The ABC Family summer block is shaping up, and it's not just the return of Pretty Little Liars that will have you glued to your television. (Though, let's be honest, that doesn't hurt.) The cable network is bringing on a slew of new shows, including the cancer drama Chasing Life . Chasing Life is about an aspiring journalist named April who finds out that she has leukemia, just when her life was taking a turn for the better. I recently watched the pilot of Chasing Life and despite my original reservations about the new drama — would it really be able to sustain its challenging premise? — I found myself thoroughly enjoying the show. It ran the risk of being overly saccharine and life-affirming (and ugh, those promos didn't exactly help) but the pilot itself was just the right blend of sweet and clever, mainly thanks to Chasing Life 's talented star Italia Ricci.
So where do you know Ricci from? For starters, no, she isn't the long-lost sibling of Christina Ricci (though they do sort of look alike). Ricci is a Canadian actress who you may have seen in a few other projects. If you are a fan of the American Pie films, you might remember her from the series' Beta House installment. It came out on DVD in 2007 and featured a lot of beautiful girls who are inexplicably attracted to awful guys, usually those with the last name "Stifler." Check her out at the 23 second mark of the trailer below — Ricci is the one being objectified by said guy in the front of the group.
In 2009, Ricci had a recurring role on the Canadian-produced Disney XD series Aaron Stone, in which she played Chase Ravenwood. Later she had a recurring role on the much-less-kid-friendly Secret Girlfriend, which aired for one season on Comedy Central. It was a strange show and Ricci played the friend of the titular "secret girlfriend."
After that it was on to Cartoon Network for Unnatural History, a live-action show about a globe-trotting teen who must learn how to cope with his permanent placement in Washington, D.C. Ricci played a brainy high school student — and a potential love interest for the lead character, Henry — before the show was axed in 2010 after its first season.
One place off the small screen that you may have seen Ricci? In Joseph Gordon-Levitt's Don Jon. Yes, that woman getting hot and heavy in the club with JGL is none other than Chasing Life's Ricci. (Warning: NSFW)
Okay, so now you know where Ricci has been in her professional life, but you might recognize her because of her personal life too. If you're a fan of The CW's (now cancelled) The Tomorrow People, you may know Ricci as the girlfriend of star Robbie Amell. Yes, she gets to make out with Gordon-Levitt on screen and Amell in real life. Best. Life. Ever. Ricci and Amell have reportedly been dating since 2009. Aren't they adorable?
Ricci did a great job in the Chasing Life pilot, and I'm excited to see what else the actress can do on the new series. She definitely has star potential, and hopefully we'll get to see more of her — preferably in shows that last longer than one season.