Reiko Aylesworth is an American actress, known for her work in theatre, movies as well as television. She is mostly known for her role of Michelle Dessler in the action drama TV series ‘24’. She was born in Evanston, Illinois, in the US. She pursued her higher studies from the University of Washington. During her college days, she took part in various local theatre productions. Her first appearance in a TV show was s in the series `One Life to Live’. She continued to play guest roles in various other shows. Her first lead role was in the paranormal hospital drama series `All Souls’. She became popular for her role of Michelle Dessler in the TV series `24’. She appeared in four seasons of the series. Other works in her career include recurring roles in the medical drama series `ER’, and the military sci-fi series `Stargate Universe’. She has appeared in several movies as well, such as `Aliens vs. Predator: Requiem’, and `Bad Parents’.
Childhood & Early Life
Reiko Aylesworth was born in Evanston, Illinois, in the US on 9th December 1972. She is of Dutch, Welsh, as well as Japanese descent. Her father worked as a psychologist and her mother worked at a jail as an administrator.
She developed an interest in acting from an early age, and was also cast in the musical `West Side Story’. Later, she studied neuroscience at the University of Washington. During this time, she took part in several theatre productions, such as `Invisible Friends’, at Seattle Children’s Theatre, and `Peter Pan’, at the Intiman Theatre Company.
Her acting skills in Peter Pan were noticed by talent scouts, and this led to the start of her acting career in television. She appeared in the soap opera `One Life to Live’, for a few episodes. She later appeared in guest roles in other popular TV shows such as `Law & Order’ and `West Wing’.
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When the casting began for the second season of the TV series `24’, Reiko Aylesworth auditioned and earned the role of Michelle Dessler, an agent working for the Counter Terrorism Unit. Her character gained popularity because of the chemistry she shared with her co-actor Carlos Bernard, who portrayed Tony Almeida, her on-screen husband. She continued to play her role from the second season in 2002 till the fifth season in 2006.
She appeared in two television films `Fathers and Sons’, in 2005, and `Magma: Volcanic Disaster’ in 2006. In 2007, she appeared in a recurring role in the medical drama series `ER’. In 2009, she was seen in the fifth season of the drama series `Lost`. The series gained a lot of popularity and appreciation, and is regarded by critics as one of the best American TV shows.
She continued to play recurring and guest roles in several other TV shows, which include `Damages’ in 2010, `Hawaii Five- 0’ between 2011 and 2014, `Revolution’ in 2014, and `Scorpion’ between 2016 and 2017.
Between 1996 and 2007, Reiko Aylesworth appeared in several films in minor roles. Some of them include `You`ve Got Mail’, (1998), `Man on the Moon’, (1999) and `Crazylove’ (2005). Her first main role on the big screen was seen in the 2007 thriller film `The Killing Floor’, which was directed by Gideon Raff. The film received mostly mixed reviews.
The same year, she appeared in the psychological thriller film `Mr. Brooks’, which turned out as a commercial success. She next appeared in a main role in the sci-fi action horror film `Aliens vs. Predator: Requiem’. Though the film was a huge commercial success, reviews were negative. In 2008, she appeared in two movies which were `The Understudy’, and `The Assistants’.
In 2012, she appeared in two comedy films `Bad Parents’, and `Buzzkill’. Both the movies were met with mostly negative reviews. In 2017, she appeared in the American-Japanese film `OhLucy!’, in a supporting role.
Reiko Aylesworth has appeared in several stage productions as well. Some of them include the McCarter Theatre Center’s production of `Humpty Dumpty’, and Summer Play Festival’s production of `The Fearless’.
The action drama series `24’, is undoubtedly the most significant and popular work in her career. She played the role of Michelle Dessler, a Counter Terrorist Unit agent. She appeared in four seasons of the series. The series aired for seven seasons and over the years it gained huge popularity and appreciation. It has won several awards throughout its run, which includes two Golden Globes and several Emmys.
Another important role in her career is the recurring role of Amy Goodspeed in the American drama series `Lost`. It aired from 2004 to 2010, covering six seasons. The story revolved around the survivors of a commercial jet airliner after the flight crashes on a mysterious island. The series gained huge popularity and appreciation, and is also regarded by critics as one of the best TV shows.
Among her several works on the big screen, one of them is a supporting role in the psychological thriller `Mr. Brooks’. The film was directed by Bruce A Evans. It was a commercial success, earning over $ 48 million on a budget of $ 20 million. It received mixed to positive reviews. The film revolves around a wealthy businessman, who has an alter ego forcing him to become a serial killer.
Family & Personal Life
Reiko Aylesworth is married to Rob Clare, who is an expert scholar on Shakespearean theatre. She lived in New York City for many years, though recently she moved to Los Angeles.
Reiko Aylesworth was born in the same hospital as her co-star Carlos Bernard, who played her on-screen husband in the TV series `24’.