Renée Kathleen Zellweger was born on April 25, 1969, in Katy, Texas, USA to parents Emil Erich Zellweger, a Swiss-born engineer who married Renée's mother Kjellfrid Irene Andreassen, a Norwegian-born former nurse and midwife in 1963. Renée also has a brother named Drew Zellweger, a marketing executive born on February 15, 1967. Renée got interested in acting in high school while working on the drama club. She also took an acting class at the University of Texas (Austin), where she began looking towards acting as a career. After graduation, she wanted to continue acting, but Hollywood is a tough town to break into, so Renée decided to stay in Texas, and auditioned for roles around Houston, where she managed to grab roles in such films as Reality Bites (1994) and Empire Records (1995).
While on the set for the sequel, Texas Chainsaw Massacre: The Next Generation (1994), she befriended Matthew McConaughey, another Hollywood up-and-comer. He was working on a project at the time that Renée was interested in, auditioned for, and won the role in the film Love and a .45 (1994), which earned her enough critical praise that she decided to move to Los Angeles. Another role in The Whole Wide World (1996) followed which led to her big break. Cameron Crowe was busy casting his next film, Jerry Maguire (1996), starring Tom Cruise. Crowe was considering such actresses as Cameron Diaz, Bridget Fonda, Winona Ryder, and Marisa Tomei, when he heard of Zellweger's performance in The Whole Wide World (1996). He auditioned Zellweger and was sure he'd found his Dorothy Boyd.
Renée followed her huge success with a few small independent films and after receiving further critical praise, she felt confident enough to reenter the world of big-budget Hollywood films. She starred opposite Meryl Streep in the tear-jerker One True Thing (1998). She also took a role in Me, Myself & Irene (2000), opposite Jim Carrey, and soon after began dating Carrey. The two denied their relationship at first, but finally gave in and admitted it; today they are no longer together. Also in 2000, she starred in the title role in Nurse Betty (2000), where she won a Golden Globe for Best Actress in a Comedy/Musical. In 2001, she received even more critical and commercial success in the title role in Bridget Jones's Diary (2001). She received her first Academy Award nomination for her role, which was followed by her second Oscar-nominated role in the musical Chicago (2002). She then again wowed audiences with her fierce yet warm portrayal of Ruby Thewes in the film adaptation of Cold Mountain (2003), which won Zellweger an Oscar for Best Supporting Actress, which was her first Academy Award.
|Kenny Chesney||(9 May 2005 - 20 December 2005) (annulled)|
Swiss father, Norwegian mother.
Chosen by 'People Magazine' as one of the 50 most beautiful people in the world. 
She was a part of the Katy High School Bengal Brigade and Cheerleaders.
Was in the bathroom when it was announced that she won the Golden Globe for her performance in Nurse Betty (2000).
Named one of E!'s "top 20 entertainers of 2001."
With no dance or voice training, she learned how to perform for Chicago (2002) by watching co-star Catherine Zeta-Jones. She endured a grueling training regime of vocal coaching and dance training for 10 months to rise to professional standards.
Her dog, Dylan, a collie-golden retriever mix, died in November 2003.
While her mother is originally from Norway, her Swiss father was raised in Australia.
Attended University of Texas at Austin, Graduated 1991, majoring in English.
Worked as a cocktail waitress in a strip club while trying to catch her "big break" in acting.
Had a non-speaking role in Dazed and Confused (1993).
Prior to the filming of Chicago (2002), Renee had only sung previously in public in the last scene of Empire Records (1995) and in the comical karaoke scene in Bridget Jones's Diary (2001). However, critics were amazed how good her voice was in the movie.
Lived with actor Rory Cochrane for four years.
Gained 20 pounds for her role in Bridget Jones's Diary (2001).
Her Norwegian mother, Kjellfrid Irene Andreassen, is of Sami origin (a minority originating mainly from the northern parts of the Scandinavian peninsula often referred to as Lappland). Zellweger herself has many typical Sami features, such as strong cheekbones and slanted eyes.
She became the first performer to win 2 individual (excluding best acting ensemble) SAG awards in film catagories.
Is accompanied to many award shows and other functions by her long time agent John Carrabino.
Her father (Emil Erich Zellweger) and her grandparents (Dorothy and Emil Zellweger) lived in Switzerland, a village called Au in the canton of St. Gallen. They left right after World War II and moved first to Australia and then to the U.S. Emil Erich met Renee's mother on a boat during the crossing to the U.S.
Married country singer Kenny Chesney on the resort island of St. John in the U.S. Virgin Islands.
Her wedding ceremony lasted 15 minutes.
Met her future husband Kenny Chesney at a tsunami relief benefit in January 2005.
Received a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame [May 24, 2005].
In 2004, she accepted the Screen Actors Guild Award for "Outstanding Performance by a Male Actor in a Leading Role" on behalf of Johnny Depp, who wasn't present at the awards ceremony
Friend of Reese Witherspoon.
Dyed her hair brown for her role in Cinderella Man (2005).
Her father's family comes from Au in canton St. Gallen/Switzerland. This is just a few minutes away from Rorschach where Emil Jannings was born, the very first actor to receive the Academy Award for Best Actor.
Fan of Chelsea FC (England soccer club).
