Biography of Actress Rebecca Romijn: Journey from Modeling to Hollywood

Get to know Rebecca Romijn, the versatile actress known for her roles in X-Men, Ugly Betty, and The Librarians. Read her biography and discover

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Rebecca Alie Romijn (born November 6, 1972) is an American film and television actress and former fashion model. Twice-named one of People magazine's "50 Most Beautiful People,” this supermodel-turned-actress worked hard to prove she was not just another pretty face, often taking on roles that required her to be goofy and engaging, not just good-looking.

Biography of Actress Rebecca Romijn Journey from Modeling to Hollywood -

Nearly six feet tall, blond Rebecca Romijn-Stamos was born and raised in Berkeley, California, the daughter of a Dutch custom furniture-maker and an American-born Dutch mother who taught English as a second language. In interviews, she insists that growing up in that "hippie environment" taught her and her sister not to care about their looks. Nevertheless, it was her stunning appearance that attracted the attention of modeling scouts and casting directors and allowed her to live the life she'd dreamed of. A poor student, Romijn-Stamos, was persuaded by a scout during a semester break from her freshman year at University of California at Santa Cruz to give modeling a try. The opportunity to travel and make money led her to move to Paris where she worked for the world's top fashion and glamour magazines for three years before moving back to the United States in 1995.

Romijn (pronounced "Ro-Maine" in the USA but the proper Dutch pronunciation is "Ro-mine") was born in Berkeley, California, the daughter of Elizabeth (née Kuizenga), a public school English teacher and textbook author, and Jaap Romijn, a custom furniture maker. Her father, a native of Barneveld, The Netherlands, is Dutch, and her mother is a second-generation Dutch American who met Romijn's father while studying in Europe.

Romijn's maternal grandfather, Dr. Henry B. Kuizenga, was a Presbyterian minister and seminary professor. Her maternal grandmother is first cousins with Dorothy Letterman, David Letterman's mother. Many sources say that she was once nicknamed the "Jolly Blonde Giant" but she has admitted to making that up 'for a laugh'. While studying music (voice) at the University of California, Santa Cruz, she became involved with fashion modeling and eventually moved to Paris for more than two years.

Within a couple of years of her move to New York City, Romijn-Stamos saw her television career take off when she was hired as the host of MTV's "House of Style", a position formerly held by fellow supermodel Cindy Crawford. It was here that audiences--and casting directors--first realized that this supermodel was also gifted with a winning, sometimes daffy, personality and impeccable comic timing. She built on that reputation in 1998 when she made her TV acting debut as David Schwimmer's messy girlfriend on the top-rated NBC sitcom "Friends". In the years that followed, this Sports Illustrated swimsuit model was offered dozens of film and TV roles, most of which expected her to just show up and look good--something she had grown tired of doing. Instead of trading on her looks, she opted to take on small, funny roles in movies like "Dirty Work" (1998, as a bearded lady), starring Norm Macdonald and "Austin Powers: The Spy Who Shagged Me" (1999), opposite Mike Myers. She teamed with yet another "Saturday Night Live" alum, David Spade, to skewer her image playing a vapid supermodel who married Spade's Finch on the hit NBC sitcom "Just Shoot Me" in 1999. The next year, the model-actress ventured into more dramatic territory, taking on the role of the evil mutant Mystique in Bryan Singer's big-screen version of the comic book series "X-Men". The job required her to don blue body paint and scales, making her virtually unrecognizable to her fans. Singer was reportedly thrilled to have a model who was used to sitting in a makeup chair for hours play the part.

