Sara Paxton[1] (born April 25, 1988) is an American actress, model and singer. She grew up in California and began acting at an early age, appearing in many minor roles in both films and television shows, before rising to fame in 2004, after playing the title role in the series Darcy's Wild Life and Sarah Borden in Summerland. Paxton's most notable roles have been in the films Aquamarine (2006), Sydney White (2007), Superhero Movie (2008), The Last House on the Left (2009), The Innkeepers (2011). She has also appeared prominently in television, with a lead role in Darcy's Wild Life (2004–06). In 2016, it was announced that Paxton was cast in David Lynch's 2017 Twin Peaks series.

Early life

Sara Paxton, an only child, was born on April 25, 1988 in Woodland Hills, Los Angeles, to what she has described as "a very mixed family".[2] Her father, Steve, is of English, Irish, and Scottish descent, and is distantly related to actor Bill Paxton. Her mother, Lucia, was born in Monterrey, Mexico, and raised in Ciudad Acuña.[2][3][4][5] Sara's mother was born Jewish and Sara's father converted to Judaism upon marrying her mother.[6][7][8] Both her parents are dentists.[9]

During her childhood, Paxton put on shows and wanted to perform, sometimes dressing up in costume and coming to school as a particular character.[8] She grew up in the San Fernando Valley, choosing to attend a public high school instead of accepting home-schooling.[8] Paxton graduated from El Camino Real High School in June 2006.[10]

Paxton has said that attending college was "very important" to her because "it is important to expand your mind."[8] In 2006, Paxton applied to the University of Southern California's film studies program.[10] She has noted that she would like to major in business administration with a minor in history (as she is a "history fanatic")[8] and to start a production company. Paxton delayed plans to attend college, because every time she lined up a class schedule she was offered another movie. In a 2009 interview with TeenHollywood, Paxton indicated that she had been accepted to several schools and almost attended New York University, but she made the decision not to go and had no immediate plans of attending college.[11][12][13]


1997–2004: Early roles

Paxton at the Pirates of the Caribbean: At World's End premiere, May 2007

Paxton has said that singing and acting "went hand in hand" during her early years, though she initially began working as an actress,[8] appearing in musical theater and later in television commercials at a young age. Her first film role was a small role in the 1997 Jim Carrey comedy, Liar Liar.[8] During the late 1990s and early 2000s, she appeared in a number of television and film roles, including a role on the soap opera Passions, regular roles on the series Greetings from Tucson and Action, and a guest starring role on the Disney Channel show, Lizzie McGuire starring Hilary Duff playing an ex-president of Lizzie's school. In 2003, Paxton starred in R. L. Stine's Haunted Lighthouse, a short 3-D film attraction that still plays at several theme parks across the United States. She also appeared as Lana on CSI: Miami and as Marnie Piper in Return to Halloweentown.

Paxton's first major role was in the teen film Sleepover, which opened in July 2004 to negative reviews and low box office revenue;[14][15] during the same summer season, she appeared in several episodes of the series, Summerland, playing Sarah Borden, a mentally troubled teen who experimented with drugs and sex with Jesse McCartney's character. Paxton was subsequently cast in the lead role of the Discovery Kids television series, Darcy's Wild Life, playing Darcy Fields, a girl who works at a rural veterinary; the series was filmed on a farm in Toronto[8] and aired from 2004 to 2006, often featuring Paxton's music track, "Take a Walk". Paxton received an Emmy nomination for the role in 2006.

2005–2012: Mainstream recognition

In 2005, Paxton spent three months[8] working on the Florida-themed Aquamarine, in which she played a mermaid, opposite Emma Roberts and JoJo, whom she befriended while filming.[2] Paxton has said that she felt a sense of "female empowerment" while on set because "almost everyone" on set was female.[8] The film opened on March 3, 2006 and grossed approximately $7.5 million in its opening weekend.[16] Reviewers of the film compared Paxton, whose inspiration is Goldie Hawn, to actress Reese Witherspoon, saying that she has an "infectious, nutty energy."[2] Paxton recorded a song for the film's soundtrack titled "Connected", an English version of the Mexican group RBD's song Tenerte y Quererte from their 2004 album Rebelde.

