This bubbly blonde performer of TV and film made her feature acting debut as the young girl who gets kissed by Elliot in Steven Spielberg's "E. T. The Extra-Terrestrial" (1982). The real-life California Girl got her start as a child model and actor, guesting on shows such as "Silver Spoons", "Charles in Charge" and "Full House". Her stage credits include "Nightmares" at Theater East, and "Sea Mother's Son" at the Gene Dynarski Theater. She also appeared in the TV-movies "Broken Angel" (ABC, 1998) and "Daughter of the Streets" (ABC, 1990). But Eleniak is best recognized for her performance as the Beverly Hills rich kid turned lifeguard, Shauni McLain, on the hit series "Baywatch" (NBC, 1989-90; syndicated, 1991-92). Her character was married off to coworker Eddie Kramer (Billy Warlock) when both actors opted to leave at the end of the season.
Eleniak returned to features after a six-year absence with the remake of "The Blob" (1988). She subsequently appeared in a PLAYBOY pictorial spread, a move that helped her prepare for "Under Siege" (1992), an action film starring Steven Segal with Eleniak playing a PLAYBOY bunny. Her first leading role was in the 1993 remake of that beloved 1960s TV series, "The Beverly Hillbillies", in which she played Ellie May Clampett. More leads followed with "Chasers" (1994), the well-received comedy "A Pyromaniac's Love Story", opposite William Baldwin, and "Girl in the Cadillac" (both 1995). She was featured in the comic horror film, "Tales from the Crypt Presents: Bordello of Blood" (1996).