& Early career years
Panabaker is a favorite at the fan festivals such as Comic Con and is known as being approachable and courteous with her fans and throngs of admirers. She is an eloquent speaker, partly attributed to her role in the speech team during high school, and her ability to express herself articulately has certainly contributed to her success as an actress/actor/director.
Panabaker frequents the fan festivals not only to promote her work but to stay in touch with her fans. She is known as a fan favorite due to her sense of humor, down-to-earth nature, and is seen as a great story teller. Her panels are often the most highly sought-after as her candid nature is a great source for sharing comical stories of bloopers, shooting particularly challenging scenes, or simply telling anecdotes from her life and career.
When Panabaker began acting as a teenager, there were certain roles that gained her respect in her field. Danielle Panabaker Disney ‘Stuck in the Suburbs’ (2004) was a success, as was her next film ‘Sky High’ (2005), followed by ‘Read it and Weep’ (2006), which she starred in with her sister, Kay Panabaker.
Panabaker didn’t just penetrate the film industry; she also made it into television with HBO’s miniseries ‘Empire Falls’ in 2005. After winning three Young Artist Awards, it was clear that Panabaker had an extremely bright acting future in front of her. Her guest starring role in the legal drama ‘ The Gaurdian’ in 2004, her leading role in ‘Searching for David’s Heart’ in 2005, and her ensemble performance in ‘Yours, Mine & Ours’ in 2005 earned her multiple awards and set her path on one that shows no sign of slowing down.
Her career really took off after starring alongside the respected James Woods in another legal drama series ‘Shark’ from 2006-2008. During that time, she also earned her title as a Scream Queen from her roles in ‘Mr. Brooks’ (2007), ‘Friday the 13th’ (2009), ‘The Crazies’ (2010), John Carpenter’s ‘The Ward’ (2010), and Piranha 3DD (2012).
Panabaker had recurring roles on numerous mainstream drama series such as ‘Necessary Roughness’ (2011-2013), the crime drama ‘Bones’ (2012-2013), and the crime series ‘Justified’ (2014). After guess-starring as Dr. Caitlin Snow on ‘Arrow’ in the spring of 2014, her character was so well received that it was spun off into a regular character of ‘The Flash’ series which came out in October of 2014. In season two of ‘The Flash’, her character became more popular and more complex as she started to play the doctor’s alter ego Killer Frost. Her Caitlin Snow character and Danielle Panabaker Killer Frost alter ego earned her a place in the superhero world and led to multiple guest appearances on the CW series ‘Arrow’, ‘Supergirl’, and ‘Legends of Tomorrow’.
Danielle Panabaker is an American-born actress who started her acting career during her teenage years. She is currently best known for her role as Dr. Caitlin Snow and Killer Frost on the CW’s series ‘The Arrow’ and ‘The Flash’. She was born September 19th, 1987 in Augusta, Georgia and has achieved quite the list of accomplishments in her life thus far.
The University of California, Los Angeles is her alma mater, and the Danielle Panabaker Imdb includes an extensive list of her appearances and roles in both television and film. Danielle Panabaker sister, whom she has acted with, is Kay Panabaker, and Danielle Panabaker’s husband is Hayes Robbins.
Danielle Panabaker Education
While acting was the main goal for the move, Danielle was realistic and still wanted to pursue her education. She had always done well academically in school, something that continued into post-secondary. She attended Glendale Community College and studied acting. By 2005, she had earned her associate degree and made it on the Dean’s List. The year 2006 saw Danielle entering the University of California, Los Angeles for her senior year to pursue a Bachelor or Arts degree in English. She graduated in June of 2007 and had made it on the Dean’s list once again. Family and teachers of Danielle describe her as 100-percent dedicated to whatever task she was undertaking at the time, whether it be dancing, acting, or pursuing her education.
As a teen actress, Panabaker started out in occasional commercials, as many young actors do, and from there went on to roles in television. Three Young Artist Awards were among the accolades she received. Her role in the television series ‘The Guardian’ garnered her recognition, in addition to numerous popular television series such as ‘Malcolm in the Middle’, ‘Medium’, ‘Law & Order: Special Victims Unit’, and ‘Summerland’. Her role in Disney’s original movie ‘Stuck in the Suburbs’ ushered her into a successful film career.
Additional television series that brought her success and recognition included Lifetime Television’s ‘Sex and the Single Mom’ and ‘Mom at Sixteen’. The highly-regarded miniseries ‘Empire Falls’ and her character is the role that Panabaker herself attributes to the start of her mainstream success.
