BIOGRAPHY FOR PENELOPE CRUZ
Penélope Cruz Sánchez (born Apr. 28, 1974 (37 years ago)), better known as Penélope Cruz, is a Spanish actress. She gathered critical acclaim as a young actress for movies such as Jamón, Jamón, La Niña de tus ojos, and Belle époque. She has also starred in several American movies such as Blow, Vanilla Sky, and Vicky Cristina Barcelona. She is perhaps best known for her work with acclaimed Spanish director Pedro Almodóvar, in Volver and Todo sobre mi madre. Cruz has been awarded three Goyas, two European movie Awards, and the Best Actress Award at the Cannes movie Festival. In 2009 (2 years ago), she won an Academy Award for Best Supporting Actress, a Goya, and a BAFTA for her role in Vicky Cristina Barcelona. She is Spain's first female Oscar winner and also becomes the sixth Hispanic person to win an Oscar after José Ferrer, Rita Moreno and Benicio Del Toro (Puerto Rico), Anthony Quinn (Mexico), plus fellow Spaniard Javier Bardem.
Penélope Cruz Sánchez was born in Alcobendas, Madrid, Spain, the daughter of Encarna Sánchez, a hairdresser and personal manager, and Eduardo Cruz, a retailer and auto mechanic. As a toddler, she was already a compulsive performer, re-enacting TV commercials for her family's amusement. Initially, Cruz decided to focus on dance. After studying classical ballet for nine years at Spain's National Conservatory, she continued her training under a series of prominent dancers. She received three years of Spanish Ballet training with Ángela Garrido. She also had jazz dance training with Raúl Caballero and studied at Cristina Rota (mother of Juan Diego Botto) school in Madrid. At 15, however, she followed another calling after beating more than 300 other girls at a talent agency audition.
Cruz first achieved fame when she appeared in the video for "La fuerza del destino" for the Spanish synthpop group Mecano. She later started a relationship with Nacho Cano, a member of the group. A TV presenter for the teen-oriented program La Quinta Marcha, she also had early exposure in Série Rose, an erotic French TV serial. In one episode she played the role of a blind prostitute and in another played a young noblewoman pretending to be a young nobleman in a comedy of errors. She also directed Nacho Cano's video of "El waltz de los locos", in 1994 (17 years ago).
Cruz's first major movies were Jamón, jamón and Belle Époque, a movie which won an Academy Award for Foreign Language Film. In 1997 (14 years ago), she starred as Sofía Pangia, alongside Eduardo Noriega, in Abre los ojos, directed by Alejandro Amenábar, while in 1999 (12 years ago) she appeared in Pedro Almodóvar's Todo sobre mi madre (All About My Mother), which also won an Academy Award for Foreign Language Film. In 2000 (11 years ago) she appeared with Matt Damon (4 walls) in All the Pretty Horses.
For Cruz, the early 2000 (11 years ago) were a period of mediocre reviews and mixed commercial success. In late 2001 (10 years ago), she appeared in the movie Vanilla Sky, the Hollywood remake of Abre los ojos. Returning to Europe, in 2004 (7 years ago), Cruz learned Italian (she already spoke Spanish, French, and English) to star in the movie Don't Move. She earned critical praise for her role and earned the coveted David di Donatello award, the Italian equivalent of the Oscar.
In 2006 (5 years ago), she co-starred with her best friend, Salma Hayek (21 walls), in the movie Bandidas. That same year, Cruz received highly favourable reviews for her performance in Pedro Almodóvar's Volver. She shared a Best Actress award at the Cannes movie Festival with five of her co-stars, and was nominated for the Golden Globe, the Screen Actors Guild Award, the BAFTA Award, and the Academy Award for Best Actress in a leading role. The latter of these nominations made her the first Spanish actress to be nominated for an Academy Award for Best Actress.
