Kate Elizabeth Winslet (born 5 October 1975) is an English actress and occasional singer. She has received multiple awards and nominations. She was the youngest person to accrue six Academy Award nominations, and won the Academy Award for Best Actress for The Reader (2008). Winslet has been acclaimed for both dramatic and comedic work in projects ranging from period to contemporary films, and from major Hollywood productions to less publicised indie films. She has won awards from the Screen Actors Guild, British Academy of Film and Television Arts, and the Hollywood Foreign Press Association among others, and has been nominated twice for an Emmy Award for television acting.
Raised in Berkshire, Winslet studied drama from childhood, and began her career in British television in 1991. She made her film debut in Heavenly Creatures (1994), for which she received her first notable critical praise. She achieved recognition for her subsequent work in a supporting role in Sense and Sensibility (1995) and for her leading role in Titanic (1997), the highest grossing film at that time.
Since 2000, Winslet's performances have continued to draw positive comments from film critics, and she has been nominated for various awards for her work in such films as Quills (2000), Iris (2001), Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind (2004), Finding Neverland (2004), Little Children (2006), The Reader (2008) and Revolutionary Road (2008). Her performance in the latter prompted New York magazine critic David Edelstein to describe her as "the best English-speaking film actress of her generation". The romantic comedy The Holiday and the animated film Flushed Away (both 2006) were among the biggest commercial successes of her career.
Winslet was awarded a Grammy Award for Best Spoken Word Album for Children in 2000. She has been included as a vocalist on some soundtracks of works she has performed in, and the single "What If" from the soundtrack for Christmas Carol: The Movie (2001), was a hit single in several European countries. Winslet has a daughter with her former husband, Jim Threapleton, and a son with her second husband, Sam Mendes, from whom she is separated. She lives in New York City.
Winslet was 26 when she received her third Academy Award nomination, for Iris, just missing the mark of Natalie Wood, who received her third nomination at age 25. She set the mark as the youngest actor to receive five nominations, at age 31, for Little Children (2006). She surpassed Bette Davis, who was 33 when she received her fifth nomination for her performance in The Little Foxes (1941). With her Best Actress nomination for The Reader, Winslet became the youngest actor to receive six Oscar nominations. At age 33, Winslet passed the mark Davis, one year older, set with Now, Voyager (1942).
Winslet received Academy Award nominations as the younger versions of the characters played by fellow nominees Gloria Stuart, as Rose, in Titanic (1997) and Judi Dench, as Iris Murdoch, in Iris. These are the only instances of the younger and older versions of a character in the same film both yielding Academy Award nominations, thus making Winslet the only actor to twice share an Oscar nomination with another for portraying the same character.
When she was not nominated for her work in Revolutionary Road, Winslet became only the second actress to win a Golden Globe for Best Actress (Drama) without getting an Oscar nomination for the same performance (Shirley MacLaine was the first for Madame Sousatzka , and she won the Golden Globe in a three-way tie). Academy rules allow an actor to receive no more than one nomination in a given category; as the Academy nominating process determined that Winslet's work in The Reader would be considered a lead performance—unlike the Golden Globes, which considered it a supporting performance—she could not also receive a Best Actress nomination for Revolutionary Road.
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Kate Winslet - Mildred Pierce Premiere at the Film Festival in Venice