Blake Ellender Lively (née Brown) was born August 25, 1987 and is an American actress.
Lively is known for starring as Serena van der Woodsen in the CW drama television series Gossip Girl (2007–2012). She also starred in a number of films, including The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants (2005), The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants 2 (2008), The Town (2010), Green Lantern (2011), Savages (2012), The Age of Adaline (2015), The Shallows (2016) and A Simple Favor (2018).
She has been married to Canadian-American actor Ryan Reynolds since 2012, with whom she has three children.
She was born in the Tarzana neighborhood of Los Angeles, California. Her mother, Elaine (née McAlpin), worked as a talent scout, and her father, Ernie Lively (né Ernest Wilson Brown, Jr.), is an actor. Lively was named after her grandmother’s brother.
She has an older brother, Eric Lively, two half-sisters, Lori Lively and Robyn Lively, and a half-brother, Jason Lively. Her half-siblings are from her mother’s previous marriage. Both of her parents and all of her siblings are, or have been, in the entertainment industry.
During her childhood, her parents took her to acting classes that they taught because they did not want to leave her with a babysitter. Lively said that watching her parents teach acting helped her learn the “drills” and gain confidence as she got older and entered the entertainment industry. She began her acting career at age 10, when she appeared in the 1998 film Sandman, which was directed by Lively’s father. She was initially not particularly interested in acting and wanted to attend Stanford University.
She attended Burbank High School, where she was a class president, a cheerleader and a member of the championship choir. Her brother Eric asked his talent agent to send her on a few auditions over a period of a few months during the summer. From these auditions, she was cast as Bridget for The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants (2005) and filmed her scenes in between her junior and senior years.
Lively describes herself as a “foodie and cook” and has said Martha Stewart is her “idol”. She is also a fan of Nigella Lawson’s work. In 2008, Lively baked a cake with Stewart during an episode of The Martha Stewart Show. In 2009, Lively stated that she “hoped one day to have an interior decorating company”, citing her love for antiques and fascination with “colors and textures and layering things”. In 2010, she attended a tailor-made workshop at Le Cordon Bleu in Paris, and has spoken of her desire to return to the culinary school for further instruction.
Also in 2010, Lively spent an evening working as a pastry chef at the renowned Per Se in New York City. She has remarked that, when traveling, she always takes cookery classes to immerse herself in the local culture. In 2010 and again in 2011, Lively spoke publicly of her desire to become a restaurateur. In 2011, she created a s’mores cupcake to be sold at Sprinkles bakeries. In 2012, Lively’s wedding reception was featured in Martha Stewart Weddings; food photography was the focal point of the picture spread. In 2013, she appeared in Elle Decor to recount her experiences designing a custom La Cornue oven for her newly purchased Bedford home. In 2013, she filmed a cooking segment for Vogue’s website, demonstrating how to make a brie pastry. In 2014, she launched Preserve, a digital magazine and e-commerce website with hand-made one-of-a-kind items all selected by Lively; on October 9, 2015, Lively closed the site, stating that it had been launched before it was ready, and that she plans to rebuild and relaunch it properly.
In 2013, she appeared in a video clip for Gucci’s “Chime for Change” campaign that aims to raise funds and awareness of women’s issues in the areas of education, health, and justice.