Catherine Zeta-Jones,CBE(//; born 25 September 1969)is a Welsh actress. Born and raised in Swansea , Zeta-Jones aspired to a theatrical career from an early age. In her early teens, she played roles in the West End productions of the musicalsAnnieandBugsy Malone. She studied musical theatre at the Arts Educational Schools, London , and made her adult stage breakthrough with a leading role in a 1987 production of42nd Street. Her screen debut came in the French-Italian film1001 Nights(1990), and she found success as a regular in the British television seriesThe Darling Buds of May(1991–93). Tired of being typecast as the token pretty girl in British films, Zeta-Jones relocated to Los Angeles.Zeta-Jones established herself in Hollywood with roles in the action filmThe Mask of Zorro(1998) and the heist filmEntrapment(1999). Critics praised her portrayal of a vengeful pregnant woman inTraffic(2000) and a murderous singer in the musical filmChicago(2002). The latter won her Academy and BAFTA Awards for Best Supporting Actress, among other accolades . She starred in high-profile films for much of the decade, including the black comedyIntolerable Cruelty(2003), the heist filmOcean's Twelve(2004), the comedyThe Terminal(2004), and the romantic comedyNo Reservations(2007). Parts in smaller-scale features were followed by a decrease in workload, during which she returned to the stage and portrayed an ageing actress inA Little Night Music(2009), winning a Tony Award . Zeta-Jones continued to work intermittently in the 2010s, starring in the psychological thrillerSide Effects(2013) and the action filmRed 2(2013).Zeta-Jones has received an Academy Award , a British Academy Film Award and a Tony Award , and in 2010 she was appointed Commander of the Order of the British Empire (CBE) for her film and humanitarian endeavours. She supports various charities and causes, and is a prominent celebrity endorser of brands. Her struggle with depression and bipolar II disorder has been well-documented by the media. She is married to the actor Michael Douglas with whom she has two children.
Greater success followed when she starred opposite David Jason and Pam Ferris in the British period comedy-drama television seriesThe Darling Buds of Mayfrom 1991 to 1993. Adapted from H. E. Bates ' novel of the same name , Zeta-Jones played the role of the eldest daughter of a family living in the countryside in 1950s Britain.The series was the highest-rated television show in the country at the time, and Zeta-Jones gained wide public recognition for it; she said "Literally, with one hour of television my life completely changed. I couldn't go anywhere".
In 1994 Zeta-Jones played the melancholic Eustacia Vye in the television filmThe Return of the Native, an adaptation of the novel of the same name (1878) by Thomas Hardy , and the wife of Lloyd Owen's character in the television war dramaThe Cinder Path.She was then cast as the eponymous protagonist of the 1995 television biopicCatherine the Great. Lisa Nesselson ofVarietyfound the miniseries to be "brightly colored" but "wooden and hollow"; she thought that Zeta-Jones "imparts a certain grace and resolve to her sovereign-in-the-making".Zeta-Jones next starred as the pragmatic girlfriend of Sean Pertwee's character inBlue Juice(1995), publicised as Britain's first surf film , which Leonard Maltin described as a "superficial and predictable" production.
Varietyconsidered Zeta-Jones to be a standout in her part, but the film had a negative critical reception and earned little at the box office.The CBS television miniseriesTitanic(1996) was better received.Starring opposite Peter Gallagher and George C. Scott , she portrayed the lead role of Isabella Paradine, a young mother engaged in an extramarital affair on the RMSTitanic.
Writing forRolling Stone, Peter Travers commented that "Zeta-Jones needs no lessons in being gorgeous" and commended her for turning "the battle into a delicious game of strip-fencing".The role proved to be a breakthrough for her and she was nominated for the MTV Movie Award for Best Breakthrough Performance .
The Observerpraised a scene in which Zeta-Jones is "all feline grace, balletic skill and wanton sexuality", but showed concern that "her charms are not subtle and her range of expressions is narrow, but neither point need be a drawback in the kind of action films that are undoubtedly her metier".Later that year Zeta-Jones appeared alongside Liam Neeson and Lili Taylor inThe Haunting, a remake of the 1963 film of the same name about a team of paranormal experts who look into strange occurrences in an ill-fated mansion. The horror feature received generally poor reviews but found a large worldwide audience.In a scathing review, Mick LaSalle wrote that "Zeta-Jones seems less an actress and more a pretty face, and not an interesting one at that".
Dallas Observeras "a remarkable achievement in filmmaking, a beautiful and brutal work".Edward Guthman of theSan Francisco Chroniclefound Zeta-Jones to be a standout among the ensemble and described her as "sensational" in a scene in which she confronts a Tijuana dealer, adding that "through sheer conviction, she electrifies a moment that could have been absurd".The ensemble ofTrafficwon the SAG Award for Outstanding Cast and Zeta-Jones was nominated for the Golden Globe Award for Best Supporting Actress .
The film and her performance received critical acclaim.William Arnold of theSeattle Post-Intelligencerfelt that the actress made "a wonderfully statuesque and bitchy saloon goddess", and David Edelstein ofSlatemagazine wrote that she has "a smoldering confidence that takes your mind off her not-always-fluid dancing – although she's a perfectly fine hoofer, with majestic limbs and a commanding cleavage" and particularly praised her rendition of the song " All That Jazz ".ChicagoearnedUS$ 306 millionworldwide, and was the recipient of the Academy Award for Best Picture .For her performance, Zeta-Jones won the Academy Award , SAG Award , and the BAFTA Award for Best Supporting Actress, among other awards and nominations.