Paxton hosted The Secret Life of Water, the first episode of the series Planet H2O, which premiered in April 2006 on public television stations. In May of the same year, she made an appearance on the television series Pepper Dennis, playing a teen actress. Paxton, who sees herself as an "evolving actress,"[10] then appeared in Return to Halloweentown, replacing Kimberly J. Brown in the fourth installment in Disney Channel's Halloweentown series; she dyed her hair brown for the role. The film aired on October 20, 2006. During the summer and early fall of 2006, Paxton filmed The Party Never Stops: Diary of a Binge Drinker, a Lifetime Television film, in Vancouver Island.[8] In the film, she plays Jessie, a college student who falls victim to binge drinking. Paxton has described it as "very different" from her previous roles, and has specified that she was looking for a role that would be a "challenge".[11] The film aired in March 2007.[17] Paxton's next film role was in Sydney White, a college-set comedy starring Amanda Bynes and Matt Long; filming began on February 12, 2007 in Orlando, Florida and the movie was released on September 21, 2007.[18] She next starred in Superhero Movie, a parody on superhero films which began filming in September 2007 and was released on March 28, 2008. She provided backing vocals on her co-star Drake Bell's theme song for the movie Superhero! Song.[19]

Paxton starred in the remake of The Last House on the Left, playing the lead female character, Mari. The film opened March 13, 2009. Her next film may be Gravy, a horror-comedy with Jena Malone and Winona Ryder, and she will also guest star on the show Jonas.[4][20]

2013–present: Television roles and film

Paxton starred in the CW drama series The Beautiful Life alongside Corbin Bleu, Mischa Barton and Elle Macpherson. The show premiered on September 16, 2009, but was cancelled after 2 episodes.[21] It was later aired online on YouTube. Paxton next co-starred with Scott Eastwood in the thriller Enter Nowhere,[4] and also played one of the lead roles in the Ti West film The Innkeepers.[22] Paxton also starred in the 2011 movie Shark Night. She then played Mirabella on the ABC Family movie Lovestruck: The Musical in 2013.

In April 2016, it was announced that Paxton had joined the cast of David Lynch's 2017 Twin Peaks revival.[23]

Music career

Paxton was signed to a record deal with Epic Records during the time she was cast in Aquamarine.[8] Her debut music CD, The Ups and Downs, featuring the titled single "Here We Go Again", is due for release by Epic at some point "in the future"; as of March 2007, Paxton has not completed work on it.[24] She has described the sound as "pop/rock. It is believed Paxton's debut album has been shelved and she has no plans to continue her music career as she has not made any announcement of any plans to further her career in the music industry."[8]

Personal life

Paxton has credited her Jewish religion for feeling "very connected" to her family, who keep her "grounded" and are "always number one" in her life.[8] She did not have a Bat Mitzvah because she was busy filming, though she has said that she "wanted to [have one] so bad".[8]



Year Title Role Notes
1997 Liar Liar Child at Party and School
1997 You're Invited to Mary-Kate & Ashley's Christmas Party Patty Video short
1998 Music from Another Room Young Karen
1998 Soldier Angie
1998 Tunnel Vision Shauna Short film
1999 Durango Kids Hillary
2001 Ruby Princess Runs Away, TheThe Ruby Princess Runs Away Princess Sabrina
2003 Haunted Lighthouse Ashley Short film
2004 Sleepover Staci
2006 Aquamarine Aquamarine Lead role
2007 Sydney White Rachel Witchburn
2008 Superhero Movie Jill Johnson
2009 Last House on the Left, TheThe Last House on the Left Mari Collingwood
2011 Innkeepers, TheThe Innkeepers Claire
2011 Shark Night Sara Palski
2011 Enter Nowhere Jody
2012 Static Rachel
2013 Love & Air Sex Kara
2013 Cheap Thrills Violet
2013 Liars All Katie
2014 Boys of Abu Ghraib Peyton
2014 All Relative Grace
2015 Happily Ever After Sarah Ann
2016 Sundown Lina Hunter