Panabaker dabbled in a number of areas of film, television, and acting as she also explored musical theater and was part of several stage productions including ‘Pippin’, ‘West Side Story’, ‘Once Upon a Time’, ‘Country Beast’, and ‘Beauty Lou’.
Born in Augusta, Georgia in 1987 to Donna Mayock and Harold Panabaker, Danielle’s spent a lot of her young life on the road due to her father’s sales job. Her sister, Kay Panabaker, also dabbled in acting but is currently a zoologist. The Panabaker family spent time in different parts of the States from South Carolina to Pennsylvania and Orange, Texas. When Danielle took a drama class at a summer camp at a young age, her love of and talent for acting was discovered. At the age of 12, she was acting in community theaters and from there started auditioning for commercials and small roles. It was this initial foray into community theater that awoke her passion and inspired her to keep moving forward on the path toward mainstream acting success.
In 2000, the Panabaker family moved to Naperville, Illinois, and Danielle attended the Crone Middle School. From there, she went to the Neuqua Valley High School where she discovered the speech team and honed her skills of debate and articulate expression, and also becoming an excellent story teller. At only 14, she graduated from high school proving she wasn’t just a pretty face or a talented actress/actor, but also had brains on her side. At this point, Panabaker was also a talented dancer as she had taken ballet and pointe classes regularly until 15 years of age.
In 2003, Danielle’s mother and sister decided that focusing on Danielle’s future acting career was the way to go and wanted to support her in every way they could. Feeling that it was the place to be to land regular and prominent acting roles, they relocated with Danielle to Los Angeles, California, and Danielle’s acting career most certainly benefited from the move.
‘Empire Falls’, the miniseries, was based on the 2001 Pulitzer Prize winning novel written by Richard Russo. It relates the tribulations of a diner manager, Miles Roby, in a small blue-collar town in Maine. Roby manages the Empire Grill Diner, and that is the central point the story circles around as the characters and staff all congregate here and live out their lives and personal dramas, and Panabaker plays Roby’s daughter.
With such a prestigious starting point, coming from a Pulitzer Prize winning novel, the miniseries ‘Empire Falls’ was slated for success. With a stellar cast and direction, the adaptation from novel to miniseries was a huge success, and as part of that success, Panabaker attributes her big boost in confidence in her acting abilities as a result of being part of such as successful and well-received project. Once Panabaker had a taste of what it was like to be part of a successful and artistic endeavour, she pushed forward with the fierce determination and dedication that became characteristic of her reputation and personal character.
Danielle Panabaker Movies and TV Shows
In 2004, Panabaker starred in ‘Searching for David’s Heart’ alongside Ricky Ullman. She continued on this path as in 2005, she starred in two more widely-released films: ‘Sky High’ and ‘Yours, Mine, and Ours’.
She landed her next big role opposite Haley Joel Osment and Ryan Merriman in ‘Home of the Giants’ in 2008. From there, she continued to land roles opposite big stars such as Kevin Costner in ‘Mr. Brooks’. In ‘Read It and Weep’, the original Disney channel movie, her role is as an alternate version of a character originally played by her sister, Kay Panabaker.
Panabaker’s fame continued to grow as she starred in the successful CBS television series ‘Shark’ opposite major star, James Woods. Here, Panabaker played the role of Julie Stark, the daughter of the main character.
In the American series ‘Shark’, Panabaker continued to hone her experience acting in legal and crime dramas as she played the daughter of an infamous Los Angeles defense attorney struggling with the legal system and his role within it. After defending a wife-abuser and the wife ending up dead, Stark, played by James Woods, becomes disillusioned with his choices and career and decides to shift gears to now keeping criminals off the streets, rather than defending them and putting them back amongst the public to do more harm. Stark’s internal struggle, his role as a lawyer and his interactions with his staff and his daughter, played by Panabaker, form the central tenet of the series.
Shark lasted for two seasons but showcased Panabaker’s talents well, in addition to her ability to work harmoniously with a number of different fellow actors of impressive caliber, such as James Woods.
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Modern Scream Queen
Panabaker also became known as one of the modern scream queens. In 2009, she played a main character on the ‘Friday the 13th’ reboot costarring with Jared Padalecki. In the film, Panabaker played the main character, Jenna, and proved she could portray fear and scream with the best of them.
Additional films that cemented her scream queen status include ‘The Crazies’, John Carpenter’s ‘The Ward’, and ‘Piranha 3DD’.
