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Bellamy Young Bio
Bellamy Young (born February 19, 1970 as Amy Maria Young) is an American television, film, theatre actress and producer, best known for her role as First Lady of the United States Melody “Mellie” Grant in the ABC drama series Scandal (2012–present). In 2014, for her portrayal of Mellie, Young won the Critics’ Choice Television Award for Best Supporting Actress in a Drama Series.
Young began her acting career in theatre. In the 1990s, she performed in a number of Broadway shows including the original production of The Life. On Off-Broadway, Young appeared on Stephen Sondheim‘s musical Merrily We Roll Along (1994), and Randy Newman‘s Faust (1995–1996).
In 1995, Young made her television debut in a recurring role on the NBC daytime soap opera Another World as Dr. Courtney Evans. She guest-starred on Law & Order in 1997 and 1998, in two different roles. In 1999 she made her film debut with a small role in the crime drama Black and White and later co-starred in several independent films. In 2000’s she began appearing in guest-starring roles on a number of television dramas and comedies, including The Drew Carey Show, The X Files, ER, Frasier, The West Wing, NCIS, Medium, Grey’s Anatomy, Private Practice, Two and a Half Men, Supernatural, Drop Dead Diva, and Castle. From 2000 to 2011, Young made over 30 guest appearances on television shows.
Young was a regular cast member in the USA Network series Peacemakers in 2003. The show was cancelled after one season of nine episodes. She had recurring roles in the Lifetime legal drama series For the People as Deputy Dist. Atty. Agnes Hunt in 2002, on NBC period drama American Dreams as Diane Shaw in 2003, on NBC’s Scrubs as Dr. Grace Miller in 2004, as Assistant State Attorney Monica West on CBS’s CSI: Miami (2005–06), and on ABC primetime soap opera Dirty Sexy Money (2008–2009) as Ellen Darling, the eldest daughter-in-law of the Darling family. She also had a recurring role in Criminal Minds as Beth Clemmons from 2011 to 2013.
Young has appeared in supporting roles in a couple of films, including We Were Soldiers (2002) and Mission: Impossible III (2006), along with independent movies like Larceny (2004), Eve of Understanding (2006), Trust Me (2007), This Is Not a Test (2008), In My Sleep (2010), The Freebie (2010), and Joint Body (2014
In 2011 Shonda Rhimes cast Young in the recurring role of First Lady Melody “Mellie” Grant on the ABC political thriller television series Scandal opposite Kerry Washington and Tony Goldwyn. Before Scandal, Young appeared in Shonda Rhimes’ Grey’s Anatomy and Private Practice. She appeared in every episode of the first season of Scandal and was upgraded to a series regular as of season two. Young later said that originally her part was a minor role for the three episode recurring arc.
Young has received critical acclaim for her performance as First Lady and won generally favorable reviews from critics during the second and third seasons. The Daily Beast named her the “Breakout star” of the show in 2014. Many critics praised Young’s performance in her character’s centered episode “Everything’s Coming Up Mellie” of the third season. Cicely K. Dyson’s review for The Wall Street Journal states: “Bellamy Young has been an amazing scene stealer for two-and-a-half seasons, and this time she finally got her chance to shine.” Robert Rorke, writing for The New York Post, states that, “In Mellie, the show has its most fleshed-out character and in Young, its most compelling performer… The television academy has nominated Washington once for Best Actress in a Drama Series. Let’s see if they remember Bellamy Young next July, when the nominations come out.”
In 2014, Young was a promising contender for an Emmy Award in the Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Drama Series category, though she did not receive a nomination. She won a Critics’ Choice Television Award for Best Supporting Actress in a Drama Series for her performance in season three.