Ashley Madekwe

Ashley Madekwe Headshot


Birth Date: December 6, 1981

Age: 42 years old

Birth Place: London, England, UK

A sultry and glamorous on-screen presence, Ashley Madekwe first caught the attention of film and television audiences with dramatic roles in her native Great Britain, which led to her appearing in "Cassandra's Dream" (2007), a crime drama directed by none other than Woody Allen. International stardom soon came calling with the highly provocative "Secret Life of a Call Girl" (Showtime, 2008-2011), originally broadcast on the United Kingdom's ITV2, and a co-headlining role on the short-lived American series "The Beautiful Life: TBL" (The CW, 2009). These two projects helped pave the way for Madekwe's casting in the soapy hit television serial "Revenge" (ABC, 2011-) as the two-faced, social-climbing party planner Ashley Davenport. Like the character she played, Madekwe showed no fear in reaching for what she wanted, a sure sign of an actress with a promising future.

Born and raised in London by a part-Nigerian father and an English mother, Madekwe frequently vied to be the center of attention, which led her father to make her take acting lessons. By the time she was in her late teens, she guest-starred on such venerable British series as "The Bill" (ITV, 1984-2010), and landed a supporting part in "Storm Damage" (BBC Two, 2000), a critically acclaimed TV movie; Madekwe played the ill-fated Annalise, the daughter of a drug addict who ends up in a care home for troubled youth. She then balanced formal training at the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art with more television work, playing another edgy character, a pregnant secondary school student named Bev, on the first season of the British series "Teachers" (Channel 4, 2001-04). Following her graduation in 2005, Madekwe proved potent eye candy in such films as "Cassandra's Dream," an ill-received crime flick starring Colin Farrell and Ewan McGregor, and "Venus" (2006), a vehicle for the great Peter O'Toole. However, her casting in "Secret Diary of a Call Girl" brought her back to the edge; she co-starred on the second and third seasons as Bambi, an escort with a lust for life, who unfortunately proves unlucky in love. The series was broadcast for American audiences by Showtime and proved to be a huge ratings hit, providing Madekwe with her first serious exposure stateside.

By 2009, the fashion-forward Madekwe was cast in her first American television series from creator Mike Kelley "The Beautiful Life: TBL," set in the world of professional modeling; unfortunately, only five episodes were produced. She had much better luck with her sophomore American effort, "Revenge," a lurid evening soap about a woman out to destroy a wealthy Hamptons family. In knowing the show's creator, Mike Kelley, and learning that there would be a British character, Madekwe felt nothing but confident about snagging the role: "I knew that that part was mine" (The TV Chick, Nov. 22, 2011). In the pilot, Madekwe's character, Ashley Davenport, introduced the vengeance-driven main protagonist to high society; however, it wasn't long in the show's run before Ashley began playing the two sides against each other. During the same year that "Revenge" premiered, Madekwe also appeared in "Bedlam" (Sky Living, 2011-), a supernatural-themed British series which proved popular enough that additional seasons were produced, albeit without her. Despite no shortage of acting work, Madekwe found time to marry her longtime boyfriend and fellow actor Iddo Goldberg in 2012, as well as write a blog, "Ring My Bell," focused on the latest in women's fashion. Though the popular blog features Madekwe sporting different fashion trends in daily photographs, she stands by the fact that "it's not a fashion blog, to be honest" (The TV Chick, Nov. 22, 2011).

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