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Catherine Zeta Jones


Birth name:

Catherine Jones




Swansea, West Glamorgan, Wales, UK



Race or Ethnicity:


Sexual orientation:






Executive summary:



5' 8" (1.73 m)


Catherine Zeta Jones - Pictures

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Catherine Zeta Jones - Biography


Catherine Zeta Jones (pronounced /ˈziːtə/ "zeeta"; born 25 September 1969), now hyphenated as Catherine Zeta-Jones, is a Welsh actress, currently based in the United States. She began her career on stage at an early age. After starring in a number of UK and US television films and small roles in films, she came to prominence with roles in Hollywood movies such as The Phantom, The Mask of Zorro, and Entrapment in the late 1990s. She won an Academy Award, BAFTA Award and a Screen Actors Guild Award and was nominated for a Golden Globe Award for portraying Velma Kelly in the 2002 film adaptation of Chicago.

She was born Catherine Zeta Jones in Swansea, South Wales to Patricia (née Fair), an Irish seamstress, and David "Dai" Jones (b. 1946), a Welsh sweet factory owner. Her name stems from those of her grandmothers — her maternal grandmother, Catherine Fair, and her paternal grandmother, Zeta Jones (1917 – 14 August 2008).
Zeta-Jones was raised Catholic. After her parents won £100,000 at Bingo in the 1980s, they moved to St. Andrews Drive in Mayals, a middle upper-class area of Swansea. Jones left the private Dumbarton House School early, to further her acting ambitions without obtaining O levels. She then attended the The Arts Educational Schools in Chiswick, West London, for a full-time three-year course in musical theatre.

Catherine Zeta-Jones's stage career began in childhood. She often performed at friends' and family functions, and was part of a Catholic congregation's performing troupe before the age of 10. Zeta-Jones made her professional acting debut when she played the lead in Annie, a production at Swansea Grand Theatre, and also starred in a production of Bugsy Malone as Tallulah. When she was 14, Mickey Dolenz stopped by the Grand Theatre to audition her for The Pyjama Game. He was so impressed with her performance that she was offered the opportunity to join his show for the rest of the tour. By 1987 Zeta-Jones was starring in 42nd Street as Peggy Sawyer in the West End. Zeta-Jones was cast in the leading role after the actress playing Peggy Sawyer and the understudy fell ill. She also played Mae Jones in the Kurt Weill opera Street Scene with the English National Opera at the London Coliseum Theatre in 1989. Once the show closed, the actress traveled to France, where she received the lead role in French director Philippe de Broca's Les 1001 Nuits (also known as Sheherazade), her feature film debut.
Her singing and dancing ability suggested a promising future, but it was in a straight acting role, as Mariette in the successful British television adaptation of H. E. Bates' The Darling Buds of May, that brought her to public attention and made her a British tabloid darling. She briefly flirted with a musical career, beginning with a part in the 1992 album Jeff Wayne's Musical Version Of Spartacus, from which the single "For All Time" was released in 1992. It reached #36 in the UK charts. She went on to release the singles "In the Arms of Love", "I Can't Help Myself", and a duet with David Essex, "True Love Ways", reaching #38 in the UK singles chart in 1994. She also starred in an episode of The Young Indiana Jones Chronicles, as well as in Christopher Columbus: The Discovery.
She continued to find moderate success with a number of television projects, including The Return of the Native (1994) based on the novel of the same name and the mini-series Catherine the Great (1995). She also appeared in Splitting Heirs (1993), a comedy starring Eric Idle, Rick Moranis and John Cleese.

In 1996, she was cast as the evil aviatrix Sala in the action film, The Phantom, based on the comic by Lee Falk. The following year, she starred in the CBS mini-series Titanic, which also starred Tim Curry and Peter Gallagher. Steven Spielberg, who noted her performance in the mini-series, recommended her to Martin Campbell, the director of The Mask of Zorro. Zeta-Jones subsequently landed a lead role in the film, alongside compatriot Anthony Hopkins and Antonio Banderas. She learned dancing, riding, sword-fighting and took part in dialect classes to play her role as Elena. Commenting on her performance, Variety noted, "Zeta-Jones is bewitchingly lovely as the center of everyone's attention, and she throws herself into the often physical demands of her role with impressive grace." In 1999, she co-starred with Sean Connery in the film Entrapment, and alongside Liam Neeson and Lili Taylor in The Haunting.
In 2000, she starred in the critically acclaimed Traffic with future husband Michael Douglas. Traffic earned praise from the press, with the critic for the Dallas Observer calling the movie "a remarkable achievement in filmmaking, a beautiful and brutal work". Zeta-Jones's performance earned her her first Golden Globe nomination, as Best Actress in a Supporting Role in a Motion Picture.
After taking the lead role of America's Sweethearts, a 2001 film which also starred Julia Roberts, Billy Crystal and John Cusack some thought her career might suffer because the movie was panned by the critics for poor screenwriting, directing and acting. Despite the poor reviews, it was a hit at the box office grossing over $138 million worldwide.

