Puneet Varma (Editor)

Karen Davis (The Grudge)

Updated on
Share on FacebookTweet on TwitterShare on LinkedInShare on Reddit
Gender  Female
Religion  Catholic
Portrayed by  Sarah Michelle Gellar
Created by  Stephen Susco
Occupation  Caretaker
Status  Deceased
First appearance  The Grudge
Last appearance  The Grudge 2
Family  Aubrey Davis (sister; deceased) Mrs. Davis (mother; deceased)
Significant other(s)  Doug (boyfriend; deceased)
Similar  Takeo Saeki, Toshio Saeki, Helen Shivers, Krysta Kapowski, Cici Cooper

Karen Davis (portrayed by Sarah Michelle Gellar) is a fictional character from The Grudge. Being the central character, she uncovers the Saeki house's dark past and is the only one to survive the first film. She returns in The Grudge 2 and compels her sister, Aubrey, to put a stop to the curse. Her portrayal was met with critical acclaim by critics and the films crew.


The Grudge

Karen Davis (Sarah Michelle Gellar) is the main protagonist of The Grudge. She is an American social worker who moves with her boyfriend, Doug, to Tokyo. She volunteers to take care of a woman named Emma Williams when Emma's first caretaker, Yoko, does not show up to work. When Kayako Saeki, an undead woman bound to a curse, starts killing people around her, she starts investigating the curse's origin. She decides to head back to the house to keep Doug from falling to the curse, but fails. Karen then tries to stop the curse by burning down the house, but this instead releases the curse.

The Grudge 1.5

In the animated short film The Grudge 1.5, Karen is rescued by a young Chinese journalist, Eason when he arrives the house on fire to find Detective Nakagawa, but he saves Karen before they were attacked by Kayako and the two make it out alive and Karen is taken to the hospital.

The Grudge 2

The second installment reveals that Karen was hospitalized after the events of the first film. She is now paranoid, traumatized, and frantic to stop Kayako. She is visited by her sister Aubrey, who was sent by their mother. Later, Kayako resurfaces and grabs her arm; panicked, she frees herself and evades Kayako and the police. When she reaches the roof of the hospital, she backs away to the edge of the roof and Kayako pushes her off to her death.


Gellar received praise for her performance in the first film, and many of them referenced her performances as the reason for the film's success. Upon her appearance in The Grudge 2, she received praise again but also received mixed reviews due to the character's surprise death.


Before Gellar was cast, numerous other actresses were suggested, such as Selma Blair; the two of them had previously starred together in the teen movie Cruel Intentions. The role eventually went to Gellar, who was known for her work in horror films such as I Know What You Did Last Summer and Scream 2.


Karen Davis (The Grudge) Wikipedia