Keira Knightley

Keira Knightley was an Oscar-nominated British actress whose acclaimed body of work included such praiseworthy films as "Pirates of the Caribbean: The Curse of the Black Pearl" (2003), "Atonement" (2007), "Anna Karenina" (2012), and "The Imitation Game" (2014). Born and raised in London, Knightley was immersed in the creative arts from a very young age. Both of her parents were respected London stage actors, so they encouraged their young daughter to embark on acting career of her own. Knightley started attending plays at a very young age and immediately fell in love with acting. She was fortunate enough to land an agent at the age of six, and quickly began landing work on television and commercials. By the mid-90s, when she was still in her early teens, Knightley was appearing in TV movies like "A Village Affair" (ITV, 1995), as well as the mini-series "Coming Home" (ITV, 1998). Then in 1999 Knightley landed her first breakthrough film role when she appeared as Sabe in the widely-anticipated prequel "Star Wars: Episode I - The Phantom Menace." The global fanbase of the "Star Wars" franchise exposed Knightley to a massive new audience, and her career skyrocketed as a result. Her next big part came in 2003 when she was cast alongside Johnny Depp in the swashbuckling action picture "Pirates of the Caribbean: The Curse of the Black Pearl." That film was a huge success, spawning four sequels, three of which Knightley reprised her role as Elizabeth Swann. By the mid-2000s, Knightley began earning praise for appearing in a number of period films. These included "Pride & Prejudice" (2005), "Atonement," "Silk" (2007), and "The Duchess" (2008). Her work in "Pride & Prejudice," an adaptation of Jane Austen's beloved novel, earned Knightley her first Oscar nod for acting. By the 2010s, the twenty-something Knightley continued building a notable body of acting work by appearing in such critically-lauded films as "A Dangerous Method" (2011), "Anna Karenina," and "The Imitation Game," the latter of which earned Knightley her second Academy Award nomination. Having done some of her most critically-acclaimed work in period films, Knightley returned to the genre in 2019 with a starring role in "The Aftermath" (2019). The film was set in Hamburg in the immediate aftermath of World War II, and follows a young British couple (Keira Knightley and Jason Clarke) as they share a house in the war torn city with a German widower played by Alexander Skarsgard.