Anne Hathaway Bio: 'Princess Diaries' to 'The Dark Knight Rises'

Born November 12th, 1982 in Brooklyn, New York, Anne Jacqueline Hathaway showed her talent for performance – both in acting and music – at an early age. It didn't take long for her to wow prestigious schools and to get her big break in Hollywood with the short-lived show "Get Real." Hathaway became known to crowds of little girls with 2001’s "The Princess Diaries," and since then it’s been a steady stream of work, success and growing up in the spotlight. Career highlights include her roles in "Brokeback Mountain," "The Devil Wears Prada," "Rachel Getting Married," "The Dark Knight Rises" and "Les Miserables." In this video, learns more about the life and career of Anne Hathaway.

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Biography of Anne Hathaway

She’s gone from playing an ugly duckling to one hot feline. Welcome to, and today we’ll be taking a look at the career of Anne Hathaway.

Early Life

Anne Jacqueline Hathaway was born November 12th, 1982 in Brooklyn, New York, and grew up in New Jersey. Hathaway abandoned her plans to become a nun when her older brother came out of the closet, and soon took after her mother by deciding to perform.

First Jobs

Hathaway’s acting and singing talents soon earned her a spot as the first ever teen in a prestigious theater program. After getting on-screen practice in commercials, she landed her first TV role in the family drama “Get Real” in 1999. While that show lasted less than a year, it was the boost Hathaway’s burgeoning career needed.

Big Break

By 2001, she beat out over 500 other young actresses to win the lead in “The Princess Diaries.” This huge box office success was Hathaway’s big break, and it allowed her to showcase her goofy and glamorous sides as a girl who discovers she is heir to the throne of a faraway country.

More Family-Friendly Films

Hathaway continued with family-friendly releases, including Disney’s 2001 production “The Other Side of Heaven.” The next year, she joined a star-studded cast in the Charles Dickens adaptation “Nicholas Nickleby.” Her fairytale continued with “Ella Enchanted,” where she did some singing, and in “The Princess Diaries 2: Royal Engagement.”

Growing Up on the Big Screen

However, after years of child-centric projects, Hathaway’s next move was to show her audiences she was growing up. She appeared nude in 2005’s “Havoc,” and was praised for her acting performance. But it was her part in that year’s controversial “Brokeback Mountain” that influenced her career most significantly, and convinced her to be more selective with her projects.

“The Devil Wears Prada”

The next year’s fashion-heavy “The Devil Wears Prada” was another career highlight for Hathaway, where she starred alongside her childhood idol Meryl Streep. In 2007, she donned a British accent to portray famed novelist Jane Austen in “Becoming Jane.”

Busy Year

2008 was the year she proved her range as an actress: After becoming a new face for Lancôme, she starred beside Steve Carell in the successful remake of the ‘60s spy show “Get Smart,” appeared in the failed thriller “Passengers,” and made the gutsy choice to play a rehab patient in “Rachel Getting Married.” That film was such a victory for the actress that she earned nominations for both a Golden Globe and an Oscar.

Personal Troubles

However, her personal life took a turn for the worse when her longtime boyfriend was arrested for fraud. Fortunately, the self-effacing star took the opportunity to mock the situation when she hosted “Saturday Night Live” later that year.

High Profile Films in 2009

In 2009, Hathaway was a high point in the otherwise panned “Bride Wars.” But by 2010, she was back at the top of her game: besides winning an Emmy for her guest appearance on “The Simpsons” and reprising her theater work, Hathaway appeared in three high-profile films. First came a romance with Topher Grace in the ensemble comedy “Valentine’s Day,” then a spot as the White Queen in Tim Burton’s “Alice in Wonderland,” and finally she stripped down with her “Brokeback Mountain” co-star Jake Gyllenhaal for “Love and Other Drugs.”

The Oscar Debacle

The next year, she attempted to bring youth to the 83rd Academy Awards as host alongside James Franco. While Hathaway’s performance was praised, the result was widely considered the worst Oscarcast in history. Her 2011 film “One Day” didn’t redeem her year, but the computer animated flick “Rio” was a hit.


2012 was Hathaway’s biggest year yet: aside from marrying actor Adam Shulman, she took on the physically demanding role of Catwoman in the final installment of Christopher Nolan’s blockbuster Batman trilogy, “The Dark Knight Rises.” Her next challenge was the emotional adaptation of the musical drama “Les Misérables,” in which she was required to sing live, and cut her signature long hair. Both roles made sure there was plenty of Oscar buzz around this star.


Though she started in family-friendly fare, Hathaway has proven herself a down-to-earth, versatile and well-rounded actress. With comparisons to acting greats like Julia Roberts, Audrey Hepburn and Judy Garland, Anne Hathaway will be shining from big screens with her trademark smile for a long time.

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