EntertainmentCelebritiesPenelope Cruz, the best-known Spanish in Hollywood along with...

Penelope Cruz, the best-known Spanish in Hollywood along with Javier Bardem

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Penélope Cruz was born in Alcobendas, Madrid (Spain) on April 28, 1974 , into a family formed by Eduardo Cruz, who worked in a car dealership, Encarna Sánchez, a hairdresser, and three children: Penélope, the eldest, Mónica (1977), who would also be an actress and model, and Eduardo (1985), who would dedicate himself to the world of music.

Pé (that’s what they called Penélope, the name that the Cruz couple gave their eldest daughter because they were ardent admirers of Joan Manuel Serrat and were passionate about the Catalan artist’s song), studied at the Juan XXIII school, but soon felt subjugated by the world of acting, especially as a result of being enthusiastic about the film ‘Tie me up’, by Pedro Almodóvar, and with the work of Victoria Abril. She was 13 years old and decided to be an actress.

She studied nine years of classical ballet at the National Conservatory of Madrid, four years of dance at the Cristina Rota School in New York, three years of Spanish dance with Ángela Garrido and jazz courses with Raúl Caballero while she attended castings and auditions. to move on to interpretation. His first appearance was the one he made in the video ‘La fuerza del destino’ (1994), by the pop group Mecano, with whose singer, Nacho Cano, he would also shoot the video clips ‘El patio’ (1994) and ‘El waltz de los locos’ (1995) and would maintain a loving relationship, living in New York and London (1996).

From the music video to the big screen

But by then, Pé was already a star: his first video clip meant an open door to television, first on Telecinco, with ‘La quinta marcha’, a program for young people, with Jesús Vázquez, and he worked on an episode of ‘Series Rosa’ (TVE), directed by Jaime Chávarri.

His first role on the big screen was in ‘The Greek Labyrinth’ (1990), by Rafael Alcázar, a film that was followed by his huge success: ‘Jamón, jamón’ (1992), by Bigas Luna, with Javier Bardem and Jordi Mollà. This highly erotic role and her sensual beauty earned her popular launch as a sex-symbol, a label from which she found it difficult to break free.

She was nominated for the VII edition of the Goya Awards in the section for best leading actress and for the Fotogramas de Plata for best actress. They were followed by “Belle Epoque” (Hollywood Oscars, 1993), by Fernando Trueba, which was a magnificent success for her and for Spanish cinema, with Ariadna Gil, Fernando Fernán Gómez, Jorge Sanz and Chus Lampreave, and films such as, among others , ‘For love only for love’ (‘Per amore, solo per amore’), ‘The butterfly effect’, ‘The rebel’ (‘La ribelle’) or ‘Everything is a lie’, until he filmed ‘Love seriously harms health”, by Manuel Gómez Pereira, which was a great success.

And from Almodóvar, to Hollywood

In ‘Tremula Flesh’ (1997) he made his dream of working with Almodóvar come true, along with Javier Bardem and Ángela Molina, the same year that he worked with Alejandro Amenábar in ‘Open your eyes’, with Eduardo Noriega, a film that gave him enormous prestige. She was 23 years old and, with those two titles and the following one, ‘The girl with your eyes’, by Fernando Trueba, for which she would win the Goya Award (1998) for best leading actress, the Fotogramas de Plata, awarded by popular vote , and the prize of the Union of Actors), he would make the leap to international cinema, especially as a result of ‘Todo sobre mi madre’ (1999), by Almodóvar.

With homes in Los Angeles, New York, London and Madrid, Penélope goes from success to success and works with actors such as Matt Demon in ‘All the Pretty Horses’, with Nicolas Cage in ‘Captain Corelli’s Mandolin’ (‘Captain Corelli’s Mandolin’), with Tom Cruise (in ‘Vanilla Sky’) and Johnny Deep (in ‘Blow’) spreading a lot of ink about his possible romances with one of them ( Nicolas Cage, Matt Damon and Tom Cruise).

She has worked in more than fifty films, among which stand out: ‘Volver’ (2006), by Pedro Almodóvar, for whose performance she was nominated for an Oscar, she won her second Goya and the award for best female performance at the ‘Hollywood Awards’ , an award granted by film critics, producers and directors of film festivals; ‘Elegy’ (2007), by Isabel Coixet, with Ben Kingsley; ‘Vicky, Cristina Barcelona’ (2007), by Woody Allen, with Javier Bardem, Scarlett Johansson and Rebeca Hall, which won her the Oscar (2008) and her third Goya Award; ‘Nine’ (2009), by Rob Marshall, where she sings and dances, and, again directed by Woody Allen, ‘To Rome with love’ (‘To Rome with Love’) (2011). In addition to ‘Pirates of the Caribbean: on mysterious tides’ (‘Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides’).

Pe and Bardem

During the filming of ‘Vicky Cristina Barcelona’ (2007) a romance began between the actress and Javier Bardem, who, on July 14, 2010, after several denials and three years of dating, finally got married in secret in the Bahamas, on an island of his friend the actor Johnny Depp, and on January 22, 2011 his first son, named Leo, was born.

His powerful image has served as a claim for various firms: among others, Freixenet (Christmas 1994 ad); Perfume Carmen, by Victorio and Lucchino (1998); ