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Name: Hilary Swank
Birth Date: July 30, 1974
Birth Place: Lincoln, Nebraska, USA
A two-time Academy
Award-winning American actress. She is best
known for her two Oscar-winning performances:
a troubled transman, Brandon Teena, in the movie
Boys Don't Cry, and a struggling waitress-turned-boxer,
Maggie Fitzgerald, in Million Dollar Baby.
Her film career in Hollywood began with a small
part in Buffy the Vampire Slayer (1992) and
then a major part in The Next Karate Kid (1994),
where she played Julie Pierce, the first female
protégé of the (by then) legendary
sensei Mr. Miyagi, played by Pat Morita.
Swank was born in Lincoln, Nebraska and makes
no secret of her humble beginnings, particularly
as a child growing up near Lake Samish in Bellingham,
Washington. After winning her second Best Actress
Oscar, she said: "I don't know what I did
in this life to deserve this. I'm just a girl
from a trailer park who had a dream." She
has ADHD (Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder),
and takes Ritalin to treat it.
When she was nine years old, Swank made her
first appearance on stage starring as Mowgli
in The Jungle Book, and thereafter became heavily
involved in her school and community theater
programs. She went to school in Bellingham,
where she lived with her family, until she was
16. She competed in the Junior Olympics and
the Washington State championships in swimming;
she ranked 5th in the state in all-around gymnastics
(which would come in handy when starring in
The Next Karate Kid (1994) years later). Swank's
parents separated when she was 15, and her mother,
supportive of her daughter's desire to act,
moved the two of them to Los Angeles, California,
where they lived out of their car until Swank's
mother saved enough money to rent an apartment.
She enrolled in South Pasadena High School,
and started acting professionally. Swank also
helped pay the rent with the money she earned
appearing in television programs such as Evening
Shade and Growing Pains.
In 1998, Swank was cast as single mother Carly
Reynolds on Beverly Hills 90210. She was initially
promised it would be a two-year role, but saw
her character written out after 16 episodes.
Swank later said that she was devastated at
being cut from the show, thinking, "If
I'm not good enough for 90210, I'm not good
enough for anything." As it turned out,
the firing was the best thing to happen to Swank,
as it freed her to audition for the role of
Brandon Teena in Boys Don't Cry. The role made
her a star, with almost every critic hailing
hers as the best female performance of 1999.
The performance ultimately won her the Golden
Globe and Oscar for Best Actress. Swank's Oscar
success means that she has joined the ranks
of Vivien Leigh, Helen Hayes, Sally Field, and
Luise Rainer as the only actresses to have been
nominated twice and win both times. She is also
the third youngest double Best Actress Oscar
Even after winning her first Oscar, she was
reminded of her humble roots. She had earned
only $75/day for her work on Boys Don't Cry,
a total of $3000 ; her earnings were so low,
that (according to an anecdote on 60 Minutes)
she hadn't even earned enough to qualify for
On February 28, 2006, it was announced Swank
had signed a three-year contract "to be
both the muse and the spokesperson for a new
women's fragrance by Guerlain to be launched
later this year."
In October 2006 Hilary Swank started filming
P.S. I love You in Co.Wicklow in Ireland with
Swank married actor Chad Lowe on September 28,
1997. They met at a 1992 Hollywood Athletic
Club party and are both members at the AGAPE
Spiritual Center in Culver City, California,
along with fellow stars Dennis Quaid and Meg
Ryan. Swank infamously forgot to thank Lowe
during her acceptance speech after winning her
first Oscar in 2000, and she spent nearly every
public appearance afterward making up for it.
Upon winning her second Oscar in 2005, Lowe
was the first person she thanked. However, in
January 2006, the couple separated. In subsequent
interviews, Swank expressed hope that they could
reconcile, but they later announced in May 2006
that they were divorcing.
On January 15, 2005, after arriving at a New
Zealand airport she was fined NZ$230 by the
Manukau District Court for not declaring an
apple and orange she had in her purse when she
landed. Swank appealed the fine, but it was
upheld on March 30, 2005.
According to Life & Style magazine, Swank
is dating Creative Artists Agency boss John
Campisi. The couple was spotted kissing and
holding hands on August 27, 2006. However, Campisi's
lawyers deny they are together, saying "Mr.
Campisi has a strictly platonic relationship
with Ms. Swank." Swank's friend says, "Hilary
cried on his shoulder when she and Chad split.
He comforted her through that intensely difficult
The 25-year-old Brazilian model boasts three
significant long-term contracts--Victoria's
Secret, Maybelline and Telecom Italia Mobile,
Italy's mega-cellphone carrier. The former girlfriend
of rocker Lenny Kravitz is now reportedly dating
Prince Wence of Lichtenstein, heir to a royal
fortune Forbes estimates at $4 billion.
Labyrinth (2008) (announced)
- P.S., I Love You (2008)
(filming) .... Holly
- The Reaping (2007) (post-production)
.... Katherine Winter
- Freedom Writers (2007)
- The Black Dahlia (2006)
.... Madeleine Linscott
- "Saturday Night Live"
... aka SNL (USA: informal title)
- Million Dollar Baby (2004)
.... Maggie Fitzgerald
- Red Dust (2004) .... Sarah
- Iron Jawed Angels (2004)
(TV) .... Alice Paul
- 11:14 (2003) .... Buzzy
- The Core (2003) .... Maj.
- The Space Between (2002)
- Insomnia (2002/I) ....
Detective Ellie Burr
- The Affair of the Necklace
(2001) .... Jeanne St. Remy de Valois
- The Gift (2000) .... Valerie
- The Audition (2000)
- Boys Don't Cry (1999)
.... Brandon Teena
- "Beverly Hills, 90210"
- The Wedding: Part 1 (1998) TV Episode
.... Carly Reynolds
- Heartwood (1998) ....
- Quiet Days in Hollywood
(1997) .... Lolita
- The Sleepwalker Killing
(1997) (TV) .... Lauren Schall
- "Leaving L.A."
(1997) TV Series .... Tiffany Roebuck
- Dying to Belong (1997)
(TV) .... Lisa Connors
- Sometimes They Come Back...
Again (1996) .... Michelle Porter
- Terror in the Family (1996)
(TV) .... Deena Martin
- Kounterfeit (1996) ....
- The Next Karate Kid (1994)
.... Julie Pierce
- Cries Unheard: The Donna
Yaklich Story (1994) (TV) .... Patty
... aka Victim of Rage
- "Camp Wilder"
(1992) TV Series .... Danielle
- Buffy the Vampire Slayer
(1992) .... Kimberly Hannah
- "Growing Pains"
- Menage a Luke (1992) TV Episode ....
- "Evening Shade"
(1990) TV Series .... Aimee #1 (1991-1992)