The Early Years

It’s in Guelph, Ontario, Canada, that Neve Adrianne Campbell was born on October 3, 1973. Her father Gerry was from Scotland while her mother Marnie was born in Holland. In fact, Neve (pronounced Nev) was her mother’s maiden name.

Although Gerry and Marnie were both associated with the theater world, they got divorced when Neve was two years old. She has two younger brothers,, Damian and Alex, and an older brother named Christian. Both Alex and Christian are also actors.

neve the ballerina

After having seen The Nutcracker with her father when she was six, Neve found her calling and started dancing. She was so good that when she was nine, she was offered a full scholarship and began training at the National Ballet School of Canada.

Having studied six different types of dancing, including jazz, flamenco, modern, hip hop, and classical ballet, she soon appeared in productions of Sleeping Beauty and The Nutcracker with the National Ballet of Canada.

But ballet takes its toll on the body and Neve suffered a number of injuries. It was also an unhappy time for her because the world of professional dancing is often a breeding ground for competition and backstabbing. When she was 14, she suffered a nervous breakdown that made all her hair fall out. This finally convinced her to give up dancing.

neve becomes a model

Soon after, a talent scout discovered her and convinced her to do some modeling. She stayed in the business long enough to shoot commercials for Eaton’s Department Store and Petro Canada, but quit after two months, finding the profession shallow and unsatisfying.

At that point, she turned to acting and was soon cast as the Degas Girl in The Phantom of the Opera at Toronto’s Pantages Theater. At 16, she was at the time the youngest person ever to be cast in this production. In total, she performed in over 800 shows.

During that period, she met struggling actor Jeff Colt, a bartender at the theater in which she performed. They soon fell in love and moved in together in 1990, when Neve was only 17. They were married in 1995 in England’s Westminster Cathedral, but they amicably got divorced three years later.

neve on party of five

Her acting career took off in 1992 on Canadian television. After guest appearances on shows such as The Kids in the Hall, Are You Afraid of the Dark? and Kung Fu: The Legend Continues, she was cast in the teen drama Catwalk. In 1994, she appeared in three TV movies: I Know My Son Is Alive, The Forget-Me-Not Murders and Baree.

Following two other small 1994 features, Paint Cans and The Dark, she took on the part of Julia Salinger Holbrook on the hit Fox series Party of Five, also starring Lacey Chabert and Jennifer Love Hewitt. She stayed on the series until its final season in 2000.

neve on scream

In 1996, Neve appeared in the TV movie The Canterville Ghost, as well as the supernatural thriller The Craft, co-starring Robin Tunney, Fairuza Balk, and Christine Taylor. That same year, she snatched the leading role of Sidney Prescott in a little slasher film called Scream. Made on a budget of $15 million, it went on to gross over ten times that amount at box offices worldwide.

In 1997, she reprised her role in Scream 2. Then, she was offered a plum part in the sizzling Wild Things (1998) alongside Denise Richards, Matt Dillon, and Kevin Bacon. She wasn’t sure whether she was going to accept the job until Robert DeNiro convinced her that she was young enough that it wouldn’t kill her career if the film flopped.

Also in 1998, she was featured in another sexy movie, 54, and lent her voice to the animated feature The Lion King II: Simba’s Pride. After the comedies Three to Tango (1999) and Drowning Mona (2000), she made the independent drama Panic (2000) and was chased by a psycho again in Scream 3 (2000).

With her television duties on Party of Five over, she starred in Investigating Sex (2001). Following the television adaptation of Last Call (2002), she was seen in the offbeat Lost Junction (2003).

Next, she produced, wrote, and starred in The Company (2003), a movie about life in a ballet company, something she obviously knows something about. In 2004, she was busy with the Val Kilmer and Amy Smart thriller Blind Horizon, When Will I Be Loved? and Churchill: The Hollywood Years.

In March 2006, Campbell made her West End theatre debut, in a version of Arthur Miller’s Resurrection Blues at the Old Vic theatre. The play, which received mixed reviews, co-stars Matthew Modine and Maximilian Schell, and was directed by Robert Altman, with whom Campbell has previously worked with in The Company. She performed again at the West End later in 2006 as part of Love Song, starring alongside Cillian Murphy, Michael McKean, and Kristen Johnston, to mixed reviews.

Love Talks

Neve married Canadian actor Jeffrey Colt in 1995; they divorced in 1998. She has also dated actors John Cusack, Matthew Lillard, and Pat Mastroianni. In 2005, she began dating John Light, an English actor who she met while filming the movie Investigating Sex. The couple became engaged in February 2006, and got married in May 05, 2007, in a small and reserved ceremony in Malibu (Guests, which include close family and friends, have been sworn to secrecy about the exact time and place of the ceremony). They live in London, England. When Light proposed, he got down on one knee and recited Shakespeare to her.