In the early 2000s, Jessica Alba was everywhere. In everything from Sin City to the superhero flick Fantastic Four, and finally the thriller film Into the Blue, the beautiful actress was beyond well-known for her screen time.
Then, all of a sudden, she all but disappeared. Alba’s personal life started to interfere with her professional life, and her face was seen less and less. Let’s take a stroll down memory lane and see where the actress came from and where she is today.
California Girl Thorugh and Through
Jessica Alba grew up in a modest household in Claremont, California. Her mother worked as a fry-cook, flipping burgers during the day and working as a bartender in the evenings. And her father worked as a cook during the night after his career in the Air Force.
The young Alba never thought she fit into her family, once saying, “I always thought I was born into the wrong family, that I was… royalty, and nobody knew it but me.”
Alba Grew Up With Authority Issues
Because of her self-proclaimed entitlement complex, Alba became very rebellious at a young age, getting her into numerous problems. Living in a very religious and conservative, traditional Catholic, Latin household didn’t help matters.
And that rebellious behavior transferred over to her schooling. Let’s just say that she didn’t get along with a lot of her teachers, and she was also isolated from other students a lot of the time due to her health — she was in and out of the hospital a lot growing up.
It All Started With A Teacher Telling Her To Be A Righty
Her rebellious nature towards authority all started in grade school when a teacher told her she had to write with her right hand. Alba was a lefty, and when she asked why she had to switch hands, no one gave her a solid explanation.
And being so young she couldn’t figure out the reason by herself. Alba said, “I have had a big problem with authority ever since.” The lack of explanation is enough to make any kid question authority!
She Wanted To Grow Up To Be The Opposite Of Her Parents
It’s not entirely surprising that Alba grew up with a rebellious streak. Her parents married and had children at a young age, so, to her, it felt as though she and her brother, Joshua, grew up alongside their parents.
But growing up that way made Alba realize she wanted nothing more than to be the opposite of her blue collar-working parents. At the young age of five, she knew she wanted to be an actress. Of course, almost no one took her dream seriously.
Alba Has A Very Diverse Family Background
Having young parents wasn’t the only thing that was difficult for Alba to bear growing up. She also came from a very diverse background. Her mother is of French, English, Danish, German, and Welsh descent, while her father’s parents were both children of Mexican immigrants.
With such a diverse background, Alba felt as though she didn’t fit in anywhere. But all of that was about to change as she grew up.
She Dressed Very Modestly Growing Up
Alba and her brother were raised in a strong Catholic household with numerous strict rules, including no intimacy before marriage. So, growing up, Alba would dress very modestly, never showing too much skin or much of the body she was starting to grow into.
It didn’t necessarily bother her, though, since she didn’t like getting too much attention from unwanted people. But her modest style didn’t keep men from staring and approaching the young girl.
She Started To Feel Self-Conscious About Her Body
Unfortunately, Alba was often approached by older men. It made her so uncomfortable that she decided to speak with her youth pastor about the issue, thinking he would have some words of wisdom.
He didn’t. The youth pastor actually blamed Alba and her choice of clothing, even though she was young and dressed very modestly. The pastor’s statement led Alba to have body and self-confidence issues, something that would rear its ugly head later in her life when asked to show a lot of skin during filming.
Alba Left The Church When She Was A Teenager
When she was a teenager, Alba decided to leave the church. She felt as though she was being judged for her appearance. Alba explained her decision, saying, “Older men would hit on me, and my youth pastor said it was because I was wearing provocative clothing when I wasn’t.”
“It just made me feel like if I was in any way desirable to the opposite sex that it was my fault, and it made me ashamed of my body and being a woman.”
She Entered An Acting Competition At Age 11
In 1992, at the age of 11, Alba decided she wanted to pursue her dream of acting. So, when she heard about an acting competition in Beverly Hills, California, that was offering free acting classes as a prize, she begged her mom to compete.
She wound up winning the grand prize and was enrolled in her first acting classes. It wasn’t even ten months later that an agent signed her.
She Landed Her First Film A Year Later
It was just one year later that Alba landed her first role as Gail in the feature film called Camp Nowhere, which released in 1994. What started as a two-week gig wound up being Alba working for two months after the lead actress dropped out of the project.
