Michelle Trachtenberg

Michelle Trachtenberg

Trachtenberg in June 2008
Born Michelle Christine Trachtenberg
(1985-10-11) October 11, 1985[1]
New York City, New York, U.S.
Occupation Actress
Years active 1988–present

Michelle Christine Trachtenberg /ˈtræktənbɜːrɡ/ (born October 11, 1985[1]) is an American actress. She is known for portraying Nona F. Mecklenberg in The Adventures of Pete & Pete (1994–96), Dawn Summers in Buffy the Vampire Slayer (2000–03), Celeste in Six Feet Under (2004), and Georgina Sparks in Gossip Girl (2008–12). She has also appeared in films such as Harriet the Spy (1996), Inspector Gadget (1999), EuroTrip (2004), Ice Princess (2005), Black Christmas (2006), 17 Again (2009), Cop Out (2010), and Killing Kennedy (2013).

Early life

Trachtenberg was born in New York City,[2] the younger of two daughters of Lana, a bank manager, and Michael Trachtenberg, a fiber-optics engineer.[3] Her father is German Jewish and her mother is Russian Jewish, and she is of the Jewish religion,[4] with her grandparents living in Israel.[5] She was raised with her older sister Irene in Sheepshead Bay, Brooklyn, where she attended junior high school at The Bay Academy for the Arts and Sciences.[6] She later attended Notre Dame High School in Sherman Oaks, California.[7]


Trachtenberg made her first television appearance at the age of three, in a commercial for Wisk detergent.[8] She went on to feature in over 100 more commercials.[8] She appeared in her first credited role as Nona F. Mecklenberg on the Nickelodeon series The Adventures of Pete & Pete from 1994 until 1996. During the same period she played Lily Montgomery on the soap opera All My Children.[9][10]

Trachtenberg at the Buffy the Vampire Slayer wrap party, April 18, 2003

Trachtenberg's film career began in 1996 with the title role in Harriet the Spy. During this time, she also began a recurring role in season two of the television series The Adventures of Pete & Pete, of which she later became a regular. She then starred in the short-lived television series Meego, which garnered her a Young Artist Award.[11] She returned to film in 1999 for Inspector Gadget. She also starred in the film Can't Be Heaven. In the summer of 2000, she took on the role of Dawn Summers in Buffy the Vampire Slayer, remaining in the role until the show ended in 2003. She also hosted the Discovery Kids series Truth or Scare from 2001 to 2003.

After Buffy and Truth or Scare, Trachtenberg appeared in the comedy film EuroTrip. She also had a recurring role in the HBO series Six Feet Under as Celeste, a spoiled pop star for whom Keith Charles served as a bodyguard. In March 2005, she played the title character in Walt Disney Pictures' comedy drama Ice Princess. In the film, Trachtenberg played a science whiz named Casey Carlyle, who is torn between a future in academia and her newfound dream of being a professional figure skater.

In April 2006, Trachtenberg guest-starred in the episode of House, "Safe". She revealed on the December 22, 2006, episode of Late Night with Conan O'Brien that House was her favorite show, and that she was friends with one of the producers and had asked to be a guest star.[12]

In November 2006, Trachtenberg guest starred in season six of the crime drama Law & Order: Criminal Intent. In the episode "Weeping Willow", she played the role of Willow, a kidnapped video blogger, likely based on lonelygirl15. Trachtenberg also appeared in the Fall Out Boy music video for "This Ain't a Scene, It's an Arms Race", the Joaquin Phoenix-directed music video for "Tired of Being Sorry" by Ringside, and the video for the Trapt song "Echo".

In 2006, Trachtenberg starred in Black Christmas, the remake of the 1974 slasher of the same name. In 2007, she was cast as the female lead in an ABC comedy pilot called The Hill, based on the newspaper of the same name in Washington, DC.[13] She provided the voice of Tika Waylan for Dragonlance: Dragons of Autumn Twilight, a direct-to-video animated film based on the novel of the same name.[14]

Trachtenberg appeared on The CW hit show Gossip Girl as Georgina Sparks, who recently left rehab and brings back the dark past Serena van der Woodsen desperately wants to leave behind.[15] She returned to the show for a multiple-episode story arc towards the end of season two.[16] Trachtenberg appeared in the season-three finale and in season four. She also appeared several times in season five, and in almost every episode of season six, the show's final season.[17] In 2009, Trachtenberg was a cast member on the NBC drama Mercy; the series lasted one season.

