What Happened To The Actor Who Played Lyla On Friday Night Lights?

Lyla Garrity had quite the narrative arc in NBC's acclaimed adaptation of football drama "Friday Night Lights." In the first season, she's a car dealership-vandalizing cheerleader who thinks nothing of cheating on her recently disabled boyfriend. In the second season, she's a deeply religious convert who enters into a relationship with a Christian youth leader. And by the end of season three, she's abandoned her small-town roots to further her education at Vanderbilt University.

But what has the actor who played her been up to since? Well, quite a lot as it happens. Indeed, since Minka Kelly waved goodbye to the fictional town of Dillon in 2009, Minka Kelly has guested on everything from "Jane the Virgin" to "Robot Chicken," graced the film world in numerous theatrical and straight-to-VOD releases, and shown up in Maroon 5 music videos, PlayStation adventure games, and the off-Broadway stage.

And that's only on a professional level. Kelly has also regularly found herself in the tabloids thanks to numerous high-profile relationships and a tell-all memoir which proved that her life hasn't always been one of carefree glitz and glamour. Here's a closer look at the Californian's eventful past 15 years.

She briefly became a Charlie's Angel

In the same year that "Friday Night Lights" came to an end, Minka Kelly landed a role in what she no doubt hoped would be another long-running prime time hit. This time around, she was following in the footsteps of Drew Barrymore, Cameron Diaz, and Lucy Liu by playing one of the three crime-fighting heroes in an adaptation of "Charlie's Angels." Unfortunately, the ABC series suffered the embarrassment of being canceled after just four episodes.

Kelly played ex-street racer Eva French in the short-lived drama, with Annie Ilonzeh and Rachael Taylor completing the girl power trio. But the show was slated by critics from the offset, with The Boston Globe arguing that Kelly was miscast and IGN writing that they found it difficult to "believe that these ladies could change a flat tire, much less take down a notorious human trafficker." Its Rotten Tomatoes rating stands at a humiliating zero percent.

Luckily, Kelly appeared to take the news that she was out of a job in her stride. In response to the cancelation, she tweeted (via The Hollywood Reporter), "I've had a wonderful time working with this incredible crew and amazing cast. I've made friends 4 life! A beautiful experience ... Thank you for all the love and support! Amazing things on the way!!! All is good. xo."

Minka Kelly hit the Broadway stage

In 2011, Minka Kelly was able to add a Broadway credit — well, an-off Broadway credit — to her résumé when she was cast in "Love, Loss, and What I Wore," the Nora and Delia Ephron play in which five women deliver various monologues about the parallels between relationship and fashion.

The Californian took to the stage at the Westside Theatre for four weeks alongside Conchata Ferrell ("Two and a Half Men"), Anna Meara ("Sex and the City"), AnnaLynne McCord ("90210"), and lifestyle guru B. Smith. But Kelly's brief run wasn't any indication of her talents. The production, which debuted in 2008 and finished in 2012 after more than 1,000 performances, was renowned for rotating its cast on a regular basis.

In an interview with Esquire, Kelly argued that her lack of formal training shouldn't be a barrier to her career: "I didn't go to theater school. I didn't go to Juilliard. But I've lived a lot. I've seen a lot. I feel like that makes up for a little bit. I've lived a lot at my young age." However, it doesn't appear as though she was too keen on the whole experience, as she hasn't returned to the stage since.

Minka Kelly played Jackie Kennedy

In 2013, Minka Kelly joined the likes of Mariah Carey, Alan Rickman, and Cuba Gooding Jr. in what was the most star-studded, and slightly random, cast of the year for Lee Daniels' historical drama "The Butler." And she was given one of the film's most glamorous roles, First Lady Jackie Kennedy.

Speaking to Life and Style (via Digital Spy) about her part in the film, which explored the life of longtime White House butler Eugene Allen, Kelly acknowledged she had some pretty huge shoes to fill: "It was intimidating. It was scary. It was incredibly humbling and a huge honor. I enjoyed it very much." And the Californian, who was chosen ahead of director Daniels' initial choice, Mila Kunis, also came away from the shoot with an even greater admiration for Kennedy: "Her integrity, strength and character [were inspiring]. I just really respect how she was such a dignified woman."

Kelly also revealed in the same interview how the costume department tried to help her inhabit her presidential character: "These are outfits she actually wore. The outfit that I wear in the scene after the assassination had to be made — I couldn't fit into the actual clothes from that time. We tried."

Minka Kelly published her memoir

Minka Kelly added "acclaimed author" to her list of talents in 2023 when she published her candid and often emotionally devastating autobiography. Described as a tribute to all working-class single moms "dealt a bad hand," "Tell Me Everything: A Memoir" was given rave reviews on its release and subsequently saw the former "Friday Night Lights" star race up The New York Times non-fiction best-seller list.

Kelly leaves no stone unturned in the book, addressing everything from her experiences as the daughter of a drug-addicted stripper single mother, to the bullying she endured during her middle and high school years, to the mental abuse she suffered at the hands of an early boyfriend. The latter makes for particularly harrowing reading as the actor discusses being coerced into filming a sex tape and getting a tattoo while also revealing that she had an abortion.

