Isabelle Fuhrman
Fuhrman in 2010
Born (1997-02-25) February 25, 1997 (age 27)
EducationStanford Online High School
Years active2001–present

Isabelle Fuhrman (born February 25, 1997[1]) is an American actress. She is best known for her role as Esther in the horror film Orphan (2009) and its prequel Orphan: First Kill (2022). She also portrayed Clove in the dystopian adventure film The Hunger Games (2012), and Alex in the independent film The Novice (2021).

Early life

Fuhrman was born in Washington, D.C., the daughter of Elina Fuhrman (née Kozmits), a journalist, author, wellness activist, and founder of the vegan soup company Soupelina, and Nick Fuhrman, a one-time Wisconsin political primary candidate for U.S. House of Representatives, and business consultant.[2][3] Her father, who is of Irish descent, was adopted by a Jewish family. Her mother is a Russian Jewish immigrant from Soviet Moldova.[4] Isabelle Fuhrman has an older sister who was born in 1993. She and her family moved to Atlanta in 1999 when her mother joined CNN.[5] She attended the Buckley School, a private school in Sherman Oaks for high school. Fuhrman also briefly attended the RADA, and briefly was a student at The Westminster Schools in Atlanta.[6] She graduated from Stanford Online High School in 2015.[7][8]


Fuhrman's acting career began at age seven, when a casting director from Cartoon Network spotted her while she was waiting for her older sister Madeline and cast her for one of the shows, Cartoon Fridays.[9] Her early credits include Grace O'Neil in the pilot episode of the 2006 television series Justice, and a number of national commercials for such brands as Pizza Hut and K-Mart. In 2007, she made her film debut in the controversial drama feature Hounddog.[10]

Fuhrman's performance as Gretchen Dennis (also known as Girl Ghost) opposite Jennifer Love Hewitt in a 2008 episode of Ghost Whisperer earned her a Young Artist Award nomination.[11] Also in 2008, Fuhrman was cast in the movie Orphan alongside Vera Farmiga and Peter Sarsgaard following an exhaustive nationwide search of young actresses to portray the lead in the three-way collaboration between Warner Bros., Appian Way Productions, and Dark Castle Entertainment.[12][13][14][15] It was released in 2009 to commercial success and Fuhrman's acting was praised.[16] She also appeared in comedy skits on The Tonight Show with Jay Leno.[13]

In 2011, Fuhrman played Angie Vanderveer in the dark comedy Salvation Boulevard (based on the novel by Larry Beinhart), with an ensemble cast that included Pierce Brosnan and Marisa Tomei. It premiered at the Sundance Film Festival.[17]

In 2012, Fuhrman voiced the genetically enhanced assassin Victoria in Hitman: Absolution.[18] In the same year she played Clove, a career tribute who tries to kill the main character, Katniss, in the film The Hunger Games.[19] She originally auditioned to play Katniss, but was too young to play the part; she was 14 at the time. She received a call-back to audition for Clove and got the part.[20] On May 15, 2012, it was announced that Fuhrman would star in the remake of the 1977 horror classic Suspiria;[21] however, it was later announced that the production was stuck in legal woes and that the film would not be made.[22]

On May 24, 2013, Fuhrman was cast as Max in Dear Eleanor (2016),[23] directed by Kevin Connolly. In 2014, Fuhrman was cast in the film Cell, an adaptation by Stephen King.[24] In 2015, she was cast in a "major recurring role" on the Showtime drama series Masters of Sex, playing Tessa, the daughter of Virginia Johnson (Lizzy Caplan).[25] Fuhrman was also cast as the lead in the independent drama Hellbent.[26]

In 2021, Fuhrman starred as Alex in Lauren Hadaway's directorial debut The Novice. Her performance gained critical praise, with critics calling Fuhrman's turn "a Daniel Day-Lewis transformation" and "the year's best performance".[27] For The Novice, she won the Tribeca Film Festival Award for Best Actress, and was nominated for the Independent Spirit Award for Best Female Lead.[28][29] It was announced in 2020 that Fuhrman would reprise her role as Esther in an Orphan prequel;[30] the film, titled Orphan: First Kill, was released in August 2022, with Fuhrman's performance again being lauded.[31][32]

