Toronto, Ontario, Canada
23 April 1985
Rachel Alice Marie Skarsten was born April 23, 1985 to Mary Aileen Self Skarsten and Dr. Stan Skarsten. She has a younger brother Jonathan Skarsten, six years her junior whom she regards as her best friend. At the age of nine, her father died suddenly of pancreatic cancer. Rachel danced for the Royal Academy of Dance for 12 years, earning her Elementary Level with distinction in 1999. After an injury to her ankle, Rachel was forced to give up dance and turned to sports. She played at the highest level of competitive female hockey as a goalie for the Leaside Wildcats in Toronto, where in 2002 she won the Toronto City Championships in a shootout.
At 17 she won a major role - that of superhero Black Canary/Dinah Lance - in the WB series Birds of Prey, after being discovered by Producer Brian Robins. After the show was canceled, she moved home from Los Angles eager to take a hiatus from acting, to graduate high school and pursue an undergraduate degree. After graduating from Earl Haig Secondary School in the top 10% of her class, and being named an Ontario Scholar, she was accepted into the prestigious Canadian Queen's University. There she completed a double major in English Literature and Classical History. After graduation, she backpacked around Western Europe for four months with friends. She moved back to Los Angeles in the spring of 2008.
She is a qualified lifeguard who feels most comfortable in the water, and is happy to be near the ocean in Santa Monica.
- Fred Gerber and Deborah Chow have both directed for Beauty and the Beast while Bill Goddard had been a producer. On the other side of the camera, Rachel, and Giacomo Gianniotti were both cast members.
- Attended the Royal Academy of Dance for 12 years.
- Qualified lifeguard.
- A graduate of Toronto's prestigious Claude Watson School for the Arts.
- Graduated Queen's University with a BA with honors in English, Literature and a minor in Classical History.
- Fluent in Norwegian.
- Excluding certain credits, including TV Movies, & short credits.
|1998||Little Men||Elizabeth 'Bess' Lawrence||24 episodes|
|2002||Birds of Prey||Dinah Lance||14 episodes|
|2003||Fear of the Dark||Heather Fontaine||Movie|
|2003||1-800-Missing||Brittney Moore||1 episode|
|2011||Flashpoint||Natalie Braddock||11 episodes|
|2012||The Listener||Elyse||3 episodes|
|2012||The L.A. Complex||Roxanne||3 episodes|
|2012||Beauty and the Beast||Brooke Chandler||2 episodes|
|2015||Fifty Shades of Grey||Andrea||Movie|
|2015||Reign||Queen Elizabeth||1 episode|