Jessica Biel rose to fame as the wholesome preacher's daughter on the WB television show 7th Heaven, then gained greater notoriety for trying to get herself kicked off the show via a risqué photo spread in the men's magazine Gear. Making such statements as, "Mary Camden is dead," the 17-year-old Biel indeed got out of her contract to pursue a movie career; when that floundered, she - amusingly - found herself reconsidering her haste and returned for guest spots on the program.
Biel was born on March 3, 1982, in Ely, MN, then raised in Boulder, CO. She was first discovered at the 1994 IMTA Los Angeles Convention, which earned her a scholarship to Diane Hardin's Young Actors Space in Los Angeles. Teen print modeling followed, and in 1996, Biel began her run as Mary Camden on the Aaron Spelling-produced 7th Heaven. Shortly thereafter, she was cast as Peter Fonda's granddaughter in Victor Nunez's rich character study, Ulee's Gold (1997), and as Jonathan Taylor Thomas' love interest in I'll Be Home for Christmas (1998).