Hilarie Ross Burton (born July 1, 1982) is an American actress and producer. A former host of MTV's Total Request Live, she portrayed Peyton Sawyer on the WB/CWdrama One Tree Hill for six seasons (2003–2009). Burton gained wider recognition with leading roles in the films Our Very OwnSolstice and The List. In 2010, she began starring as Sara Ellis on the USA crime drama White Collar, and had a recurring role as Dr. Lauren Boswell on the ABC medical drama Grey's Anatomy in 2013.


 [hide*1 Early life

Early life[edit]Edit

Burton was born on July 1, 1982 in Sterling, Virginia. Her father is a former Green Beret.[2] She is the eldest of four children with three brothers. She graduated from Park View High School in 2000, where she was student council treasurer her second year,[3] vice-president her junior year,[4] and captain of the cheerleading squad, student council president, and homecoming queen her senior year.[5] Burton attended New York University and Fordham University.


Burton's first big break came when working as a VJ for the Total Request Live on MTV. She was supposed to be a guest commentator for one segment, but producers decided to offer her a permanent job. Burton went on to present at the 2000 MTV Video Music Awards and MTV's Iced Out New Year's Eve. Burton went on to portray herself on The WB teen drama television series Dawson's Creek in 2002, which was marked as her television debut.

In April 2003, Burton was cast in The WB drama pilot, One Tree Hill. Burton portrayed the role of Peyton Sawyer, a fiercely independent visual and musical artist and cheerleader. The series premiered on September 23, 2003 and went on to be the network's top rated program of the year. The role was considered Burton's breakout role and is her best-known to date. For her role in the series, Burton was featured on the cover ofMaximAmerican Cheerleader Magazine and People. Her performance received critical praise and she earned three Teen Choice Award nominations.[5] In May 2009, The CW announced Burton would not be returning for the show's seventh season based on her own decision not to return, contrary to rumors she left due to salary issues.[6]

In June 2005, Burton made her feature film debut in the independent drama film Our Very Own. The film centered on five small-town teenagers who dream of a better life. The film starred Allison Janney and Cheryl Hines and was released to positive reviews from critics. Burton and her fellow stars in the film received the "Outstanding Ensemble Acting" award at the prestigious Sarasota Film Festival.[7] In September 2007, Hilarie appeared in the Lifetime drama film Normal Adolescent Behavior. Hilarie played the role of Ryan and followed a group of friends whom are in a six-way polyfidelitous relationship. That same year Burton co-starred in the supernatural horror film Solstice opposite Amanda Seyfried and Elisabeth Harnois.

In June 2008, Burton starred in the independent thriller filmThe List. Burton portrayed the role of Jo Johnston and was filmed in Wilmington, North Carolina while Burton was on production break for One Tree Hill. The film was released for a limited release and went on to make $132,863 in the US alone. That same year, Burton had a small role in the Fox Searchlight Pictures drama film The Secret Life of Bees. Burton played Deborah Owens, the deceased mother to Dakota Fanning's character.

In January 2009, Burton was cast in another independent drama, Bloodworth. The film is an adaptation of Provinces of Night by author William Gay. Filming also took place in Wilmington, North Carolina in April and May that same year. The film also starred Hilary Duff and Val Kilmer and premiered at the 2010 Santa Barbara International Film Festival in February 2010. The film later went on to a limited release on May 20, 2011 to positive reviews from critics and over $12,971 worldwide.

In July 2010 Variety announced Burton would have a recurring arc in the USA Network crime drama series White Collar playing Sara Ellis, an insurance investigator in the second season. In February 2011, Burton was upgraded to a series regular for the third season which premiered on June 7, 2011. The series was renewed for a fourth season in August 2011 with Burton reprising her role, credited in the recurring cast.[8]

On January 23, 2012, Burton guest-starred on the ABC police comedy-drama Castle, in season 4: episode 13 titled "An Embarrassment of Bitches" portraying Kay Cappuccio, a reality television star who is accused of the murder of a famous dog trainer.[9] In May 2013, Burton began a recurring role in the ABC medical drama Grey's Anatomy for the final three episodes of the ninth season, playing Dr. Lauren Boswell.

