Thursday, September 17, 2015

Let's talk about: Keira Knightley

 Keira Christina Knightley was born on March 26, 1985 in Richmond, a suburb of London. 
Her parents were both in the entertainment business. Her father, Will Knightley, was an actor. Her mother, Sharman Macdonald, was an actress turned playwright. 
Keira asked for her own agent when she was three years old. 
When she was six she finally got that agent and her first role on television as "Little Girl" in Screen One: Royal Celebration in 1993. 

She didn't have any formal training and continued to act because she loved it. 
She went to a regular school nearby and didn't have a plan for when she left. 
At a young age, they discovered that Keira had severe difficulties when reading and writing. She wasn't formally diagnosed with dyslexia but it was felt that she was dealing with a form of it. 
She worked really hard, with the help of her family, until she was able to overcome her problem by her early teen years. 

She continued to land roles in various television shows and some films. 
The first time she really made a name for herself was when she played Natalie Portman's decoy "Padme" in Star Wars: Episode 1- The Phantom Menace in 1999. 
Her role as the decoy was kept a secret before the movie's release so that the surprise would not be spoiled. The similarity between Keira and Natalie Portman was so great that during filming, their moms couldn't even tell them apart once they were in makeup.  

"The problem for me was that by being in the film the magic was broken. I loved the first Star Wars film and my mum was really into it too, that's why I took the part. But the Force wasn't there when we were filming it, and they didn't have real light sabres, which annoyed me."

At this point she began to get offers for much bigger roles and had to start turning some things down so that she could focus on one project at a time along with her schoolwork. 
In 1999 she appeared in Oliver Twist and traveled to Romania where she did her first title role playing Robin Hood's daughter Gwyn in Walt Disney's Princess of Thieves. 
Her roles continued from there. 
In 2001 she sat her final school exams and then started her A- levels at Esher College studying Classics, English Literature, and Political History.
In 2002 she filmed Bend It Like Beckham which was a huge success. 
 She then landed the lead role of Larisa Feodorovna Guishar in Doctor Zhivago.
It was filmed in Slovakia throughout the spring of 2002 and forced her to leave her studies and pursue acting full time. 
She followed this with Love Actually and then landed an audition for Pirates of the Caribbean: The Curse of the Black Pearl. 
She almost missed out on Pirates. Auditions were being held in London but she was stuck in heavy traffic. She then had to be added on to the very end of the auditions list and just made it in time to audition. It was filmed after Love Actually but released before it and was the first film to make people really pay attention and wonder who this "new" face was.

Her career took off from there. 
One planned film was cancelled which led to a great opportunity. 
She spent the year instead visiting Ethiopia on behalf of the Comic Relief Charity and then spending the summer filming Pride and Prejudice. 
In October 2004, she received the Hollywood Film Award for Best female Breakthrough Actor.
In 2005 she received her first Golden Globe nomination for Pride and Prejudice, and soon after came her first Academy Award nomination. 
Her career was definitely on the rise. 
She won Best Actress for Atonement in 2007.

On May 4, 2013 Keira married her boyfriend of 2 years, James Righton, in a private ceremony near Marseilles. In May 2015, she gave birth to their first child, a daughter named Edie Righton. 

Keira continues to take on new and different roles and prove that she is a great actress. 

My favorite Keira movies are: 

#1: The Pirates of the Caribbean films

I really enjoy these films, especially the first one. 
I thought she did a really good job in this role.

#2: Love Actually 

This should come as no surprise to anyone who has read this blog. 
It's a movie that I love. Her story, while not one of my favorites in the film, is sweet and I like her in it. 

#3: Pride and Prejudice

I love Keira as Elizabeth Bennett. I think she really felt genuine in the character and brought a lot of fun and life to her. I go back and forth between this and the 1995 adaptation because there are things in each adaptation that I like better than the other. While I love the Elizabeth in the 1995 version, I think I like Keira's even better.

*Do you have a favorite Keira Knightley role? 


The Kings said...

I really liked her in "Princess of Thieves", loved her in "Pirates", and thought she did a wonderful Elizabeth Bennett in "Pride and Prejudice". She is one of my favorite actresses!

cheryl said...

I need to watch Princess of Thieves. I think I have seen it but I can't remember anything about it, so I'm not sure if I have or not.