Keira Knightley (born 26.3.1985)
Keira Knightley is an English actress who initially rose to public recognition when she appeared in the feature film Bend It Like Beckham. Knightley now has several awards nominations to her name, including an Academy Award nomination for her role in the 2005 adaptation of Pride and Prejudice.
Keira Knightley: Childhood
Keira was born in Middlesex; the child of award winning Scottish playwright, Sharman Macdonald and Will Knightley, an English actor. Keira has one older brother, Caleb (b.1979).
Knightley attended Teddington School and Esher College. Although she has dyslexia, she was successful at school.
She acquired a talent agent and pursued an acting career, appearing in After Juliet, written by her mother and United States, which was written by Ian McShane: her drama teacher at the time.
Keira Knightley: Acting Career
Keira Knightley appeared in a number of low-budget television films in the late 1990s before being cast as Sabe in Star Wars: Episode I The Phantom Menace.
In 2001, she landed her first starring role, in a Walt Disney Productions TV movie, Princess of Thieves. She also appeared in The Hole, a film that went straight to video, as well as a mini-series adaptation of Doctor Zhivago. The series received several negative reviews, though the viewing figures were high.
Keira's breakthrough to mainstream success came with a role in Bend It Like Beckham. The film grossed $18 million in its UK release and $32 million in its US release.
As a boost to her profile, Knightley was then cast in the US blockbuster movie, Pirates of the Caribbean: the Curse of the Black Pearl. Johnny Depp and Orlando Bloom also appeared in the film.
Her next major role was in the British film, Love Actually which was a success but her follow-up venture, King Arthur received very negative reviews.
In 2005 Knightley was heavily criticized for her American accent in The Jacket, starring Adrien Brody. Released later that same year, her next film, Domino, was her biggest commercial and critical failure to date.
Luckily, the year improved greatly with the release of Pride and Prejudice. Playing the film's heroine, Elizabeth Bennet, Keira received the best reviews of her career to date. Cast alongside many greatly respected actors - such as Brenda Blethyn, Donald Sutherland and Dame Judi Dench, her acting style was compared to that of a young Audrey Hepburn. The film grossed more than $100 million worldwide, and earned her a Golden Globe nomination and an Oscar nomination. Knightley was later asked to join the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences.
In 2006, the Pirates. follow-up, Dead Man's Chest became Keira's biggest financial success to date.
In 2007, the actress appeared in a number of films: Silk, Atonement (an adaptation of Ian McEwan's novel) and another Pirates. film, At World's End. Knightley was nominated for a 'Best Dramatic Actress' Golden Globe as well as a BAFTA.
Keira Knightley: A life in the media
FHM magazine voted Keira the 79th sexiest Woman in the World in 2004. In 2005, she had risen to number 18 and by 2006 had reached the top of their list.
In April 2006, Chanel chose her as the new face of their 'Coco Mademoiselle' perfume.
Keira has frequently denied rumours that she is anorexic, though her family has a history of anorexia. She later sued the Daily Mail newspaper, which had accused her of lying about having anorexia and attributing the blame of a young girl's death (cause by anorexia) to Knightley's image.