Ask Kate Winslet what she liked about any of her characters, and the word "ballsy" is bound to pop up at least once. The British actress has made a point of eschewing straightforward pretty-girl parts in favor of more devilish damsels; as a result, she's built an eclectic resume; that runs the gamut from Shakespearean tragedy to modern-day mysticism and erotica.
Born into a family of thespians -- parents Roger Winslet and Sally Bridges-Winslet were both stage actors, maternal grandparents Oliver and Linda Bridges ran the Reading Repertory Theatre, and uncle Robert Bridges was a fixture in London's West End theatre district -- Kate came into her talent at an early age. She scored her first professional gig at 11, dancing opposite the Honey Monster in a commercial for a kids' cereal. She started acting lessons around the same time, which led to formal training at a performing arts high school. Over the next few years, she appeared on stage regularly and landed a few bit parts in sitcoms. Her first big break came at age 17, when she was cast as an obsessive adolescent in Heavenly Creatures (1994). The film, based on the true story of two fantasy-gripped girls who commit a brutal murder, received modest distribution but was roundly praised by critics.
Still a relative unknown, Winslet attended a cattle call audition the next year for Ang Lee's Sense and Sensibility (1995). She made an immediate impression on the film's star, Emma Thompson, and beat out more than a hundred other hopefuls for the part of plucky Marianne Dashwood. Her efforts were rewarded with both a British Academy Award and an Oscar nomination for Best Supporting Actress. Winslet followed up with two more period pieces, playing the rebellious heroine in Jude (1996) and Ophelia in Kenneth Branagh's Hamlet (1996).
The role that transformed Winslet from art house attraction to international star was Rose DeWitt Bukater, the passionate, rosy-cheeked aristocrat in James Cameron's Titanic (1997). Young girls the world over both idolized and identified with Winslet, swooning over all that face time opposite heartthrob Leonardo DiCaprio and noting her refreshingly healthy, unemaciated physique. Winslet's performance also garnered a Best Actress nomination, making her the youngest actress to ever receive two Academy Award nominations.
After the swell of unexpected attention surrounding Titanic (1997), Winslet was eager to retreat into independent projects. Rumor has it that she turned down the lead roles in both Shakespeare in Love (1998) and Anna and the King (1999) in order to play adventurous soul searchers in Hideous Kinky (1998) and Holy Smoke (1999). The former cast her as a young single mother traveling through 1970s Morocco with her daughters in tow; the latter, as a zealous follower of a guru tricked into a "deprogramming" session in the Australian outback. The next year found her back in period dress as the Marquis de Sade's chambermaid and accomplice in Quills (2000). Kate holds the distinction of being the youngest actor ever honored with four Academy Award nominations (she received her fourth at age 29).
Off camera, Winslet is known for her mischievous pranks and familial devotion. She has two sisters, Anna Winslet and Beth Winslet (both actresses), and a brother, Joss.
In 1998, she married assistant director Jim Threapleton. They had a daughter, Mia Honey Threapleton, in October 2000. They divorced in 2001. She later married director Sam Mendes in 2003 and gave birth to their son, Joe Alfie Winslet-Mendes, later that year. After seven years of marriage, Kate announced that she and Sam amicably separated in February 2010. She was awarded Commander of the Order of the British Empire in the 2012 Queen's Birthday Honours List for her accomplishments in film and television.
|Ned Rocknroll||(December 2012 - present)|
|Sam Mendes||(24 May 2003 - 2010) (divorced) 1 child|
|Jim Threapleton||(22 November 1998 - 13 December 2001) (divorced) 1 child|
Won Best Spoken Word Album for Children, Grammy Awards, shared with Graham Greene. 
At age 11, she began attending the acting school Redroofs in Maidenhead, England, UK.
Her first acting job was dancing with the Honey Monster in a commercial for Sugar Puffs cereal.
Nominated for Best Supporting Actress, Manchester Evening News Award for her theatre role in "What the Butler Saw" as Geraldine Barclay. 
Chosen by People (USA) magazine as one of the 50 Most Beautiful People in the World. 
She has a younger brother, Joss.
Parents: Roger Winslet (actor) and Sally Bridges-Winslet.
After her first success in the film Heavenly Creatures (1994), a reviewer predicted that she would always be associated with that character and would never be a big star.
Recorded a song for the soundtrack for the movie Christmas Carol: The Movie (2001). Producers were so impressed at her efforts they have decided to release the ballad - called "What If?" - as a single. It reached the top ten in the United Kingdom, peaking at number six. [June 2001]
Announced that she and husband Jim Threapleton are splitting up. [3 September 2001]
[November 2001] Confirms that she is dating director Sam Mendes.