On June 9, 2011, Trachtenberg guest-starred on Love Bites as Jodie, who, after being unceremoniously dumped, decides – with a vengeance – to accept her ex's offer to "be friends". She reprised the role on June 16, 2011, and in the series finale on July 21, 2011. On June 28, it was announced Trachtenberg would guest-star on Weeds during its seventh season.[18] Her character Emma is a rival pot dealer who causes problems for Silas Botwin. In June 2012, Trachtenberg was cast in the film The Scribbler, produced by Gabriel Cowan.[19]

In the Criminal Minds episode "Zugzwang", Trachtenberg played Diane Turner, the criminal stalker to Spencer Reid's girlfriend, Maeve Donovan. She returned to film with the 2009 film 17 Again. She also had a small role in the comedy film Cop Out.[20] In March 2011, she was the featured cover girl in Maxim.[21]



Year Title Role Notes
1995 Melissa Lena Uncredited
1996 Harriet the Spy Harriet M. Welsch
1998 Richie Rich's Christmas Wish Gloria Direct-to-video
1999 Inspector Gadget Penny
2000 Can't Be Heaven Julie
2004 EuroTrip Jenny
2004 Mysterious Skin Wendy
2005 Ice Princess Casey Carlyle
2006 Beautiful Ohio Sandra
2006 Black Christmas Melissa Kitt
2008 Dragonlance: Dragons of Autumn Twilight Tika (voice) Direct-to-video
2009 Against the Current Suzanne
2009 17 Again Margaret "Maggie" Sarah O'Donnell
2010 Cop Out Ava Monroe
2010 DC Showcase: Jonah Hex Bar girl (voice) Short film
2011 Take Me Home Tonight Ashley
2013 Sexy Evil Genius Miranda Prague Direct-to-video
2014 Scribbler, TheThe Scribbler Alice
2016 Sister Cities Dallas Baxter


Year Title Role Notes
1991 Law & Order Dinah Driscoll Episode: "God Bless the Child"; uncredited
1993 Clarissa Explains It All Elsie Soaperstein Episode: "Babysitting"
1993–96 All My Children Lily Benton Montgomery #1 Daytime drama
1994–96 Adventures of Pete & Pete, TheThe Adventures of Pete & Pete Nona F. Mecklenberg 21 episodes
1996 Dave's World Angela Episode: "Solitaire"
1996 Space Cases Prankster #1 Episode: "All You Can Eaty"
1996 Holiday for Love, AA Holiday for Love Noelle Murphy Television film
1997 Meego Maggie Parker 13 episodes
1998 Blue's Clues Herself Episode: "Blue's Birthday"
1998 Reading Rainbow Herself (voice) Episode: "Math Curse"
1998 Guys Like Us Katie Episode: "Maestro's First Crush"
1998–99 Figure It Out Herself (panelist) 12 episodes
2000 Father's Choice, AA Father's Choice Kelly McClain Television film
2000–03 Buffy the Vampire Slayer Dawn Summers 66 episodes
2001–03 Truth or Scare Herself (host and narrator) 20 episodes
2004 Six Feet Under Celeste 4 episodes
2005 Dive from Clausen's Pier, TheThe Dive from Clausen's Pier Carrie Beal Television film
2006 House Melinda Bardach Episode: "Safe"
2006–12 Robot Chicken Various voices 5 episodes
2006 Law & Order: Criminal Intent Lisa Willow Tyler Episode: "Weeping Willow"
2008–12 Gossip Girl Georgina Sparks 28 episodes
2008 Circuit, TheThe Circuit Kylie Shines Television film
2009–10 Mercy Chloe Payne 22 episodes
2009 Super Hero Squad Show, TheThe Super Hero Squad Show Valkyrie (voice) 2 episodes
2011 Love Bites Jodie 3 episodes
2011 Weeds Emma Karlin 5 episodes
2013 Criminal Minds Diane Turner Episode: "Zugzwang"
2013 Killing Kennedy Marina Oswald Television film
2013 NCIS: Los Angeles Lily Lockhart Episode: "Merry Evasion"
2015 Sleepy Hollow Abigail Adams Episode: "Pittura Infamante"
2015 SuperMansion Blood Moon (voice) Episode: "A Midsummer Night's Ream"
2015 Christmas Gift, TheThe Christmas Gift Megan Television film

Web Series

Year Title Role Notes
2015 Guidance Anna 5 Episodes

Music Videos

Year Title Role Artist
2004 "Echo" Girlfriend Trapt
2005 "Tired of Being Sorry" Herself Ringside
2007 "This Ain't a Scene, It's an Arms Race" Herself Fall Out Boy

