Elizabeth Banks chose her stage name because she wanted a 1-syllable surname
Elizabeth Banks has one of the most recognizable names in Hollywood, but that doesn’t mean she’s had that name forever. Despite the recognition his stage name is garnering in the entertainment industry, it was a creative decision at the time of signing up to the Screen Actor’s Guild (SAG). It’s no secret, however, and Banks once explained why the change was necessary for his now-burgeoning career.
Elizabeth Mitchell bets on her new name
According to IMDb, Banks was born Elizabeth Mitchell in Pittsfield, Massachusetts. She grew up an average child with acting ambitions and eventually studied at the American Conservatory Theater to hone her skills. Before long, Banks appeared on several TV shows in small parts. Banks began to get noticed by bigger names in the industry.
By the time she was ready to pursue her dreams as a bona fide star, another actor with the same name had already registered with the guild. Lost fans may recognize Mitchell as Juliet from the hit ABC show Lost. When Banks discovered this misleading naming issue, she started thinking about something that suited her and was uniquely unique, and her process for doing so was surprisingly simple.
Meeting with Elizabeth Banks
Glamor notes how several actors get their stage names not because of creative desires, but to avoid confusion once they sign up with the Screen Actors’ Guild. The guild makes sure everyone gets proper credit every time they appear on camera. So when duplicates appear, they often cause actors to adopt a new unique name.
Banks wanted a one-syllable surname, something that sticked out of the tongue and anyone could pronounce. She searched for names that matched her criteria in hopes that would be the answer to her problem. It was, and Glamor cited the actor’s brief explanation of how that process ultimately unfolded for her.
“So I made a list, and then I put it in alphabetical order, and Banks was first on the list. And I called SAG, and they said it was available, so I I said, “I’ll take it!” I just wanted it to end!” she says.
While Banks went by his birth name for a handful of starring roles, David Wain’s cult classic comedy hot and humid american summer introduced the name fans know today. The movie wasn’t just a coming out party for Banks, but Paul Rudd, Bradley Cooper, Amy Poehler and several future industry superstars.
She has come a long way since.
A “Pitch Perfect” Career
Banks originally made a name for himself in a host of comedic performances. However, she turned out to be more than those roles entailed. Since The hunger Games to her portrayal of Laura Bush in O to manage Perfect location 2, Banks has taken his initial dreams to a top career. However, while Elizabeth Mitchell might be hidden away in the past, those days come alive through Elizabeth Banks.
While the participation of banks in the Perfect franchise is important, it was instrumental in making them, to begin with. While the films are loosely based on a non-fictional book, the events are all made up. Banks, who made the initial effort to do so, opened up about how she returned to her days as a theater kid for one of the show’s most iconic tropes.
“The idea of the riff-off, even in the first movie, was inspired by my college experience of being a nerdy musical theater kid and going to house parties where we all huddled around a piano with lyric sheets and singing and we would show and come back and forward and kind of throw it at each other. It was the inspiration for the riff-off in the first movie. And I knew in this one, I wanted it to feel like a fight club,” she told NPR.
According to IMDb, Banks will next appear in the Beanie Babies-inspired movie The bubble cap. Now, more than two decades into her career, she’s a seasoned veteran. However, her story shows that although Elizabeth Banks is the one fans know and love, Elizabeth Mitchell’s influence still shines through.
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