In ‘The Crazies’, a 2010 American sci-fi horror flick directed by Breck Eisner, the film remakes the classic 1973 film. The movie depicts the struggles of a small town that is infected by a military virus that turns those infected into psychotic killers. The remake was received well and experienced some box-office success.
Shot in Washington, John Carpenter’s ‘The Ward’, is an American supernatural horror that chronicles the psychological struggles of a young woman who sets fire to a house, is institutionalized as a result, and ends up haunted by the ghost of a former psychiatric ward inmate. Panabaker plays a fellow inmate who uses her beauty and sexual wiles to try and get what she wants and manipulate other inmates.
Piranha 3DD is a 2012 American comedy-horror film that sequels the 2010 Piranha 3D. Directed by John Gulager, Panabaker stars in the film along with such famous names as David Koechner, Gary Busey, Christopher Lloyd and David Hasselhoff. Although not exactly received well by the critics, it did further assert Panabaker’s place in the mainstream horror film genre.
Hallmark Films: ‘The Shunning’ and ‘Nearlyweds’
In 2011, Panabaker starred in the Hallmark movie ‘The Shunning’, proving that she could easily alternate between her scream queen roles and more serious characters. Panabaker played the starring role as the main character, Katie Lapp, an Amish young woman who feels something is missing from her life, until an outsider enters her life and causes conflict within her Amish community. The film was based on a novel written by Beverly Lewis.
Panabaker was given the role again in the 2013 sequel, ‘The Confession’, but due to a scheduling conflict was unable to take it on.
In her next Hallmark original movie ‘Nearlyweds’ in 2013, Panabaker works with Philip Baker Hall, Maggie Siff, and Bill Pullman in reading contemporary short fiction in the celebrated Cedering Fox’s word theater.
Recurring Roles on Television Drama Series: ‘Necessary Roughenss’, ‘Bones’, and ‘Justified’
From 2011 to 2013, Panabaker had a recurring role in the dramatic television series ‘Necessary Roughness’ in which she played Juliet Pittman. The drama was based on the true story of famed psychologist Dr. Donna Dannenfelser who worked for the New York Jets.
The American crime comedy-drama ‘Bones’ lasted for 12 seasons and had a huge following of fans and critics alike. The drama was created for Fox and was based on forensic anthropology and archaeology. Each episode was based on the two main characters, Special agent Seeley Booth and Dr. Temperance ‘Bones’ Brenna, deciphering the mystery behind found human remains. Based loosely on the life and work for Kathy Reiches, a famed forensic anthropologist, the series had a unique blend of drama and comedy. In ‘Bones’, Panabaker successfully played the recurring role of FBI special agent Olivia Sparling.
In 2014, Panabaker earned a starring role in the award-winning Bradley King sci-fi film ‘Time Lapse’. For her role in ‘Time Lapse’, Panabaker won the Best Actor/Actress award at the London Independent Film Festival in 2014. In this Indie sci-fi film, Panabaker is part of circle of friends who discover a time machine with the ability to take pictures of things that haven’t happened yet but are, instead, 24 hours ahead. ‘Time Lapse’ premiered in 2014 at the Brussels International Fantastic Film Festival and was extremely well received and was hailed by the critics as featuring amazing acting performances bolstered by a unique and mesmerizing plot.
‘The Flash’ and Caitlin Snow
When Panabaker landed the role of Dr. Caitlin Snow in the CW series ‘The Flash’, there was no doubt that she had really made it as an actor/actress. Not only had she found success as a younger star and won three Young Artist Awards to prove it, she had also found success in the theater, as a scream queen, and playing serious roles such as in ‘The Shunning’ and ‘Time Lapse’.
Comic superheroes have a firm place in American and International popular culture. Many stars have had their careers made by playing superhero roles in film and television. In ‘The Flash’, the 2014 American television series, the comic book superhero The Flash fights crime with his superpowers and superhuman abilities.
Spun off from ‘The Arrow’, the character Barry Allen, played by Grant Gustin, is a CSI guru who uses his super-human speed to fight crime and make his city a safer place. Premiering in America in 2014, ‘The Flash’ was a huge success, lagging only behind the CW’s ‘Vampire Diaries as the most-watched premiere.
Received extremely well by fans and critics alike, ‘The Flash’ was the winner of the People’s Choice Awards for ‘Favorite New TV Drama’, and its success has led to additional spin-offs such as the 2016 premier of ‘Legends of Tomorrow’. ‘The Flash’ has been renewed by CW, and its sixth season is set to premier in October of 2019.
