Hilary Swank Biography
Birth Name - Hilary Ann Swank
Date of Birth - 30 July 1974
Bellingham, Washington, USA
Height - 5' 5" (1.65 m)
Hilary Swank photo gallery
Hilary was discovered as a child by producer Suzy Sachs, who coached her in acting. When she was nine years old, she starred in her first play as "Mowgli" in "The Jungle Book". She began to appear regularly in local theater and school plays. She went to school in Bellingham, where she lived with her family, until she was 16. She competed in the Junior Olympics and Washington State championships in swimming; she ranked 5th in the state in all-around gymnastics (which would come in handy for starring in The Next Karate Kid (1994) years later). In 1990, Hilary and her mother moved to Los Angeles, where she enrolled in South Pasadena High School, and started acting professionally. She appeared in Buffy the Vampire Slayer (1992) but The Next Karate Kid (1994), where she got the part competing against hundreds of other actresses, was her breakout role. Ever since then, she has been much in demand and has worked non-stop in movies. She won the Best Actress Oscar for Boys Don't Cry (1999). She starred in a few minor films before starring in Clint Eastwood's boxing drama Million Dollar Baby (2004) that won her a Golden Globe and a SAG Award, as well as her second Academy Award. She is two for two at the Oscars, a feat she shares only with a few other women. Off-screen, she married Chad Lowe on September 28, 1997. An aficionado for anything that involves the outdoors, she enjoys: sky diving, river rafting and skiing.
Spouse - Chad Lowe (September 28 1997 - present) (filed for divorce)
More Interesting Information for Hilary Swank
Named one of "People" magazine's 50 Most Beautiful People in 2000, 2004 & 2005.
Cut off all of her hair and lived as a boy for a month to prepare her for her role as Teena Brandon in Boys Don't Cry (1999).
Ex-sister-in-law of Rob Lowe.
She won the lead role of Brandon/Teena in Boys Don't Cry (1999) after hundreds of other actresses had been considered and rejected over the course of three years. Told director Kimberly Peirce that, like her character, she was also 21 and hailed from Lincoln, Nebraska. But she was fibbing, and when Peirce later confronted her with the lies, she winningly responded: "But that's what Brandon would do."
Has been acting professionally since she was 16.
Has a parrot and a cat named Tallinn.
Competed in the Junior Olympics and Washington state championships in swimming; ranked fifth in the state in all-around gymnastics.
Discovered as a young child actor by producer Suzy Sachs.
Met her ex-husband Chad Lowe on set of Quiet Days in Hollywood (1997), married after 5-month relationship.
Mother Judy Swank moved with her to LA area at age 16, where, impoverished for a while, they lived out of their car.
Earned $75 a day for Boys Don't Cry (1999).
Auditioned for the role of Lucy Hatcher on the television series "The Practice" (1997).
Of Spanish and Native American heritage.
Hilary's 20th birthday party was a 1974 themed party and was held in Hollywood at The Crush Bar.
She and husband moved into a 4-story brownstone home in Greenwich Village (NYC) they bought for $4 million. (June, 2002)
Ex-sister-in-law of makeup artist Sheryl Berkoff.
Although she was naturally athletic from high school, she totally changed physically to play Maggie in Million Dollar Baby (2004). She gained nearly 20 pounds, becoming so buff that her former clothes are still too small for her.
Attended Santa Monica College.
First woman to win an Oscar in a role as a boxer
Is the third youngest actress to win 2 Best Actress Academy Awards. Luise Rainer and Jodie Foster were the first and second, respectively.
Joined Vivien Leigh, Helen Hayes, Sally Field and Luise Rainer as the only actresses with a perfect track record at the Oscars: Two nominations and two wins.
15th January 2005: Fined NZ$200 (AUD$190) for bringing undeclared fruit into New Zealand. She was found with an apple and orange at New Zealand's Auckland International Airport. She has since contested the fine.
