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Why Lanette From Seinfeld Looks So Familiar

"I proclaim this, the summer of George!" One of the more popular of the countless one-liners on "Seinfeld" (as in the NBC mega-hit from the 90s), this line began an episode where George (Jason Alexander) wastes three months of paid severance in a comfy chair. It also saw Elaine (Julia Louise-Dreyfus) get caught poking fun at a co-worker (Molly Shannon), Kramer (Micheal Richards) "win" a Tony Award, and Jerry (Jerry Seinfeld) hire George as a relationship assistant to help him with a new, very recognizable girlfriend.

"Seinfeld" ran for nine seasons and revolutionized the sitcom industry as a "show about nothing." Loosely based on the lives of creators Jerry Seinfeld and Larry David ("Curb Your Enthusiasm"), the series saw a whole slew of actors make appearances (check out this list from Business Insider) before they became big names. Bryan Cranston ("Breaking Bad"), Courtney Cox ("Friends"), Denise Richards ("The World is Not Enough"), and James Spader ("Blacklist") all showed up throughout the show's run.

Notable appearances were also made by many future stars as Jerry's love interests throughout the seasons, including Teri Hatcher ("Desperate Housewives"), Christine Taylor ("Dodgeball"), and Lauren Graham ("Gilmore Girls"). "The Summer of George" is the season finale of Season 8 and saw Jerry pursuing a new love interest named Lanette. She lived a busy lifestyle, and Jerry had difficulty deciphering if she was dating other people simultaneously. If you watched the episode on Netflix recently, you might have figured out you had seen her somewhere before. In fact, you have likely seen actress Amanda Peet in numerous places. Here are some of the Peet's most famous roles.

Amanda Peet was in She's the One

Far from a blockbuster film, or even one of her most famous roles, "She's the One" was one of the first times audiences got to lay eyes on Amanda Peet sharing the screen with some of the biggest names yet to explode in Hollywood. The film follows two brothers, Mickey (writer and director Edward Burns) and Francis (Michael McGlone), as they navigate their lives from very different places. An impetuous romantic, Mickey is recovering from having his heart broken by his cheating ex-fiance Heather (Cameron Diaz) when he meets and marries Hope (Maxine Bahns) in 24 hours. Francis is a headstrong Wall Street success story who is cheating on his wife (Jennifer Aniston) with his brother's ex Heather. Trying to guide them through their turmoil is the patriarch of the family, played by legendary John Mahoney.

Peet appears in a few scenes as Jennifer Aniston's sister. She seems to have the very in-your-face and up-front personality that many people experience from New Yorkers. She also displays a trace amount of jealousy towards her sister, who she feels hit the jackpot by marrying a wealthy Wall Street guy, commenting multiple times about wanting to find one of her own.

While her role was a minor supporting character, it was almost a much more significant part. In an interview with Indie Film Hustle in 2021, Ed Burns reveals that Peet and another supporting character played by Leslie Mann landed those roles after coming up short on the audition for Diaz and Aniston's parts. She may have been right on the precipice of exploding in "She's the One," but was about to do much bigger things.

She was an eager assassin in The Whole Nine Yards

Amanda Peet's big break arguably came in 2000 when she appeared in "The Whole Nine Yards" alongside Hollywood big shots like Bruce Willis ("Die Hard," "The Fifth Element"), the late Michael Clarke Duncan ("The Green Mile," "Armageddon"), Rosanna Arquette ("Pulp Fiction," "Desperately Seeking Susan"), and Matthew Perry ("Friends," "17 Again"). The film follows Oz (Perry), a dentist living in Canada in a life plagued by professional and marital misery. Life is made terrifyingly exciting when world-class mafia hitman Jimmy the Tulip (Willis) moves in next door. Oz finds himself stuck between the mob, assassins, and a wife looking to get him bumped off as well.

Peet plays Jill, a dental hygienist working in Oz's office who turns out to be an aspiring assassin herself. It is revealed that she took a contract to kill Oz but couldn't bring herself to go through with it due to his purity. She reveals this secret when she discovers Jimmy the Tulip is his neighbor, leveraging the information to meet her idol. She ends up aligning herself with the assassin to free him from the mafia's grip, beginning a romantic relationship with him. The part brought with it a sequel titled "The Whole Ten Yards" four years later.

In an interview with Screen Slam at the movie's premiere, she revealed that most of her physical comedy was accidental. "The physical comedy that I did was by accident. I just tripped and fell, and it wasn't because I am a good actress; it was because I am a big dork." This refers to a moment when she is walking down a grassy hill in heels, and viewers see her in the background twist her ankle and fall.

She was insufferable in Saving Silverman

Amanda Peet appeared in another comedy the very next year, although this one was decidedly less fun. If "The Whole Nine Yards" was at the top of the grassy hill she fell down, "Saving Silverman" would be in the wet grass at the bottom you avoid to keep from tracking it in the house. The film follows three friends — Darren (Jason Biggs), Wayne (Steve Zahn), and J.D. (Jack Black) — who are torn apart by a new love interest. Wayne and J.D. are irritated that their best friend (and member of their Neil Diamond sidewalk cover band) is infatuated with an uptight mean girl named Judith (Peet). While she forbids Darren from hanging out with the guys any further, they hatch a plan to kidnap her and pretend she is dead, reuniting him with his old flame (Amanda Detmer).

