Biography by Askmen.com
Sarah is a descendent of Baba Khan, the second Shah of the Qajar dynasty, and her royal demeanor is apparent in everything she does. Whether cheering for the home team or posing for a swimsuit spread, Sarah is full of grace and elegance. But her beauty, however impressive, is only half of the story. Sarah is also an accomplished and thoroughly likable actress. As Carmen on The L Word, she convincingly plays a sweet, aspiring DJ who pays her bills by working as a production assistant during the day. Unlike the characters whirling around her, Carmen is grounded and unwilling to trifle with love. According to Sarah, "I think there are a lot of similarities between me and Carmen, just in the sense that she's a no-nonsense kind of girl, she's very up-front with her feelings, she's not wishy-washy and she knows what she wants."
"As far as the lesbian aspect goes, it's also pretty similar in the fact that I... dabbled in it myself for a while. Also, I live in L.A., I have friends who go to gay bars, I hang out in those places. So that part came very natural to me, because of my own experiences." -Sarah Shahi, on her role in The L Word
Sarah Shahi was born Aahoo Jahansouzshahi on January 10, 1980, in Euless, Texas. To her family, the quaint little town must have felt millions of miles away from their native Iran. Then again, their safety depended upon it. Descendents of the Fath Ali Shah of the Qajar Dynasty, Sarah's family was forced to leave their homeland two years before due to the political and social unrest caused by the Islamic Revolution. Luckily, the family was safe in America, and Sarah grew up speaking both Farsi and English, celebrating her parent's culture at home, while also happily gobbling up Americana.
Sarah Shahi the beauty queen
Sarah grew quickly into her beauty and, at her mother's encouragement, began entering pageants while she was still in elementary school. Success naturally followed, and by the age of 10, she was invited to participate in an international modeling competition in New York.
Although her travel and exposure increased, Sarah's parents made sure she didn't neglect her studies. To their credit, and hers, Sarah graduated from high school a member of the National Honor Society and was also actively involved with her school's choir.
Sarah Shahi the cowboys cheerleader
Things really began moving for Sarah the following year when she packed her bags and enrolled at Southern Methodist University in Dallas. The prettiest girl on her campus, Sarah was instantly recognized for her grace and elegance, and was crowned Miss Fort Worth. The title brought her more attention than she had ever experienced, and with it came an invitation to join the world-renowned Dallas Cowboys Cheerleader squad.
Sarah shook her pom poms for "America's Team" for two full seasons in 1999-2000, during which time she appeared as the cover girl for their 2000 swimsuit calendar, and traveled to the Balkans to entertain troops as a member of a USO tour.
Despite her extraordinary extracurricular pursuits, Sarah still managed to graduate near the top of her class at SMU, where she trained as an opera singer. With her degree in hand, Sarah decided to try her luck at acting and landed a role as (what else?) a cheerleader in 2000's Dr. T and the Women, starring Richard Gere and Helen Hunt. Despite her limited screen time, director Robert Altman was clearly impressed with what he saw and encouraged Sarah to go west to pursue a career in film.
Late in 2000, she did just that, moving to Los Angeles.
Sarah Shahi in old school
Early returns from her move were extremely promising, as the Persian beauty scored a succession of guest roles on Spin City, Boston Public and Frasier before landing a recurring role as Jenny in the spy thriller Alias. By now a familiar face to casting directors, Sarah scored again in 2003 when she played recurring character Sadia Shaw on Dawson's Creek.
The increased exposure helped Sarah to land a role in the mega-blockbuster comedy Old School later that year. Acting alongside Will Ferrell and Vince Vaughn made it clear that she had finally arrived. Guest-starring roles followed on ER and Reba, where Sarah met her current boyfriend, fellow actor and series star Steve Howey.
Sarah Shahi on the l word
With her fame steadily increasing, Sarah landed on a series of her own in 2004, when she joined the impressive ensemble cast of The L Word. Playing Carmen de la Pica Morales, Sarah eats up the scenery as a gorgeous lesbian DJ. The role has been eye opening for Sarah, who's learned more than a few new tricks on set. According to the feisty Texan, "I feel like I would definitely know how to go down on a woman if I was ever in that situation."
In addition to starring on the hit show, Sarah will also be on the big screen again in 2006, playing a call girl in the offbeat indie flick The Adventures of Beatle Boyin.
- The Adventures of Beatle Boyin (2006) (filming) .... Carla
- "The L Word" (2004) TV Series .... Carmen de la Pica Morales (2005-)
- A Lot Like Love (2005) .... Starlet
- Old School (2003) .... Erica
- Class of '06 (2002) (TV) .... Meg
- Dr T and the Women (2000) (uncredited) .... Cheerleader Extra
... aka Dr. T and the Women (Germany) (USA: alternative spelling)