The Stunning Transformation Of Cheryl Hines

Two-time Emmy nominee Cheryl Hines rose to fame in 2000 with her role in the long-running comedy series "Curb Your Enthusiasm," on which she played Larry David's levelheaded wife.

Hines is a natural comedian, and it's hard to imagine "Curb Your Enthusiasm" without her wit and her chemistry with David. "I can't say enough good things about her. She's unoffendable. And she has less ego than anybody I've ever worked with. She knows exactly where to take a scene to make it funny, and she'll sacrifice herself completely for the scene. She knows that it's more important for the scene to be funny than for her to get a laugh," David said of Hines to NBC News.

However, Hines is much more than her "Curb Your Enthusiasm" role. She has an exciting personal and love life, as well as intriguing origins that have shaped her into the woman she is today. Here is the stunning transformation of Cheryl Hines, from her early days to her present, high-profile public image.

Cheryl Hines got her start in a well-known improv troupe

Originally from Florida, Cheryl Hines studied acting, radio, and television in college and then moved to Los Angeles to pursue her dream of working in those industries. She started bartending to make ends meet, but when she saw a show at The Groundlings improv/sketch theater, she was "blown away" and instantly knew she wanted to be part of the talent, even though most of her previous acting experience was in more dramatic roles.

"[W]hen I went to this show at The Groundlings and tears were streaming down my face because of something so ridiculously silly, that's when I felt like I wanted to do that. I want to be doing something so ridiculous and funny that someone will laugh at it," Hines told Carrie Brownstein in an interview with The Believer.

Hines' co-workers bought her first class at the studio as a birthday present, and the rest is history.

She nailed her Curb Your Enthusiasm audition

Cheryl Hines' improv experience helped her land her most well-known role to date because "Curb Your Enthusiasm" features heavily ad-libbed dialogue. However, when Hines first auditioned for the character of Larry David's wife, she said her lack of nerves and expectations helped her land the role. Neither Hines nor her agent thought she was a good fit for the role, but they agreed that she should simply read for the experience and possibly land a part as a waitress or something similar.

But when Hines started the audition, she said she and Larry David "just clicked immediately." According to NBC News, the audition entailed a scenario contrived by David in which he tells his wife he's giving up eating chicken right after she's made chicken for dinner. Hines received her offer for the role around four hours later, which is very rare in show business.

"They were looking for an unknown. So it worked in my favor that I had absolutely nothing on my resume," Hines said in a 2010 interview with The Paley Center for Media.

Cheryl Hines brought a spark to Curb Your Enthusiasm

"Curb Your Enthusiasm" was Cheryl Hines' major breakthrough, and her character was known for being a voice of reason who wasn't afraid to call Larry David's character out on his mistakes.

Hines' character went through a major change when her character and David's separated in Season 6, as David wanted his character's relationship to represent his own divorce in real life. Hines said that her character had "just about had it" with her onscreen husband's antics, and that her choice to leave was a "slow progression" based on many unfavorable moments.

In a 2009 interview with The AV Club, Hines opened up about how her "Curb Your Enthusiasm" role changed her perspective on how she approaches her acting. "It's definitely helped me see comedy in a different way — that comedy doesn't have to be big and over the top with huge laugh lines. It can be subtle, and there can be moments where the audience finds it. It doesn't have to be presentational," she said.

She's played many roles outside of Curb Your Enthusiasm

Cheryl Hines has no problem with the fact that "Curb Your Enthusiasm" is what made her a star. When asked by The AV Club about whether she thought she'd ever stop being most well known for playing Cheryl David, she said, "It's a different place to be in when you're an actor and you love the show that you're on, and you love the people that you work with, and you don't mind being associated with that for the rest of your life."

However, she has also shown off her versatility as an actress in many other roles. She played Dallas Royce, a lead character, on three seasons of the ABC sitcom "Suburgatory." She also plays CIA Agent Dot Karlson on Season 2 of HBO's dark comedy "The Flight Attendant." In 2007, Hines originated the role of Becky in the film "Waitress," which was later adapted into a hit Broadway musical.

Cheryl Hines' first marriage ended in divorce

Although Cheryl Hines has joked that her first husband was Larry David on "Curb Your Enthusiasm," her first real-life marriage was to producer-manager Paul Young in 2002.

"My husband and I balance each other out," Cheryl told OK! magazine in February 2010. "I'm a bit more spontaneous and quick on the draw. I like to make decisions quickly, and he's more methodical and thinks things through more. He's a little more right brain, and I'm more left brain, I think."

The couple parted later that year but have since remained on good terms and shared custody of their daughter, Catherine Rose Young. In fact, the divorce was apparently so amicable that Young produced a project of Hines' after the divorce, a dramedy series titled "This Close." Young was even present when Hines received her star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame in 2014.