Speaking to Harper's Bazaar, Kelly explained that "Tell Me Everything" had been at the forefront of her mind for a long time. But she only felt comfortable enough to put pen to paper following her mom's death in 2008: "... I remember even in high school saying, 'She has to be dead before I do this, because if she knows what I know, she'd be heartbroken.' As a child, I saw so much more than she thought I did."

Minka Kelly became a regular on the psychological thriller

After supporting parts in the war movie "The Kingdom" and the romantic comedy "500 Days of Summer," Minka Kelly landed a much more prominent role in 2011's "The Roommate." The Californian played Sara Matthews, a college freshman terrorized by Leighton Meester's seemingly innocent rich kid Rebecca Evans, in the "Single White Female"-esque tale.

And the two leads certainly didn't hold back when it came to the film's physical climax. "We worked really hard to make sure it looked like a real girl fight," Kelly told MTV News. "I Googled girl fights on YouTube, and we were sure to make sure it was messy and hair was everywhere and that we threw punches and we threw knees. We fought to kill."

And the modest box office hit — $40 million on a $15 million budget — was the first of several psychological thrillers she put her name to. In 2018, Kelly played the wife of Henry Cavill's serial killer-chasing detective in "Night Hunter." Four years later, she joined Maggie Grace and Dermot Mulroney in "Blackwater Lane." The adaptation of B.A. Paris' best-selling novel "The Breakdown" saw the Californian take center stage as a woman who, after witnessing a murder victim's body in a country lane, is convinced she's about to be next.

Minka Kelly dated Trevor Noah for two years

After several high-profile romances, or alleged romances, with the likes of Derek Jeter, Wilmer Valderrama, and Chris Evans, Minka Kelly then added former "The Daily Show" host Trevor Noah to the list when the pair began dating in 2020.

The celebrity couple initially tried to keep their relationship on the down low, avoiding talking to any sections of the press and staying off each other's social media. But they were regularly snapped together by the tabloids, and following a reported temporary break, Noah made things Instagram official in December 2021 when he uploaded a snap of himself and Kelly enjoying a meal with family and friends in his South African hometown.

Soon after, the "Friday Night Lights" star took to the same photo-sharing platform to post another hangout pic and later commented on a tribute Noah made to his late grandmother. Sadly, the couple called things off for good in May 2022. But the split was obviously amicable as they have been spotted spending time together as friends several times since.

Minka Kelly is now seeing an Imagine Dragon

Just two months after announcing that he'd split for good from on-off wife Aja Volkman, Imagine Dragons frontman Dan Reynolds was pictured enjoying an Italian meal with Minka Kelly. Inevitably, tongues started wagging, and although the two celebrities initially kept quiet about any budding romance, they made sure everyone knew while visiting a Los Angeles spa.

Indeed, Kelly and Reynolds were spotted engaging in several public displays of affection outside the establishment. And the couple have since been snapped looking equally loved up on several other outings, whether on a lunch date, getting groceries together, or attending an LA Galaxy soccer match.

So, could marriage be on the cards? Well, Reynolds is now in a position to pop the question after his divorce from Volkman was finalized in March 2024, with "irreconcilable differences" cited as the reason. The "Radioactive" singer and his ex-wife will also share joint custody of their four children, Arrow Eve, Gia James, Coco Rae, and Valentine.

Minka Kelly is about to star in a Netflix original

Get ready to see a lot more of Minka Kelly on your screens in 2024. The Californian has signed up to star alongside Josh Duhamel in "Ransom Canyon," a ten-part Netflix series that combines family drama, romance, and good old-fashioned Westerns.

Kelly has been cast as Quinn, a character described as someone who's "often found herself in the shadow of others, but after a stint in New York pursuing her career as a concert pianist, she has returned to Ransom Canyon to carve out a new path for herself."

Hailed as a cross between the Kevin Costner phenomenon "Yellowstone" and another Netflix original, "Virgin River," "Ransom Canyon" is the brainchild of April Blair, the talent behind The CW hit "All-American." And there's plenty of source material should the first season become a runaway success. In fact, the streaming giant has already optioned 11 installments of the same-named book series written by Jodi Thomas. "We think that it's going to deliver on all the romance and again it will be a really beautiful vista and setting, very escapist," claimed the company's head of drama, Jinny Howe, in an interview with Deadline.  

Minka Kelly graduated from culinary school

Whether it's Brooklyn Beckham telling us all how to make sandwiches or Selena Gomez hosting her own cookery show, it seems these days that any famous face who can do the bare minimum in the kitchen is being treated as a culinary master. But Minka Kelly has a much stronger pedigree to back up her appearances on the likes of "Star Plates" and "Ludo à la Maison."

Yes, in 2015, the "Titans" star took to Instagram to proudly reveal that she'd graduated from Culver City's New School of Cooking in California. "Thank you so much for the best six months ever," she captioned the photo, referencing the woman who'd helped her achieve such a feat, teacher Jess Hilton.