Year Title Role Notes
1996 Small Talk Panelist #1 Series
1997 NewsRadio Sara Episode: "Office Feud"
1999 Working Amanda Baines Episode: "The Prodigy"
1999 Passions Young Sheridan Series
1999 Action Georgia Dragon 2 episodes
1999 Koudelka Charlotte (voice) Video game
1999–2004 SpongeBob SquarePants Various (voice) Nickelodeon series; 12 episodes
2000 Perfect Game Sydney Movie
2000 Geppetto Featured Movie
2000 Beyond Belief: Fact or Fiction Girl Episode: "The Wailing"
2001 Hounded Tracy Richburg Disney Channel original movie
2001 Lizzie McGuire Holly Episode: "Election"
2002 CSI: Crime Scene Investigation Jody Bradley Episode: "Burden of Proof"
2002–2003 Greetings from Tucson Sarah Tobin 5 episodes
2003 CSI: Miami Lana Walker Episode: "Death Grip"
2004 Malcolm in the Middle Angela Pozefsky Episode: "Malcolm Dates a Family"
2004 Will & Grace Melanie Episode: "I Never Cheered for My Father"
2004 Summerland Sarah Borden 5 episodes
2004 Quintuplets Chelsea Episode: "Date Night"
2004–2006 Darcy's Wild Life Darcy Fields Lead role (33 episodes)
2006 Pepper Dennis April May / Chrissy Tyler Episode: "Celebrity Twin Could Hang: Film at Eleven"
2006 Skater Boys Kayla Gordon Episode: "Sundown"
2006 Return to Halloweentown Marnie Piper Lead role (replacing Kimberly J. Brown); Disney Channel original movie
2007 Party Never Stops: Diary of a Binge Drinker, TheThe Party Never Stops: Diary of a Binge Drinker Jessie Brenner Movie
2008 Wizards of Waverly Place Millie Episode: "Credit Check"
2009 Jonas Fiona Skye Episode: "Frantic Romantic"
2009 Beautiful Life: TBL, TheThe Beautiful Life: TBL Raina Marrinelli Main role
2012 Blue Eyed Butcher Susan Wright Movie
2013 Lovestruck: The Musical Mirabella Hutton Movie
2013 Guys with Kids Stacee Episode: "Gary's Idea"
2014 How to Get Away with Murder Natalia Lewis Episode: "Let's Get to Scooping"
2014 Mi$Match Kate Movie
2015 Stalker Isabelle/Lizzy Episode: "Salvation"
2015 Code Black Sophie Episode: "You Are the Heart"
2016 Heartbeat Lou Panttiere Episode: "The Land of Normal"
2016 Murder in the First (TV series) Alicia Barnes Main role
2017 Twin Peaks[23] In post-production



Year Title
2005 "Here We Go Again"
"Kiss Me Like You Mean It"
"I Miss U"
"What Have You Got To Lose"
"Love Song"

Soundtrack credits


Year Song Soundtrack
2005 "Take a Walk" Darcy's Wild Life
"There For You"
"Don't Wanna Be Alone" (with Jesse McCartney) Summerland
2006 "Connected" Aquamarine
"Can You Feel The Love Tonight" Disneymania 4
2008 "I Need a Hero" Superhero! Movie
"Superhero! Song (featuring Sara Paxton)
2012 "Shark Bite Rap" Shark Night 3D
2013 "Me Too (Stripped)" Lovestruck: The Musical
"Like a Virgin"
"How Can I Remember to Forget"
"Me Too (Main Mix)"
"Everlasting Love"