Grew up in Bellingham, Washington
Both of her Oscar-winning roles required huge physical changes
Though she's known for her dramatic work, she starred in several sitcom pilots for CBS that never amounted to much.
Has 2 dogs: Karoo, a Corgi/Jack Russell mix, and Lucky, a German Shepherd/Labarador Retriever mix.
Announced in January 2006 that she and her husband 'Chad Lowe (I)_ are separating after 8 years of marriage.
Her performance as "Brandon Teena" in Boys Don't Cry (1999) is ranked #83 on Premiere Magazine's 100 Greatest Performances of All Time (2006).
Replaced Sandra Bullock as "Maggie Fitzgerald" in Million Dollar Baby (2004) after Bullock dropped out for other commitments.
Is a vegetarian.
Studies acting with Larry Moss.
Received a cut on the forehead during filming a scene of her movie P.S., I Love You (2008). She had to be brought to a hospital and received several stitches. [November 2006]
November 2006: Awarded an Emery Award for her role in Boys Don't Cry (1999).
For a few weeks before Boys Don't Cry (1999) began filming, she went out in public dressed as a boy. Many were fooled by the disguise.
Was declared #6 on the show "Hollywood's Ten Best Beauty to Beast" transformations for the way she looked in Boys Don't Cry (1999). Three other actresses on the list were nominated for Oscars for their movies and two won: Charlize Theron (Monster (2003)), Halle Berry (Monster's Ball (2001)) and Salma Hayek (Frida (2002)).
Received the 2,325th star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame on January 8, 2007.
Made her film debut in Buffy the Vampire Slayer (1992).
Personal quotes from Hilary Swank
[2005 Academy Awards acceptance speech for Best Actress in a Leading Role] "I don't know what I did in this life to deserve all this. I'm just a girl from a trailer park who had a dream. I never thought this would ever happen, let alone be nominated. And a working actor, for that matter. And now, this. I thank the Academy. I'm eternally grateful for this great honor. I would also like to acknowledge my fellow nominees, Annette, Imelda, Kate, and Catalina, your work inspires me beyond words. I am going to start by thanking my husband because I'd like to think I learned from past mistakes. Chad, you're my everything. Thank you for your support. It means the world. I would never be standing here if it weren't for the -- each and every one of the brilliant people I had surrounding me, supporting me and believing in me. Tom Rosenberg, Gary Lucchesi, thank you for sending me this most marvelous script. You will never know how grateful I am. Paul Haggis, for writing this beautiful script. Our other producers extraordinaire: Albert S. Ruddy (Al Ruddy), Clint, Rob Lorenz (Robert Lorenz). Phyllis Huffman, our casting director. My trainers, Grant Roberts and Hector Roca, you pushed me further than I ever thought I could push myself up to that last pound, actually to that last ounce. I thank you. My sparring partners who were so patient. And everyone at Gleason's. Well, the ever-amazing Morgan Freeman. Tom Stern, our cinematographer, you are brilliant. Joel Cox, our editor, you're amazing. You know? I'm going to thank my mom for believing in me from the beginning. My dad, for his support. My agents, Josh Lieberman, Tony Lipp, Kelly Tiffan, John Campisi. Jason Weinberg, my manager (You can't do that. I haven't gotten to Clint yet! I saved him for the end) Karl Austen (Karl R. Austen), Jeff Bernstein, my lawyers. And then Clint. Clint Eastwood. Thank you for allowing me to go on this journey with you. Thank you for believing in me. You're my "macushla" Thank you. Warner brothers, as well. And you know what? Wait! Troy Nankin, my best friend and publicist. Thank you!"
"My most annoying question is 'Hilary, are you ever going to play a pretty girl?'" quoted in Newsweek.
