Jenna Elfman - Biography & Career
Elfman was born Jennifer Mary Butala in Los Angeles, California, to Sue Grace (a housewife) and Richard Wayne Butala, a Hughes Aircraft executive, of Croatian descent. She attended the Los Angeles County High School for the Arts as a dance major and graduated in 1989. Her uncle is Tony Butala of The Lettermen. She studied with acting teacher Milton Katselas at the Beverly Hills Playhouse before beginning her television career.
Elfman is best known for her role as Dharma on the TV sitcom Dharma & Greg, which ran for five years on ABC from 1997 to 2002. She won a Golden Globe Award for this role and she also was nominated 2 times for an Emmy Award.
In 2004, Elfman produced and starred in a feature film called Touched. In November 2005, CBS announced that Elfman vehicle, Courting Alex would be a midseason replacement, premiering in January 2006. It was announced in May that the show did not get picked up; however, CBS immediately inked a new development deal with Elfman to create a comedy vehicle for her, as reported in The Hollywood Reporter on June 2, 2006.
Elfman also starred in the movies Krippendorf's Tribe, Edtv, Looney Tunes: Back in Action, and Keeping the Faith.
Elfman met her husband, actor Bodhi Elfman, at a Sprite commercial audition in February 1991. She married him in 1995, making director Richard Elfman her father-in-law and noted composer Danny Elfman her uncle-in-law. In 1991, Jenna Elfman converted to the Church of Scientology, having previously been introduced to the religion by Bodhi.
In 2005, Elfman appeared at the Church of Scientology's controversial "Psychiatry: An Industry of Death" Museum, which puts forth a conspiracy theory connecting Adolf Hitler to the psychiatric profession.  In June 2006, Elfman and Bodhi Elfman reportedly approached independent film director John Roecker on a street in Los Feliz, California because of a shirt Roecker was wearing that ridiculed Scientology and Scientologists Tom Cruise and John Travolta (The front of the shirt had a picture of Tom Cruise. The caption read "Scientology Is Gay." The back of the shirt had a picture of John Travolta. The caption on the back read "Scientology Is Really, Really Gay.") Jenna Elfman loudly asked Roecker what crimes he has committed and was so agitated that she continued, "Have you raped a baby?"  This is a well-known scientology tactic, of confronting critics with demands that they confess whatever crimes the scientologist insists they have committed.