Rachel Emily Nichols (born January 8, 1980) is an American actress and model. Nichols began modeling while attending Columbia University in New York City in the late 1990s. She transitioned into television and film acting in the early 2000s; she had a bit part in the romantic drama film Autumn in New York (2000) and a one-episode role in the fourth season of the hit show Sex and the City (2002).
Rachel Nichols was born in Augusta, Maine, to Jim, a schoolteacher, and Alison Nichols. She attended Cony High School, where she competed in the high jump. Nichols said in an interview that she was not “the hot chick in high school” and her mother would euphemistically refer to her as “‘a late bloomer’, which meant that I had uncontrollable arms and legs, I had very long appendages. I took several years of very highly structured dance classes for me to be able to control myself.” Upon graduating in 1998, she enrolled at Columbia University in New York City, aiming for a career as a Wall Street analyst.
Nichols had done commercial work and had a bit part as a model in the romantic drama film Autumn in New York (2000) when her modeling agent helped her get a one-episode role in the fourth season of Sex and the City (2002). She later said she had “never really done a proper audition before”, and added that “I had such fun [filming on set], that day actually made me want to pursue [acting] more seriously.” Later that year she was cast in her first major film role as Jessica, a dogged student newspaper reporter, in Dumb and Dumberer: When Harry Met Lloyd (2003). Although the film was panned by critics, making it was a learning experience for Nichols. She said, “I was a sponge for the entire time I was in Atlanta [during filming] and freely admitted that I had no idea what was going on. I had never done a big film before, I had never been the lead in a film before and any advice anyone wanted to give me, I was more than willing to take.”
Nichols married film producer Scott Stuber on July 26, 2008, in Aspen, Colorado. Nichols allowed her hair to return to its natural blond color for the ceremony, as it had been dyed red for her consecutive roles in Star Trek and G.I. Joe: The Rise of Cobra. She later noted that it was the first time she had ever dyed her hair. They were working on building a home in Cabo San Lucas shortly after their honeymoon. In February 2009, Nichols and Stuber separated due to irreconcilable differences.
Rachel Nichols Filmography
2000 Autumn in New York