Romijn-Stamos began to graduate to higher-profile roles, but unfortunately they were routinely in dreadful films that focused largely on her physical assets and not her ability to deftly play light comedy. The sci-fi action remake "Rollerball" (2002) was a leaden disaster of near-epic proportions, in which she was saddled with an unattractive wig, a Russian accent and a clunky script-the movie got more notice for the actress' cut full frontal nude scene than anything else. She next appeared, to good effect, in the 2002 film "Simone," playing an actress who publicly doubles for the title character, a computer-generated actress that audiences believe is real-Romijn-Stamos' brief moments were effective but the film was never greater than the sum of its parts. Also in 2002 she landed her first starring role in Brian De Palma's erotic thriller "Femme Fatale," playing a sexy former con woman who is drawn into all manner of illicit intrigue in an attempt to stay on the straight and narrow. But De Palma's notoriously weak taste in material prevailed and the film was never on par with the quality of the camerawork or the spectacular beauty of the actress' scantily clad body.

Among other jobs, Romijn modeled for the swimsuit issue of Sports Illustrated and for Victoria's Secret. She also was the host of MTV's House of Style from 1998 to 2000. Rebecca is a fixture on annual lists of the world's most beautiful women by publications such as Maxim (2003-2007), (2001-,2003, 2005-2006) and FHM (2000-2005).

In 2000's X-Men, Romijn had her first major movie role as "Mystique"; she returned to the role in 2003's sequel X2: X-Men United, and again for X-Men: The Last Stand (2006). In these movies her costume consisted of blue makeup and some strategically placed prosthetics on her otherwise nude body. In X2: X-Men United she shows up in a bar in one scene in her "normal" look, and also in X-Men: The Last Stand, she appears as a dark-haired "de-powered" Mystique. She had her first leading role in Brian De Palma's Femme Fatale (2002). She also has starred in movies such as Rollerball, The Punisher and Godsend. She played the leading role in Pepper Dennis, a short-lived TV series on The WB. This series showcased Romijn's talents for comedy, singing, modeling, drama, and adventure. After dropping Stamos from her name, Romijn revived Mystique for the third installment of the series, “X-Men: The Last Stand” (2006), directed by Brett Ratner. This time, the mutants face a peculiar choice after a cure for mutations is found: retain their uniqueness and remain isolated from society or give up their strange powers and become human. Returning to television, the actress got her first starring role in the one-hour drama, “Pepper Dennis” (WB, 2005-2006), playing a workaholic journalist whose life is thrown into chaos when her sister suffers an early mid-life crisis and moves in with her. 

To make matters worse, she loses her opportunity at the anchor chair thanks to the underhanded efforts of a former one-stand. The show debuted on the WB in April—not the best time of year to premier a new show. Meanwhile, a lame marketing effort that showcased Romijn’s stellar physique rather than her acting chops or the show’s strong writing doomed “Pepper Dennis” to a poor showing in the ratings right from the start. The show failed to make the slate on the newly-formed CW the network formed after the merger of the WB and UPN. 

In January 2007, Romijn made her first appearance on the ABC series Ugly Betty as a full time regular. She plays Alexis Meade, a male-to-female transsexual and the sibling of lead character Daniel Meade. In April 2008, however, Romijn announced that she would quit the show due to her dissatisfaction with the direction that the writers have given her character. In November 2007, Romijn made a guest appearance on the ABC series Carpoolers, where she played the ex-wife of the character Laird, played by her real-life husband Jerry O'Connell.

She married actor John Stamos on September 19, 1998. During her marriage, she used the name Rebecca Romijn-Stamos in both her personal and professional life. The couple announced their separation on April 12, 2004, and divorced on March 1, 2005. She has since returned to using her birth name.

Romijn was asked by Elle magazine in April 2002 whether making Femme Fatale had given her any new ideas about her sexuality. She said, "You know, in my early twenties I wondered if I was interested in women and so I kind of, well ... did my homework. Grins And it turns out I'm pretty straight". On September 19, 2005, Rebecca announced her engagement to actor Jerry O'Connell. The date of the announcement was controversial, as it would have been her seventh anniversary with Stamos, if not for their divorce. On July 14, 2007, Romijn married O'Connell in Ojai, California.

Rebecca Romijn is a talented American actress and former model, who rose to fame for her role as Mystique in the X-Men film series. Born on November 6, 1972 in Berkeley, California, Romijn is the daughter of a community college instructor and a custom furniture maker. Growing up, she struggled with insecurity and scoliosis but found solace in music and eventually discovered her love for modeling.