'black comedyIntolerable Cruelty. The film, which was a commercial success, saw her play the role of a serial divorcée who is drawn towards a divorce attorney (Clooney).Writing forEmpiremagazine, Damon Wise called the film a "dazzling screwball comedy" and felt that Zeta-Jones showed an "an admirable facility for old-school quickfire patter".Other reviewers praised her onscreen chemistry with Clooney.
, a sequel to the heist filmOcean's Eleven(2001), which also reunited her with stars Clooney, Pitt, and Roberts. The production, which was filmed in several countries across Europe, saw Zeta-Jones play Isabel Lahiri, a Europol agent, and the love-interest of Pitt's character.Paul Clinton of CNN notes that she "dominates the screen every time she takes a breath".Ken Tucker ofNew Yorkmagazine argued that her character was redundant to the film's plot.Despite dividing critics, the sequel earned over US$360 million globally.
Death Defying Acts(2007), starring Guy Pearce as the escapologist Houdini, featured Zeta-Jones as a Scottish con-artist. The production was only given a limited theatrical release.
tells the story of an ambitious chef (Zeta-Jones) whose life changes for the better when she takes in her young niece (Breslin) after her sister's death. In preparation for her part, she worked in the kitchen and waited on tables at the Fiamma Osteria restaurant in New York.Claudia Puig ofUSA Todaythought that Zeta-Jones "shines as a character that finely balances off-putting reserve with sympathetic appeal", and Ebert, despite disliking the film, found her to be "convincing" in her role.With a global gross of US$92 million, the film marked Zeta-Jones' final commercial success of the decade.
The Rebound. The production was released theatrically in markets outside of the United States from 2009–10, but due to financial troubles of its distributor, The Film Development, the film failed to release theatrically in America.
wrote that Zeta-Jones brought in a "quiet, reflective poignancy" in her rendition of the song " Send in the Clowns ", but Emma Brocks ofThe Guardianremarked that "with her pretty voice, head wresting this way and that, [she] seems to be auditioning for stage school".For her performance, Zeta-Jones won the Drama Desk Award for Outstanding Actress in a Musical and the Tony Award for Best Actress in a Musical .
Rock of Ages, co-starring Tom Cruise and Bryan Cranston , Zeta-Jones played the part of a religiously conservative wife of a mayor. She was attracted to the idea of playing a "nightmare of a woman" and based the role on the politician Michele Bachmann ;the film received mixed reviews and failed commercially.Her final release of 2012 wasPlaying for Keeps, a romantic comedy with Gerard Butler , which proved to be her third box office failure of the year.
As with Zeta-Jones' previous few projects, the film was not widely seen, and received poor reviews.This changed when Zeta-Jones collaborated with Soderbergh for the third time to film the critically acclaimed thrillerSide Effects(2013).Co-starring with Channing Tatum , Jude Law and Rooney Mara , the film saw her play a mysterious psychiatrist who recommends an antidepressant drug with serious side effects. Peter Travers found the film to be a "hell of a thriller, twisty, terrific and packed with surprises" and considered Zeta-Jones to be "dynamite" in it.
Writing forThe Hollywood Reporter, Justin Lowe remarked that Zeta-Jones "nicely pulls off Russian spy Katja's mix of allure and menace", and with a worldwide gross of US$148 million, the film emerged as her biggest box office success sinceNo Reservations.
Catherine Bray ofVarietyfound the film to be an "amiable but creaky resurrection" of the popular sitcom, and thought that while Zeta-Jones "hits the required single note with some spirit" she was "generally underused" in it.As at August 2016, Zeta-Jones is scheduled to portray the Colombian drug lord Griselda Blanco in the biopicThe Godmother.She has also committed to play the actress Olivia de Havilland inFeud, an anthology television series from Ryan Murphy about the rivalry between the actresses Joan Crawford and Bette Davis (played by Jessica Lange and Susan Sarandon , respectively).
Zeta-Jones is also the founding host forA Fine Romance, an annual charitable programme that helps raise funds for the Motion Picture & Television Fund , and is one of the members of the Cinema for Peace Foundation .
Zeta-Jones has also featured as an advertising spokeswoman for several brands and products. She was named the global ambassador for the cosmetics company Elizabeth Arden, Inc. in 2002.The same year she was signed on by the phone company T-Mobile for an estimated US$10 million per year, making her the highest-paid celebrity endorser at the time.
In the mid 1990s she was briefly engaged to the Scottish actor Angus Macfadyen .
OK!magazine to release pictures of the event, and the rest of the press were not permitted to enter.Despite this, a freelance photographer surreptitiously took pictures of the ceremony which were then sold toHello!magazine. The couple successfully sued the magazine for invasion of privacy.
They reconciled in 2014, with Douglas stating that they were "stronger than ever".
Her versatility has been highlighted by critics.
USA Weekend: "The biggest misconception of me is that I'm some die-hard, ambitious, do-anything-to-get-anything kind of person, I'm not. I'm very shy socially".In 2003, the celebrity biographer Cliff Goodwin wrote an unauthorised biography of the actress, titledCatherine Zeta-Jones: The Biography, but the publication was indefinitely postponed after her lawyers threatened legal action.
, and theBAFTA Awardfor Best Supporting Actress.She has received twoGolden Globe Awardnominations:Best Supporting ActressforTraffic(2000) andBest Actress in a Comedy or MusicalforChicago(2002).She was appointedCommander of the Order of the British Empire(CBE) in2010for her film and charity work.
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