In 2002, Zeta-Jones continued her momentum and played murderous vaudevillian Velma Kelly in the film Chicago. Her performance was praised by the press, including the Seattle Post-Intelligencer which stated, "Zeta-Jones makes a wonderfully statuesque and bitchy saloon goddess." Zeta-Jones won an Academy Award for Best Supporting Actress for her performance. For her role in Chicago, she specifically requested a 1920s-style short bob wig, so her face could be seen and fans would not doubt she did all her dancing herself.
In 2003, she voiced Marina in the animated film Sinbad: Legend of the Seven Seas opposite Brad Pitt, as well as starring as serial divorcee Marilyn Rexroth in the black comedy Intolerable Cruelty with George Clooney. In 2004, she played air hostess Amelia Warren in The Terminal as well as Europol agent Isabel Lahiri in Ocean's Twelve, the sequel to Ocean's Eleven. In 2005, she reprised her role as Elena in The Legend of Zorro, the sequel to The Mask of Zorro. In 2007, she starred in the romantic comedy No Reservations, a remake of the German film Mostly Martha, and in 2008 starred alongside Guy Pearce and Saoirse Ronan in Death Defying Acts, a biopic about legendary escapologist Harry Houdini. In 2009, Zeta-Jones stars in romantic comedy The Rebound, in which she plays a 40-year old mother of two who falls in love with a younger man, played by Justin Bartha.
In August 2009, it was announced she would return to her musical roots and make her Broadway debut in the revival of A Little Night Music with Angela Lansbury, beginning December 2009. She will play Lansbury's daughter, Desiree.
Apart from her acting career, Zeta-Jones is also an advertising spokeswoman, currently the global spokeswoman for cosmetics giant Elizabeth Arden. She has appeared in numerous TV commercials for the phone company T-Mobile, and one for Alfa Romeo. She is also the spokeswoman for Di Modolo jewelry.

Zeta-Jones is married to actor Michael Douglas, sharing the same birthday, making him exactly 25 years her senior. She claims that when they met, he used the line "I'd like to father your children." They were married at the Plaza Hotel in New York City on 18 November 2000. A traditional Welsh choir (Côr Cymraeg Rehoboth) sang at their wedding. Her Welsh gold wedding ring includes a Celtic motif and was purchased in the Welsh town of Aberystwyth. They have two children. Their son, Dylan Michael Douglas (named after Dylan Thomas), was born on 8 August 2000, with Zeta Jones's pregnancy incorporated into her role in Traffic. Their daughter, Carys Zeta Douglas, was born on 20 April 2003. Zeta-Jones has two brothers, David and Lyndon. Her father's cousin is married to singer Bonnie Tyler, from nearby Neath, Wales. Her younger brother, Lyndon Jones, is her personal manager and producer for Milkwood Films. Zeta-Jones's parents recently moved from their Mayals property to a £2 million home two miles (3 km) further west along the Swansea coast, paid for by their daughter.
In 2004, Douglas and Zeta-Jones took legal action against stalker Dawnette Knight, who was accused of sending violent letters to the couple that contained graphic threats on Catherine's life. Testifying, Zeta Jones said the threats left her so shaken she feared a nervous breakdown. Knight claimed she had been in love with Douglas and admitted to the offenses which took place between October 2003 and May 2004. She was sentenced to three years in prison.

Dawn French and Jennifer Saunders parodied Zeta-Jones as a vacuous über-celebrity named Catherine Spartacus-Zeta-Douglas-Jones on their show French & Saunders in the series Back With a Vengeance. Catherine Spartacus-Zeta-Douglas-Jones alternates between a strong Welsh accent and a strong American accent and uses Welsh-language phrases when she speaks.
Zeta-Jones is also parodied in the BBC's The Impressions Show with Culshaw and Stephenson by Debra Stephenson reading Beauty and the Beast also alternating between strong Welsh and American accents.


Catherine Zeta Jones - Personal Quotes


"I used to go around looking as frumpy as possible because it was inconceivable you could be attractive as well as be smart. It wasn't until I started being myself, the way I like to turn out to meet people, that I started to get any work."

"I like women who look like women. I hated grunge. No one's more feminist than me, but you don't have to look as if you don't give a - you know. You can be smart, bright, and attractive aesthetically to others - and to yourself."

"In Wales it's brilliant. I go to the pub and see everybody who I went to school with. And everybody goes "So what you doing now?" And I go, "Oh, I'm doing a film with Antonio Banderas and Anthony Hopkins." And they go, "Ooh, good." And that's it."

After Scottish actor Sean Connery presented her with the Oscar: "A Scotsman giving a Welsh girl an Oscar - oh my God!"

"After Zorro, people spoke Spanish to me for ages. I'm Welsh but that movie instantly gave me a new ethnicity."

"For marriage to be a success, every woman and every man should have her and his own bathroom. The end."