"I think when you're playing a real character you have an extra responsibility to do it really right, so because of that, I do extensive research. I really try and figure out the person inside and out. I read the lines, but I read in-between the lines and try and find the qualities in that person that makes them human and I hopefully try and bring that out in what I do." - on playing Annie Sullivan
"I cut coupons, love specials and believe in buying toilet paper and toothpaste in bulk. It's just who I am." quoted in Woman's World - 7-19-05
"I've realized that as an actor you have to just keep working really hard and studying your craft. I think I thought maybe things would be easier after the first Academy Award, that I would get better job opportunities, but then you really realize that there's not a whole lot of great quality out there, for women especially. It's not just something that women say; it's the truth. Because of that I had to be specific about not just doing something that I didn't want to do, but I also needed to pay my bills. I didn't do job after job after job. I would do a job and then still keep working on acting, whether it would be reading a play - something that's inspiring - with a bunch of actors, hearing it, studying, reading books about acting, and watching actors. I think it's an ever-evolving craft. And I think it's something that you always need to work at." - On working as an actor
"I have to say that I didn't ever really see it as rejection, per se, and I don't know why. I guess if I saw it as rejection, then I would allow myself time to focus on something that seemed negative, instead of realizing, "I have an audition tomorrow," and I was auditioning a lot, and, "If I focus on why I didn't get that, then I'm not going to be able to be present and work on this." At that time it was easier for me to let go of the past and just move on. Although there were so many times when it didn't mean I didn't get depressed if I didn't get something that I really wanted. I mean, I'm human, and I absolutely would get bummed out, especially if I worked really hard on something, and it came right down to me and someone else. But I'd try to get feedback. Was there something that I could have done differently? Was it something I can work on the future for the next job? And try to gain a positive from it? And sometimes it wasn't anything I'd done. It was just the blue-eyed girl looked better with the brown-eyed boy. You can't change that; you can't control that." - On getting rejected for roles
"You need to study and work on your craft. If you're not prepared when that dream audition comes, you are not going to get that opportunity. To me, the definition of success is when opportunity meets preparation. So I really recommend that actors always work on their craft and their skills. Obviously you can't make a living doing that, but you can get a lot of joy from it and learn and be inspired by the people you're working with and by your teachers and by the material. As long as you're still being inspired by it, you're going to find joy. Then hopefully the role will come along. I just want every actor to know to keep chipping away at it." - On giving advice to beginning actors.
"At the beginning, it's not like I didn't like boxing. I just didn't think about boxing, I didn't even really have an opinion about it. And when I heard about it, I just thought, 'What is the thing about hitting someone and wanting to get hit?' The whole thing eluded me, but then, you know what? Like anything else in life, when you have to dive into something deeper, you gain respect for it because you learn about it in different ways than you ever would expect. What I realized when I learned more about boxing is that it is so much more than just the physical aspect of it. Obviously the physical aspect of it is huge, but it is such an unbelievably mental challenge. There's such an art to boxing, it's like a great game of chess. When you're in the ring, you're one with your opponent. Everything goes silent and it's you and that person. You hear your breath. You hear the other person. And as you try to figure out their strength and weakness, you're learning about your own strength and weaknesses. And each person that you spar or fight with, their strength and weakness brings out new strength and weakness in yourself. And the second you think, 'I have this person,' and get cocky, you can lose and you usually do. It's a great analogy to life. You have to remain humble and have respect for the other person." - On Boxing
"As in life, your mind can be the hugest obstacle or tool, depending on how you choose to use it. And I find that a lot of people who are successful in life say, "I can do this, and I will do this." Their minds don't get in their way; whereas people who wake up and say, "Oh, I can't," their mind is in their way, and it's going to stop them from doing what they need to do to achieve their dream." - On trying to achieve your goals.
"I think that if you can grow together, you'll stay together. The most important qualities in making a relationship work are a blend of three ingredients: communication, respect and believing in another person. I've been with my husband for over twelve years. That's what made our relationship work. We have a mutual respect, the communication is key and believing in one another makes you feel like you can do anything!" - On what's important in a relationship.
The Affair of the Necklace (2001) $3,000,000
Boys Don't Cry (1999) $3,000
Hilary Swank Filmography
An institutionalized woman with multiple personality syndrome is the one person who can reveal the identity of a serial killer.
