WORDS BY BROOKE STONE
PHOTOGRAPHY BY JUSTIN TYLER CLOSE
STYLING BY JILL LINCOLN
HAIR BY JOHN D FOR ALTERNA AT STARWORKSARTISTS.COM
MAKEUP BY KATE LEE FOR CHANEL AT STARWORKSARTISTS.COM
MANICURE BY BETH FRICKE
Leslie Bibb will make bitter people angry. Why? Because she’s so darn happy. From Wrist Cutters: A Love Story, the Iron Man films and TV shows like Popular, ER and Crossing Jordan to her latest comedy Zookeeper, her work has been diverse and abundant. “I feel pretty good about where I am in the business,” she says. “I have a lot of gratitude for this life and I am proud of myself, standing where I am today.” She should be.
In a town where most actors traipse from one unsuccessful casting call to another, desperately seeking that breakout roll, Bibb’s path was a little different. Oprah Winfrey found her in a modeling contest when she was just 16. “That turned my life upside down,” she says. “I went to New York City and traveled the world. It afforded me a great life and allowed me to study acting, while still having a beautiful apartment and not struggling financially. I call modeling my bartending job. That time was amazing and crazy and normal and abnormal all at once.” Want to know what kind of crazy teenage models get up to when they’re traveling the world? She’s keeping tight-lipped on that one, “None of your beeswax, but I had fun.”
Bibb is known for her positive outlook and refusal to dish the dirt, which has helped her keep her chin up when she’s missed out on parts she really wanted. She won’t say which ones, but rather sighs knowingly and says, “Ah, yeah, it’s Hollywood.” Rather than dwelling on what she missed out on, the upbeat actress cherishes each project she’s asked to be a part of. “My last job is always my favorite and the one I’m most proud of. So, right now, it’s Zookeeper and Good Christian Belles. I guess because they’re the freshest in my mind and what I am entrenched in that makes them my favorite. However, I love all the stuff I’ve done.”
ABC’s Good Christian Belles stars Bibb as a single mother and former high school mean girl who returns to her Dallas hometown and her mom’s house after her marriage ends in scandal and must then face the girls she terrorized as a teen. “The schedule and the speed at which television operates is a little intimidating,” she says of her new job, “but I am over the moon about working with [Sex and the City creator] Darren Star, [Steel Magnolias writer] Bobby Harling and all these funny, talented women. But, I imagine by December, when we are done, I will be pooped.”
You’d think with a schedule like that, Bibb would have no time for a social life, but you’d be wrong. She’s currently dating Iron Man 2 co-star and The Lab Magazine cover alumni Sam Rockwell who knows a thing or two about the life of a hard‑working actor. Does Bibb get all green‑eyed being with someone who might have to make out with other actresses for a role? “I don’t get jealous about love scenes,” she says. “Every guy I have ever dated has been such a shit-show about them and made me feel so guilty about a part of my job I can’t change or help. I won’t do that to Sam.”
Aside from some unusual websites dedicated to her fabulous feet on which she says, “That Web can go squirrelly on you fast. Don’t get me wrong, I have some nice feet, but that’s overkill. Someone is very, very bored!” things are going rather swimmingly for Ms. Bibb. And what does this optimistic lady want for her future? “I think that is a very intimate question,” she says, “And I am keeping the answer between me, my dreams and God!” Of course she is. Just like a good, completely loveable Christian belle.
Enjoy more this on thelabmagazine.com, coming summer 2012!