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- She was a child star who began acting as a four year old. Her first screen appearance was in the television film, ‘An Invasion of Privacy’ which also had Valerie Harper and Carol Kane. Following this she modeled for magazines.
- As a young girl she acted in minor parts in television series like ‘Spenser: For Hire’ and ‘Crossbow’. She also began appearing in small, uncredited roles in films during the 1980s.
- In 1993 she landed her first major acting project. She portrayed Kendall Hart, the long lost daughter of one of the protagonists in the soap opera, ‘All My Children’. This role got her much acclaim and paved the way for a successful acting career. She left the show in 1995.
- She was selected to play the lead, Buffy Summers, in the television series, ‘Buffy the Vampire Slayer’ in 1997. She played a teenager who has been assigned the responsibility of fighting mystical antagonists like vampires. The show ran for seven seasons and was very successful.
- She is best known for her portrayal of Buffy Summers, the teenager who kills vampires, in the television series ‘Buffy the Vampire Slayer’. The show was a critical as well as a commercial success and ran for seven seasons with 144 episodes. It made Gellar a famous face.
- In 1997 she starred with Jennifer Love Hewitt, Ryan Phillippe and Freddie Prinze Jr. in the slasher film, ‘I Know What You Did Last Summer’ which revolved around four friends who were being stalked by a killer. The film though critically panned was a huge commercial hit.
- She portrayed Kathryn in the drama film ‘Cruel Intentions’ in 1999. The movie was adapted from an 18th century novel but set among wealthy teenagers in contemporary New York.
- She appeared in the 2002 horror comedy ‘Scooby-Doo’ along with her future husband Freddie Prinze Jr. The movie received primarily negative reviews but performed very well at the box office. She reprised the role in its sequel, 2004 ‘Scooby-Doo 2: Monsters Unleashed’.
- She was chosen to play the main protagonist, Karen Davis in the supernatural horror film, ‘The Grudge’ in 2004. It was a remake of a Japanese film, and is told in a non-linear sequence of events. She reprised this role in its sequel, ‘The Grudge 2’ in 2006.
- She is also an accomplished voice actor and has provided voices to several characters in various films and television shows including ‘Robot Chicken’ (2005-2012), ‘The Simpsons’, ‘American Dad’, and ‘King of the Hill’.
- She appeared along with Alec Baldwin and Maggie Grace in the 2007 romantic comedy, ‘Suburban Girl’. The movie had been adapted from two stories in Melissa Bank’s best-selling book The Girls’ Guide to Hunting and Fishing.
- Played Sydney Roberts in the situational comedy, ‘The Crazy Ones’ opposite Robin Williams.