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What Has Sarah Michelle Gellar Been Up To Since 'Buffy the Vampire Slayer'?

Updated February 16, 2021 107k views13 items

Years after kicking vampires' butts on television, many fans may wonder what happened to Sarah Michelle Gellar. While she may not be as prominent on television and movies as she was in the late 1990s, Gellar has taken on projects outside of entertainment and created an entirely different successful career. Gellar's romantic life once made headlines, especially after dating and then marrying Freddie Prinze Jr. The couple has two children, and they consider them the most important thing in their lives, even more so than acting.

Born in 1977, Gellar got her start in television commercials before landing a breakthrough role on All My Children. Her film career took off roughly around the same time she was cast as Buffy Summers and starred in horror hits like I Know What You Did Last Summer and Scream 2. As Buffy on Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Gellar earned an entire legion of fans, as well as respect from critics for bringing to life a character capable of dealing with teenage emotion at the same time she's destroying vampires. The role was a forerunner for female superheroes, and years after going off the air, Buffy remains a beloved character. Where is Sarah Michelle Gellar now and what has she been up to? She's still kicking butt, just not that of evil monsters.

  • Photo: David Shankbone / Wikimedia Commons / CC BY-SA 3.0

    She Married Her Co-Star Freddie Prinze Jr.

    Gellar met Prinze Jr. in 1997 while filming I Know What You Did Last Summer and the two became friends. Two years after meeting, they began dating, and to the delight of fans, publicly announced their relationship in 2000. According to Gellar, the evolution of their relationship came about after a single dinner out.

    "We were supposed to have dinner with a friend of ours, and she didn't make her plane, so we went anyway," Gellar recalled. "We'd had tons of dinners before and for some reason, it felt different that night. Organically, it just transitioned into something else."

    They married in September 2002, the same year both starred in the first Scooby-Doo movie. Seven years later, Gellar gave birth to their first of two children.

  • Photo: Scooby Doo: The Movie / Warner Bros. Pictures

    Her Role In 'Scooby-Doo' Alongside Her Husband Became A Cultural Phenomenon  

    In 2002, while still playing Buffy on television, Gellar and Prinze Jr. teamed up to star in Scooby-Doo, a live-action version of the classic cartoon. Gellar played Daphne alongside Prinze Jr.'s Fred, and Prinze Jr. claimed to have been thrilled to work with his wife.

    "If Sarah wasn't there, I would have cracked up," he remembered. "If we were lonely for home, at least we had to be lonely together. It was a long, long shoot."

    With a budget of over $80 million, the movie was the biggest of Gellar's career, and became a huge success at the box office after earning a worldwide total of $275 million. Scooby-Doo found such success that filmmakers made a sequel, Scooby-Doo 2: Monsters Unleashed. The franchise stands as the only live-action onscreen pairing of Gellar and Prinze Jr. Now that the couple has children, it will most likely remain that way.

  • She Took A Hiatus From Acting After The Birth Of Her Child

    After Gellar gave birth to daughter Charlotte Grace in 2009, she decided to take a break from acting to focus on her family. "I was so busy in my twenties, I was moving so fast," Gellar remembered. "It's like once I had kids I finally learned to stop and enjoy moments."

    In addition to spending time with her children, Gellar involved herself in kid-related food projects, which ended up becoming an entirely new career for her. Even after son Rocky James was born in 2012, however, Gellar wasn't ready to give up acting. Luckily, Prinze Jr. didn't mind setting his own acting career aside to become a full-time dad.

    In 2012, Gellar prepared to return to television and expressed enthusiasm about the idea. "It was the time away that got me really excited about different projects and more focused on what it is I ultimately wanted to do," she said.

  • Photo: Ringer / The CW

    She Deliberately Returned To TV With 'Ringer' So She Could Be Closer To Her Daughter

    When Gellar decided to return to television after eight years away, she wanted to find a project that would allow her plenty of time with her family while working. "As a mom, I decided it was something that was going to afford me the chance to do both," she said.

    At the time, Gellar's daughter was 20 months old and her son had yet to be born, but being an engaged mom was important to her. She chose Ringer as her return to television and played a dual role of twin sisters. Although critics generally approved of the show, not enough viewers watched. Due to low ratings, Ringer ended after one season.