Ashley Victoria Benson (born December 18, 1989) is an American actress and model.
She known for her role as Hanna Marin in the teen mystery-drama television series Pretty Little Liars (2010–2017). She starred in the films Bring It On: In It to Win It (2007), Christmas Cupid (2010), Spring Breakers (2012), Ratter (2015), Chronically Metropolitan (2016), and Her Smell (2018).
Ashley Benson began dancing competitively at age 3, studying ballet, jazz, tap and hip hop. She began singing in choirs and musicals at a young age, performing a solo at her church at age 4. When she was eight years old she signed with Ford Models, and appeared in a number of print ads.
Benson appeared on the daytime soap Days of Our Lives as Abigail Deveraux from 2004 to 2007.
Benson made her big screen debut with a bit part in the 2004 comedy 13 Going on 30. She starred as Carson in Bring It On: In It to Win It (2007), the fourth installment of the Bring It On franchise. The role required her to both overcome her fear of heights to perform the cheerleading stunts, and to end her contract with Days of our Lives:
I got off it, I mean I had talked with the producers about doing this film, and they weren’t going to let me do it… I had just passed up so many opportunities where I could have done a film. So this big thing just came up, and I ended up getting to do this. I’m happier that I got off the soap though. I mean I give all my credit to them, because I have learned so much from being on soap operas and working with amazing actors who’ve been on there for like thirty, forty years. It was an honor to work with them. It’s definitely given me all my background. But getting off the soap opera helped me a lot too, because I can move on to bigger and better things. So I am definitely thankful I got to be on a soap opera though.
In 2010, Benson starred in the television film Christmas Cupid alongside Christina Milian and Chad Michael Murray, which also aired on ABC Family. In January 2012, Benson was cast in the film Spring Breakers, after Emma Roberts dropped out due to creative reasons. The film centers on four college students who are arrested and bailed out by a drug and arms dealer, who sends them out to do some dirty work on spring break. The film co-starred Selena Gomez, Vanessa Hudgens, and James Franco. Filming took place in March and April 2012, and the film was released in March 2013.
She has appeared in the music videos for NLT’s “That Girl”, One Call’s “Black Light”, and Hot Chelle Rae’s “Honestly”. In the January 21, 2013, episode of the CBS sitcom How I Met Your Mother, Benson appeared as Carly Whittaker, Barney Stinson’s half-sister who dated Ted Mosby. That same month, Benson became the face of eveningwear designer Faviana.
She starred in the 2015 independent horror thriller film Ratter, playing Emma Taylor, a girl who is stalked through her technological devices. That same year, she also appeared in Pixels as Lady Lisa, a fictional game character brought to life. In 2016, Benson appeared in the biographical comedy-drama film Elvis & Nixon as Margaret.