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Remember Phoebe Cates? The real reason the ‘Fast Times at Ridgemont High’ star vanished

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Phoebe Cates, once a star of Hollywood classics like “Gremlins” and “Fast Times at Ridgemont High,” has swapped the glitz and glamour of the film industry for a simpler, more fulfilling life.

Born on July 16, 1963, in New York City, Phoebe grew up in a family deeply rooted in the entertainment world. Her father, Joe Cates, was a producer-director, and her uncle was the president of the Director’s Guild. Her siblings were also involved in the arts.

 

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Phoebe initially pursued ballet at Julliard, but a knee injury shifted her path. At 14, she turned to modeling, gracing the cover of Seventeen magazine four times. Despite her success, she felt unfulfilled and sought new horizons. A chance encounter with a film agent at Studio 54 led her to acting, training with Robert Ravan of The Actors’ Circle and Alice Spivack of H.B. Studios.

Her acting debut came in 1982 with “Paradise,” and soon after, she starred in “Fast Times at Ridgemont High,” known for its iconic pool scene. Despite the fame, Phoebe remained grounded. “If a girl wants a career, she has to be willing to strip. If you’ve got a good body, then why not show it?” she said in 1982.

Remember Phoebe Cates? The real reason the 'Fast Times at Ridgemont High' star vanished
Photo by Ron Galella/Ron Galella Collection via Getty Images

Phoebe continued to work in both film and theater, meeting her future husband, actor Kevin Kline, while auditioning for “The Big Chill” in 1983. They married in 1989 and had two children, Owen and Greta. Balancing family and career, Phoebe decided to step away from acting in the 1990s to focus on raising her children.

In 2005, Phoebe opened Blue Tree, a boutique on Madison Avenue in New York City, selling fragrances, clothing, and gifts. She works hands-on in the store, dedicating herself to her new role as a shopkeeper.

Remember Phoebe Cates? The real reason the 'Fast Times at Ridgemont High' star vanished
Phoebe Cates attends the 71st Annual Tony Awards at Radio City Music Hall on June 11, 2017 in New York City. (Photo by Jim Spellman/WireImage)

Phoebe Cates, now living on Manhattan’s Upper East Side, has found joy and contentment in her new life, far from the Hollywood spotlight. She continues to look amazing and remains an enduring figure in the hearts of her fans.