Life was good for Alba. She was modeling, acting, and landing some great commercial jobs. But strange things started happening to the actress. She knew things were too good to be true.
She Started To Get Strange Phone Calls
Everything changed for Alba when she landed the role of Maya in the television series Flipper. The series was filmed in Australia, and Alba couldn’t have been more excited to travel to the land down under for work.
But then she started receiving strange phone calls from some random man she didn’t know. Being new to the business, Alba didn’t think much of it, believing the man to be nothing more than an eccentric fan. She couldn’t have been more wrong.
One Day, Alba Was Snatched Off Set
Unfortunately, the man behind the phone calls didn’t get the hint when Alba would continue to press ignore. But then she found herself in the middle of an absolute nightmare. One day the young actress was snatched from the set right under everyone’s noses.
Soon the crew realized she was missing, and when they couldn’t find her, they contacted the local police. At the time, Alba was a minor, so they took the disappearance very seriously.
They Found Her After 14 Hours
Everyone was frantic. They had no idea where a kidnapper would possibly take the young actress. Thankfully, after almost 14 long hours, Alba was found. If the kidnapping wasn’t scary enough, how the police found the young girl is something out of a horror movie.
They found Alba in the trunk of some car with her hands and feet bound. And, to top it all off, she was also gagged. But Alba is made out of some strong stuff, and she didn’t let the incident define her life.
Her Big Break: James Cameron’s Dark Angel
Even after the incident, Alba made waves in Hollywood, but her big break came when James Cameron selected her out of a pool of a thousand girls to play Max Guevara in the Fox series Dark Angel.
The series ran for two seasons and even garnered a Golden Globe nomination for Alba. But that wasn’t the only thing she got out of the show. The actress also met Michael Weatherly on set. Soon the two started dating.
Alba’s Parents Were Not Happy With Their Relationship
Alba grew up in a very religious household. So, when her parents learned that she was dating a man 12 years older, they weren’t exactly “happy.” Alba didn’t really care, though. And when he proposed to her, she said yes. Alba was only 20 years old.
But the marriage only lasted two years. But the actress’s career didn’t falter after that misstep. Soon she was landing major roles left and right. She even met someone special on another one of her sets.
Another Career Milestone Happened in 2004
In 2004, Alba landed another super role, playing the Invisible Woman Susan Storm in the superhero film Fantastic Four, released in 2005. The character was so popular that she received two nominations at the 2006 MTV Movie Awards, one for Best Hero and another for Best On-Screen Team.
But those weren’t the only things to come out of the box office success. While on set, Alba met someone special, production assistant Cash Warren. For Alba, it was love at first sight. But there was a minor issue.
2005 Brought With It Another Lead Role
Another film Alba starred in was the thriller Into the Blue, opposite Paul Walker. The film allowed Alba to show off her swimming skills yet again, something she showcased when she was younger during her time on set with Flipper.
But her mind was still focused on the man she met while on the Fantastic Four set, Cash Warren. She wanted to see if their chemistry would lead anywhere, but there was a huge issue between the two.
Warren Wanted Out Of The Friend Zone
When it came to Cash Warren, it was love at first sight for Alba. There was a slight issue, though; Alba was already seeing someone else. So, Warren was thrown into the friend zone. Obviously, for the production assistant, that wasn’t going to do.
So, one day, he made his move. He wrote a letter to Alba saying, “I really, really like you.” The actress had no choice but to follow his lead.
They Got Together…For A Little While
Alba decided to follow her heart and break up with the guy she was seeing in favor of Warren. Even though it was “love at first sight,” their relationship didn’t last long. Warren was an overly jealous boyfriend, and Alba wasn’t going to deal with that type of emotional abuse.
So, she left him. But they cared for each other very deeply and wound up getting back together only a few short months later.
Cash And Jessica Were Pregnant And Engaged
Alba and Warren were back together for what felt like a split second when they shared some big news. The actress was pregnant, and the two of them were planning on getting married. Cash and Warren were wed in 2008 and, to this day, are still going strong.