In May 2007 (4 years ago), it was announced that Penélope and her sister Mónica would be designing a 25-piece collection for the Barcelona-based fashion chain Mango. On Jul. 7, 2007 (4 years ago), Cruz presented at Live Earth. In late 2007 (4 years ago), she starred in the Jaume de Laiguana-directed video for her brother's first single, named "Cosas que contar", along with her friend Mía Maestro and her sister Mónica. Cruz had previously shown a keen interest in fashion and is a model for L'Oréal and its "Telescopic" mascara.
In 2008 (3 years ago), Cruz appeared with Sir Ben Kingsley in fellow Spaniard Isabel Coixet's movie Elegy, earning her critical praise for an English-speaking role. The movie was based on the Philip Roth story The Dying Animal. She was nominated for a Golden Satellite award for her performance.
In 2008 (3 years ago), she starred in Woody Allen's Vicky Cristina Barcelona as María Elena, Javier Bardem's mentally unstable ex-wife. Her performance received wide critical praise. For the role, Cruz received her second Academy Award Nomination, and later won for Best Supporting Actress, making her only the second Spanish actor to win an Academy Award, a year after her boyfriend, Javier Bardem, won for No Country for Old Men. She became the first Spanish actress to win an Academy Award, and one of the only actors besides Robert De Niro (6 walls) and Ingrid Bergman to win the Oscar for a role speaking two different languages. Besides the Oscar, Cruz won the BAFTA, the Independent Spirit Award, the National Board of Review Award, and the New York movie Critics Circle Award for Best Supporting Actress in Vicky Cristina Barcelona. She also earned Golden Globe and Screen Actors Guild nominations for her role.
Cruz again collaborated with Pedro Almodóvar in his movie Los Abrazos Rotos, which is slated to be released in the U.S. in Nov. 2009 (2 years ago). She will also be featured in the movie version of the musical Nine along with other Oscar winners Sophia Loren, Judi Dench, Daniel Day-Lewis, Nicole Kidman (24 walls) and Marion Cotillard.
Cruz has a younger brother, Eduardo, a singer, and a younger sister, Mónica.
Cruz claims to be a vegetarian since 2000 (11 years ago). She speaks four languages: Spanish, Italian, French and English. Cruz has also donated a considerable amount of money and time to charity; in 1997 (14 years ago) she volunteered in Uganda for two months.
Cruz was raised as a Roman Catholic, but the religion she feels closest to is Buddhism. After appearing in Vanilla Sky with Tom Cruise (12 walls), they had a three-year relationship which ended in Jan. 2004 (7 years ago). During that time, she and Cruise were seen visiting several Church of Scientology locations in Hollywood, and there was published speculation that Cruise had convinced Cruz to join the church.
After filming Sahara in Feb. 2005 (6 years ago), she began dating actor Matthew McConaughey. In May 2006 (5 years ago), they released a joint statement to People, saying that they "have decided to take time off as a couple." Later that year they announced that they were "no longer intimate and separating was the best thing to do at this time". She has been dating actor Javier Bardem since 2007; the two appeared together in Jamón, Jamón, Live Flesh and 2008's Vicky Cristina Barcelona.
In Apr. 2007 (4 years ago) Cruz, who was single at the time, stated that she would like to have children one day and she feels the need to adopt. "Of course I want to have kids," Cruz, told the Spanish edition of Marie Claire in its Apr. issue. "I want to have my own kids, but also adopt. For a while I've had the feeling that my life won't be complete if I don't adopt".
For Love, Only for Love
The Greek Labyrinth
Alegre ma non troppo
Todo es mentira
El Efecto mariposa
Más que amor, frenesí
Love Can Seriously Damage Your Health
Open Your Eyes
Hjørne af paradis, Et
The Girl of Your Dreams
"The Hi-Lo Country"
All About My Mother
All the Pretty Horses
Woman on Top
Don't Tempt Me
Captain Corelli's Mandolin
Waking up in Reno
Fanfan la tulipe
Head in the Clouds
The Good Night
Vicky Cristina Barcelona
AWARDS AND NOMINATIONS
Blockbuster Entertainment Awards
Imagen Foundation Awards
MTV Movie Awards
NAACP image (wallpaper) Awards
Peñíscola Comedy movie Festival