Shannon Tweed (born March 10, 1957, St. John's, Newfoundland) is a Canadian actress and model who has acted primarily in soft core low budget films. She is the daughter of a mink rancher and is the oldest of seven siblings.
Shannon became involved in beauty pageants at a young age. After the Canadian wish-fulfillment TV series Thrill of a Lifetime arranged for her to pose for Hugh Hefner's Playboy, she gained fame as the Playmate of the Month for the November 1981 issue (photographed by Richard Fegley) and eventually the Playmate of the Year for 1982. She was briefly involved with Hugh Hefner at that time. Since then, Shannon has primarily acted in TV series (including a year on the prime-time soap Falcon Crest and a guest appearance in Frasier) and B movies.
Shannon has appeared in over 60 films over the past twenty years. She is one of the best known actresses of mainstream erotica, and she is identified with the genre of the erotic thriller--most notably her movies Night Eyes 2 & 3. Most of them seem to involve her having sex with people of various professions such as detectives, lawyers and evil geniuses. In addition to having sex, she frequently gets to beat up the bad guys while wearing figure-hugging outfits e.g. No Contest or catfight with a nemesis. She is also identified with one of the more well-known of bizarre and amusing titles in films: Cannibal Women in the Avocado Jungle of Death (1989).
Shannon has played bad characters just as frequently as good characters. One memorable evil character was Electra, a kind of superhuman dominatrix intent on world domination. On rare occasions she has made it into mainstream films such as Detroit Rock City , but only in minor roles.
She lives with Gene Simmons of KISS (they are not married) and they have two children. She occasionally acts (and models) with her younger sister, Tracy Tweed.