The news shouldn't have come as too much of a shock to her followers as the actor had repeatedly taken to the same platform to show off her progress. "I remember a time when I thought the only thing to a salad was iceberg and ranch," she remarked on one particular photo, proving just how much of a culinary journey she undertook.

Minka Kelly is now a jewelry designer

In the same year she graduated from culinary school, Minka Kelly further proved her versatility when she joined forces with ABLE to develop a leather clutch to celebrate International Women's Day. And four years later, she worked with the same company to create a new jewelry line, The Barbara Collection.

Kelly first aligned herself with ABLE, a brand renowned for educating and employing disadvantaged women, in 2009. She explained to Us Weekly, "Since the loss of my mother, I have wanted to dive deeper into the lives of women around me. It remains so important to me to know that what we do at Able directly contributes to jobs and dignity for women around the world."

And if you're wondering who Barbara is, well, she's one of the firm's first jewelry designers who left quite the impression on the "Euphoria" star. "She overcame a 10-year battle with addiction, now has four daughters and a husband and is pursuing a Bachelor's degree in psychology," explained Kelly to People (via Yahoo!) "If that doesn't inspire you and make you want to keep going and grow as much as you possibly can, I don't know what will."

Sam Levinson specially wrote Minka Kelly a role in Euphoria

You know you've made it when one of TV's hottest showrunners writes a role specifically for you. That's what happened to Minka Kelly when Sam Levinson cast her as wealthy mom Samantha in his parent-scaring drama series "Euphoria."

In an interview with Vanity Fair, the Californian spoke about how honored she was to be considered: "I was like, 'Sam Levinson knows who I am?' To be invited on one of your favorite shows is such a surreal thing." Kelly didn't know exactly what she was signing up for, having only been given a couple of lines of dialogue beforehand. But she obviously did a good job. Samantha was only intended as a one-episode character but ended up appearing in a total of four.

Levinson liked to put Kelly through her paces during shooting, often changing the scripts on the day of shooting. Luckily, the actor enjoyed the challenge. She did, however, take umbrage with a sensual scene in which Samantha's purple ballgown was supposed to fall to the floor. "That was my first day as a guest on this new show, and I just didn't feel comfortable standing there naked."

Minka Kelly joined the superhero world

It seems like you aren't anyone in Hollywood these days unless you have at least one superhero vehicle on your IMDB page. In 2017, Minka Kelly ensured that she didn't get left behind by signing up to play Dawn Granger, aka the female half of the crime-fighting duo Hawk and Dove, in the DC Universe series "Titans."

Speaking to TV Line, the Californian revealed that donning a spandex suit was never part of her career plan: "I didn't expect it, but I've been just so pleasantly surprised just because ['Titans' is] its own version of a superhero show. To me, I think it sort of stands on its own, it's not like any other one. It's definitely more grown-up than the rest, and also somewhat more violent."

Dove proved to be so popular with audiences that she was upgraded from recurring character to series regular in time for season two. By this point, the actor had become fully immersed in the comic book world. In fact, when asked by Comicbook.com about a possible spin-off for Dove and Alan Ritchson's Hawk, she seemed delighted by the prospect: "If that's what the fans want, I would be honored, of course. I think Alan and I would kill it."

Minka Kelly is still working on her relationship with her dad

As she revealed in her memoir "Tell Me Everything," Minka Kelly grew up without her father Rick Dufay after the former Aerosmith guitarist decided to shirk his parental responsibilities. But in recent years, the "Friday Night Lights" star has managed to forgive, and even forge a relationship with, the musician.

"I used to be really angry at him for not being there for my younger years, but I think that everything happens as it's supposed to," Kelly told People in 2023. The Californian has spoken about how supportive Dufay was when her mother, Maureen, died in 2008. She also briefly moved in with him while she tried to get a foot on the acting ladder.

Kelly acknowledges that there's still work to do to repair the damage of her childhood, but that she's never stopped loving her dad. "I think that he is so wise and he is so smart, and he's wonderful in so many ways and helped me navigate living in L.A. and going through this business in a way that I need maybe him more now than I did when I was younger."

Minka Kelly was named the world's sexiest woman

Minka Kelly certainly had plenty to celebrate in the year 2020. As well as reaching the age of 30, the "Friday Night Lights" star was also given one of the most coveted honors in the showbiz world: Esquire's Sexiest Woman Alive.

The Californian proudly graced the cover of the men's magazine for the November issue that year, and inside, she revealed how comfortable she'd become in her own skin as she approached her fourth decade. "I'm cool with my flaws and all that stuff. It just feels nice to be at peace with yourself," she said (via CBS News). "I think my 30th birthday gave me permission to have all that. The 20s were a pain in the ass — figuring it all out. What am I doing? Where do I go?"

And Kelly, who was dating baseball star Derek Jeter at the time, enjoyed accepting the accolade, too: "I've never done a sexy photo shoot before. It was really liberating. It was exciting. I would look at the pictures, like, that's me?"