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Minka Kelly

Minka Kelly

American actress
Minka Kelly
The basics

Quick Facts

Intro American actress
A.K.A. Minka Dumont Dufay, Minka Dumont Kelly
Is Actor Artist Television actor Stage actor Film actor
From United States of America
Type Arts Film, TV, Stage & Radio
Gender female
Birth 24 June 1980, Los Angeles, Los Angeles County, California, USA
Age 40 years
Star sign Cancer
Father: Rick Dufay
Height: 1.651 m
Valley High School
Peoplepill ID minka-kelly
The details


Minka Dumont Kelly (born Minka Dumont Dufay; on June 24, 1980) is an American actress. She is most known for her roles in the TV series Friday Night Lights (2006), Parenthood (2010) and Charlie's Angels (2011). She is also known for her role in The Roommate (2011). She appeared in the 2013 film The Butler as Jackie Kennedy and in the short-lived Fox science fiction/crime drama Almost Human.

Early life

Kelly was born in Los Angeles, California. She is the only child of former Aerosmith guitarist Rick Dufay and the late Maureen Dumont Kelly, and the granddaughter of actor and investment counselor Richard Ney. Kelly and her mother moved to various communities before settling in Chicago by the time Kelly was in junior high school. She has French, Irish and Dutch-Indonesian ancestry.


After graduating from Valley High School in Albuquerque, New Mexico, Kelly returned to Los Angeles. While on a test shoot for a modeling agency, she was approached by a former Playboy Playmate who was interested in managing her, and who placed Kelly as a receptionist at a surgeon's office who would provide Kelly breast augmentation in exchange for hours worked. She ultimately decided against the procedure, leading to her being fired. That exposure to the medical field prompted her to attend school for a year to become a surgeon's assistant; afterward, she worked as a scrub technician. During the four years, she spent in that vocation she continued auditioning for film and television roles.

Kelly made her show business debut in 2002, appearing in the music video for a Puddle of Mudd song She Hates Me. The video was directed by Marc Webb and featured, besides Kellys, all members of the band including Wes Scantlin. She then appeared in a music video for a Something Corporate song If You C Jordan, which was directed by Richard Reines.

2003 saw her acting debut as an extra in the short film The Turbo Charged Prelude for 2 Fast 2 Furious, a six-minute introduction to the action film 2 Fast 2 Furious, starring Paul Walker and Tyrese Gibson. This was followed by a guest appearance on Cracking Up. She has since appeared in a number of television shows such as Entourage, Drake & Josh, and American Dreams. In 2005, Kelly landed a three-episode recurring role on The WB comedy series What I Like About You.

In April 2006, Kelly was cast as a series regular on the NBC drama Friday Night Lights. The show, based on the high school football movie of the same name, follows a high school football team in the fictional small town of Dillon. Kelly played the role of high school student and cheerleader "Lyla Garrity." In preparation for her role as a cheerleader, she trained with the Pflugerville High School cheerleading squad. The series premiered on October 3, 2006, with Kelly receiving praise for her performance with The New York Times calling her performance "heartbreaking". At the end of the show's third season, Kelly left the series as her character left for college.

In 2006, Kelly starred in the horror slasher film The Pumpkin Karver and had a bit role in State's Evidence. In 2007, she reunited with Friday Night Lights creator Peter Berg in the film The Kingdom in a cameo role as "Ms. Ross" alongside Jamie Foxx and Jennifer Garner. In 2009, she also made a cameo in the film, 500 Days of Summer.

In August 2008, Kelly was cast as the protagonist in The CW pilot Body Politic. She played the role of Francesca "Frankie" Foster, who moves to Washington, D.C. to work for a senator and befriends a group of eager up-and-comers. Despite acclaim from critics who viewed the pilot, The CW did not pick up the series. Kelly also appeared in the pilot for the short-lived CBS ensemble comedy series Mad Love playing the role of Kate, a Midwestern girl who falls in love with Henry at the top of the Empire State Building. When the show was picked up, Kelly was replaced by Sarah Chalke.

In April 2010, Kelly appeared on the NBC drama Parenthood. She played the role of a behavioral aide to the child character "Max" who is diagnosed with Asperger syndrome. Kelly went on to appear in nine episodes of the show before making her final appearance in the episode "Taking the Leap" which aired on March 29, 2011. That same year, Kelly was named "Sexiest Woman Alive" in the annual Esquire magazine feature. She accepted a role in the Off-Broadway play Love, Loss, and What I Wore for an April 27–29, 2011, run with Conchata FerrellAnnaLynne McCordAnne Meara, and B. Smith.

In December 2010, ABC announced that Kelly was cast in the planned reboot of the crime drama Charlie's Angels. She played the role of street racer "Eva French." The pilot was filmed in March 2011 and the series was picked up on May 13, 2011. The film premiered on September 22, 2011, to over 8.76 million viewers. The series received unanimously negative reviews from critics. Despite a planned thirteen episodes, ABC canceled the series after the premiere of the fourth episode due to low ratings.

In February 2011, Kelly starred as the protagonist on the Screen Gems thriller film The Roommate. The film follows a college freshman whose roommate has an obsession with her that turns violent. The film also starred Leighton Meester and went on to make over $15.6 million in its opening weekend and over $40 million worldwide. The film was universally panned and was considered a "cheap remake" of the 1992 film Single White Female.

Kelly greets Service members during a USO Holiday Troop Visit in Bagram Airfield, Afghanistan from December 2011

Variety announced that Kelly was cast as the lead in the mystery comedy film Searching for Sonny. The film follows two reunited friends who are suspects in a murder mystery that is similar to a play in which they appeared during high school. Production took place in May and June 2010 in Fort Worth, Texas. The film won the "Best Narrative Feature" Award at the Festivus Film Festival.

She joined an eight-day, four-country United Service Organizations tour in December 2011 with Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff General Martin DempseyRobert HorryJordin SparksThomas Miles, and Sergeant Major Bryan B. Battaglia. In February 2012, she was one of the celebrities who modeled in red dresses for The Heart Truth Red Dress Collection show, part of New York Fashion Week. She wore a Diane von Fürstenberg dress. In June 2012, Kelly was revealed to be the lead actress in the music video for Maroon 5's second single from the Overexposed album, "One More Night". Kelly appeared in the 2013 film The Butler as "Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis."

In September 2017, it was announced that Kelly had been cast in the live-action television series Titans, as Dawn Granger/Dove.

Most recently, in 2020, Kelly was seen starring as "Sarah" in Marc Carlini's comedy/drama She's in Portland, alongside Tommy Dewey and Ricco Ross.

She has also finished filming for Eytan Rockaway's biographical drama Lansky, which is based on American mob boss Meyer Lansky. Kelly will be seen alongside AnnaSophia Robb and John Magaro.

Personal life

Kelly dated actor Chris Evans in 2007. From May 2008 to August 2011, she dated baseball player Derek Jeter. Jeter and Kelly reunited briefly in early 2012 before separating again. Kelly and Evans rekindled their relationship in 2012, and broke up in 2013. 

As of 2020, Kelly reportedly has been in a relationship with Trevor Noah, host of The Daily Show, for ‘several months’, a source told People Magazine. They’ve been staying and self-isolating together in New York, most likely from Trevor’s Manhattan apartment where he has been filming the Daily Show. The source told People, ‘They are very happy. It’s a very serious relationship.’

Kelly's mother Maureen died in 2008, at age 51, from colon cancer.

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