|Born||Summer Yasmine Bishil
(1988-07-17) July 17, 1988
Pasadena, California, U.S.
Summer Yasmine Bishil (born July 17, 1988) is an American actress. She first came to prominence for her roles as Jasira in the 2007 film Towelhead and as Taslima in the 2009 film Crossing Over. She is also known for her role as Margo Hanson on the Syfy fantasy drama series The Magicians.
Bishil was born in Pasadena, California and is the youngest of three children. Her American mother is of Mexican and Caucasian descent and her father is of Indian descent. In 1991, when Bishil was three years old, the family moved to Saudi Arabia and then to Bahrain, where she and her brother attended British and American schools.
The September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks prompted her family to return to the United States. They moved to a Mormon community in San Diego where she attended a regular public high school for a week. Because of the post-9/11 tension in the U.S., her schoolmates did not welcome her kindly. She stated that the return was not easy: “I hated it. I was called a whore on the first day of school, and somebody said they thought my dad funded terrorism. I just knew that nobody was ever going to want to be my friend there. I had panic attacks the first year of my life here.” The family later moved to Arcadia, where her mother home schooled her. She took classes at Citrus College in Glendora, California.
Bishil started acting lessons at age 14. Within a year, she was signed to a contract with a manager and agency. Bishil’s first role was on the short-lived Nickelodeon television show Just for Kicks, followed by appearances in several other children’s shows.
Bishil’s breakthrough performance came as the lead in Alan Ball‘s film, Towelhead in 2006, an adaptation of the novel of the same name. Slate critic Dana Stevens said that “Her performance is the truest thing in a movie that, for all its good intentions, feels thoroughly phony and mildly embarrassing, like an extended PSA about inappropriate touching.” Bob Strauss, who writes for several Los Angeles newspapers, states that Bishil, “…is one of the finest natural film actresses to emerge in years.” Gary Goldstein in a September 12 Los Angeles Times review of the movie Towelhead, stated that, “…newcomer Summer Bishil turns in a gutsy, quietly riveting performance as Jasira.”
In 2009, she filmed Wayne Kramer‘s project, Crossing Over, starring Harrison Ford, Ray Liotta and Ashley Judd, a portrayal that received some favorable notice from Associated Press‘s Jay Reiner. She was chosen to portray Azula in M. Night Shyamalan‘s 2010 film The Last Airbender, and was planned to be the focus of the planned but never-filmed sequel.
In 2013 Bishil was cast as Samira one of the lead roles on the short-lived ABC drama Lucky 7. In late 2014 Bishil was cast in the role of Margo Hanson in the Syfy drama series The Magicians; currently in its third season (in 2018).
|2009||Crossing Over||Taslima Jahangir|
|2010||Last Airbender, TheThe Last Airbender||Azula|
|2018||Under the Silver Lake||The Girlfriend|
|2005||Days of Our Lives||Stacey||Episode #1.10164|
|2006||Just for Kicks||Stacey||Episode: “Premiere Episode: Part 2”|
|2006||Drake & Josh||Tabitha||Episode: “Josh Runs Into Oprah”|
|2006||Hannah Montana||Rachel||Episode: “Good Golly, Miss Dolly”|
|2006||Return to Halloweentown||Aneesa||Television film|
|2009||Three Rivers||Karen Rollins||Episode: “Good Intentions”|
|2010||Whole Truth, TheThe Whole Truth||Michelle Penner||Episode: “Young Love”|
|2011||90210||Leila Shirazi||4 episodes|
|2013||Lucky 7||Samira||Main role|
|2013||Blast Vegas||Serena||Television film|
|2014||Law & Order: Special Victims Unit||Heba Salim||Episode: “Criminal Stories”|
|2015||iZombie||Eliza Marquette||Episode: “Flight of the Living Dead”|
|2015–present||The Magicians||Margo||Main role|
Awards and nominations
|2008||Young Hollywood Awards||One to Watch||Towelhead||Won|||
|2008||Independent Spirit Awards||Best Actress||Towelhead||Nominated|||