Featuring Yasmine Bleeth
Image via Coleman-Rayner

What happened to ‘Baywatch’ star Yasmine Bleeth?

The journey of the 'Baywatch' star Yasmine Bleeth and where she is now.

Think back to ’90s hit series Baywatch and you’ll likely be picturing Yasmine Bleeth. Bleeth, who played Caroline Holden, has experienced her share of highs and lows in the industry, ranging from her cocaine addiction to an infamous hit-and-run incident.

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Once upon a time the Baywatch star was a recognized talent, touted as one of the most beautiful actorss of her generation, thanks to her charm and personality.

Besides Baywatch, Bleeth was featured in numerous movies and soap operas of the time, catapulting her into the world of stardom. Unfortunately, her alcohol and cocaine dependence led to her unceremonious exit from the world of fame leading to the inevitable question, “Where is Yasmine Bleeth now?”

How did she begin her journey?

Yasmine Bleeth is brushing her hair in 'Hey Babe'.
Image via Canadian Film Development Corporation

As a pre-teen New York native, Yasmeen Bleeth made her debut appearance and began her acting journey portraying the 12-year-old orphan Theresa in the 1983 film Hey Babe alongside the legendary comedian Buddy Hackett. Bleeth’s portrayal of a subjugated orphan striving to achieve her dream of becoming a performing artist amidst a whirlpool of obstructions earned her much-desired recognition.

A few years later, at the age of 16, Bleeth starred in the daytime soap opera Ryan’s Hope, which was canceled in 1989. Months following her mother’s death, she resumed her acting career by playing LeeAnn Demerest in One Life to Live. Bleeth had also received the opportunity to star in the soap opera Herman’s Head before landing her breakthrough appearance in Baywatch.

Bleeth on Baywatch

Yasmine Bleeth is in her red swimsuit in Baywatch.
Photograph via James Aylott/Getty Images

Bleeth’s success received a huge boost after being cast as Caroline Holden in Baywatch from 1993 to 1997. She played the younger sister of Stephanie Holden and her character was supposed to appear for just one episode. However, her immense popularity made the producers hire her for more screen time and cast her in a total of 72 episodes.

In the show, she starred opposite the central characters and stars like David Hasselhoff and other female co-stars like Alexandra Paul, Pamela Anderson, and Carmen Electra, who went on to receive subsequent recognition and fame for their works. Her character was romantically involved with Logan Fowler, played by Australian actor Jaason Simmons.

Bleeth was able to become a household name that even found a perfect representation in the cult hit sitcom Friends, where the characters Joey and Chandler’s love for the show was synonymous with their obsession with Yasmine Bleeth.

This tremendous popularity earned her innumerable accolades and brought her widespread attention, as her name was put on People’s 50 Most Beautiful People list in 1995. Bleeth also managed to occupy a place on FHM’s 100 Sexiest Women in the World list from 1996 to 2001.

Post-Baywatch and drug abuse

Yasmine Bleeth post Baywatch
Photograph via NBC

Bleeth’s exit from Baywatch saw the downfall of her popularity, caused by her constant battle with drug abuse, specifically cocaine addiction. The actress appeared in a few projects and TV shows like Nash Bridges opposite Don Johnson and Cheech Marin for three years. She also went on to star in movies like BASEketball, Coming Soon, Undercover Angel, and Goodbye, Casanova.

Her departure from Baywatch was blamed on her heavy dependence on drugs which made her difficult to work with. This was confirmed by the producer of the show, Douglas Schwartz, who stated that Bleeth frequently arrived late on the set and was also going through a rough patch in her personal life, which accelerated the continuing troubles on the part of the crew members to deal with her indiscretion.

The Baywatch star opened up about her troubled years as an addict which were simultaneous with the on-and-off relationship with Richard Grieco, exacerbating her degree of dependency. The actress, in an interview, did not hesitate to share the secret details of her past scandalous life. “I never expected to get into drugs,” she said.

Like is the case for many addicts, her drug usage started as a social thing, something her fame could certainly have given her easy access to, but it quickly developed into something out of her control. She also said that she had cocaine delivered to her home “like ordering Chinese food.”

As a result, she suffered from severe weight loss, sporadically encountered bloody noses, and collapsed at a Glamour photoshoot. Following the incident, she checked into a rehab facility in Malibu but she went back to cocaine within two weeks.

A silver lining is that, during her time in rehab, Bleeth met her future husband – who she’s now been married to for many years – Paul Cerrito, a club owner in Michigan. Paul was reportedly assisting her in struggling with her addiction problems and the two married in 2002. In an interview, Yasmine Bleeth candidly told Glamour, “Consciously trying to stay off drugs is now part of my life and always will be.”

Where is she now?

Yasmine Bleeth is wearing a black hoodie.
Photograph via Coleman-Rayner

Bleeth appeared in Baywatch: Hawaiian Wedding in 2003. Afterwards, she stayed away from the screen for nearly 20 years, opting to live a more reclusive life. Her next part came in 2021, with William Dear’s comedy Whack the Don. According to IMDb, the 55-year-old actress has, as of Feb. 2024, has 3 other upcoming titles that have yet to hit the screens and streaming services.

In 2020, the actress was seen and photographed in comfortable clothes while taking her dog on a walk on a sunny Californian summer day. More recently, in June 2023, Yasmine Bleeth was once again spotted but this time glamorously dressed for a sushi lunch in San Fernando Valley.


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Author
Jayasmita Dutta Roy
A keen lover of cinema, Jayasmita harbors an utmost interest in staying updated about everything ranging from the classics to contemporary blockbusters. When she is not glued to the computer gleaning information about intriguing pop culture gossips, you will see her in a random coffee shop immersed in the surreal world of Murakami.
Author
Margarida Bastos
Margarida has been a content writer for nearly 3 years. She is passionate about the intricacies of storytelling, including its ways of expression across different media: films, TV, books, plays, anime, visual novels, video games, podcasts, D&D campaigns... Margarida graduated from a professional theatre high school, holds a BA in English with Creative Writing, and is currently working on her MA thesis.