Happy Birthday Keira Knigthley!
Today (March 26th) is the Golden Globe and Academy Award® Nominee (for Best Actress performance of her iconic role, Elizabeth Bennet in 2005 Pride & Prejudice film) Keira Knightley's 26th Birthday!
Born March 26, 1985 in Teddington, Middlesex, England, UK, Keira Christina Knightley is the daughter of actor Will Knightley and playwright Sharman Macdonald. After she requested an agent at the age of three, her parents allowed her to work on productions in her summer holidays. Her first role was at the age of 9, in Moira Armstrong's A Village Affair. However, Knightley's first high profile role came in 1999... See full bio (via her IMDB profile) »
Check out these interesting and Fun Facts about Miss Keira Christina Knightley!
Keira Knightley is currently on the West End stage in a production of “The Children’s Hour” (until April 30th), in which she plays a 1930s schoolteacher who is accused of having a lesbian love affair with a fellow faculty member (Elizabeth Moss). She was last seen in the criminally underrated “Never Let Me Go” (available on DVD and Blu-ray now!) with Carey Mulligan and Andrew Garfield and will next be seen on screen in "Last Night" and “A Dangerous Method” sometime later this year and the voice of Tinker Bell in Syfy's "Neverland" in December.
Here's wishing our favorite Elizabeth Bennet...the lovely, beautiful, and talented Keira Knightley a fantastic birthday today...and many more to come!
♥Happy Birthday Keira!♥
Keira Knightley as Elizabeth Bennet
in Pride & Prejudice
in Pride & Prejudice
Joe Wright on casting Keira Knightley as Elizabeth Bennet:
"I wouldn't say that I didn't want to cast her, I didn't go to anyone else before Keira but I felt perhaps that she was too beautiful to play Elizabeth Bennet. So I met her anyway, and she was the right age and I was very keen to cast people that were the right age. So I met Keira very late one night in a hotel bar in Montreal and discovered this scruffy little kid who's a tomboy really, sort of spiky knees and elbows, and suddenly it occurred to me that was perfect for Elizabeth. Elizabeth Bennet is a tomboy and she refuses to conform to the feminine ideals of the period. Then I started talking to Keira and discovered her to be incredibly bright, incredibly funny, independently spirited, very strong young woman who doesn't say what she thinks you want to hear, but says exactly what she thinks. All of those qualities made me think that Keira was perfect for Elizabeth Bennet."
"She was the most incredibly focused person of any age that I have ever met and I think that is part of her strength. She's extraordinary, she's almost Zen-like in that way, she's really extraordinarily focused. She conserves her energy; she puts it all into those moments when the camera is turning. She's incredible."Keira Knightley on being cast as Elizabeth Bennet:
“ I was terrified to the point where I begged my agents not to put me up for it because I’ve been so obsessed by the book. When I was seven, I had all of the Austen novels on book tape and I’d listen to them on the loop. Then I saw the BBC version and I was obsessed with that. Elizabeth Bennet is one of my favorite characters in English literature. I absolutely adore her. When one of my agents went, `Alright, you’re going to read for Elizabeth Bennet´. I said, `No don’t, I’m going to fuck it up. Please don’t do it. I couldn’t bear it if I ruined her.´ I was so terrified that I learned the entire script, my character and everybody else’s by heart before I started.”
“I’ve been obsessed by Pride and Prejudice since I was seven when my mum got me a tape of the book and I used to listen to it on a loop. Then I got two dolls houses: the small one was called Longbourn [the Bennet family home] and the big one which my mum still has is called Pemberley [Mr Darcy’s palatial estate] and I had all the characters from the book. When the TV version [starring Jennifer Ehle and Colin Firth] came out when I was nine I watched it solidly for two years, and I was obsessed again. The TV version was such a hit and I thought there’s no way I can do it because nobody will buy me as Elizabeth Bennet. But luckily my agent and family forced me into going to meet Joe Wright and I’m very glad that I did.” (Keira Knightley)He said...She said:
"Joe just kept saying that he believed in me, which is amazing because all actresses are, by nature, completely insecure beings. If they say that they’re not, they’re lying. It’s a profession made out of insecurities. You’ve got to use them all. So, to have somebody say, `I believe in you, you can do this´ is absolutely extraordinary. He [Joe Wright] was so sweet and he kept saying, `I’m going to keep you safe darling, don’t worry about it´" (Keira Knightley)
"When I met Keira, I realized that she asks questions of herself and other people, and is really a tomboy. She has a lively mind and a great sense of humor. During shooting, she kept on surprising me. What does one look for in an actor? Originality of thought; somebody who is able and willing to give their heart to what they are doing, and is able to really listen to the other actors. Keira did all of that, and was a hard worker." (Joe Wright)
“Joe Wright had other ideas. He thought I was far too pretty. Then we met and he changed his mind. He realized that I was a complete scruff, and said: `You’re perfect.´” (Keira Knightley)
“I don´t really know what to say about Keira other than the fact that she´s brilliant. So focused. And clear. In between takes she´d just sit very, very still, conserve all the energy. She worked like a dog. Every day she was on the set.” (Joe Wright)
What Keira's P&P co-stars (Matthew Macfadyen, Donald Sutherland, Brenda Blethyn, and Rosamund Pike) said about her...
“She (keira Knightley) was a delight. She came straight on to the set from one film [P&P], and was going straight off to the next [Domino]. And she was fantastic. So self-possessed and connected.” (Matthew Macfadyen)
“Keira had an agent at birth! This is your mum, this is your dad, this is your agent!” (Matthew Macfadyen)
“Keira’s the heart of it. It’s her movie and that’s what it’s all about. She’s a wonderful actress. She’s so profound. I thought she was really good in Bend It Like Beckham. But, you know, she’s a kid. Then, when I watched her working with Joe Wright, she was perfect. She sat there. She joked around but she didn’t joke around. She participated but she was always separate and disciplined and alone and concentrated and attentive and respectful, respectful of the work. It was like working with a zen person. She was so pure. I was hugely impressed.” (Donald Sutherland)Question: Before I saw this film I must confess that I thought to myself 'I can't see Keira Knightley as that character' - mainly because I, I think she's done so many contemporary things and she... and having met her a number of times she's just a very, a very modern young woman. But then I changed my mind after I saw the movie...
"Before the first audition, when they asked me to come in and meet her, I thought 'I can't play Jane to Keira Knightley's Lizzie' but I went and I met her, and thought she was so fabulous, and thought 'if they're prepared to take a risk with her, then I'll go with it.' We became really close." (Rosamund Pike)Keira's upcoming film projects for 2011/2012 (via IMDB)...
- A Dangerous Method (2011) (post-production) .... Sabina Spielrein
- London Boulevard (2011) (completed) .... Charlotte
- Last Night (2011) (completed) .... Joanna Reed
- Neverland (TV movie) (post-production) ... Tinker Bell (voice)
- Anna Karenina (2012) ... Anna Karenina
P.S. Speaking of birthdays or in this case anniversary, my P&P (2005) Forum turns 5 years online today too! I created the P&P fan forum the same day as Keira's birthday 5 years ago today (of course, unaware at the time that it was her birthday, lol). So, yeah, there are 2 reasons to celebrate today and every year...KK's b-day and the P&P forum. How cool, eh?