Whether she is appearing in a frothy television comedy or an intense movie drama, Carla Gugino creates interesting and believable characters. A native of Sarasota, FL, Gugino spent most of her youth being shuttled by her mother to various locations in California. At age 15, she and her mom were living in San Diego, when Gugino was convinced to try a modeling career in New York City. She succeeded, but soon found the fast pace of high-fashion modeling too much for her and moved to Los Angeles, where she took advice from an aunt, model Carol Merril, best known for her work on Let's Make a Deal game show, and enrolled in acting classes to study under drama coach Gene Bua. Gugino quickly found her calling as an actress and she threw herself into her studies. Because she was so young, her mother insisted that Gugino study only six months in Los Angeles and then return to San Diego. Just before the time period ended, Gugino made her film debut in the comedy Troop Beverly Hills (1986). More features followed, until she got her first supporting major role, that of Norma in the Robert De Niro/Leonardo Di Caprio drama This Boy's Life (1993). Her next co-starring role came in Miami Rhapsody (1995). Gugino interrupted her film career to play a co-starring role on the Michael J. Fox sitcom Spin City. She found she missed working in films and left the series. Her other television credits include the British miniseries The Buccaneers and television movies for the HBO and Showtime cable networks. As her film career progressed, Gugino kept landing increasingly meaty roles. In 1998, she starred opposite Nicolas Cage in Brian De Palma's action thriller Snake Eyes. Later following with roles in both Spy Kids and The One (both 2001), Gugino continued to gain wide exposure. Subsequently proving she had what it takes to thrill in the two Spy Kids sequels, Gugino was later cast as the eponymous character in the 2003 action/crime hybrid series Karen Sisco. Based on the character originally essayed by Jennifer Lopez in the 1998 Steven Soderbergh film Out of Sight, the show followed the exploits of a tough but sexy US Marshal as she chased fugitives along Miami's Gold Coast. That same year Gugino could also be spotted in a duel role in director Keith Gordon's The Singing Detective.