It's been more than 20 years since Jessica Biel found fame back in the mid-'90s as a teenage star on The WB. To celebrate the beautiful actress-producer's 36th birthday on March 3, 2018, Wonderwall.com is taking a look back at the Golden Globe nominee's life in pictures — from her "7th Heaven" days to her most memorable movies and romances to her roles as Mrs. Timberlake and Mom. Keep reading for more…
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Minnesota-born, Colorado-bred Jessica Biel was active in sports and musical theater as a young girl. After a few years as a child model, at 14, she was cast as Mary Camden — the second-oldest daughter in a minister and his wife's growing brood — on "7th Heaven," which debuted on The WB network on Aug. 26, 1996. Jessica starred on the show for six years though came back for a few guest appearances during the remainder of its 11-season run. Jessica is seen here during Season 1 with co-stars David Gallagher, Catherine Hicks, Beverley Mitchell, Barry Watson, Mackenzie Rosman and Stephen Collins.
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The year after she launched her acting career on "7th Heaven," Jessica made her feature film debut in "Ulee's Gold." She earned critical praise for her performance as the granddaughter of Peter Fonda's character in the well-reviewed 1997 film.
Jessica Biel got to know Adam LaVorgna when they co-starred in the 1998 movie "I'll be Home for Christmas." He later joined the cast of "7th Heaven" as Robbie Palmer, who was, for a time, her character's troubled love interest. Jessica and Adam dated in real life too, reportedly from 1998 to 2001. Adam was by Jessica's side at the Elton John AIDS Foundation and InStyle Oscar Party in March 2000, which came just weeks after she appeared topless and semi-nude in a controversial Gear magazine cover story she'd posed for when she was still 17. Not long after, Jessica enrolled at Tufts University while continuing to act, though she dropped out after just a few semesters.
In 2001, Jessica Biel starred opposite teen-movie heartthrob Freddie Prinze Jr. in the rom-com "Summer Catch." She played his baseball-player character's love interest, Tenley Parrish. The same year, she donned a futuristic bikini to star in Aerosmith's "Fly Away From Here" music video.
Jessica Biel played Lara, the promiscuous college roommate of Shannyn Sossamon's Lauren, in the 2002 film adaptation of "The Rules of Attraction," based on the novel by Bret Easton Ellis. The flick featured a cast of teen-movie stars of the era including James Van Der Beek (pictured), Ian Somerhalder, Kate Bosworth and Kip Pardue.
After splitting with Adam LaVorgna, Jessica Biel moved on with a (then) practically unknown Chris Evans. The couple, seen here at a PlayStation 2 party in October 2003, dated on-and-off from late 2001 until 2006.
Jessica Biel scored top billing in 2003's "The Texas Chainsaw Massacre" remake. Though critics hated it, audiences flocked to the slasher film, which opened at No. 1 at the box office in October 2003 and earned nearly $110 million on a $9 million production budget.
Jessica Biel took on the action-adventure genre with a major role in 2004's "Blade: Trinity," the third film in the Marvel franchise starring Wesley Snipes as the titular superhero vampire hunter. Ryan Reynolds co-starred.
Jessica Biel donned blue eye shadow on the red carpet at the 2004 MTV Movie Awards, where she was nominated for the breakthrough female performance prize for her work in "The Texas Chainsaw Massacre." She lost out to Lindsay Lohan, who won for her performance in "Freaky Friday." But Jessica was in good company: Scarlett Johansson, Keira Knightley and Evan Rachel Wood were losers in the same category that night.
It was movie after movie for Jessica Biel in the aughts. In 2005, she played Lt. Kara Wade, a talented Navy pilot in the action-packed movie "Stealth." Unfortunately for Jessica and co-stars Jamie Foxx and Josh Lucas, the flick was a major bomb with critics and audiences.
In October 2005, Jessica Biel was named "The Sexiest Woman Alive" by Esquire magazine.
In 2006, Jessica Biel took on a serious (and critically praised) role as the female lead in the period mystery "The Illusionist" opposite Edward Norton (pictured) and Paul Giamatti.
After calling it quits with Chris Evans, Jessica Biel made headlines in November 2006 when she and New York Yankees star Derek Jeter were spotted kissing as they partied at various Las Vegas hotspots. On New Year's Day 2007, the hard-bodied pair were photographed playing volleyball while vacationing together at a resort in Puerto Rico.
Barely two weeks after she enjoyed a holiday getaway with baseball legend Derek Jeter, Jessica Biel met a music star who quickly began pursuing her. Her "7th Heaven" co-star Beverley Mitchell told "Access Hollywood Live" that she was there the night Jessica and now-husband Justin Timberlake met in mid-January 2007. "It was at the Golden Globes. It was so cute because they were like — it's that moment like, 'I like you, I think you like me.' It was very, very sweet," she said. "They were definitely flirting." According to Justin, "We met and got talking. Afterwards I asked my friend if I could call her and ask her out," he said in 2012. "My friend called Jessica and Jessica said yes, and so I called her." Jessica, however, didn't go out with JT right away. So he tried harder — and didn't rely on texts. "I did it the old fashioned way — by telephone. That's something I learned from both my stepdad and my grandfather, that there is a thing called chivalry and it doesn't have to die with the birth of the Internet." Here's what Jessica and Justin looked like on that fateful night!