Danielle Panabaker plays a genius bioengineering expert by the name of Dr. Caitlin Snow. In season two of ‘The Flash’, her character becomes multi-dimensional as her role includes playing Killer Frost, Snow’s alter ego. Panabaker’s portrayal of Killer Frost has allowed her to seamlessly enter the world of superheros as she has crossed over to make guest appearances in ‘The Flash’ spin-offs ‘Legends of Tomorrow, ‘Arrow’, and ‘Supergirl’.
Panabaker’s role in ‘The Flash’ has evolved even more to include he directorial debut of the 18th episode of the fifth season ‘Godspeed’. The episode was seen as a great step forward and expansion of Panabaker’s talents as one that can work as well behind the camera as she can in front of it.
Panabaker’s Most Successful Character: Dr. Caitlin Snow
While Panabaker has found success with multiple character portrayals and roles in her television and film career, her current role as Dr. Caitlin Snow and Killer Frost on CW’s ‘The Arrow’ and ‘The Flash’ is her most successful and popular to date.
The character of Caitlin Snow has an interesting history as a young girl who valued life and the Hippocratic Oath so much that she couldn’t even bring herself to step on a bug. Born on February 28th, 1989, Caitlin followed in the footsteps of her scientist parents.
Caitlin and her father were very close, but sadly her father developed Multiple Sclerosis, and it was later discovered that Caitlin also carried the gene. Caitlin’s father used experimental cryogenic therapy to save himself and his beloved daughter by releasing the disease progression.
During the clinical trials that cured Caitlin, they also left her with an alternate personality, Killer Frost. When riding her bike one day with her father, she crashes. Her rage triggers the release of her alter-ego Killer Frost, and once Caitlin sees her reflection in her bicycle’s mirror, she realizes who she is and suppresses her Killer Frost identity for years to come.
After the death of Caitlin’s father and her estrangement from her mother as a result, Caitlin grows up to develop an intense interest in the field of bioengineering. After losing her fiancé that she works at S.T.A.R. Laboratories with due to a particle accelerator explosion, Caitlin is once again swallowed by sadness but continues exploring her passion as a scientist and a bioengineer.
When Snow is working for S.T.A.R. Labs, she starts working with Barry Allen, The Flash, a crime scene investigator. After Allen fulfills his identity as The Flash, Snow becomes part of his team by providing medical support for them as they attempt to thwart the evil efforts of the city’s meta-humans.
The meta-humans represent the ills of society and the dark side of human nature, while The Flash and his team represent hope for the future through the efforts of those who use their powers for good, rather than evil.
When Snow becomes Killer Frost, she succumbs to the dark side of her character and of society and joins the meta-humans in their quest to perpetuate evil. The Team Flash attempts to bring her back, and this battle represents the larger battle that becomes the central conflict in the series.
Danielle Panabaker’s role as Caitlin Snow/Killer Frost has gained her critical acclaim as one that plays a split personality that is torn between her good nature and her dark side, rekindled by the explosion of the particle accelerator. Panabaker’s ability to so aptly capture the duality of evil and good in human nature has made her a fan favorite and catapulted her into mainstream fame and fortune. Her Caitlin Snow/Killer Frost character has become a crucial part of the show’s conflict, and the power of The Flash team to help each other and guard their precious Central City against the corruption of humanities dark side.
As is the tradition in most superhero films and characters, the underlying message and conflict circles around the duality that exists between evil and good. Most often, it is the superheroes and super villans, like The Flash and Killer Frost that come to symbolize the darkness that exists within all of us. The crux of the superhero universe is how to battle those instincts and who will win out.
Danielle Panabaker has penetrated the superhero culture with her character as Caitlin Snow/Killer Frost. While the crossover into DC and Marvel movies can be difficult as the film companies often ignore the actors from the television series and cast their own, Panabaker has most likely secured herself the role of Caitlin Snow/Killer Frost for as long as she wants to play it.
Danielle and charity
Danielle Panabaker is not just a pretty face and a talented actress/actor/director. Panabaker believes in using her public role, her career, and her articulate nature to support multiple charitable organizations such as Unicef, Art of Elysium, and the Young Storytellers Foundation.
Panabaker values both the fictional and factual roles she can play as an ambassador for these organizations around the world.
In 2019, Panabaker, Jim Lee (DC Comics co-publisher), Tom King, and fellow actresses Nafessa Williams and Candice Patton showed their appreciation for the service of military personnel by working in collaboration with the United Service Organizations (USO). They toured five American military bases spread throughout Kuwait and visited 12,000 U.S. troops to acknowledge their efforts and promote DC’s 80th anniversary of Batman.