Reese Witherspoon

  • Birth Name: Laura Jean Reese Witherspoon
  • Birth Place: New Orleans, Louisiana, United States
  • Profession: Actor, Producer, Model
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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

  • 2017, Emmy — Outstanding Limited Series: Winner
  • 2018, Golden Globe — Best Performance by an Actress in a Limited Series or Motion Picture Made for Television: Nominee
  • 2005, Screen Actors Guild Awards — Outstanding Performance by a Female Actor in a Leading Role: Winner
  • 2020, Producers Guild Awards — Norman Felton Award for Outstanding Producer of Episodic Television, Drama: Nominee
  • 2015, Critics' Choice Movie Awards — Best Actress: Nominee
  • 2017, Emmy — Outstanding Lead Actress in a Limited Series or a Movie: Nominee
  • 2006, People's Choice Awards — Favorite Leading Actress: Winner
  • 2017, Screen Actors Guild Awards — Outstanding Performance by a Female Actor in a Television Movie or Limited Series: Nominee
  • 2018, BAFTA Television Awards — Best International: Nominee
  • 2019, Screen Actors Guild Awards — Outstanding Performance by an Ensemble in a Drama Series: Nominee
  • 2009, People's Choice Awards — Favorite Female Movie Star: Winner
  • 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
  • 2006, CMT Music Awards — Collaborative Video of the Year: Nominee
  • 2014, Independent Spirit Awards — Robert Altman Award: Winner
  • 2015, Independent Spirit Awards — Robert Altman Award: Winner
  • 2015, BAFTA Film Awards — Best Leading Actress: Nominee
  • 2014, Oscar — Best Performance by an Actress in a Leading Role: Nominee
  • 2019, People's Choice Awards — Favorite Drama TV Star: Nominee
  • 2014, Screen Actors Guild Awards — Outstanding Performance by a Female Actor in a Leading Role: Nominee
  • 2000, Golden Globe — Best Performance by an Actress in a Motion Picture - Musical or Comedy: Nominee
  • 2006, Critics' Choice Awards — Best Actress: Winner
  • 2017, Critics' Choice Awards — Best Actress in a Movie Made for Television or Limited Series: Nominee
  • 2006, BAFTA Film Awards — Best Actress in a Leading Role: Winner
  • 2020, Golden Globe — Best Performance by an Actress in a Television Series - Drama: Nominee
  • 2005, Oscar — Best Performance by an Actress in a Leading Role: Winner
  • 2008, People's Choice Awards — Favorite Female Movie Star: Winner
  • 2015, Golden Globe — Best Performance by an Actress in a Motion Picture - Drama: Nominee
  • 2000, Independent Spirit Awards — Best Female Lead: Nominee

Relationships

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

College

  • Attended Stanford University, Stanford, California, United States
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