California native Karen Moncrieff spent the '80s as an actress on the daytime dramas Guiding Light, Days of Our Lives, The Bold and the Beautiful, and Santa Barbara. During the '90s, she made several TV guest-star appearances on the crime dramas Diagnosis Murder and Silk Stalkings before moving on to feature-length projects, including the made-for-TV mystery Murder Between Friends and the sci-fi schlock-fest XTRO 3: Watch the Skies. After 2000, she took a break from acting and got into filmmaking with her writing and directing debut Blue Car. Premiering at the 2002 Sundance Film Festival and quickly picked up by Miramax, this understated coming-of-age drama was a major departure from the glossy sentiment of her earlier television work, winning Moncrieff much acclaim on the festival circuit. She also started directing episodes of the HBO series Six Feet Under, alongside other up-and-coming filmmakers Lisa Cholodenko, Rose Troche, and Nicole Holofcener.