Purchased a $3 million (US) home in London with boyfriend (later husband) Sam Mendes. They also bought a home in New York City.
She holds a unique position in Academy Awards history: Only twice have two actresses been nominated for playing the same character in the same film. The first two were Gloria Stuart and Kate in Titanic (1997). The second two were Judi Dench and Kate in Iris (2001/I).
Married director Sam Mendes in a private ceremony whilst on holiday in the West Indies in May 2003.
Daughter Mia's name is Italian for "my".
Prefers to wear boots rather than ordinary shoes because it makes her feel that her feet are "firmly on the ground."
Resides in both London, England, and New York City, USA. However, her main home is in Cotswolds, England.
Has a nephew, George. His mother is Beth Winslet.
Sprained her ankle on the set of Romance & Cigarettes (2005) in May 2004.
Was considered for the role of Bridget in Bridget Jones's Diary (2001) but it was then decided she was too young to portray the role.
Was born in the same hospital as her husband, Sam Mendes.
Filmed her 2005 American Express commercial in Camden Town, London, England.
Her performance as Clementine Kruczynski in Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind (2004) is ranked #81 on Premiere Magazine's 100 Greatest Performances of All Time (2006).
Her daughter Mia had to be delivered by Cesarean section, which made Kate feel she hadn't given birth properly. She admitted to it only after giving birth to her son Joe (who had been delivered naturally).
Was offered the role of Eowyn in The Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers (2002).
Kate married Sam Mendes, who was a childhood friend of Tom Hollander, with whom he went to Cambridge University and whom he directed in several plays. Tom and Kate were both in the film Enigma (2001).
Nominated for Best Supporting Actress, Premiere Magazine for Sense and Sensibility (1995)). 
Won Best Film Actress, Smash Hits Magazine. 
Won Sexiest Actress, Entertainment Insider Awards. 
Won Film Actress of the Year, Variety Club of Great Britain. 
Nominated for Best Actress, Roughcut.com Internet Movie Award for Holy Smoke (1999). 
When interviewed on "Good Morning America" (1975) to promote her film The Holiday (2006), they surprised her by showing a clip which was supposedly Winslet on the Sugar Puff Commercial in 1987. However, the girl in the clip shown was not her. Winslet did not point out the error because she did not want to embarrass the researcher and get the person fired. She was then praised by the media for her caring and consideration of other people. 
Her performance in Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind (2004) is her personal favorite.
Along with Claude Rains (for Mr. Skeffington (1944)), Vanessa Redgrave (for Julia (1977)) and Mare Winningham (for Georgia (1995)), she is the only performer to be nominated for an Supporting Oscar (for Iris (2000)) for playing the title role in a movie. As of 2006, Redgrave is the only one to win.
As of January 2009, she is the youngest actress to rack up 6 Academy Award nominations.
Runner-Up for Best Actress, New York Film Critics Circle for Holy Smoke (1999). 
Nominated for Best Supporting Actress, Rec.Arts.Movies.* Critics Circle for Quills (2000). 
Runner-Up for Best Actress, National Society of Film Critics for Holy Smoke (1999). 
Runner-Up for Best Actress, New York Film Critics Circle for Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind (2004). 
Is a fan of Rufus Wainwright's CD, "Poses" (mentioned in one of her ads for AmEx).
Nominated for Best Actress in a Dramatic Performance, Excellent Dynamic Activism (EDA) Awards/The Alliance of Women Journalists for Little Children (2006). 
In an interview for the London Evening Standard, she revealed she has taken a year off (from April 2006 to April 2007) from her career, to spend more time with her family. 
Official Celebrity Spokesperson for Lancôme. 
Her children refer to very close friend Leonardo DiCaprio as "Uncle Leo". He also bought Kate an inscribed gold ring, after they filmed Revolutionary Road (2008). However, Winslet keeps the inscription a secret.
Chosen by People Magazine as one of the 50 Most Beautiful in the World. 
Auditioned for the role of "Elizabeth" in Kenneth Branagh's Frankenstein (1994). Helena Bonham Carter got the role, but Branagh was so impressed by Winslet that he offered her the part of "Ophelia" in Hamlet (1996).
Involved, along with Sherilyn Fenn, Rufus Sewell, Miranda Richardson and Paul McGann in the 1998 film project "Johnny Hit and Run Pauline". The film was to be executive produced by Emma Thompson, and written and directed by Fay Efrosini Lellios. The shooting was set to start in June 1998 in New Hampshire. The film was canceled due to financial withdrawal. 
