Emily Deschanel is an American actress best known for her role as forensic anthroplogist Temperance Brennan in the police procedural television series Bones, based on the real life of forensic anthropologist Kathy Reichs.
She appeared in Anne Renton's independent comedy The Perfect Family opposite Kathleen Turner and Jason Ritter, playing a successful lawyer who struggles with telling her religious mother she is pregnant and in a loving, committed relationship with another woman.
Deschanel starred in Nick Cassavetes' film My Sister's Keeper. She can also be seen in Jerry Bruckheimer's Glory Road opposite Josh Lucas, Derek Luke and Jon Voight.
Additional film credits include Anthony Minghella's Cold Mountain, John Lee Hancock's The Alamo, Sam Raimi's Spider-Man 2, Stephen Kay's Boogeyman and Jane Weinstock's Easy.
Deschanel's television credits include guest appearances on Crossing Jordan, Providence and Law & Order: Special Victims Unit, as well as the Stephen King mini-series Rose Red.
A member of the Interact Theatre Company, Deschanel's theatre credits include Emily in Our Town and Natasha in Three Sisters.
An animal-rights activist, Deschanel is passionately involved with the Farm Sanctuary, working to end cruelty toward farm animals and promoting compassionate living through rescue, education and advocacy. She is also involved with the Humane Society and Women for Women International.
Deschanel was born in Los Angeles and received her B.F.A. in Theatre from Boston University. She is the older sister of actress and musician Zooey Deschanel.