Stephanie Chaves-Jacobsen was born on June 22, 1980 in Hong Kong. The daughter of a Chinese/English/Norwegian father and a Portuguese mother, Jacobsen spent her formative years living in Hong Kong. She felt a tremendous cultural shock after her family moved to Australia when she was 12 years old.
Though she graduated from Sydney University with a degree in English literature and philosophy, Stephanie Jacobsen decided to devote herself 100% to the pursuit of a career in the arts — because, as she notes, “I considered a multitude of other careers, but I always intended to be an actor.” Jacobsen immediately began auditioning for a wide variety of locally shot television shows and movies — with her first professional credit coming in 2000 with a four-episode stint on an Australian sitcom, Pizza.
Though she had made a one-shot appearance on the popular sci-fi program Farscape in 2001, Stephanie Jacobsen’s big break came that same year after she landed a recurring role on the hit Australian soap Home and Away. The series, which has also launched the careers of such notable performers as Isla Fisher, Heath Ledger and Naomi Watts, provided Jacobsen with a crash course in the ins and outs of surviving a fast-paced shoot, and she ultimately stayed with the show for an impressive 79 episodes over a two year period.
After taking on a four-episode gig on the short-lived drama Headland — which also featured fellow up-and-comer Rachael Taylor in a recurring role — Stephanie Jacobsen found herself rubbing shoulders with familiar faces like Katee Sackhoff, Mary McDonnell, and Tricia Helfer on the made-for-television movie Battlestar Galactica: Razor. The movie, which transpired in between seasons three and four of the popular SciFi Channel series Battlestar Galactica, was instrumental in introducing Jacobsen to viewers outside of her native country, and it wasn’t long before she found herself presented with a whole host of increasingly lucrative opportunities.
Though she landed a role in the pilot episode of the short-lived ABC series Life on Mars, Stephanie Jacobsen was axed from the series before it ever hit the airwaves after she was replaced by Lisa Bonet. Undaunted, Jacobsen successfully auditioned for a recurring role on the cult FOX series Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles — in which she played a resistance fighter dating Brian Austin Green’s Derek Reese. Although recently canceled, Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles paved the way for Jacobsen to land a pivotal role in a straight-to-video thriller, The Devil’s Tomb (which also stars Cuba Gooding Jr., Ron Perlman, and Taryn Manning) and she’ll soon be seen in the SciFi Channel’s original movie Quantum Apocalypse.
Expectations are running high for Stephanie Jacobsen’s next project. She’s joining the cast of the CW’s highly anticipated update of the classic ‘90s nighttime soap Melrose Place. Cast as a prostitute/medical student (no, really), Jacobsen will be sharing the screen with such notable up-and-comers as Jessica Lucas, Ashlee Simpson, and Katie Cassidy (as well as familiar faces like Thomas Calabro and Laura Leighton).