Amber Laura Heard was born in Austin, Texas, to Patricia Paige Heard (née Parsons), an internet researcher, and David C. Heard (David Clinton Heard), a contractor. She has English, Irish, Scottish, German, and Welsh ancestry. Heard appeared in the Academy Award-nominated film, North Country (2005), in which she played Charlize Theron's character in flashbacks. Her other early film credits include: Syrup (2013), Drive Angry (2011) 3D, The Joneses (2009), Never Back Down (2008), Alpha Dog (2006) and Friday Night Lights (2004). On television, Heard starred on The CW drama, Hidden Palms (2007), and had guest starring roles on Showtime's Californication (2007) and CBS's Criminal Minds (2005).