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Shannon Elizabeth

Age: 44
Hometown: Born in Houston, Texas. Grew up from third grade through high school in Waco, Texas, then lived in Los Angeles for 20+ years, and now my hometown is...
Current city: Cape Town, South Africa
Occupation: Actress and conservationist

Three adjectives that describe you: Compassionate, focused, and persistent.

Favorite activities: My favorite activities are working with animals in any capacity, traveling, yoga, hiking, taking my dog, Peanut, to the beach, tennis, going to the gym, and watching Big Brother and The Amazing Race!

What do you think will be the most difficult part of living inside the Big Brother house?
I think it'll be most difficult to juggle many different personalities and to adapt to situations on the spot as they get thrown at me.

What moment in your career do you think prepared you to live in the Big Brother house?
I feel like I've had many different opportunities in my life that have helped to prepare me for the house. My career in acting has obviously prepared me so that I can go into the house and play a role, almost. I'll have to play the role of someone who can be friendly, backstabbing, deceitful, powerful, weak, and mysterious—just to name a few.

Then, I used to play poker. That has taught me a lot about reading people and situations, patience, and timing. My career in conservation has taught me a lot about compassion and learning everything you can about any given set of circumstances before making a decision about how best to proceed.

Which past Big Brother cast member did you like most?
It's definitely a toss up between... Dr. Will, Evel Dick, Dan Gheesling, and Janelle.

Do you have a strategy for winning the game?
My strategy is that I will constantly have to change my strategy. I have seen every single season of Big Brother at least once, if not twice. I will need to pull from all of the best players and make it my own. I am hoping for some big, loud, outgoing personalities that can stand out as big targets right off the bat.

I, meanwhile, will be setting up my alliance and picking people off one by one. But at the end of the day, this is a game—a really fun game. The most important thing to remember is to take the game seriously, but not myself. I think this is what we saw with Dr. Will and Boogie and why they were so endearing. If I could pull off half of what they were able to achieve, I'd be very excited.

My life's motto is...
"UBUNTU." It's an African saying that comes from the languages of Xhosa and Zulu. It means "I am because we are." We are all interconnected. This includes all living —people, animals, plants, ecosystems, the planet, everything. And every decision we make every day has a lasting impact on the people and planet around us. Only through living in tolerance and respect for everything can we all thrive.

What would you take into the house and why?
- My dog Peanut. He just makes everything better all the time!
- An invisibility cloak.
- A computer so I could watch the Live Feeds for Celebrity Big Brother.

Fun facts about yourself:
- I used to play poker on the pro poker circuit for years.
- I was secretly an extra on Baywatch and the film Black Sheep before my career started. I wanted to get some on-set experience, but I never let my agents know.
- There's a rhino named after me at the Rhino Pride Sanctuary in South Africa.
- I currently split my time between the U.S. and South Africa where I have been running my conservation organization, Animal Avengers.