In 2008, Jessica Biel held her own and earned praise for her portrayal of an American widow who marries a young British aristocrat (Ben Barnes) then clashes with her new mother-in-law (Kristin Scott Thomas) and bonds with her new father-in-law (Colin Firth, pictured) in the 1920s-set romantic comedy "Easy Virtue," which was based on a play by Noel Coward. She also ably belted out several songs for the indie film's soundtrack.
The whole family — dad Jon, mom Kimberly and brother Justin Biel — were by Jessica Biel's side when she was honored for her volunteer work with disadvantaged youth with the Heart of Los Angeles (HOLA) National Impact Award in November 2008.
Justin Timberlake and Jessica Biel kept an incredibly low profile in the early years of their romance. But he was by Jessica's side when she served as a bridesmaid in "7th Heaven" co-star and longtime friend Beverley Mitchell's wedding in Ravello, Italy, in October 2008.
She can sing too! Jessica Biel, who trained as a vocalist as a child, took on the role of Sarah Brown (opposite actress Ellen Greene, pictured) in a Los Angeles Philharmonic production of the musical "Guys and Dolls" at the Hollywood Bowl in July 2009.
In the action-packed 2010 big-screen adaptation of "The A-Team," Jessica Biel played a captain in the Defense Criminal Investigative Service who helps a group of elite Special Forces operatives — which includes ex-boyfriend Face (played by Bradley Cooper) — when they go rogue in an effort to clear their names.
In January 2010, Jessica Biel and actor Emile Hirsch joined musician Kenna and others as they climbed Mt. Kilimanjaro — Africa's tallest peak — in an effort to raise awareness of the global water crisis. The stars met up again in New York City that March to celebrate the premiere of "Summit on the Summit: Kilimanjaro," a documentary about their quest that aired on MTV.
In March 2011, Jessica Biel and Justin Timberlake released a statement confirming that they'd broken up, explaining the split was "completely mutual" and that it was "time to move on." A few months later, she was romantically linked to Scottish actor Gerard Butler during and after they filmed the disappointing 2012 sports rom-com "Playing for Keeps." Later in 2011, Jessica and Justin reconciled — and he proposed marriage during a vacation in Montana that December.
In August 2012, Jessica Biel returned to action flicks with a role opposite Colin Farrell and Kate Beckinsale in "Total Recall." The trio are seen here at the film's London premiere. Jessica was later nominated for worst supporting actress at the Golden Raspberry Awards for her performance as well as for her acting in "Playing for Keeps."
In October 2012, Jessica Biel donned a pink Giambattista Valli Haute Couture wedding dress and married Justin Timberlake in Puglia, Italy, in front of family and famous friends including Jimmy Fallon, Andy Samberg, Timbaland and Beverley Mitchell. A month later, the new Mrs. Timberlake showed off her gorgeous wedding rings at the "Hitchcock" film premiere in Los Angeles.
Though Jessica Biel attended the 66th Cannes Film Festival in May 2013 to support new husband Justin Timberlake, who was there to promote his film "Inside Llewyn Davis," she ended up stealing the spotlight when she hit the red carpet at his movie's premiere in a heavily embroidered and feathered Marchesa gown that she accessorized with a serpent necklace.
Her greatest role yet came in 2015: motherhood. Jessica Biel, seen here on a Whole Foods run less than three weeks before she gave birth, welcomed son Silas Randall with husband Justin Timberlake on April 8 that year.
In 2016, Jessica Biel, an avid baker, took on a new project: She opened the family-friendly restaurant Au Fudge in West Hollywood. She's seen here at the eatery — which has monitored playrooms, a mostly organic menu and plenty of tasty kid-friendly fare — with her pal of two decades, Beverley Mitchell, and the "7th Heaven" actress' daughter, Kenzie Cameron, that August.
Despite his best effort, Justin Timberlake's silly antics failed to take attention away from his fashion risk-taker wife, Jessica Biel, when they hit the red carpet at the 2017 Academy Awards, where he was up for a best original song Oscar for "Can't Stop the Feeling" from "Trolls." Jessica was a fixture on all the best dressed lists thanks to her bold gold-sequined Kaufman Franco gown featuring a wild neckpiece yet otherwise minimal styling.
Jessica Biel took her career into her own hands when she championed and executive produced her first TV project, USA's "The Sinner," in 2017. She also starred in the eight-episode mystery-crime drama, which scored big in the ratings and earned her praise from critics (plus a Golden Globe nomination) for her portrayal of a young mother who violently kills a man in public seemingly without a motive. "There have been so many times in my career that I can say, 'I don't feel terribly proud about this thing' or 'I didn't really like the project.' But with this particular one, it's so nice to do something that you're genuinely proud of," she told The Daily Telegraph.
Getting pickier about projects is just one thing that's changed for Jessica Biel since she had son Silas Timberlake, seen here with her at age 2 in September 2017. "You think you're a selfless person, and then you realize you're not," she told Marie Claire the same year. "These little people come around, and they require so much, and your schedule is really not your own… and it's very clear that it's your life now revolving around this dude."
In January 2018, it was Justin Timberlake's turn to support Jessica Biel on the red carpet. The couple are seen here at the Golden Globes, where Jessica was nominated for best actress in a miniseries or television film for her work in "The Sinner," which itself was nominated for best miniseries or TV film.