In September 2022, Fuhrman joined the cast of the Kevin Costner-directed western film Horizon: An American Saga and Face, a film directed by Justine Bateman.[33][34]


Fuhrman was approached by Save the Children in 2010, to be a celebrity advocate for their "Caps for Good" project. She and several volunteers with Save the Children have helped knit hundreds of baby caps in an effort to reduce the death rate of newborns in developing countries.[35] Fuhrman is on the advisory board of the Love & Art Kids Foundation, a Los Angeles based non-profit organization.[36]



Year Title Role Notes
2007 Hounddog Grasshopper
2009 Orphan Esther
2010 Sammy's Adventures: The Secret Passage Hatchling Shelly Voice role
2011 Salvation Boulevard Angie
From Up on Poppy Hill Sora Matsuzaki Voice role
2012 The Hunger Games Clove
2013 Don't Let Me Go Michelle
After Earth Rayna Uncredited[37]
2014 All the Wilderness Val
The Snow Queen 2 Alfida Voice role (English version)
2016 Cell Alice Maxwell
Dear Eleanor Max the Wax
1 Night Bea
2018 Down a Dark Hall Izzy
Good Girls Get High Morgan
Hellbent Danni Frost
2020 Tape Pearl
2021 The Novice Alex
The Last Thing Mary Saw Eleanor
Escape Room: Tournament of Champions Claire Extended edition version[38]
2022 Orphan: First Kill Leena Klammer / Esther
2023 Sheroes Ezra
2024 Horizon: An American Saga – Chapter 1 Diamond Kittredge Post-production
Horizon: An American Saga – Chapter 2 Post-production
TBA Unit 234 Laurie Saltair Post-production[39]
TBA Wish You Were Here[40] Charlotte Post-production


Year Title Role Notes
2006 Justice Grace O'Neil Episode: Pilot
2008 Ghost Whisperer Gretchen Dennis Episode: "Pieces of You"
2010 Pleading Guilty Carrie Television film
2011 The Whole Truth Lyric Byrne Episode: "Perfect Witness"
2013, 2020 Adventure Time Shoko Voice role; episodes: "The Vault", "Together Again"
2015 Masters of Sex Tessa Johnson Recurring role, 8 episodes

Video games

Year Title Role Notes
2007 Disney Princess: Enchanted Journey Heroine Voice role
2012 Hitman: Absolution Victoria Voice role
2016 Let It Die Mushroom Magistrate Voice role
2016 Sid Meier's Civilization VI Quote Technology quote[citation needed]


Year Title Role Stage Notes
2017 All the Fine Boys Emily Pershing Square Signature Center February 14 – March 26, 2017
2019 Mac Beth Macbeth Lucille Lortel Theatre May 7 – June 9, 2019

Awards and nominations

Year Award Category Work Result Refs
2009 Young Artist Awards Best Performance in a TV Series – Guest Starring Young Actress Ghost Whisperer Nominated
2009 Dublin Film Critics' Circle Awards Best Actress – 4th place Orphan Won
2009 Fright Meter Awards Best Actress Orphan Won
2010 Fangoria Chainsaw Awards Best Supporting Actress Orphan Nominated
2014 Behind the Voice Actors Awards Best Vocal Ensemble in an Anime Feature Film/Special From Up on Poppy Hill Nominated
2016 Madrid International Film Festival Best Lead Actress Don't Let Me Go Nominated
2021 Tribeca Film Festival Best Actress in a Leading Role The Novice Won
2022 Independent Spirit Awards Best Female Lead The Novice Nominated


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  40. ^ [ Julia Stiles Wraps On Directorial Debut ‘Wish You Were Here’; Isabelle Fuhrman, Mena Massoud, Jennifer Grey, Kelsey Grammer & More Star ]
  41. ^ "2009 Fright Meter Awards". Retrieved September 25, 2022.

External links