American actress and model Elizabeth “Beth” Toussaint is best known for her various appearances including Dallas, Star Trek: The Next Generation, and Red Eye. How did she make her claim to fame and what is she up to now?
Beth Toussaint was born September 25th, 1962 in Pleasant Hill, California to her parents Maynard Toussaint and Leona Toussaint.
Toussaint has a younger brother, David Toussaint who is known for his work as a writer, commentator, theater critic, playwright and author.
Beth attended Pleasant Hills High School. During this time, she proved herself as an athlete and became a member of the school’s track team.
After completing high school, she went on to continue her education at Duke University. She then studied acting at Brian Reese Studios.
Before making her way into the world of acting, Toussaint was working as a model. Through these experiences, she managed to land a role in the Bon Jovi "She Don’t Know Me” music video.
Her appearance in music videos continued with Bob Seger’s 1986 video "Like a Rock", SAGA’s 1987 music video "Only Time Will Tell", and Peter Cetera’s 1987 music video for the song “Big Mistake.”
Beth Toussaint made her debut as an actress that same year of 1987 as Shelly in the horror film “Berserker.” She was then selected for a minor role in the action horror-comedy film “Dead Heat”, which starred Treat Williams, Joe Piscopo and Lindsay Frost.
Toussaint continued her career with a single episode appearance in the TV series “Monsters.”
Following these more minor roles, she had her big break in 1988 when she was cast in the role of Tracy Lawton in the soap opera “Dallas,” aired on CBS. After her recurring role on “Dallas,” she went back to taking smaller characters on series such as “Growing Pains” and “Booker.” In 1994 she was offered a guest role in the Emmy Award-winning series “Babylon 5.”
Some of Toussaint’s other most notable television roles include her appearance on the action-adventure series “MacGyver,” her character on the Fox police series “21 Jump Street,” as well as one of her most recent roles where she appeared as the recurring Hope Adams Wilson on the soap opera “The Young and the Restless.”
Toussaint also has a variety of experience in the movie industry, particularly in the horror and thriller genres. She appeared in films such as the 1991 film “Blackmail,” the action, comedy, and horror movie “Dead Heat,” an action and scifi film “Project Shadowcaster II,” the notorious “Scream 3” horror movie, in addition to the 2005 thriller “Red Eye.”
Star Trek: The Next Generation
Another minor role included that of Ishara Yar on the Star Trek: The Next Generation fourth season episode titled "Legacy".
Ishara Yar was a complex character. She was the sister of Natasha Yar (Denise Crosby) and grew up on Turkana IV where she was active in the Coalition.
In this episode, Ishara appeared to grow close to the Enterprise-D crew and indicated she wanted to leave the Coalition and perhaps one day join Starfleet. Ishara, in a dramatic turn of events, essentially sabotaged the Alliance, allowing for the Coalition to invade.
Instead of holding her for her actions which endangered Starfleet officers, Captain Picard sent her back.
As she left, Ishara told Data that the time they had spent together was the closest thing to friendship that she had ever known, wrapping the episode up with a bittersweet tone.
This particular episode and the performance given by Toussaint as Ishara Yar was given much praise and acclaim by the Star Trek fandom.
What is Beth Toussaint doing now?
Toussaint is married to Jack Coleman and has been since 1996. Coleman is an American actor, most well known for his roles in the 1980s “Dynasty” soap opera, the science-fiction drama series “Heroes,” as well as his portrayal of two different state senators on both the hit comedy mockumentary series “The Office” and the crime mystery drama “Castle.”
The couple had a daughter together in 1999 and named her Tess. Around this time, Toussaint decided to retire her career as an actress and focus primarily on raising her daughter. Still, she continued to appear in television and films for several years after this. Her last acting credit came in 2006 when she appeared for 6 episodes of The Young And The Restless.
More recently, in June of 2021, Toussaint posted to Instagram regarding a serious surgery she had undergone for her cervical spine.
She had been experiencing “debilitating head and spinal pain,” which ultimately led to having a three disc replacement.
She expressed much gratitude for the support of her husband and daughter during this time.