The Big Empty - About the Cast

Last Update: 13 November 2003
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RACHAEL LEIGH COOK (Ruthie)
Enchanting Rachael Leigh Cook is well on her way to becoming one of her
generation's most talented screen stars. Cook's ability to switch from
comedic roles to more serious ones establishes her presence as a
capable young actress. She just completed shooting the Jerry
Bruckheimer produced pilot "Fearless" for the WB in the lead role of
Gaia. Cook has also recently completed filming several independent
movies such as Stateside opposite Jonathan Tucker. This past summer,
Cook shot 11:14 opposite Hilary Swank and Colin Hanks.
 
Other indies include Scorched with Woody Harrelson and John Cleese,
which premiered in Cannes; 29 Palm for Davis Entertainment, in
association with Cook's Ben's Sister Productions, in which she stars
opposite Michael Rapaport and Jeremy Davies; and American Crime
starring opposite Kip Pardue and Anabella Sciorra. Cook's previous
movies include Josie and The Pussycats for Universal in the starring
role of Josie. She filmed opposite Tim Robbins and Ryan Phillippe in
MGM's Anti-Trust and can also been seen in Get Carter for Warner
Brothers starring opposite Sylvester Stallone and Michael Caine. Her
breakout role occurred in the hit movie She's All That, in the starring
role of Laney for Miramax and Tapestry Films, opposite Freddie Prinze,
Jr. Furthermore, Cook can be seen in Miramax's Blow Dry starring in the
role of Christina opposite Josh Hartnett and scripted by Simon Beaufoy
(The Full Monty).
 
Cook also co-produced and starred in the independent film Tangled
opposite Shawn Hatosy and Jonathan Rhys Meyers. Other previous credits
include the independent features The Bumblebee Flies Away, starring
opposite Elijah Wood; The Hi-Line, directed by Ronald Judkins, which
debuted at the 1999 Sundance Film Festival; and All I Wanna Do,
directed by Sara Kernochan and distributed by Miramax. Other projects
included Showtime's feature The Defenders with Beau Bridges, and the
film Living Out Loud with Danny DeVito and Holly Hunter, where Cook
portrayed Hunter as a young girl. Cook filmed the comedy, Naked Man,
co-written by Ethan Coen, playing a "biker babe." Previously, Cook
appeared in the independent feature The House of Yes starring with
Parker Posey. With a dark manic edge, Cook portrayed Posey's character
as a young girl on the verge of womanhood.
 
On the television front, Cook has lensed a guest star appearance in
"Dawson's Creek" and has appeared in the CBS miniseries "True Women,"
co-starring opposite Annabeth Gish and Dana Delany. Cook also starred
in the CBS movie Country Justice.
 
Cook began by modeling for local department stores in print, and with a
canine co-star on the Milkbone dog biscuit box. Her first screen
assignment came when writer/director Peter Syvertsen cast the untried
actress in the short film 26 Summer Street. Set against the squalor of
a 1930s tenement in Baltimore, the film stars Cook as a young girl
watching a baby. Her simple conversations with a doctor (Syvertsen)
illuminate his own life. The experience taught Cook, then fourteen, the
basics of filmwork.
 
Cook soon found herself in Los Angeles auditioning for feature roles.
Success came quickly when cast by Barbara Cohen and Mary Gail Artz in
her first full-length feature The Babysitter's Club (Columbia), an
ensemble film that cast Cook as a quiet conservative girl who must
protect the secret of a loyal friend. Following, Cook played the savvy
free-spirited Becky Thatcher opposite Jonathon Taylor Thomas and Brad
Renfro in Disney's Tom & Huck.
 
Despite success, Cook's Midwest modesty is refreshing: "I'm always
trying to appreciate how lucky I've been so far. But I started getting
worried when I stopped taking hotel soaps!" she remembers. An art lover
who acknowledges a passion for drawing, Cook hopes to broaden her
artistic pursuits into screenwriting, but for the time being will
settle for adventures in front of the camera.
 

Press Notes Main Page
Soundtrack Info 
About the Production
Locking in the Actors
Let's Put Baker on the Map!
Subliminally Speaking
 
About the Cast
- Jon Favreau
- Rachael Leigh Cook
- Kelsey Grammer
- Sean Bean
- Daryl Hannah
- Adam Beach
- Joey Lauren Adams
- Melora Walters
- Jon Gries
- Bud Cort
- Gary Farmer
- Brent Briscoe
 About the Filmmakers
- Steve Anderson (Director)
- Doug Mankoff (Producer)
- Gregg L. Daniel (Producer)
- Andrew Spaulding (Producer)
- Keith Resnick (Producer)
- Steve Bickel (Executive Producer)
- Jeffrey Kramer (Executive Producer)
- Steven G. Kaplan (Executive Producer)
- Peter Wetherell (Executive Producer)
- Jory Weitz (Casting Director)
- Scott Scalise (Film Editor)
- Aaron Osborne (Production Designer)
- Chris Manley (Director of Photography)
- Brian Tyler (Music Composer)
- Dondi Bastone (Music Supervisor)
- Kristin M. Burke (Costume Designer)

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