With a successful modeling career that saw her grace the covers of several international editions of popular magazines, Romijn quickly transitioned into acting. She made her big-screen debut in 2000's X-Men, playing the shape-shifting Mystique. The role established her as a household name, and she went on to reprise the role in the sequels X2 and X-Men: The Last Stand.

Aside from her role in the X-Men franchise, Romijn has had several other notable roles in film and television. She starred in Brian De Palma's Femme Fatale, and has appeared in movies such as Rollerball, The Punisher, and Godsend. On television, she has had recurring roles on Ugly Betty, where she played Alexis Meade, and on TNT's The Librarians as Eve Baird.

In addition to acting, Romijn has also hosted the reality competition show Skin Wars and voiced Lois Lane in the DC Animated Movie Universe. She has been recognized for her beauty by several publications and has been featured in several annual lists of the world's most beautiful women.

Today, Romijn continues to captivate audiences with her talent and beauty, and her legacy in the entertainment industry remains solid. From a shy and insecure teenager to a confident and successful actress, Rebecca Romijn is a true inspiration.

Personal life

In 2000, Romijn started dating actor John Stamos, whom she had met while filming an episode of Friends.[20] They became engaged in 2004 but ended their engagement later that year.[21] Romijn then began a relationship with actor Jerry O'Connell, whom she had met at a party hosted by mutual friend Chris Rock. They became engaged in August 2005 and married in July 2007 in a traditional Jewish ceremony.[22][23] The couple have twin daughters, Dolly Rebecca Rose and Charlie Tamara Tulip, born in 2008.[24]

Throughout her career, Romijn has been an advocate for animal rights and has been a member of People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA).[25][26] In 2002, she appeared in a PETA ad campaign, encouraging pet owners to have their cats and dogs spayed and neutered.[27] She has also been a celebrity supporter of the Humane Society of the United States (HSUS) and has been a part of their campaign against puppy mills.[28][29]

In 2020, Romijn appeared in the horror film Satania 6, which was released on streaming platforms. The film received mixed reviews from critics, but Romijn's performance was praised by some. The following year, she starred in the television film The Lost Husband, which was well received by audiences and critics alike.

In 2021, Romijn was cast in a recurring role on the Netflix series Insatiable, playing the mother of the lead character. The series was met with criticism from some for its depiction of body shaming, but Romijn's performance was widely praised by audiences and critics.

Charity work

Romijn is actively involved in charity work and has supported several organizations over the years. She is a strong supporter of the Make-A-Wish Foundation, which grants wishes to children with life-threatening medical conditions. In 2006, she participated in the foundation's Walk for Wishes event and raised money for the organization.[30]

In addition, Romijn is a supporter of the St. Jude Children's Research Hospital, which is dedicated to finding cures for children with cancer and other life-threatening diseases. She has participated in the hospital's annual Thanks and Giving campaign, which raises money for research and treatment programs.[31]

Romijn is also a supporter of Stand Up to Cancer, an organization that raises funds for cancer research. She has appeared in several public service announcements for the organization, encouraging people to make a donation to support its efforts.[32]


Throughout her career, Romijn has established herself as a versatile actress, capable of tackling a wide range of roles and genres. She has been praised for her work on both the big and small screens and has left a lasting impact on audiences around the world.

Despite facing several challenges throughout her career, including the recasting of her most well-known role as Mystique, Romijn has continued to work hard and pursue her passion for acting. Her dedication and commitment to her craft have made her one of the most recognizable and respected actresses of her generation.

In addition to her acting career, Romijn has been a role model for many women, inspiring them to pursue their dreams and work hard to achieve their goals. She has shown that with perseverance and determination, anything is possible.


Rebecca Romijn is a talented actress and former model who has made a name for herself in the entertainment industry. With her stunning looks and versatile acting skills, she has become one of the most recognizable and respected actresses of her generation. From her role as Mystique in the X-Men film series to her work on television shows like Ugly Betty and The Librarians, Romijn

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