It’s a rare feat when a beautiful blonde gets the chance to knock around a seasoned action veteran such as Arnold Schwarzenegger onscreen, but with the release of Terminator 3: Rise of the Machines, former model Kristanna Loken takes full advantage of the opportunity; and she looks good doing it. Born the daughter of a former actor/writer turned organic fruit farmer and a onetime model in Ghent, NY, Loken spent most of her early years studying dance and riding horses. Encouraged early on by her mother to pursue a career in modeling, the young beauty stepped before cameras for the first time at the age of 15. Landing a contract with Elite soon thereafter, it wasn’t long before the girl began to eye an acting career. Getting off to a solid start with a recurring role on the popular soap opera As the World Turns in 1994, Loken went on to appear in such TV series as Pensacola: Wings of Gold and Mortal Kombat: Conquest before graduating to features with the 2000 action film Gangland. Subsequently appearing in the following year’s Academy Boyz, she continued to turn up on the small screen in numerous episodes of the popular series Philly. Although Loken’s status, to this point, had remained a relatively low-key affair, it was her casting as the villainous T-X in the eagerly anticipated sequel Terminator 3: Rise of the Machines in 2003 that found her gaining instant worldwide recognition. Beating out such heavy contenders as the buff Joanie Laurer (formerly known as WWF star Chyna), Loken eagerly accepted the opportunity to relentlessly pummel Schwarzenegger as few could claim.