Cheat Sheet: Julianne Moore
Date of Birth:
December 3rd 1960
Place of Birth:
Fort Bragg, North Carolina
What you probably already know:
That she definitely believes that variety is the spice of life. She’s had us bawling through the dramas of The Hours and Magnolia, gasping through the thrillers Hannibal and Shelter and chuckling at comedies Evolution and Crazy Stupid Love. Phew. She can basically act the pants off any role that lands in her lap. And her morning mailbag is undoubtedly filled to the brim with possible parts, after she declared that she reads every single script in her mailbox. Isn’t that nice? Whilst she gives each script a fair chance, when it comes to deciding on a role, she is quite selective. Which is probably why we rarely catch her in a bad film. Originally, she was dubious at joining the star-studded cast of Crazy Stupid Love, as she thought it was “another one of those rubbish romantic comedies with a lot of stars in it” (cough – Valentines Day, New Years Eve – cough).
What you might not know:
Her real name is Julie Ann Smith. Due to the rules when registering with the Actor’s Guild (you cannot register the same name as anyone else) she found that both her name, and many variations were already taken, hence she took her father’s middle name ‘Moore’ and crafted a new one. She actually never planned a career in acting when she was younger, preferring the idea of helping people as a doctor. Although she isn’t directly saving lives, she is a US ambassador for Save The Children.
After studying for a degree in Fine Arts, she traversed the stereotypical “I’m going to be a star!” route of moving to New York, working as a waitress, and desperately trying to find her big break. Unfortunately it was a long, tough slog to the top. She began popping up in off-Broadway plays, alongside bit-parts in TV soaps, which would have been a great start on the career ladder, except that Moore remained clinging to that rung for longer than she would have liked. Finally, a satisfying role drifted along, well two roles to be exact; the parts of two half-sisters on the TV series As the World Turns, which brought the long-deserved recognition of her talents – an Outstanding Ingénue Daytime Emmy Award. It was the first of many.
The award gave Moore a shove up that notorious ladder into the realm of TV-movies. It took seven years of relatively forgettable projects before Moore ultimately breached the pearly gates to the big screen with the role of a victim in Tales from the Darkside: The Movie . Sadly, the obvious connotations are unfounded, with the film focusing on three tales of horror (altogether Ewok-unrelated).
Gradually, aided by supporting parts in films such as The Gun in Betty Lou’s Handbag Moore began to receive bigger and better roles, including a small yet memorable role opposite Harrison Ford in The Fugitive. Moore’s portrayal of a cocaine-sniffing porn star in the drama Boogie Nights won her an Oscar nomination (the first of four so far) which confirmed her space in the spotlight as a truly talented actress.
But it seems she never forgot her humble TV-appearance beginnings, as fans of 30 Rock will know, she popped up as Alec Baldwin’s love interest last year. She’s also appearing as Sarah Palin in the TV-movie Game Change, as well as a few dramas and fantasies (which is an interesting first for Moore…unless it’s sci-fi).
Julianne Moore quote:
“You never have sex the way people do in the movies. You don’t do it on the floor, you don’t do it standing up, you don’t always have all your clothes off, you don’t happen to have on all the sexy lingerie. You know, if anybody ever ripped my clothes, I’d kill them.”
What to say at a dinner party:
“After a tough career rut of TV appearances, Julianne Moore has transformed into a truly fearless actress who chooses her roles intelligently, resulting in a back catalogue that is solidly all killer no filler.”
What not to say at a dinner party
“I wonder if the carpet matches the drapes.”
We were impressed with her performance in Crazy Stupid Love, and it will be interesting to see how she fares in the mysterious fantasies Nicholas North and The Seventh Son in the years to come. And now she’s technically British. Patriotic love!