Lives in New York City. She also owns a home in Gloucestershire, England.
The Holiday (2006) was the first movie that Kate used her own accent and didn't develop a special voice for her character.
Sister-in-law of Edmund Harcourt.
As of 2009, she is only one of six performers who won a Golden Globe Award as Best Lead Actor/Actress in a Motion Picture Drama without being nominated for an Oscar for that same role (hers for Revolutionary Road (2008)). The others are Spencer Tracy in The Actress (1953), Anthony Franciosa in Career (1959), Omar Sharif in Doctor Zhivago (1965), 'Shirley Maclaine' in Madame Sousatzka (1988), Jim Carrey in The Truman Show (1998). However, of those six performers, Winslet is the only one to be nominated and win an Academy Award for a leading role but for a different role, in a same year.
The producers of the The Reader (2008) tried to promote Winslet as Supporting Actress during the Oscar race 2009 in order to enhance her chances to get nominated twice (for Best Supporting Actress for The Reader (2008) and Best Lead Actress for her role in Revolutionary Road (2008)). The Academy overthrew this plan by nominating Winslet for Best Lead Actress for her performance in The Reader (2008), leaving aside her performance in Revolutionary Road (2008), although she won several other award nominations in both categories for the respective movies. According to Academy rules, an actor is eligible for only one nomination in a single category.
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), Renée Zellweger for Cold Mountain (2003), Reese Witherspoon for Walk the Line (2005), Helen Mirren for The Queen (2006), Jennifer Hudson for Dreamgirls (2006), Mo'Nique for Precious (2009/II), Natalie Portman for Black Swan (2010) and Octavia Spencer for The Help (2011).
Returned to work 11 months after giving birth to her daughter Mia in order to begin filming The Life of David Gale (2003).
Returned to work 5 months after giving birth to her son Joe in order to begin filming Romance & Cigarettes (2005).
Born at 7:15 am-BST.
Announced that she had separated amicably from husband Sam Mendes two months previously (15 March 2010).
Virgin Group billionaire Richard Branson credited Kate with 'helping to carry' his 90-year-old mother out of his burning Caribbean-island house, where Winslet, her boyfriend 'Ned Rocknroll' and her two children were staying (August 2011).
Ranked as having one of the "Most Beautiful Famous Faces" by "The Annual Independent Critics List of the 100 Most Beautiful Famous Faces From Around the World" for 14 consecutive years. She was ranked #31 in 2010, #22 in 2009, #12 in 2008, #15 in 2007, #18 in 2006, #21 in 2005, #13 in 2004, #11 in 2003, #14 in 2002, #4 in 2001, #11 in 2000, #20 in 1999, #17 in 1998, and #27 in 1997.
Gave birth to her first child at age 25, a daughter Mia Honey Threapleton on October 12, 2000. Child's father is her first husband, Jim Threapleton.
Gave birth to her second child at age 28, a son Joe Alfie Winslet Mendes on December 22, 2003. Child's father is her second husband, Sam Mendes.
She was awarded the CBE (Commander of the Order of the British Empire) in the 2012 Queen's Birthday Honours List for her services to drama.
Was awarded the CBE, by Queen Elizabeth II, for her services to acting [November 22, 2012].
Announced that she and Ned Rocknroll, whom she has been engaged to since July 2012, married in a secret ceremony in New York with just Winslet's children, Mia and Joe, and 6 friends present. Leonardo DiCaprio gave the bride away (December 26, 2012).
[talking about her screen debut in Heavenly Creatures (1994)]: "I was reading the script in the back of the car and I turned to my dad and yelled, 'I've GOT to get this!' And he replied, 'Then you will.' And I thought, 'Yep, that's it. I'm bloody well going to.' And that was it. I was so determined. It was something crucial to my life. I just so communicated with her, the story and their relationship. And when I found out, I just couldn't believe it. I was so happy, I cried. I remember I was working part-time at a deli at the time because I didn't have any money and was in the middle of making a sandwich when they phoned and said I'd got the job. I burst into tears and had to leave work because I couldn't control myself. It was absolutely brilliant."
In 2002, she had this to say about doing nude scenes: "I like exposing myself. There's not an awful lot that embarrasses me. I'm the kind of actress that absolutely believes in exposing myself."
I'd rather do theatre and British films than move to L.A. in hopes of getting small roles in American films.