P.S., I Love You (2008) .... Holly Kennedy
A young widow discovers that her late husband has left her 10 messages intended to help ease her pain and start a new life.
The Reaping (2007) .... Katherine Winter
Thousands of years ago there was a series of bizarre occurrences that many believed to have been the Ten Biblical Plagues. No one thought they could happen again. Until now.
Freedom Writers (2007) .... Erin Gruwell
A young teacher (Swank) inspires her class of at-risk students to learn tolerance, apply themselves, and pursue education beyond high school.
The Black Dahlia (2006) .... Madeleine Linscott
... aka Black Dahlia (Germany)
"Saturday Night Live" .... Host (1 episode, 2005)
... aka SNL (USA: informal title)
... aka SNL 25 (USA: alternative title)
- Episode #30.13 (2005) TV Episode .... Host
Million Dollar Baby (2004) .... Maggie Fitzgerald
Red Dust (2004) .... Sarah Barcant
Iron Jawed Angels (2004) (TV) .... Alice Paul
11:14 (2003) .... Buzzy
The Core (2003) .... Maj. Rebecca Childs
... aka Core (USA: poster title)
The Space Between (2002)
Insomnia (2002/I) .... Detective Ellie Burr
The Affair of the Necklace (2001) .... Jeanne St. Remy de Valois
The Gift (2000) .... Valerie Barksdale
The Audition (2000)
Boys Don't Cry (1999) .... Brandon Teena
"Beverly Hills, 90210" .... Carly Reynolds (16 episodes, 1997-1998)
- The Elephant's Father (1998) TV Episode .... Carly Reynolds
- Illegal Tender (1998) TV Episode .... Carly Reynolds
- Ready or Not (1998) TV Episode .... Carly Reynolds
- Santa Knows (1997) TV Episode .... Carly Reynolds
- Comic Relief (1997) TV Episode .... Carly Reynolds
Heartwood (1998) .... Sylvia Orsini
Quiet Days in Hollywood (1997) .... Lolita
... aka The Way We Are
"Leaving L.A." .... Tiffany Roebuck (6 episodes, 1997)
- Dead Elvis (1997) TV Episode .... Tiffany Roebuck
- Now? (1997) TV Episode .... Tiffany Roebuck
- The Black Widower (1997) TV Episode .... Tiffany Roebuck
- The Eyes of the City (1997) TV Episode .... Tiffany Roebuck
- Give Them Names (1997) TV Episode .... Tiffany Roebuck
The Sleepwalker Killing (1997) (TV) .... Lauren Schall
... aka Crimes of Passion: Sleepwalker (UK)
... aka From the Files of Unsolved Mysteries: The Sleepwalker Killing
Dying to Belong (1997) (TV) .... Lisa Connors
Sometimes They Come Back... Again (1996) .... Michelle Porter
... aka Sometimes They Come Back 2 (USA)
Terror in the Family (1996) (TV) .... Deena Martin
Kounterfeit (1996) .... Colleen
The Next Karate Kid (1994) .... Julie Pierce
Cries Unheard: The Donna Yaklich Story (1994) (TV) .... Patty
... aka Victim of Rage
"Camp Wilder" .... Danielle (1 episode, 1992)
- See Spot Go (1992) TV Episode .... Danielle
Buffy the Vampire Slayer (1992) .... Kimberly Hannah
"Growing Pains" .... Sasha Serotsky (2 episodes, 1991-1992)
- Menage a Luke (1992) TV Episode .... Sasha Serotsky
- There Must Be a Pony (1991) TV Episode .... Sasha Serotsky
"Evening Shade" .... Aimee #1 (2 episodes, 1991-1992)
- I Do, I Don't (1991) TV Episode .... Aimee #1
- The Road Trip (1991) TV Episode .... Aimee #1
"Harry and the Hendersons" (1 episode, 1991)
- Harry Goes Ape (1991) TV Episode
"ABC TGIF" (1990) TV Series .... Danielle
Freedom Writers (2007) (executive producer)
Beautiful Ohio (2006) (producer)