Awards and nominations

Year Award Category Work Result Ref.
1997 Young Artist Award Best Performance in a Feature Film: Leading Young Actress Harriet the Spy Won [22]
1998 Young Artist Award Best Performance in a TV Comedy Series: Supporting Young Actress Meego Won [23]
2000 YoungStar Award Best Young Actress in a Comedy Film Inspector Gadget Nominated
2000 Young Artist Award Best Performance in a Feature Film: Supporting Young Actress Inspector Gadget Nominated [24]
2001 Teen Choice Award TV – Choice Sidekick Buffy the Vampire Slayer Nominated
2001 Young Artist Award Best Performance in a TV Drama Series: Supporting Young Actress Buffy the Vampire Slayer Won [25]
2001 Saturn Award Best Supporting Actress on Television Buffy the Vampire Slayer Nominated
2002 Young Artist Award Best Performance in a TV Comedy Series: Leading Young Actress Truth or Scare Nominated [26]
2002 Young Artist Award Best Performance in a TV Comedy Series: Guest Starring Young Actress MADtv Nominated
2002 Saturn Award Best Supporting Television Actress Buffy the Vampire Slayer Nominated
2003 Saturn Award Best Supporting Television Actress Buffy the Vampire Slayer Nominated
2004 Daytime Emmy Award Outstanding Performer in a Children's Series Truth or Scare Nominated [27]
2007 Sarasota Film Festival Breakthrough Performer Beautiful Ohio Won
2012 Teen Choice Award Choice TV Villain Gossip Girl Nominated


  1. 1 2 Cusumano, Josephine (2015-10-11). "Michelle Trachtenberg Celebrates Her 30th Birthday". instyle.com. Retrieved 28 January 2016.
  2. Tatiana Morales (March 18, 2005). "Find And Fight For Your Dream". cbsnews.com. Retrieved July 21, 2010.
  3. "Michelle Trachtenberg Biography (1985–)". Film Reference.
  4. "March 14, 2013 episode". Kathy.
  5. "James Marsters and Michelle Trachtenberg interview". contactmusic.com. Retrieved March 14, 2007.
  6. Butler, Karen (March 19, 2005). "ON 'ICE': Sheepshead Bay native talks of tough workouts for lead in 'Ice Princess'". The Brooklyn Paper. Retrieved November 16, 2009. When Michelle Trachtenberg was a young girl growing up in Sheepshead Bay, she dreamed of being a championship ice skater like her childhood idols, Michelle Kwan and Oksana Baiul.
  7. "Gossip Girl Transformations - Michelle Trachtenberg". InStyle. Retrieved February 11, 2013.
  8. 1 2 Koltow, Barry (July 11, 1996). "Defining where 'Harriet' ends, Michelle Trachtenberg begins". Los Angeles Daily News. Retrieved March 9, 2008.
  9. Morales, Tatiana (March 18, 2005). "Find And Fight For Your Dream". CBS News. Retrieved March 9, 2008.
  10. White, Kelly (December 2000). "Under Michelle's spell". Girls' Life. Retrieved November 23, 2007.
  11. "19th Annual Awards". www.youngartistawards.org. Retrieved March 9, 2011.
  12. "Michelle Trachtenberg about her Guest Appearance on House @ Conan O'Brien 22/12/2006". YouTube. August 18, 2010. Retrieved February 4, 2014.
  13. "Trachtenberg goes to Washington in ABC comedy". Reuters. March 8, 2007. Retrieved March 14, 2007.
  14. "Dragonlance: Dragons of Autumn Twilight". Internet Movie Database.
  15. Ausiello, Michael (March 19, 2008). "Gossip Girl casts Buffy alumna Michelle Trachtenberg". Ausiello Report, TVGuide.com. Archived from the original on June 3, 2008.
  16. "Michelle Trachtenberg to Return to Gossip Girl". People. January 5, 2009.
  17. Godwin, Jennifer (May 18, 2009). "This Just In: Is Georgina Joining Gossip Girl?". E! Online.
  18. Hibberd, James (June 27, 2011). "Michelle Trachtenberg cast as pot dealer on Weeds". Entertainment Weekly. Retrieved February 4, 2014.
  19. Fleming, Mike (May 9, 2012). "'The Scribbler' Starts Production With Katie Cassidy Starring". Deadline.com. Retrieved February 4, 2014.
  20. McNary, Dave (December 27, 2009). "Kevin Smith's 'Dicks' becomes 'Cop Out'". Variety. Retrieved January 9, 2010.
  21. "Michelle Trachtenberg". Maxim.com.
  22. "18th Annual Youth in Film Awards 1995-1996". Young Artist Award. Retrieved 2015-01-10.
  23. "19th Annual Youth in Film Awards 1996-1997". Young Artist Award. Retrieved 2015-01-10.
  24. "21st Annual Young Artist Awards for 1998-1999". Young Artist Award. Retrieved 2015-01-10.
  25. "22nd Annual Young Artist Awards 1999-2000". Young Artist Award. Retrieved 2015-01-10.
  26. "23rd Annual Young Artist Awards 2002". Young Artist Award. Retrieved 2015-01-10.
  27. "31st Annual Daytime Emmy Award Nomination" (PDF). emmyonline.org. Retrieved 2015-01-10.

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