Carla Gugino (born August 29, 1971) is an American actress known for her roles of Sally Jupiter in Watchmen, Ingrid Cortez in the Spy Kids film trilogy, and as the lead characters of the television series Karen Sisco and Threshold.
Gugino was born in Sarasota, Florida, of Italian, English, and Irish ancestry. Her parents separated when she was two. Her father, Carl Gugino, is an orthodontist. Her mother moved the family to Paradise, California, when she was four years old. Despite moving around California a great deal as a child, Carla Gugino remained a straight-A student and graduated valedictorian. At the age of 15 she was spotted by a modeling agency in San Diego and moved to New York. This was unusual as at only 5 feet 4 inches (1.65 m) tall, she was considered too short for catwalk work. Finding the experience too much, Gugino moved back to California that summer. Partly at the suggestion of her aunt, game show model Carol Merrill, she subsequently studied acting.
Gugino has starred in many films including art-house film Lovelife along with Saffron Burrows and Sherilyn Fenn, Snake Eyes with Nicolas Cage (1998), Judas Kiss (which she also co-produced, 1998), the three Spy Kids