Qualley at the 2017 San Diego Comic-Con
|Born||Sarah Margaret Qualley
(1994-10-23) October 23, 1994
Kalispell, Montana, U.S.
Sarah Margaret Qualley (born October 23, 1994) is an American actress, dancer, and model known for playing Jill Garvey on the HBO television series The Leftovers and Mia Sutton in the 2017 film Death Note.
Qualley was born on October 23, 1994 in Montana. She is the daughter of Andie MacDowell, an actress and model, and Paul Qualley, a model, musician, contractor, and rancher. She has an older brother, Justin (born 1986), and an older sister, Rainey (born 1990). Rainey is also an actress, dancer, and model, as well as a singer-songwriter under the name Rainsford. The Qualley siblings spent their early years on a ranch in Missoula, Montana. Qualley’s parents separated when she was five years old, and she subsequently split her time equally between each parent.
Education and training
As a teenager growing up in Asheville, North Carolina, she and her sister were both debutantes, and Qualley made her debut at the Bal des débutantes in Paris. She left home at 14 to board at the North Carolina School of the Arts, where she studied dance. She trained as a ballerina, earning an apprenticeship at the American Ballet Theatre and studying at New York’s Professional Children’s School. However, at the age of 16, following an offer to become an apprentice with the North Carolina Dance Theater company, Qualley decided to quit dance. In order to stay in New York, she began working as a model. Of this period, Qualley says: “I wrote to my mom saying: ‘Look, I don’t think I want to be a dancer any more so I’m going to quit ballet and stay here. I will have this and this income next week.’ I laid it out in a way that she couldn’t say no because I was so organised.” Qualley later changed her focus to acting and attended London’s Royal Academy of Dramatic Art summer program. Qualley attended New York University.
In 2011, Qualley made her modeling debut at the age of 16 during New York Fashion Week, walking for Alberta Ferretti. She modelled during Paris Fashion Week Spring/Summer 2012 for Valentino and Chanel. She again walked for Chanel during their Fall/Winter 2012 show. Qualley has posed for publications such as Vogue, W, Teen Vogue, Interview, Vanity Fair, and Nylon. Qualley appeared in the Ralph Lauren Fall/Winter 2016 print campaign, shot by Steven Meisel.
Qualley first appeared on screen in 2013 playing a small part in Gia Coppola‘s film Palo Alto. She received the part because she happened to be on set visiting her then-boyfriend, Nat Wolff.
In June 2013, she was cast as a series regular in the HBO television series The Leftovers. Qualley reprised her role as Jill Garvey for the subsequent second and third seasons of The Leftovers in 2015 and 2017, respectively.
In 2016, she appeared in Shane Black‘s comedy The Nice Guys. In April 2016, Qualley was announced to have joined the cast of Shawn Christensen‘s The Vanishing of Sidney Hall. The film premiered at the 2017 Sundance Film Festival, alongside another film of hers, Novitiate. In Novitiate, Qualley stars as Sister Cathleen, a young woman who begins to question her faith as she trains to be a nun. The film was released on October 27, 2017. That same year, Qualley starred in Death Note, directed by Adam Wingard.
Qualley will star in IO, a sci-fi drama directed by Jonathan Helpert. She plays Sam Walden, a teenager surviving as one of the last people on an abandoned post-cataclysmic Earth, who is racing to find a cure for her poisoned home world before the last shuttle off the planet to the distant human space colony leaves her stranded. In 2019, Qualley will appear in Quentin Tarantino‘s upcoming film Once Upon a Time in Hollywood, playing a character named Kitty Kat.
In the media
In 2015, Qualley appeared in the short promotional film L’Américaine for American fashion label Tory Burch. The film was directed by Dianna Agron, who would later be Qualley’s costar on Novitiate.
Qualley appears as the central character in a Spike Jonze-directed commercial for KENZO World. The 2016 short film/ad was choreographed by Ryan Heffington. However, much of the dance routine was improvised by Qualley herself, as she is trained in classical ballet.
As of June 2017, Qualley lives in Los Angeles with her sister Rainey, with whom she shares a rescue dog named Books. Qualley is very close with her sister, whom she has described as “my idol, my best friend in the whole world.”
|2016||The Nice Guys||Amelia|
|2017||Novitiate||Sister Cathleen Harris|
|The Vanishing of Sidney Hall||Alexandra|
|Death Note||Mia Sutton|
|2019||Once Upon a Time in Hollywood||Kitty Kat||Post-production|
|TBA||Native Son||Mary Dalton||Post-production|
|Against All Enemies||Post-production|
|Strange but True||Melissa||Post-production|
|2014–2017||The Leftovers||Jill Garvey||Main role; 22 episodes|