Biography

Although she made her movie debut at 15, this Southern belle steered clear of typical teen roles and instead turned in complex performances in indie favorites such as Freeway and Election. But Witherspoon's success wasn't limited to just critical acclaim. A role in Cruel Intentions (1999) alongside future husband Ryan Phillippe (whom she later divorced) made this serious actress something of a teen idol, while her charismatic turn as a Barbie doll with a brain in the 2001 comedy Legally Blonde made her a megastar. Post-Blonde, Witherspoon has tried her hand at producing and continues to land high-profile roles, including an Oscar-winning performance as Johnny Cash's wife in Walk the Line (2005).

Fast Facts

  • Descendant of John Witherspoon, one of the 56 signers of the Declaration of Independence.
  • Began acting in commercials at age 7.
  • Landed first movie role (and first on-screen kiss) in 1991's The Man in the Moon after auditioning in a 10-state talent search. Garnered critical acclaim in the film as a 14-year-old tomboy.
  • Turned down roles in the slasher flicks Scream (1996) and Urban Legend (1998).
  • Played sister to Rachel (Jennifer Aniston) in two episodes of Friends in 2000.
  • Was the first to host Saturday Night Live following the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks.
  • When Witherspoon and her then-husband, Ryan Phillippe, were co-presenters at the 2002 Academy Awards, he gestured to the envelope and joked, "You open it. You make more money than I do."
  • Named one of People magazine's 50 Most Beautiful People in 2002.

Awards

  • 2002, Golden Globe — Best Performance by an Actress in a Motion Picture - Musical or Comedy: Nominee
  • 2006, Golden Globe — Best Performance by an Actress in a Motion Picture - Musical or Comedy: Winner
  • 2000, Golden Globe — Best Performance by an Actress in a Motion Picture - Musical or Comedy: Nominee
  • 2005, Oscar — Best Performance by an Actress in a Leading Role: Winner
  • 2009, People's Choice Awards — Favorite Female Movie Star: Winner
  • 2006, People's Choice Awards — Favorite Leading Actress: Winner
  • 2005, BAFTA Film Awards — Best Actress in a Leading Role: Winner
  • 2006, CMT Music Awards — Collaborative Video of the Year: Nominee
  • 2005, Screen Actors Guild Awards — Outstanding Performance by a Female Actor in a Leading Role: Winner
  • 2015, BAFTA Film Awards — Best Leading Actress: Nominee
  • 2014, Oscar — Best Performance by an Actress in a Leading Role: Nominee
  • 2015, Critics' Choice Movie Awards — Best Actress: Nominee
  • 2014, Independent Spirit Awards — Robert Altman Award: Winner
  • 2015, Independent Spirit Awards — Robert Altman Award: Winner
  • 2014, Screen Actors Guild Awards — Outstanding Performance by a Female Actor in a Leading Role: Nominee
  • 2015, Golden Globe — Best Performance by an Actress in a Motion Picture - Drama: Nominee
  • 2008, People's Choice Awards — Favorite Female Movie Star: Winner

Relationships

  • Deacon Reese Phillippe — Son
  • Ava Elizabeth Phillippe — Daughter
  • John Witherspoon — Father
  • Ryan Phillippe — Ex-husband
  • Betty Reese Witherspoon — Mother
  • John Draper Witherspoon — Brother
  • Jake Gyllenhaal — Ex-significant Other
  • Jim Toth — Husband
  • Tennessee James Toth — Son

College

  • Attended Stanford University, Stanford, CA

Details

  • Birth Name: Laura Jean Reese Witherspoon
  • Birth Place: New Orleans, LA
  • Birthday: March 22, 1976, Aries
  • Profession: Actor, Producer, Model
  • User Rating:4.74 out of 5 (292 ratings)
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