Thanks to Lena's portrayal of Queen Gorgo – and her ability to hold her own against Leonidas (Gerard Butler) – in 2007's smash hit "300," producers finally took notice of Lena's talents. Within a year of the release of "300," Lena would be on FOX carrying the new show "Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles." Remaining faithful to Linda Hamilton's big screen representation of the heroine, Lena boasted an athletic physique and tough persona that has suited the actress well.
Lena's tendencies towards sci-fi and adventure-type roles began early in her career, in 1994's "The Jungle Book" through the TV movie "Merlin," and leading up to playing Angelika in "The Brothers Grimm" in 2005. Born in Bermuda to British parents, Lena grew up in the West Yorkshire area of England. Her acting abilities in the Royal National Theatre led to her first film while still a teenager: the 1992 picture "Waterland." A wide variety of small roles kept Lena busy through the ‘90s – as a maid in the Anthony Hopkins movie "Remains of the Day," the heroine in Richard Dean Anderson's "MacGyver: Trail of Doomsday" TV film, and as Liv Tyler's sister in the Ralph Fiennes drama "Onegin" in 1999.
In 2000, Lena showcased her range and leading lady qualities in the college thriller "Gossip," in which Lena is college student Cathy Jones opposite James Marsden. Two years later, Lena joined the esteemed cast of Neil Labute's "Possession" starring Gwyneth Paltrow and Aaron Eckhart. In 2003, Lena appeared in the Ray Winstone / John Malkovich suspense film "Ripley's Game." 2005's "The Cave" was another reliable adventure/horror in which Lena coasted, but "Imagine Me & You" (released the same year) was a refreshing departure, this time playing a lesbian opposite her "The Cave" co-star Piper Perabo.
With Lena now fully sanctioned as a strong screen presence (particularly in the action-adventure genre), her future as an A-list star rests on the endurance of "The Sarah Connor Chronicles" show. Either Lena will emerge as an in-demand talent for projects usually offered to Angelina Jolie, or her streak as a reliable supporting actress will continue. Either way, Lena's charisma is palpable and should lend itself to more high profile projects in the next decade.
Lena on the Web
Ultimate web resource page for Lena.
TV Guide: Lena Headey
Recent news, photos and TV listings of Lena.
Short bio with Lena's complete filmography.
Lengthy, detailed biography and links to Lena's upcoming projects.
Lena talks about playing the Queen in "300."
A chat with Lena on her show "The Sarah Connor Chronicles."
Movie Jungle.com Interview
Lena and "Sarah Connor Chronicles" producer James Middleton talk about making the show.
Lena on the Screen
Lena first appeared in the Jeremy Irons vehicle "Waterland" in 1992. She's Lizzie in "The Remains of the Day," Elise in "MacGyver: Trail of Doomsday," Kitty Brydon in "The Jungle Book," Angelika in "The Brothers Grimm," Luce in "Imagine Me & You," Queen Gorgo in "300," and titular character of Fox's "Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles."
"We've all had that moment where you look into someone's eyes and there's some kind of recognition there, whether you act on it or not."
On playing Sarah Connor:
"You consider what the character's been through, where she's been, who she is now, and all the elements of her life and you think – I always think, ‘How would this effect me?'"