Kate's Notes

Thursday, March 01, 2007

Courtney Cox

Courteney Cox

Courteney Bass Cox Arquette (born Courteney Bass Cox on June 15, 1964) is probably known to the world by a different name all together: Monica Geller: one of the 6 stars on the long-running television sitcom “Friends,” where Cox’s image and the anal-retentive corky character became synonymous. However, she was an actress and former fashion model before the show, gracing the big screen in feature films such as Ace Ventura: Pet Detective, opposite Jim Carrey in 1994, and after the show, trying to break away from her “Friends” moniker, playing a ruthless tabloid magazine editor and executive director on FX network’s new melodrama, “Dirt.”

From the time when she won our hearts as the pretty young girl who danced on stage with Bruce Springsteen in his video, “Dancing in the Dark,” Cox has been the twinkle in the entertainment industry’s eye.

Early life

A Birmingham, Alabama native, Cox was born to an affluent Southern family: her late father, Richard L. Cox, was a businessman and her mother, also named Courteney (née Bass), was a housewife. Cox has two older sisters (Dottie Pickett and Virginia Cox), one older brother (Richard, Jr.) and an astounding nine half-brothers and half-sisters. Her parents divorced in 1974, and her father eventually traveled to Panama City, Florida where he would open a company called Cox Pools, while Cox grew up with her mother and her stepfather, New York businessman Hunter Copeland.

Cox was raised in an exclusive society town, Mountain Brook, Alabama. She attended Mountain Brook High School, where she was a cheerleader, tennis player and swimmer. In order to break the mold of her proper upbringing, she did take up the drums to explore her rebellious nature. Upon graduation, Cox went to study architecture and interior design at Mount Vernon College for Women – her mother’s alma mater. She dropped out after one year to pursue a modeling career, after being signed by the Ford modeling agency in New York City. While modeling, she also took acting classes, and acquired a Northern accent.

Early Career

Bruce Springsteen was the unlikely ticket for Cox’s ride to fame, and first came to prominence in his 1984 music video, where she was the pulled-on-stage-girl who danced onstage with Springsteen for 26 seconds. Cox is also notable for being the first person to use the word "period" on United States television in its physiological sense, in a 1985 advertising campaign for Tampax brand tampons. Her early film roles include Masters of the Universe (1987) starring Dolph Lundgren and Cocoon: The Return (1988) with Don Ameche and Steve Guttenberg. Cox's early television work include a starring role in the short-lived television series “Misfits of Science” (1985), and later a recurring role (1987 - 1989) on the television series “Family Ties” as the last girlfriend of Alex P. Keaton (Michael J. Fox). Cox also appeared as Meryl, Jerry's girlfriend/pretend wife on the hit television sitcom "Seinfeld," starring Jerry Steinfeld in 1994.

After appearing in the Jim Carrey comedy Ace Ventura: Pet Detective (1994), Cox found fame playing Monica Geller on the hit television series “Friends,” from 1994-2004, starring alongside Jennifer Aniston, Lisa Kudrow, Matt LeBlanc, Matthew Perry, and David Schwimmer. This was the role that would shoot her star straight to the top. The six principal cast members, including Cox, became household names due to the mass popularity and success of the show, and all characters ended up earning a 1-million paycheck per episode. However, she was the only principal member of the show's cast not to be nominated for an Emmy Award.

During her time on “Friends,” Cox appeared in the highly successful and high-profile series of films, Scream (1996), Scream 2 (1997), and Scream 3 (2000). While filming the first of this trilogy, she met her husband David Arquette. Although she starred in several other films during her time on “Friends” none achieved the same level of success as the show. Such films include The Runner, 3000 Miles to Graceland and The Shrink is In. In late 2003, Cox produced the television series “Mix It Up”: the lifestyle show received low ratings and was not renewed for a second season.

After her “Friends” role, Cox was producer Marc Cherry's first choice to be offered a starring role as Susan Mayer on "Desperate Housewives." But due to the actress's pregnancy, she was unavailable for the part, therefore, giving the role to Teri Hatcher. A couple of years later, Cox signed a deal with ABC Television Studio (formerly Touchstone Television), to star in her own series.

Since “Friends,” Cox has primarily concentrated on her family but has starred in the independent film November (2005), which had only a limited theatrical release, co-starred with Tim Allen in the critically slammed Zoom, and cameoed in the big budget remake of The Longest Yard, as the girlfriend of Adam Sandler. She has recently supplied her voice for the animated film Barnyard.

As of 2007, Cox plays Lucy Spiller, a tabloid editor, in the FX network’s melodrama, “Dirt.” Cox and her husband, David Arquette, are the executive producers of the series.

Personal Life

Cox's previous relationships include the late Ian Copeland and a long term relationship with actor Michael Keaton. Cox also dated Counting Crows singer Adam Duritz, and appeared in their music video for song "A Long December" in 1997. Duritz has also dated Cox's "Friends" co-star, Jennifer Aniston.

She met actor David Arquette on the set of Scream; the couple married on June 12, 1999 in an Episcopalian ceremony held at the Grace Cathedral in San Francisco, CA. Both Arquette and Cox had the sentence “A deal's a deal” inscribed on their wedding rings. While Cox has occasionally used her full married name, "Courteney Cox Arquette", professionally, she continues to be generally known simply as "Courteney Cox."

On June 13, 2004, she gave birth to their first child, daughter Coco Riley Arquette, after years of trying to conceive. The child was originally to be named after her mother as Courteney Cox Arquette (naming the eldest daughter after her mother is a common tradition in upper-class Southern families [citation needed]), however her husband's family objected to this on the grounds that naming a child after a living relative goes against Jewish tradition. Coco is a nickname Cox's friends gave her mother when she was a child.

Jennifer Aniston and Courtney Cox played best friends on the set of their hit show, “Friends,” and very soon after the beginning of season one, they became fast friends in real life. The pair has been together through thick and thin: from Cox’s struggle to get pregnant with husband David Arquette, to Aniston’s messy separation and high-profile divorce Brad Pitt (who went onto have a baby girl with Angelina Jolie), they have held each others hands throughout it all. She is also Coco Riley Arquette’s godmother.

In an interview in mid-2006, Cox opened up about her opinion regarding plastic surgery in a Marie Claire interview, where she admitted to seriously considering it as a viable option to aging gracefully: “David has a huge problem with it, but I don’t. It’s hard getting older; it’s hard not to be young anymore.”

Charity and Activism

Cox supports several charities, including Camp Laurel, Lili Claire Foundation, Pediatric Epilepsy, and Project A.L.S.


Post a Comment

<< Home