During the early months of their marriage, Alba won a few prestigious awards, including a Saturn Award for Best Actress. So, it begged the question, where is the actress now?
Alba All But Left The Industry
For someone who was on the big and little screen for most of the early 2000s, it was a shock when Alba all but disappeared from the spotlight. As it turned out, the actress had another route she wanted to take with her life.
She decided she wasn’t going to take the entertainment industry seriously anymore. It wasn’t because Alba wasn’t landing roles. The actress just wasn’t happy with directors and producers.
She Didn’t Like The Way The Industry Was Headed
Alba wasn’t entirely happy with the industry. The actress even criticized the Fantastic Four director for telling her to “cry prettier.” When all she wanted to do was be taken seriously as an actress, being typecast as the “hot chick” who had to cry pretty wasn’t what she had in mind.
That being said, she hasn’t stepped away from acting altogether. Alba has appeared in various television shows and films since her “big air” days, including a lead role in L.A’s Finest. But acting isn’t her main love anymore.
Alba Began Working On Various Projects
In 2009, Alba decided to start working on philanthropic projects. Ironically, she went back to her rebellious roots and began to superglue posters to billboards in Oklahoma City to get her messages across. Let’s just say police officers weren’t thrilled by her antics, and they eventually charged her with vandalism.
All she wanted to do was bring awareness to the diminishing population of great white sharks! After she was charged, Alba decided to pursue a more business-oriented route.
The Honest Company Became Her Focus
After her run-in with the law, Alba decided to go the legal route with her work. In 2011, the actress founded The Honest Company alongside Brian Lee, Sean Kane, and Christopher Gavigan. The goal of the company was to launch baby and beauty products for ethical consumerism.
That meant all of the products were eco-friendly and didn’t contain any “health-compromising chemicals or compounds.” The company has been successful ever since Alba’s products came on the market.
The Honest Life Was A New York Times Best Seller
The line was such a success that a few years later, in 2013, Alba decided to write a book about her experience as an entrepreneur and creating a toxic-free environment for her young family. The Honest Life was a smashing success.
At its peak popularity, The Honest Life hit number eight on the New York Times Best Seller list. After the success of her book, Alba decided to launch a new line of “Honest” products.
Honest Beauty Was Alba’s Next Venture
In October of 2015, the actress launched a new line of “Honest” products called Honest Beauty. Interestingly, this company is completely separate from The Honest Company, with its own logo and website.
The line is comprised of a 66-piece makeup range and 17 skin-care products, totaling 83 beauty products. Similar to The Honest Company products, the Honest Beauty line is free of any harmful toxins. Because of the company’s popularity, Alba plans to expand over to Western Europe!
Alba Is Involved In Multiple Charities And Organizations
From a young age, Alba has been interested in giving back to the community and charity work — most likely from her Catholic upbringing and her close ties to the church when she was younger.
Some of the charities the actress is involved in include Clothes Off Our Back, Habitat for Humanity, Project HOME, RADD, National Center for Missing and Exploited Children, Soles4Souls, Step Up, SOS Children’s Villages, and many more.
She’s A Board Member For Baby2Baby
One of the organizations Alba is very involved in is a charity called Baby2Baby. For her part in the organization, Alba is an “angel” and Board Member who helps distribute diapers, clothing, and other basic necessities to impoverished families throughout Los Angeles.
She works with other female celebrities to make sure they can do all the can for children ages 0-12. Considering she has three children of her own, this is a charity that is very near and dear to her heart.
Alba Works Very Closely With 1Goal Movement
Baby2Baby isn’t the only charity taking up some of the actress’s time. Alba is also very involved in an organization called 1Goal movement. The mission of this charity is to provide education to children in Africa.
This includes providing the children with outreach programs, textbooks, and donations to help supply schools with as much inventory as they can. For Alba, it is important for children to have every opportunity in the world to improve their lives.
Family Is Everything
And while Alba is off making the world a better place for children and the environment, her family always comes first. As of 2020, she and her husband Cash Warren have three children, two girls and one boy.
She claims that making movies is the easiest part of her life. But she’d prefer to be a full-time mom, wife, and entrepreneur. It’s no wonder we see Alba less and less on the small and big screen!