Peet's portrayal of Judith was meant to be the unintentional villain of the film, keeping him from seeing his friends and playing the music they love. Unfortunately, the line between a slapstick comedy villain and a reasonable mature woman is blurred as Peet is seemingly the only one in the film with redeeming qualities. In his scathing film review, Roger Ebert pointed out, "Peet is too nice to play someone this mean."

Ebert's half a star wasn't the only negative review of the movie, as it holds a 19% critic and 51% audience review on Rotten Tomatoes. Michael Dequina of The Movie Report said, "It's the audience that needs saving, not the title character." With a relatively new career launching and a genre filled with films like "American Pie," "There's Something About Mary," and "Dumb and Dumber," this film could have stalled Peet's career permanently, but instead she took a different path.

She went the thriller route with Identity

Two years later, Amanda Peet landed a role in the thriller "Identity," directed by James Mangold ("Logan," "Indiana Jones 5"). The film stars John Cusack ("Grosse Point Blank," "High Fidelity"), the late Ray Liotta ("Goodfellas," "Field of Dreams"), and Rebecca De Mornay ("Risky Business," "Wedding Crashers"). Ed (Cusack) is a former police detective who finds himself stranded at a hotel in the middle of nowhere during a rain storm. The other occupants of the hotel begin to die one by one before a mysterious connection between them is discovered.

Peet appears as Paris, a prostitute trying to escape her life when she is thrust into the hotel with a cop, an actress, a family, a troubled couple, and a corrections officer with a convicted felon he's transporting. While she spends most of her screen time assisting Cusack to get to the bottom of the murders, she ends up being one of the last people standing at the end, following a twist that nobody could have ever seen coming.

"Identity" also marked the beginning of a working relationship with John Cusack in the first of three films together. When on set, she joked in a backstage interview that she kept begging the director to add a kissing scene with Cusack into the script, something that he playfully refused to do. She went on to say that getting into character wasn't difficult, the cold and wet conditions on set exhausted her, and it was easy for her to get scared under those conditions.

She outran the Mayan calendar in 2012

Speaking of John Cusack, Amanda Peet reunited with him again in 2009 for the Roland Emmerich disaster flick "2012." The film played on the hysteria that was expected with the end of the Mayan calendar and the impending "end of the world." The film starred Cusack, Thandiwe Newton ("Westworld," "Crash"), Chiwetel Ejiofor ("12 Years a Slave," "Dr. Strange"), and Woody Harrelson ("Hunger Games," "Zombieland"), and follows a struggling writer (Cusack) as he protects his family while they flee the ongoing global catastrophes that come with the end of the world.

Peet appears as Cusack's wife, and while she got to have that kiss with Cusack she longed for in "Identity," she was too busy to enjoy it as she and Cusack spent all of their time on the run to avoid death. In an interview with Cinemablend, the actress spoke about doing the stunts for the movie. "I did lean out of a moving airplane in a harness to reach for John's hand while Roland [Emmerich] was in a helicopter filming me. I did have that moment where I said to myself, 'You've come a long way from your Skittles commercial.'"

She went on to say that it was her dream to do a romantic comedy with Cusack and that the dialogue had gotten better in "2012" than in some of Emmerich's previous films. "But most of it was on the page. I think he's very into the character portion of the story because I think he thinks that no matter how big he gets, it's not gonna work. It's not gonna be awesome unless you're with the tiny civilian family and their dynamic. It's gonna be hollow."

She learned baseball for Brockmire

One of Amanda Peet's most recent parts is in the IFC series "Brockmire," starring Hank Azaria ("The Simpsons," "The Birdcage") as the title character. It follows a disgraced baseball announcer that has a very tragic and public meltdown on air after discovering his wife's constant cheating. After being fired, he moves to a small town and is hired to commentate for a minor league baseball team, the Morristown Frackers.

Peet plays Jules James, the owner of the team and someone who bonds with Brockmire over both baseball and booze. The two of them find themselves very attracted to each other, dividing their time equally between baseball and drinking. During an interview with Parade, Peet described her character by saying, "For an alcoholic, she has her s*** together." She continues on in the interview to discuss her preparation for the role and having to learn baseball.

"I watched Ken Burns' documentary; I read some, and I looked at the documentary about the Portland Mavericks, who were a minor league team. I feel like I didn't retain that much. I still had to ask Hank, 'Am I supposed to be happy when he runs to first base, or sad?'" She confessed that even though her character is a huge baseball fanatic and even owns a minor league team, she doesn't understand the draw of the game. "When I watch a baseball game, I don't understand what's interesting about it. Nobody ever makes it to first base. I mean, for, like, long periods of time, no one's making it to first base."