Anne Jacqueline Hathaway is an American actress born on November 12, 1982. She has been continuously active since 1999 and has played a variety of roles in film, stage and television. She was also on the People Magazine’s list of 50 Most Beautiful People for 2006. Her most recent film role is that of Selina Kyle in “The Dark Knight Rises.”
Hathaway’s parents are lawyer Gerald Thomas Hathaway and actress Kathleen Ann McCauley. She was born in Brooklyn, New York, and her family moved to Milburn, New Jersey, when she was six years old. Hathaway wanted to be a nun when she was a child but changed her mind at the age of 15 when she learned her older brother Michael was a gay. She acted in many school plays at Milburn High School and was nominated for a Paper Mill Playhouse Rising Star Award for her role as Winnifred in “Once Upon a Mattress.” Hathaway also performed at Carnegie Hall at the age of 16 as a member of the All-Eastern U.S. High School Honors Chorus. She was cast in a starring role in the television series “Get Real” shortly after this performance.
Hathaway was also admitted to the acting program of The Barrow Group Theatre Company as a teenager, the first person ever to do so. Hathaway attended Vassar College for several semesters as an English major before she transferred to New York University. Hathaway’s formal training is in stage acting, which she prefers to film acting. Her acting style is comparable to that of Audrey Hepburn and Judy Garland. Garland is Hathaway’s favorite actress, and her idol is Meryl Streep.
Hathaway’s first film role was that of Mia Thermopolis in the comedy “The Princess Diaries” in 2001 and its sequel in 2004. Her first dramatic roles in film were Allison Lang in “Havoc” and Lureen Newsome Twist in “Brokeback Mountain,” both made in 2005. Hathaway returned to comedy in 2006 with the starring role of Andrea Sachs in “The Devil Wears Prada.” Hathaway was nominated for the Academy Award for Best Actress for her role as Kym Buchman in the 2008 drama “Rachel Getting Married.” She also had starring roles in three hits during 2010, including “Alice in Wonderland,” “Love and Other Drugs” and “Valentine’s Day.” Hathaway’s film roles in 2011 included a voice role in “Rio” and a starring role as Emma Morley in “One Day.”
Hathaway’s most recent role is that of Selina Kyle, also known as Catwoman, in “The Dark Knight Rises,” the third film in director Christopher Nolan’s Batman trilogy. Kyle is a cat burglar who crosses paths with the villain Bane (Tom Hardy), a terrorist leader attempting to destroy Gotham City. Kyle is searching for a computer program that will delete her criminal history, allowing her to start out with a clean slate. Kyle’s appearance in Gotham City eventually compels Batman (Christian Bale) to come out of retirement.
Hathaway didn’t know the role for which she was being considered when she initially auditioned for Nolan. She was expecting the film to have a different female villain and was surprised to learn she had won the part of Catwoman. Hathaway considers the role of Catwoman to be her most physically demanding role to date. She was already in excellent physical condition but had to dramatically increase her training regimen to meet the demands of the role. Hathaway received extensive training in martial arts, and she also used actress Hedy Lamarr as the inspiration for this role.
Hathaway works with a number of charities, such as St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital, The Step Up Women’s Network, The Creative Coalition and The Human Rights Campaign. Hathaway has been a heavy smoker at various periods in her life, most recently quitting in 2008. She credits her reduction in stress with her cessation of smoking and a return to a vegetarian diet.
Hathaway began a romantic relationship with Raffaello Follieri in 2004. Follieri was a real estate developer who established the Follieri Foundation, a charitable organization that provides vaccinations for children in Third World countries. Hathaway was a significant contributor to the foundation, and she also served on its board of directors. She ended her relationship with Follieri in 2008, when the IRS began investigating him for failure to report income. Folleiri later pled guilty to a number of fraud charges and served 4.5 years in prison. Hathaway was never charged with any crime for her association with the Follieri Foundation and became engaged to actor Adam Shulman in 2011.