"Celebrity Charades" (2005) TV Series (executive producer) (unknown episodes)
11:14 (2003) (executive producer)
"Nuit des Césars, La" .... Herself (1 episode, 2007)
- 32ème nuit des Césars (2007) TV Episode .... Herself
"Six O'Clock News" .... Herself - Actress (1 episode, 2007)
... aka BBC News at Six O'Clock (UK: new title)
... aka BBC Six O'Clock News (UK: new title)
- Episode dated 21 February 2007 (2007) TV Episode .... Herself - Actress
The 64th Annual Golden Globe Awards (2007) (TV) .... Herself - Presenter
"Late Night with Conan O'Brien" .... Herself (3 episodes, 1999-2007)
- Episode dated 11 January 2007 (2007) TV Episode .... Herself
- Episode dated 17 February 2005 (2005) TV Episode .... Herself
- Episode dated 24 November 1999 (1999) TV Episode .... Herself
"Ellen: The Ellen DeGeneres Show" .... Herself (1 episode, 2007)
- Episode dated 9 January 2007 (2007) TV Episode .... Herself
"The Tonight Show with Jay Leno" .... Herself (4 episodes, 2001-2007)
- Episode dated 4 January 2007 (2007) TV Episode .... Herself
- Episode dated 20 December 2004 (2004) TV Episode .... Herself
- Episode dated 25 March 2003 (2003) TV Episode .... Herself
- Episode dated 23 November 2001 (2001) TV Episode .... Herself
"The View" .... Herself (1 episode, 2007)
- Episode dated 3 January 2007 (2007) TV Episode .... Herself
"Entertainment Tonight" .... Herself (1 episode, 2006)
... aka E.T. (USA: informal title)
... aka ET Weekend (Australia: weekend title)
... aka Entertainment This Week (weekend title)
... aka This Week in Entertainment (USA: weekend title)
- Episode dated 20 October 2006 (2006) TV Episode .... Herself
On Native Soil (2006) .... Narrator
"HypaSpace" .... Herself (2 episodes, 2006)
... aka HypaSpace Daily (Canada: English title: long title)
... aka HypaSpace Weekly (Canada: English title: long title)
- Episode #5.150 (2006) TV Episode .... Herself
- Episode #5.149 (2006) TV Episode .... Herself
"Corazón de..." .... Herself (1 episode, 2006)
- Episode dated 25 July 2006 (2006) TV Episode .... Herself
"VH1: All Access" .... Herself (1 episode, 2006)
- Celeb Breakups & Scandals (2006) TV Episode .... Herself
"The Oprah Winfrey Show" .... Herself (4 episodes, 2005-2006)
... aka Oprah (USA: short title)
- Oprah's After-Oscar Party 2006 (2006) TV Episode .... Herself
- Episode dated 14 November 2005 (2005) TV Episode .... Herself
- Oprah's After Oscar Party 2005 (2005) TV Episode .... Herself
- Episode dated 31 January 2005 (2005) TV Episode .... Herself
The 78th Annual Academy Awards (2006) (TV) .... Herself - Presenter: Best Actor
A Concert for Hurricane Relief (2005) (TV) .... Herself
Born to Fight (2005) (V) .... Herself
James Lipton Takes on Three (2005) (V) .... Herself
2005 MTV Movie Awards (2005) (TV) .... Herself - Presenter
"Waratte iitomo" .... Herself (1 episode, 2005)
- Episode dated 26 May 2005 (2005) TV Episode .... Herself
"Sunday Morning Shootout" .... Herself (1 episode, 2005)
- Episode #2.19 (2005) TV Episode .... Herself
The 77th Annual Academy Awards (2005) (TV) .... Herself - Winner: Best Actress in a Leading Role
11th Annual Screen Actors Guild Awards (2005) (TV) .... Herself - Winner: Outstanding Performance by a Female Actor in a Leading Role/Nominee: Outstanding Performance by a Cast of a Motion Picture, Outstanding Performance by a Female Actor in a Television Movie or Miniseries