  1. ^ Paxton's birth certificate lists no middle name, despite the sometime reported middle name of "Emily." See the California Birth Index, 1905–1995. Center for Health Statistics, California Department of Health Services, Sacramento, California. At
  2. ^ a b c d "All is going swimmingly for Aquamarine star Paxton". Kalamazoo Gazette. 2006-03-17. Retrieved 2007-01-12. 
  3. ^ "Sara Paxton from 'The Last House on the Left'". Break Media. Retrieved 2011-03-30. 
  4. ^ a b c Lee, David C. (2009). "Sara Paxton". TDINK. Retrieved 2009-03-21. 
  5. ^ Damarys, Sara Paxton in 'The Last House on the Left' published by date=2009-03-13
  6. ^ Sparktech Software LLC (2012-02-01). "'The Innkeepers' Star Sara Paxton: I Would Love To Play Carrie — Inside Movies Since 1920". Retrieved 2012-05-30. 
  7. ^ Bloom, Nate (2007-04-05). "Celebrity Jews". The Jewish News Weekly of Northern California. Retrieved 2007-04-05. 
  8. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m n o Jones, Jen (March–April 2007). "Sara Paxton". JVibe (Jewish Family & Life) 3 (2): 14–17. 
  9. ^ Wilson, Staci Layne (2009-03-06). "Sara Paxton – Interview". Retrieved 2009-03-15. 
  10. ^ a b c "Sara Paxton loved wearing the fins in Aquamarine". Scripps Howard News Service. 2006-06-16. Retrieved 2007-01-12. 
  11. ^ a b Reid, Michael D. (2006-09-08). "Sara Paxton brings the party". Times Colonist. Retrieved 2007-01-12. 
  12. ^ Audrey Fine (5 September 2007). "Sara Paxton Party Never Stops". Seventeen. 
  13. ^ "Sara Paxton's In the "House"". Archived from the original on 29 November 2014. 
  14. ^ "Sleepover". Rotten Tomatoes. 2004. Retrieved 2007-01-12. 
  15. ^ "Sleepover". The Numbers. 2004. Retrieved 2007-01-12. 
  16. ^ "Aquamarine". The Numbers. 2006. Retrieved 2007-01-12. 
  17. ^ "Sara Paxton set to "Party" on at Lifetime" (Press release). Reuters. 2006-09-25. Retrieved 2007-01-12. 
  18. ^ "Amanda Bynes Set to Star in the New Comedy 'Sydney White' for Morgan Creek Productions" (Press release). Morgan Creek Productions. 2006-01-03. Retrieved 2007-01-12. 
  19. ^ "Dimension Films scares up 'Superhero'". Los Angeles Times. 2007-09-20. Retrieved 2007-09-20. [dead link]
  20. ^ Roberts, Sheila (2009-03-04). "Sara Paxton Interview, Last House on the Left". MoviesOnline. Retrieved 2009-03-15. 
  21. ^ Kit, Borys (2010-04-05). "Jack Heller to direct 'Enter Nowhere' film". MoviesOnline. Archived from the original on May 7, 2010. Retrieved 2010-04-05. 
  22. ^ Miska, Brad (2010-04-27). "Sara Paxton Becomes the Final 'Innkeeper'". Bloody Disgusting. Retrieved 2010-04-27. 
  23. ^ a b Murthi, Vikrim (April 25, 2016). "'Twin Peaks' Full Cast Revealed: Amanda Seyfriend, Michael Cera & Over 200 More Join David Lynch Show". Indiewire. Retrieved April 25, 2016. 
  24. ^ Steinberg, Lisa (2007). "SARA PAXTON LIFE OF THE PARTY". Starry Constellation Magazine. Retrieved 2007-03-10. 
  25. ^ "Sarah Paxton".  Allmusic Accessed 2016-1-28