She is close with her daughter Catherine

The daughter that Cheryl Hines shares with her first husband, Catherine Rose Young, is currently 19 years old and in college, and bears a striking resemblance to her mother.

In an interview with Access Hollywood in July 2023, Hines confirmed that she and her daughter have always been very close. "I have a lot of frequent flier miles to go see her. It's just different, it takes a minute to adjust," Hines said when discussing her empty nest.

Hines also revealed the backstory behind the beauty line she created with her daughter, aptly named Hines + Young. Hines asked Catherine if she wanted to start a company together after she moved out because they wanted to create something that focuses on "self-care", "staying calm," and "feeling good."

Hines said her inspiration for the line of products — which are sustainable and fight plastic pollution in the oceans — stems from her and her daughter's shared love of beaches.

Cheryl Hines is a pro at poker

As for Cheryl Hines' hobbies, she is a poker expert and enthusiast, even winning a whopping $50,000 first-place prize at a tournament in 2006. According to Showbiz Cheat Sheet, Hines found her passion for it when she was pregnant and had a lot of free time, focusing on video poker while at home. When Catherine was born, Hines was then able to participate in live poker and fell in love with the game.

Her skills came in handy when she starred in the 2008 mockumentary film "The Grand," which is a mockumentary about a poker tournament that used heavily ad-libbed dialogue.

"I do have a tendency to talk a lot at the poker table, which throws people off because they spend a lot of time trying to read me. But I talk a lot when I have a good hand and when I have a bad hand, too. Sometimes it annoys people so much they can't wait to get out of the tournament. And that can only be good for me," Hines told New York Magazine when discussing the film. "Manipulating people is what's so fun about poker. I love that you can just look into someone's eyes and lie — and it's perfectly acceptable," she added.

She has been active in charity work

After Cheryl Hines' nephew Michael was born with cerebral palsy, Hines stepped up and fought for the rights of other children born with the same condition. Her efforts included her visiting members of Congress to urge them to fight budget cuts that would affect people with cerebral palsy, serving at fundraising galas, and donating her poker winnings to the cause.

"When Michael was born, my husband, Paul Young, was so wonderful — he suggested we start a "Baby Michael" fund to help defer some of Michael's medical costs. There are so many medical expenses that aren't covered by insurance. For example, the cost of medical equipment and wheelchairs is exorbitant. That's why I think it's important to be a voice for people with CP. If my efforts can help even one child with CP, or one family, then I feel good about what I'm doing," Hines told Brain & Life in 2007.

Cheryl Hines' marriage to Robert F. Kennedy Jr. is thanks to Larry David

Nowadays, Cheryl Hines' name is associated with more than just her acting work, mainly because she's been married to high profile political figure Robert F. Kennedy Jr. since 2014. The two started dating two years prior and were actually first introduced to one another in 2006 by none other than Larry David himself while they were at a ski resort in Canada. According to The New York Times, Hines didn't know much about Kennedy's politics when she first met him and was mainly drawn to his sense of humor and adventurousness.

According to an interview Hines gave on Alec Baldwin's podcast in 2022 titled "Here's The Thing," David regretted inadvertently causing Hines and Kennedy's courtship. "Larry was like, 'That's a terrible idea. No, no, no, don't get involved,'" Hines told Baldwin. "Cut to — we've been married for eight years."

Since then, Kennedy has decided to run for president in 2024 as a Democratic candidate, a decision his wife supported. "He is a fearless leader who understands the needs of the American people and has devoted his life fighting for democracy," Hines said of her husband in a statement obtained by People in April 2023.

Her marriage to Robert F. Kennedy Jr. has been controversial

Robert F. Kennedy Jr. has been known for spreading anti-vaccine conspiracy theories throughout his presidential campaign. Although Cheryl Hines supports her husband's presidential run, she has actively spoken out against and has attempted to distance herself from many of his views. "My husband's opinions are not a reflection of my own. While we love each other, we differ on many current issues," she wrote on Twitter in January 2022. She also publicly condemned her husband's comment on the Holocaust, in which he compared vaccine mandates to the policies of Nazi Germany.

Although Hines has advocated for whooping cough vaccines in the past and has vaccinated her own daughter, she says she understands "both sides" of the argument. "If Bobby is standing up and saying, 'Well, are we sure that they're safe and every vaccine has been tested properly?' That doesn't seem too much to ask," she said to The New York Times.

Kennedy was so concerned about how his campaign would affect his wife's reputation that he even offered to publicly announce to the media that the two were separated to protect her image. Hines told The New York Times in June 2023 that she hasn't lost any acting jobs due to her husband yet; however, she had to adjust to choosing her words much more carefully because the political spotlight is rather different than the comedy world spotlight.