Amanda is quite possibly known best for her role of Captain / Major / Colonel Samantha Carter in highly successful MGM television series Stargate SG-1. In order to understand how and why Amanda has become a role model to great many people all over the world, a highly successful and respected actor and now executive producer of science fiction / fantasy series Sanctuary, one needs to go back a few of years.
Amanda has British roots – she was born in Rochford, Essex, and then lived in South Benfleet, Essex, but very shortly afterwards, when she was just one year old, her family relocated to Ontario in Canada. While obviously holding a Canadian citizenship, she still retains her British one.
Amanda is a very talented lady in many, many respects. One of those talents lies and has lied for a long time in science. Her parents begged her to go into science when she was younger, but at the same time Amanda herself, according her mother, always wanted to be an actress. Very early on she excelled in maths, but when she founds herself at a high school, she took great interest in arts. In Toronto, Ontario, she was attending North Toronto High, and it was here where she won both the Dramatic Arts Award and Environmental Science Award. She says, “I always had this sort of inkling I’d like to be a doctor when I was younger, […] but acting was always in the forefront.”
It certainly remained in the forefront – as Amanda studied drama at the University of Windsor School of Dramatic Arts in Windsor, Ontario. Having graduated, she spent four more years studying theatre and appearing in several stage productions, including Children of a Lesser God, Lion in Winter and Steel Magnolias. To this day she recalls how she vowed back then never to do television. However, a short time later she secured an agent and got her first commercial (Tim Horton’s Oat Bran Muffins). A couple more commercials followed and the payments for those allowed her to help finance the existence of Random Acts, an improvisational comedy troupe that she formed in early 90s in Toronto with two other women (Katherine Jackson and Anne Marie Kerr). The troup was performing sketch comedies at venues in Toronto and around, including at The New Ideas Festival and Tarragon Spring Arts Fair. When the lives of each of the members of the troupe took them in different directions, it ceased its activities.
In early 90s Amanda started appearing in both television movies and series, mostly playing smaller episodic parts that were gradually, with time, getting larger. Those appearances include television movies such as Golden Will: The Silken Laumann Story, Remembrance and Rent-a-Kid and television series such as Flash Forward, Due South and The X-Files. Her major breakthrough, though, came in 1997 when she was offered the role of Captain Samantha Carter on science fiction series Stargate SG-1.
Amanda played Samantha Carter for 11 years. Through that role she came to be an enormously successful actor, contributing a great deal to the show’s success, but equally importantly, she became a role model for many, many women all over the world. Amanda’s true-to-life portrayal of the strong and independent female soldier, professional in carrying out of her duties, intelligent, knowledgable in astrophysics and emotional, feeling person, has made her performance critically-acclaimed for 10 years and after. Amanda has also been applauded many times by real life military men and women for her true-to-life portrayal of a member of the Air Force.
Amanda chooses to portray different aspects of female minds and personalities through many of her different characters. Stargate SG-1’s Samantha Carter or Sanctuary’s Helen Magnus are probably two most prominent examples of her philosophy, but the characters representing female strength, sense of achievement, intelligence and fulfillment, without compromising their feminity, may be seen at any stage of her film-making career.
Nowadays, Amanda has gone beyond being only an actor: she produces and stars in her own, immensely innovative fantasy / science fiction series Sanctuary, currently a project dearest to her heart. The show, originally sold only online, is now being produced for television and, following its successful first season, has its second season currently filmed.
Through her work and personality, Amanda has touched and changed the lives of many. Her talent as an actor has been recognized numerous times by presenting her with nominations and awards for her work as an actor and director. Her generosity and kindness are well-known among those of her fans who had an opportunity to meet her in person at various conventions and events she occasionally attends.