[On her duel/strip scene from "The Mask of Zorro"]: "I kept thinking 'Thank God I have long hair in this movie'."

"This film holds a lot of meaning to me, both professionally and personally. I actually met my husband when I was promoting the film in Deauville, France, and it was such an amazing time for me, being completely unknown, really, in America or in Mexico, where I shot the first one. It's a very important film for me and it's very close to my heart." [on 'Mask of Zorro, The']

"I wish I was born in that era: dancing with Fred Astaire and Gene Kelly, going to work at the studio dressed in beautiful pants, head scarves, and sunglasses."

"Did I want this role? That's like saying did I want to wake up in the morning wanting to breath!" on landing the part of Velma Kelly in Chicago.

"I do think I'm lucky I met Michael. Not just Michael Douglas the actor and producer with two Oscars on the shelf, but Michael Douglas the love of my life. I really do think it was meant to happen."

I like to feel sexy. I know my husband thinks I'm sexy. I think he is too. But I don't go out half-naked with 'sex' written across my back.

Humor and that wonderful word called 'charisma.' You cannot translate it. I can't nail it on the head, other than to just say that I'm completely over the top about my husband. - on what makes a man irresistible.

Yes, I was in love with my husband at first sight and still am. We have the most solid relationship.

"I don't go into the triple-X sites. I'm certainly not going to pay money to see myself naked, when I can just go into the bathroom and whip it off for free." -speaking on the Internet and its fascination with celebrities and porno


Catherine Zeta Jones - Filmography


Cleo (2011) .... Cleo
Dali (2010/II) .... Gala Eduard Dalì
The Rebound (2009) .... Sandy
Death Defying Acts (2007) .... Mary McGarvie
... aka Death Defying Acts: Houdini's Secret (USA: DVD box title)
No Reservations (2007) .... Kate
The Legend of Zorro (2005) .... Elena de la Vega
... aka Z (USA: poster title)
Ocean's Twelve (2004) .... Isabel Lahiri
The Terminal (2004) .... Amelia Warren
Intolerable Cruelty (2003) .... Marylin
Sinbad: Legend of the Seven Seas (2003) (voice) .... Marina
Chicago (2002) .... Velma Kelly
... aka Chicago (Germany)
America's Sweethearts (2001) .... Gwen Harrison
Traffic (2000) .... Helena Ayala
... aka Traffic - Die Macht des Kartells (Germany)
High Fidelity (2000) .... Charlie Nicholson
The Adventures of Young Indiana Jones: Daredevils of the Desert (1999) (V) (as Catherine Zeta Jones) .... Maya
The Haunting (1999) .... Theo
... aka La maldición (USA: Spanish title)
Entrapment (1999) .... Virginia Baker
... aka Verlockende Falle (Germany)
The Mask of Zorro (1998) .... Elena Montero / Elena Murrieta
... aka Die Maske des Zorro (Germany)
Titanic (1996) (TV) (as Catherine Zeta Jones) .... Isabella Paradine
The Phantom (1996) (as Catherine Zeta Jones) .... Sala
Blue Juice (1995) .... Chloe
Catherine the Great (1995) (TV) .... Catherine
... aka Katharina die Große (Germany)
The Return of the Native (1994) (TV) (as Catherine Zeta Jones) .... Eustacia Vye
... aka Thomas Hardy's The Return of the Native (UK: complete title)
The Cinder Path (1994) (TV) .... Victoria Chapman
"The Young Indiana Jones Chronicles" .... Maya (1 episode, 1993)
- Palestine, October 1917 (1993) TV episode .... Maya
"The Darling Buds of May" .... Mariette (18 episodes, 1991-1993)
- Climb the Greasy Pole: Part 2 (1993) TV episode (as Catherine Zeta Jones) .... Mariette
- Climb the Greasy Pole: Part 1 (1993) TV episode (as Catherine Zeta Jones) .... Mariette
- The Happiest Days of Your Life: Part 2 (1993) TV episode (as Catherine Zeta Jones) .... Mariette
- The Happiest Days of Your Life: Part 1 (1993) TV episode (as Catherine Zeta Jones) .... Mariette
- Le Grand Weekend (1992) TV episode (as Catherine Zeta Jones) .... Mariette
(13 more)
Splitting Heirs (1993) .... Kitty
"Coup de foudre" (1 episode, 1992)
- Résurgence (1992) TV episode
Christopher Columbus: The Discovery (1992) (as Catherine Zeta Jones) .... Beatriz
... aka Cristóbal Colón: el descubrimiento (Spain)
Out of the Blue (1991) (TV) .... Chirsty
Les 1001 nuits (1990) .... Sheherazade
... aka 1001 Nights (International: English title: informal literal title)
... aka Le mille e una notte (Italy)
... aka Scheherazade (UK: TV title)
... aka Sheherazade


Catherine Zeta Jones  - Related Links

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Catherine Zeta Jones





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