Lara Flynn Boyle is an American actress best known to television audiences for her roles as Donna Hayward in Twin Peaks (30 episodes, 1990-1991) and as Helen Gamble in The Practice (115 episodes, 1997-2003).
She has also played numerous memorable film roles, in movies such as Red Rock West (1992), Wayne's World (1992), The Temp (1993), Threesome (1994), Afterglow (1997) and Men in Black II (2002).
Aside from her lead role in Twin Peaks and her major supporting role in The Practice, Boyle has had recurring roles in Ally McBeal (playing her Practice character Helen Gamble in a show crossover), Huff (playing mentally unstable patient Melody Coater in the first season) and a seven-episode turn as Monica Mancuso in Las Vegas.
Boyle's first film role was a bit part in Ferris Bueller's Day Off (1986), which earned her a SAG card, though her scene was eliminated from the final cut of the film.
She then appeared in Amerika (1987), Poltergeist III (1988) and Dead Poets Society (1989), before landing her first major part, and the role which made her well known - Donna Hayward in the critically acclaimed series Twin Peaks.
When the series ended in 1991, creator David Lynch produced a movie, Twin Peaks: Fire Walk With Me, but - largely due to her rise in fame, and increased film offers - Boyle chose not to return. Moira Kelly took over the role of Donna for the film.
In 1997, Boyle auditioned for the title role in David E. Kelley's Ally McBeal. Although she lost out to Calista Flockhart, Boyle impressed him enough to create the role of Assistant District Attorney Helen Gamble in his other 1997 series, The Practice, specifically for her.
She starred on the show until 2003, when - in a dramatic attempt to revamp the show and cut costs - she was unceremoniously dismissed along with most of the other main cast.
The role of Helen earned her an Emmy nomination, as well as household fame and several Screen Actors Guild ensemble cast nominations.
In 2002, Boyle played a lead role in the blockbuster film Men in Black II as the villainous alien Serleena.
She also guest starred on one of the last episodes of Ally McBeal once again, only this time as Tally Cupp, a completely different role from that which she had played before.