The 62nd Annual Golden Globe Awards (2005) (TV) .... Herself - Winner: Best Actress in a Motion Picture [Drama]/Nominee: Best Actress in a Mini-Series or Made for TV Movie
Tsunami Aid: A Concert of Hope (2005) (TV) .... Herself
The 10th Annual Critics' Choice Awards (2005) (TV) .... Herself - winner
"Today" .... Herself (1 episode, 2004)
... aka NBC News Today (USA: promotional title)
... aka The Today Show (USA)
- Episode dated 13 December 2004 (2004) TV Episode .... Herself
The 2004 IFP/West Independent Spirit Awards (2004) (TV) .... Herself (presenter: Best Female Lead)
Sex at 24 Frames Per Second (2003) (V) .... Herself (interviewee)
... aka Playboy Presents Sex at 24 Frames Per Second: The Ultimate Journey Through Sex in Cinema (USA: complete title)
"Late Show with David Letterman" .... Herself (1 episode, 2003)
... aka Late Show Backstage (USA: title for episodes with guest hosts)
... aka The Late Show (USA: informal short title)
- Episode dated 4 April 2003 (2003) TV Episode .... Herself
"The Daily Show" .... Herself (1 episode, 2003)
... aka The Daily Show with Jon Stewart (USA: new title)
... aka The Daily Show with Jon Stewart Global Edition (International: English title: cut version)
- Episode dated 27 March 2003 (2003) TV Episode .... Herself
The 75th Annual Academy Awards (2003) (TV) .... Herself - Presenter: Film clip from 'The Hours'/Past winner
"Nature" .... Narrator (1 episode, 2003)
- Under Antarctic Ice (2003) TV Episode .... Narrator
2002 MTV Movie Awards (2002) (TV) .... Herself - Presenter
Day for Night: The Making of 'Insomnia' (2002) (V) .... Herself
"The Rosie O'Donnell Show" .... Herself (2 episodes, 2000-2001)
- Episode dated 7 November 2001 (2001) TV Episode .... Herself
- Episode dated 6 March 2000 (2000) TV Episode .... Herself
The Concert for New York City (2001) (TV) .... Herself
The 73rd Annual Academy Awards (2001) (TV) .... Herself - Presenter: Best Actor
The 2001 IFP/West Independent Spirit Awards (2001) (TV) (uncredited) .... Herself - Presenter
The Orange British Academy Film Awards (2001) (TV) .... Herself
The Gift: A Look Inside (2001) (V) .... Herself
"HBO First Look" .... Herself (1 episode, 2001)
- The Affair of the Necklace (2001) TV Episode .... Herself
"E! True Hollywood Story" .... Carly Reynolds / ... (1 episode, 2001)
- Beverly Hills 90210 (2001) TV Episode .... Herself/Carly Reynolds
Reel Models: The First Women of Film (2000) (TV) .... Co-Host
The 72nd Annual Academy Awards (2000) (TV) .... Herself - Best Actress Winner
The 57th Annual Golden Globe Awards (2000) (TV) .... Herself
Archive Footage:Cómo conseguir un papel en Hollywood (2007) (TV) .... Herself
50 premios Sant Jordi de cinematografía (2006) (TV) .... Maggie Fitzgerald
VH1 News Presents: Hollywood Secrets Revealed - Scenes They Don't Want You to See (2006) (TV) .... Herself
Oficio de actor, El (2005) (TV) (uncredited) .... Herself
San Sebastián 2005: Crónica de Carlos Boyero (2005) (TV) (uncredited) .... Teena Brandon - Brandon Teena
101 Biggest Celebrity Oops (2004) (TV) .... Herself - #63: Acceptance Speech Goofs
The European Film Awards (1999) (TV) .... Brandon Teena