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Kate Winslet Biography

Kate Elizabeth Winslet was born October 5, 1975, in Reading, England. With acting deep-rooted into her genes, it was no wonder Kate herself would also turn to the dramatic arts.

Her grandparents, Oliver and Linda Bridges, founded and operated the Reading Repertory theater; father Roger Winslet and mum Sally were both actors; uncle Robert Bridges appeared in the original West End production of Oliver!; and both her sisters Beth and Anna are actors. Her younger brother Joss is probably the only Winslet that did not enter the family business.

kate winslet in king arthur's court

She made her debut at age 11, when she costarred with the "Honey Monster" in a commercial for a children's breakfast. After acting lessons and a graduation from a performing arts high school, Kate took to the stage in productions of Adrian Mole and Peter Pan.

Kate then took the television route, with appearances on sitcoms, most notably a recurring role on the British comedy, Get Back. Kate went from a rather dark role in the 1994 film Heavenly Creatures (as a teen involved in a murder), to the more children-oriented A Kid in King Arthur's Court, where she starred as Princess Sarah.

kate winslet's sense & sensibility

The British actress' career was about to rise, after Kate was cast as Marianne Dashwood in the adaptation of Jane Austen's period piece, Sense and Sensibility, sharing the screen with Emma Thompson and Hugh Grant.

The film's producers and director, Ang Lee, knew that Kate was the one for the part during her audition, and to underscore that decision, she received an Oscar nomination for Best Supporting Actress.

She may have lost the Oscar, but she did win the Screen Actors Guild for Outstanding Performance by a Female Actor in a Supporting Role, and a British Academy of Film and Television Arts Best Supporting Actress Award, both for Sense and Sensibility.

As even more evidence that Kate was a natural in a corset, she next starred in two more period pieces in 1996: Jude (based on the novel Jude the Obscure), and Hamlet (the one with Kenneth Branagh), where she starred as the tragic Ophelia.

kate winslet's titanic role

In 1997, Kate plunged into the icy waters and made movie history, as the heroine of James Cameron's mega movie Titanic. Her role as Rose DeWitt Bukater not only made her the envy of teenage girls worldwide (for getting to share breathing space with Leonardo DiCaprio), but it also marked her transition from artsy, independent films, to commercial blockbuster flicks. She received another Oscar nod, this time in the Best Supporting Actress category, making her the youngest actress to receive two Oscar nominations.

But Kate chose the road less traveled by supposedly refusing the lead roles in Shakespeare in Love (Gwyneth sure owes her a big thank you) and Anna and the King, in order to star in two more alternative, independent films: Hideous Kinky (1998) and Holy Smoke (1999).

2000 saw Kate in yet another period piece: the critically acclaimed Quills. She then appeared in Enigma (2001), Iris (2001), The Life of David Gale (2003), and was heard in the animated feature Flushed Away (2006), with Hugh Jackman.

Delving into children-oriented films isn't a bad idea, since Kate is also mother to Mia (her daughter with ex-husband Jim Threapleton)and Joe (her son with husband Sam Mendes).

kate winslet's oscar nods

Oscar sure does like Kate. She holds the record for being the youngest actor to receive four Academy Award nominations, which she by the age of 29. She was nominated for an Academy Award for the third time in 2002 as Best Actress in a Supporting Role for Iris. And her fourth Oscar nod in 2005 was for Best Actress for her work in Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind (2004). Some might even argue that Kate was robbed of a nomination for her stellar perfomance as a widowed mother of four boys in 2004's Finding Neverland.

Kate is no stranger to award nominations, however. By 2005, she had already been nominated for four Golden Globe awards, and in 2007, she received a fifth for her role in the critically acclaimed Little Children


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