Shannon Shay Mitchell (born April 10, 1987) is a Canadian actress and model. She stars in the ABC Family original series, Pretty Little Liars as Emily Fields.
Born to a Filipino mother and Irish/Scottish father, Mitchell is a native of Toronto, Ontario. Even as a young child, Mitchell was interested in the performing arts, declaring to her parents that she would pursue such a career. Mitchell began dance lessons at the age of five, and she and several of her classmates toured the city to compete with a variety of other dance schools.
At the age of 10, Mitchell's family moved west to Vancouver, British Columbia. Within a year of their arrival, an international modeling agency held an open casting call for teen and pre-teen girls who were vying for representation. Mitchell was one of the girls selected.
By her late teens, Mitchell had successfully modeled for a variety of companies in cities as varied as Bangkok, Hong Kong and Barcelona. Wanting to focus on her true passion, Mitchell returned to Toronto and began to study acting with great focus and determination. Her hard work paid off and, after signing with her first theatrical agency, Mitchell appeared in the hit series Degrassi: The Next Generation and booked several national commercials. Mitchell also landed a recurring role in the Disney XD series Aaron Stone, is featured in the music video for recording artist Sean Paul's hit song Hold My Hand and appeared in the Global series Rookie Blue. She modeled for Aropostale. Her most prominent role is in Pretty Little Liars on ABC Family. She originally auditioned for the role of Spencer.