Is one of 9 actresses to have won the Academy Award, BAFTA Award, Critics' Choice Award, Golden Globe Award and SAG Award for the same performance. The others in chronological order are Julia Roberts for Erin Brockovich (2000), Reese Witherspoon for Walk the Line (2005), Helen Mirren for The Queen (2006), Jennifer Hudson for Dreamgirls (2006), Kate Winslet for The Reader (2008), Mo'Nique for Precious (2009/II), Natalie Portman for Black Swan (2010) and Octavia Spencer for The Help (2011).
Was considered for the role of Jessica Kimble in Jason Goes to Hell: The Final Friday (1993).
Honored as Harvard's Hasty Pudding Woman of the Year for 2009 on February 5, 2009.
Born at 2:41 PM (CST).
Was engaged to Jim Carrey (July-December 2000).
Purchased a four bedroom house in the Pacific Palisades community in California at $4 million with boyfriend Bradley Cooper (December 2009).
Inducted into the Texas Film Hall of Fame on March 10, 2011 in Austin, Tx.
She had "a couple of lines" as a beauty shop customer in My Boyfriend's Back (1993) but the scene was cut.
Was voted 'Dream Date' of her class before she graduated from high school in 1987.
On Los Angeles "It opens your eyes in this town, it's amazing. It's taught me who I don't want to be."
Regarding the lifestyle of the people of Romania, she says, "I learned how little in the way of material goods we really need, and how beautiful a simple life can be. In Romania people work with their hands every day, and you'll see an 80-year-old woman still chopping wood because she's been looking after herself all her life, and she still has the strength to do it."
"It saddens me every day when people come up and say, 'OK, how did you lose that weight?' I can't speak about it because I am not an authority on weight loss. I am just not. I am not challenged with a medical situation that's weight-related and that I need to pay attention to". [on the weight she lost after Bridget Jones's Diary (2001)].
It was very exciting for me to fill out Bridget's dresses. It felt really great. I didn't feel any different. I didn't feel uncomfortable, and I didn't feel as if it changed my life. I got such positive responses from the fellows in my life while I looked like Bridget Jones. I had a lot of friends who said I should think about keeping some of the weight on. I have to say I agreed, because there were certain things about it I liked very much. But, of course, I'm a girl, and I thought, 'Ugh, no.' Like anybody, I want to look my best.
"I see the Oscar [for best supporting actress in Cold Mountain (2003)] in my bedroom, and it's like I bought it in a souvenir shop on Hollywood Boulevard".
My life has far exceeded what I might ever have dreamed of because I would never have been so bold as to dream that these things might happen to me.
"I wanted to be self-sufficient, I wanted to take care of myself, and I wanted to learn. I wanted to travel, I wanted to see the world and have my eyes opened. I wanted to be consistently challenged, and I knew I needed to be creative in some way. When I got my job in a bar and I could pay for my tuition and go on auditions and sometimes get jobs that I loved and pay my rent, I knew that I would be all right. That's when my dreams came true, long before the telephone rang and someone said, 'Come and meet Tom Cruise'".
It's great to be a brunet. I can sneak around downtown Los Angeles and nobody knows it's me. I went to Starbucks to get my coffee in the morning, and they said, 'What's your name?' I said, 'Oh, Renée.' Nobody even looked at me twice. My friends even walk past me. It's fantastic because I feel so free again. That's why I think the old adage that blonds have more fun is a presumption! [on dying her hair brown]
I think we can all relate to Bridget standing in a hallway wanting to know, 'Do you love me or not?' She just blurts it out and maybe that makes her seem like she's not strong. I think she's very brave because she's speaking her mind. Ultimately, she knows that even if she doesn't get the right answer from this man, she will still get up and move forward. That's strength to me.
What I admire most about Bridget is her ever-present optimism in the face of adversity. I love how she has romantic troubles, but she gets back up and even laughs at herself. Me? I do my best. I keep on trying, anyway.
Emotionally gaining the weight didn't affect me. In fact, I was afraid that I didn't gain enough weight. We were working six days a week, so my fear was that I'd lose a few pounds from the work, and the fluctuations in my weight would show on the screen. But they weren't noticeable. (On her weight gain in Bridget Jones: The Edge of Reason (2004)).
People did suggest to me, 'Oh, it might not be necessary to gain that much weight or as much as you did last time.' I thought the weight was essential in repeating the journey. If you're not going to be who she is, then what is the point?
I am very proud to be Norwegian. [1996 interview]
(On landing Jerry Maguire (1996)) I remember driving to the audition, and I remember being very calm because I was thinking, 'This is never going to happen'.
I'm not single, I'm busy. That's my line.
[on why she was in the bathroom when she won the Golden Globe for Nurse Betty (2000)] I had lipstick on my teeth!
|Bridget Jones's Diary (2001)||$3,750,000|
|Down with Love (2003)||$6,000,000|
|Cold Mountain (2003)||$15,000,000|
|Bridget Jones: The Edge of Reason (2004)||$11,000,000|
|Cinderella Man (2005)||$5,000,000|
(September 2005) Annouced that she is getting a divorce from country music star Kenny Chesney after just 4 months of marriage.
(September 2006) In Vancouver filming Case 39 (2009).
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