A (2000) - Paul
Dracula 2000 (2000) - J.T
Whatever It Takes (2000) - Ryan Woodman/Brian Ryan
Liberty Heights (1999) - Ted
"Once and Again" (1999) TV Series - Eli Sammler
Clips' Place (1998) (TV)
Westing Game, The (1997) (TV) Chris Theodorakis

West is the lead guitar player in the band Average Joe

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