Born Julie Bowen Luetkemeyer, March 3, 1970, in Baltimore, MD; daughter of Jack (worked in commercial real estate) and Susie Luetkemeyer; married Scott Phillips, September, 2004. Education: Brown University, B.A., 1991.
Addresses: Office—c/o Boston Legal, David E. Kelley Productions, 1600 Rosecrans Ave., Manhattan Beach, CA 90266.
Actress in films, including: Five Spot Jewel, 1992; Happy Gilmore, 1996; Multiplicity, 1996; An American Werewolf in Paris, 1997; You're Killing Me …, 2001; Amy's Orgasm, 2001; Venus and Mars, 2001; Joe Somebody, 2001; Kids in America, 2005; Partner(s), 2005. Television appearances include: Loving, 1992; Lifestories: Families in Crisis, 1993; Class of '96, 1993; Acapulco H.E.A.T., 1993; Runaway Daughters (movie), Showtime, 1994; Where Are My Children? (movie), 1995; Extreme, 1995; Party of Five, FOX, 1996; Strange Luck, 1996; Three, 1998; ER, NBC, 1998–99; The Last Man on Planet Earth (movie), 1999; Oh Baby, 2000; Dawson's Creek, The WB, 2000; Ed, NBC, 2000–03; Justice League, Cartoon Network, 2002; Jake in Progress, ABC, 2005; Lost, ABC, 2005–06; Boston Legal, ABC, 2005–. Stage appearances include: Guys and Dolls; Lemon Sky; Stage Door. Also appeared in television commercials; hired as spokesperson for Neutrogena, 2001.
Film and television actress Julie Bowen is primarily known for her roles in hit television shows Ed and Boston Legal. Though she appeared in a number of other television programs and roles in films, one of her best known roles came in the 1996 Adam Sandler vehicle Happy Gilmore. Both in film and television, Bowen regularly played the girlfriend or love interest.
Born Julie Luetkemeyer in Baltimore, Maryland, Bowen is the middle of three daughters born to Jack and Susie Luetkemeyer. Bowen was attracted to acting from an early age. With her older sister, Molly, and younger sister, Annie, Bowen put on plays in the family's backyard. After attending Baltimore's Roland Park Country School, Bowen entered Brown University. She continued to act in college, appearing in productions of Guys and Dolls, Lemon Sky, and Stage Door. Bowen also spent her junior year abroad studying in Florence, Italy, before graduating with her B.A. in Renaissance Studies in 1991.
Before earning her degree, Bowen was cast in her first film. She had a role in the 1992 independent release Five Spot Jewel, which was shot while she was a college senior. Remaining on the East Coast, Bowen continued to pursue an acting career. She appeared in television commercials, had a recurring role on the soap opera Loving in 1992, and made a guest appearance on the series Class of '96.
To further her acting career, Bowen moved to Los Angeles, California. She spent the next decade primarily working in television. Bowen was cast in her first television movie, 1994's Runaway Daughters, shortly after arriving in Los Angeles. Bowen also had numerous guest spots on shows like Party of Five and Strange Luck in the early to mid-1990s. She soon progressed to recurring or regular stints on series like Extreme, and the short-lived Three. From 1998 to 1999, Bowen played Roxanne Please, Dr. Noah Drake's girlfriend, for a number of episodes on the hit NBC series ER.
Bowen's film career began in earnest in the mid-1990s. She had a memorable turn as Virginia Venit in Happy Gilmore. Bowen's character becomes involved with Sandler's titular golfer, a hockey player trying to save his grandmother's home from the taxman. That same year, Bowen starred in Multiplicity with Michael Keaton. Bowen followed these roles with an appearance in the 1997 film An American Werewolf in Paris. This film was a sequel/remake of An American Werewolf in London, a horror/comedy, and was panned by critics. Bowen played a party girl who becomes a victim to one of the werewolves.
Bowen continued to move between television and film in the early 2000s. After appearing in two guest spots in 2000 on Oh Baby and Dawson's Creek, the actress appeared in a number of films. In 2001 alone, three films featuring Bowen were released, including Amy's Orgasm Venus and Mars, with Lynn Redgrave, and the holiday film Joe Somebody, with Tim Allen. In the last film, Bowen plays Meg, the love interest of Allen's character, who helps him find his life again after his marriage ends.
In 2000, Bowen had her first major role in a hit television series. She spent four years in a starring role on the quirky NBC hit Ed. Bowen played Carol Vessey, the love interest of the title character, Ed Stevens. Ed returns to his hometown in Ohio, Stuckeyville, after his marriage ends badly. A lawyer, Ed runs a bowling alley out of which he also operates his law business. Bowen's Carol was a cheerleader in high school whom Ed had a crush on. As an adult, she worked as a teacher at their high school alma mater.
Bowen shined in the role on Ed and had chemistry with her co-star. The show's co-creator, Rob Burnett, told Neal Justin of the Star Tribune, "She's this odd combination of beauty and humor and intelligence. That's hard to find. We had auditioned every actress in Hollywood for the role. I remember Julie came in at the end of a long day and we were practically asleep and then, suddenly, she knocked our socks off."
The success of her work on Ed led to an endorsement deal for Bowen. In 2001, she signed on to be a spokesperson for Neutrogena products. She appeared in prints ads and television commercials for various skin and makeup products for the company. Bowen married Scott Phillips in September of 2004.
After Ed was canceled, Bowen had recurring roles in two ABC series, Jake in Progress and Lost. Bowen also continued to appear in small roles in films like the comedy/drama, Kids in America, and Partner(s) both released in 2005.
Also in 2005, Bowen joined the cast of the hit show Boston Legal at the beginning of its second season. She played Denise Bauer, a strong lawyer who had a soft side. Bowen remained with the show for its third season, and found the role was reflective of her own personality. Bowen told the New Zealand Herald, "Whenever I get into a fight with my husband he always says, 'You've got to stop being a lawyer.' But he used to say that well before I ever played one. So I think [Boston Legal] is just an opportunity for my inner lawyer to come out."
Business and Industry, August 2001, p. 30.
Daily News (New York, NY), September 27, 2005, p. 98.
New York Times, February 25, 1996, sec. 2, p. 25.
New Zealand Herald, May 4, 2006.
Omaha World Herald (Omaha, NB), December 21, 2001, p. 1E.
Pittsburgh Post-Gazette (Pittsburgh PA), May 21, 2005, p. D5.
Record (Bergen County, NJ), May 1, 2002, p. F9.
Rocky Mountain News (Denver, CO), December 25, 1997, p. 16D.
Star Tribune (Minneapolis, MN), October 17, 2001, p. 1E.
Toronto Star (Toronto, Canada), December 26, 1997, p. B16.
"Crane Poole & Schmidt Staff Bios: Julie Bowen," ABC.go.com, http://abc.go.com/primetime/bostonlegal/cast_bios/Julie_Bowen.html (August 12, 2006).
"Julie Bowen," Internet Movie Database, http://www.imdb.com/name/nm0100866/ (August 12, 2006).