In August 2013, Burton began work on CBS's Hostages as Samantha, the mistress of lead character Brian Sanders.[10]

Personal life[edit]Edit

[1][2]Burton holding an M4 Carbineduring a USO visit.

Burton resided in Wilmington, North Carolina, where One Tree Hill was filmed.[1][5] In 2004, Burton married One Tree Hill assistant director Ian Prange, son of executive producerGreg Prange. They divorced in 2009.[1] She has a cat named after writer Edgar Allan Poe, and is close friends with fellow One Tree Hill stars Bethany Joy LenzSophia Bush,Danneel HarrisJames LaffertyChad Michael Murray and Elisabeth Harnois.

In May 2007, Burton ranked No. 77 in the Maxim Hot 100 List of 2007.[11] She also appeared on the cover of the November 2006 edition of Maxim with One Tree Hill co-stars Sophia Bush and Danneel Harris. In previous years, Burton ranked No. 2 on Femme Fatales: The 50 Sexiest Women of 2005 and #12 on Much Music's 20 Hottest Women of 2003.

In 2007, Burton created her own production company called Southern Gothic Production (SoGoPro) along with Nick Gray, Kelly Tenney, James Burton and Meg Mortimer.[12][13][14][15][16] Burton is also on the North Carolina Film Council.[17] Burton has been in a relationship with actor Jeffrey Dean Morgan since 2009. The couple welcomed a son Augustus "Gus" in March 2010.[18][19]




Year Title Role Notes
2005 Our Very Own Bobbie Chester Sarasota Film Festival: Outstanding Ensemble Acting
2007 Normal Adolescent Behavior Ryan
Solstice Alicia
2008 The List Jo Johnston
The Secret Life of Bees Deborah Owens
2009 The True-Love Tale of Boyfriend & Girlfriend Boyfriend A Southern Gothic Production
2010 Bloodworth Hazel
2012 Naughty or Nice Krissy Kringle Hallmark Original Movie
2013 Christmas on the Bayou Katherine 'Kat' Lifetime Original Movie
Year Title Role Notes
2000–2004 Total Request Live Herself
2002 Birds of Prey Quiet Classmate Episode 1.03: "Prey for the Hunter"
2002 Dawson's Creek Hilarie (Female VJ) Episode 5.19: "100 Light Years from Home"
2003–2009 One Tree Hill Peyton Sawyer Main Role (Seasons 1–6; 2003–2009; 130 episodes)

Nominated — Teen Choice Award for Choice Breakout TV Star Female(2004) Nominated — Teen Choice Award for Choice TV Actress: Drama/Action/Adventure(2004) Nominated — Teen Choice Award for Choice TV Actress: Drama(2005)

2003 MTV's Iced Out New Year's Eve Herself Host
MTV Does Miami Herself Co-Host
MTV Diary Herself with One Tree Hill cast
Pepsi Smash Herself Host
2005 Unscripted Herself
2005/2006 The Tony Danza Show Herself
2008 Little Britain USA Lesbian Student 1 Episode 1.06
2010–2013 White Collar Sara Ellis Main role

Recurring cast (Season 2: 6 episodes) Main cast (Season 3: 10 episodes) Recurring cast (Season 4: 4 episodes)

2012 Castle Kay Cappuccio Episode 4.13: "An Embarrassment of Bitches"
2013 Grey's Anatomy Dr. Lauren Boswell Recurring role (Season 9: 3 episodes)
2013 Hostages Samantha Recurring role, 4 episodes
Music Video
Year Title Role Notes
2005 "The Mixed Tape" Peyton Sawyer Jack's Mannequin video


Year Group Award Result Title
2004 Teen Choice Awards Choice Breakout TV Star – Female Nominated One Tree Hill
Choice TV Actress: Drama/Action/Adventure Nominated
2005 Teen Choice Awards Choice TV Actress: Drama Nominated One Tree Hill
2006 Sarasota Film Festival Outstanding Ensemble Acting Won Our Very Own
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