April 25, 1969
Role That Made Her Famous:
Playing the single mom who falls for her boss (Tom Cruise) in the romantic comedy, “Jerry Maguire.”
-Won the Academy Award for Best Supporting Actress for her role in “Cold Mountain”
-Oscar nominee for Best Actress for “Bridget Jones’s Diary” and “Chicago”
Renee Zellweger Biography (Courtesy of Miramax Films and “Cold Mountain”):
Prior to winning an Oscar for her role in “Cold Mountain,”Renee Zellweger received an Academy Award nomination, a SAG Award and a Golden Globe Award as Best Actress in a Comedy or Musical for her performance as Roxy Hart in the hit musical film “Chicago.” The year before, starring in the title role of the smash hit “Bridget Jones’s Diary,” Zellweger garnered international acclaim and an Oscar and Golden Globe nomination.
Zellweger’s other recent films include “White Oleander” and “Down With Love,” a satirical homage to the Rock Hudson/Doris Day sex comedies, co-starring opposite Ewan McGregor. In 2004, Zellweger will be heard in the animated comedy “Sharkslayer” and will reprise her role in “Bridget Jones: The Edge of Reason.”
Ironically, Zellweger took her first acting class to ensure graduating from The University of Texas with a literature degree, but her rise to leading lady status has been dramatic. After appearing in such television projects as the USA Network telefilm “A Taste for Killing” and the Showtime Drive-In Classics series “Shake, Rattle and Rock,” she made her film debut while still in Austin in Richard Linklater’s coming-of-age film “Dazed and Confused.” This was followed by Ben Stiller’s “Reality Bites,” “Love and a .45”, “8 Seconds,” “The Return of the Texas Chainsaw Massacre,” “Empire Records” and “My Boyfriend’s Back.”
Her other film credits include “Me, Myself, and Irene” directed by the Farrelly brothers, “The Bachelor,” Neil Labute’s dark comedy “Nurse Betty,” and the critically acclaimed “One True Thing” with William Hurt and Meryl Streep. Zellweger received acclaim with her vulnerable performance opposite Tom Cruise in “Jerry Maguire” under Cameron Crowe’s direction, being named Best Breakthrough Performer of 1996 by The National Board of Review, and receiving a Blockbuster Award for Best Supporting Actress in a Comedy and SAG Award nomination.