It's very important for me to make the statement that I am English and just because I've done one really big film, it doesn't mean that I don't want to keep a finger in the fantastic British film industry and do films like this.
About her spur-of-the-moment marriage to Sam Mendes - "We hadn't been planning to do it but we thought it was rather a good idea, so we just did it."
After Titanic (1997) it would have been completely foolish for me to go and try and top that. I'm an English girl, I've always loved England, I've never felt the desire to leave it for any particular reason. And whilst I'm ambitious and care very much about what I do, I'm not competitive. I also don't want to act every day of my life. ... So it was important to me after Titanic (1997) to just remind myself of why it was that I was acting in the first place, which is of course because I love it.
Since I was 13 or 14, I've always felt older than I actually am.
I was on the tube just before Christmas. and this girl turned round to me and said, 'Are you Kate Winslet?'. And I said, 'Well, yes. I am actually'. And she said, 'And you're getting the tube?' And I said, 'Yes'. And she said, 'Don't you have a big car that drives you around?' And I said, 'No'. And she was absolutely stunned that I wasn't being driven round in some flash car all the time. It was ludicrous.
People say to me, 'You seem to have made this conscious decision to do independent films'. In reality, I haven't. After each movie, I always think, how different can I possibly be?... Is this going to challenge me, is this going to inspire me, and is this going to make me love my job more than I already do?
There is no way we are going to move out of England. Some might think that we want to live in Hollywood but that is not what we want at all. We will go and live in New York when it is necessary because of work but we prefer to be in England. I'm proud to be English - we both are. It's very important to me to retain that. I am an English girl and I love England. I have never felt the desire to leave. I am still ambitious and I will have to travel and live elsewhere because of that but England is always home.
On a scene from the movie Holy Smoke (1999),: "It was a difficult scene. When I read the script and I saw this scene was there, I laughed hysterically. I just couldn't believe it. When it came to shooting it, I had been sort of putting it off, and pretending it wasn't going to happen. And suddenly, I am there naked, peeing and thinking "Oh no!" It was really hard to do, but I've always loved the fact that it was there, and it's such a sort of turning point for the character I play in the movie that I've always felt sort of good, that it should be there."
On receiving her 4th Oscar nomination: "I can't believe it. I am ecstatic! This nomination means so much to me. To be remembered for a film that was released a while ago, I am unbelievably honoured and completely overwhelmed."
There's more to life than cheekbones.
Mum and dad were very much friends, and up to life. There was no anxiety for anything when I was growing up, they just taught me to be me.
Life is short, and it is here to be lived.
Loving someone is setting them free, letting them go.
I don't know if it's a skill, but I have been really lucky. I've always got on with every actor I've had to work opposite. I just always try and be as accepting of that person as I possibly can, and remain non-judgmental about their process, because every actor works in a different way.
I was a wayward child, very passionate and very determined. If I made up my mind to do something, there was no stopping me.
On going to the 1996 Oscars: Emma Thompson said to me 'Listen, it's honestly just like going to see a fantastic show', and actually it really is, because there are so many people to look at and all those fabulous frocks and it's really fascinating. But mum and dad and I did kind of amble through it a bit, a bit like the Beverly Hillbillies, getting out the car, my mum stepping on my dress and I'm going 'Mum, mum!'
I'm really proud of being English, because I learned my job in England, in English films with English actors. But I never dared dream of such a success... it's more than a dream. I realize it's extraordinary for a British actress. I feel good, but guilty at the same time, cause I wish I could share this emotion with all my British actors' friends... I play the main character in the most expensive and probably successful film, but that's not a good reason to leave England and become a superstar. Not at all.
It seems daft that I'm famous and I've not really got to grips with that.
On taking chances in Hollywood: If you're not still learning and growing as an actor, then you have no backbone and no career. - Interview, November 2000.
My skin still crawls if you call me a movie star. I get embarrassed. I think, don't be ridiculous. Maybe it's because I'm British. To me, Julia Roberts that's a movie star. But when people do call me one, that, I think, is an enormous compliment but, my God, is that a responsibility!
It feels unbelievable to be mentioned in the same breath as fellow actress Meryl Streep. It's inconceivable to me that this would even happen in my lifetime at all. It's such a dream. (About being nominated in the same category as superstar Meryl Streep)
|Holy Smoke (1999)||£360,000|
|Finding Neverland (2004)||£6,000,000|
|The Reader (2008)||$1,000,000|
|Revolutionary Road (2008)||$1,000,000|
|Movie 43 (2013)||$1,600|
(June 2012) London, England
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