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Catherine Zeta Jones
Saturday, February 23, 2008

Catherine Zeta-Jones (born 25 September 1969) is an Academy Award-winning Welsh actress. She was born in Wales and began her career on stage at an early age. After starring in a number of television films and small roles in films, she became famous with roles in films such as The Phantom, The Mask of Zorro and Entrapment in the mid to late 1990s.

She is married to Michael Douglas, with whom she starred in the 2000 film Traffic. Her most recent films are Ocean's Twelve and The Legend of Zorro. She won an Academy Award for Best Supporting Actress for her role in Chicago. She has been the spokeswoman for T-Mobile since 2003.

Early life

Born Catherine Jones, in Treboeth, in the parish of Llangyfelach, a working class area of Swansea, West Glamorgan in Wales. She was the middle child of three children born to Dai Jones, a Welsh sweet factory owner, and Patricia Fair, who is of Irish-Catholic extraction. Her father has no religious interests and Catherine and her siblings were raised as Roman Catholics. After her parents won £100,000 at bingo in the 1980s, they moved to St. Andrews Drive in Mayals, an upper class area of Swansea. She attended Dumbarton House School, Swansea, where she was an average student.

One of her first performances to an audience was to friends and family at her great-aunt Faith O'Brien's house. Catherine used the living room table as her stage. She left school early to further her acting ambition without obtaining O levels qualifications. Her name stems from those of her grandmothers; one named Katherine Fair, and the other Zeta Jones, named after a ship which her great-grandfather had sailed on.


Zeta-Jones' stage career began in childhood. She was a part of a Catholic congregation's performing troupe before she was 10. She also starred in a London production of Annie, among other productions, such as Bugsy Malone. By 1987 she was starring in 42nd Street as Peggy Sawyer in the West End. Once the show closed, Zeta-Jones travelled to France, where she received the lead role in French director Phillippe De Broca's 1001 Nights (also known as Sheherazade), her feature film debut.

Her exotic beauty, along with her singing and dancing ability, suggested a promising future, but it was in a straight acting role, as Mariette in the successful television adaptation of H. E. Bates' The Darling Buds of May (1991), that she made her name. She briefly flirted with a musical career, having a part in Jeff Wayne's 1992 Spartacus. A single, "The Appian Way", featured her; it was released but failed to chart. She also starred in an episode of The Young Indiana Jones Chronicles, as well as having a role in Christopher Columbus: The Discovery.

She continued to find moderate success with a number of television projects, namely, The Return of the Native and the mini-series Catherine the Great. She also starred in Splitting Heirs, a comedy starring Eric Idle, Rick Moranis and John Cleese. In 1996, she was cast as the aviatrix "Sala" in Paramount's big budget action film, The Phantom, based on the famous comic created by Lee Falk.

Jones starred in the CBS mini-series Titanic, which also starred Tim Curry and Peter Gallagher. Steven Spielberg, who noted her performance in the mini-series, recommended her to the director of an upcoming film, The Mask of Zorro. Jones landed a lead role in the film, alongside Antonio Banderas. The film contributed to boosting her profile. The following year she was the star of the film, Entrapment with Sean Connery. Later that year she also starred in The Haunting, alongside Liam Neeson and Lili Taylor.

In 2000 she starred in Traffic with future husband Michael Douglas. The following year she starred in America's Sweethearts, with Julia Roberts, Billy Crystal and John Cusack. In 2003, she won an Academy Award or Oscar for Best Supporting Actress for her performance in the 2002 film Chicago. Chicago also won the Academy Award for Best Film that year. On 22 October 2005, she referenced her award, as guest host on the television show Saturday Night Live, surrounded by four male dancers, mimicking the Bob Fosse-inspired Chicago-style dancing, suggesting in song that, no matter how bad she might be that night, "They Can't Take My Oscar Away".

In 2003 she voiced a role in Sinbad: Legend of the Seven Seas, as well as starring in Intolerable Cruelty with George Clooney. In 2004 she was in The Terminal, as well as Ocean's Twelve, the sequel to Ocean's Eleven. In 2005 The Mask of Zorro returned to the big screen, with Catherine reprising her role as Elena in The Legend of Zorro. She stars in and produces the rugby-related comedy, Coming Out, which Welsh rugby star Gavin Henson will also be in.

Private life

Zeta-Jones is married to actor Michael Douglas, with whom she has two children. They were married at the Plaza Hotel in New York City on 18 November 2000. Their son, Dylan Michael Douglas, was born 8 August 2000. (Her American admirers like to think that he is named after Bob Dylan, a favourite of Douglas, while her British admirers like to think that Dylan Thomas, also born in Swansea, was the inspiration). Their daughter, Carys Zeta Douglas, was born April 20, 2003. Zeta-Jones has decided that her children will grow up aware of their Welsh heritage and has built a seaside home for her parents in her hometown of Swansea. She also wants her children to know the Welsh language (Cymraeg), although she herself is not a Welsh-speaker.

Her elder brother, David A. Jones (also known as Cameron Jones), is VP for film company, Initial Entertainment. He was an executive producer of Gangs of New York. Catherine's younger brother Lyndon Jones is her personal manager and producer for Milkwood Films. Catherine's parents recently moved from their Mayals property to a £2 million cliff top home two miles away, built for them by Catherine. Apart from her acting career, Zeta-Jones is also an advertising spokeswoman for the mobile phone company T-Mobile. She is currently the global spokeswoman for cosmetics giant Elizabeth Arden.

posted by admin @ 9:13 AM, ,

Britney Spears

Britney Jean Spears is an American pop singer, dancer, songwriter, actress, and author. Her debut album ...Baby One More Time, released in January 1999, propelled her to international stardom. It spawned five singles, including "...Baby One More Time", which topped the Billboard Hot 100. She released her second studio album Oops!... I Did It Again in May of 2000 with similar success. Her third album Britney was released in November 2001, followed by the release of her fourth album In The Zone in November 2003. The album's breakout single "Toxic" was an international success and has won Spears her first Grammy Award. The collection Greatest Hits: My Prerogative was released in November 2004 followed by a remix album B in the Mix: The Remixes a year later and a brief career break. Her fifth album Blackout was released worldwide in October 2007, with the lead single "Gimme More" earning success on worldwide charts.

Britney has sold over 91 million records worldwide and an estimated 63.3 million solo singles Zomba Label Group. The Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA) ranks her as the eighth best-selling female artist in American music history, having sold 31 million albums in the U.S. Spears's fame in the music industry has led her to experiment with other forms of media, including film and television. As an actress, she is most noted for her starring role in the 2002 movie Crossroads. Spears has also made guest appearances in various movie and television programs. Her success as a singer led her to several high-profile advertising deals and endorsements, including her own perfume line.

Birth name: Britney Jean Spears
Born: December 2, 1981, McComb, Mississippi, United States
Origin: Kentwood, Louisiana, United States
Genres: Pop, dance-pop, urban pop
Occupations: Singer, dancer, songwriter, actress
Years active: 1992–present
Label: Jive
Website: www.britneyspears.com

posted by admin @ 9:10 AM, ,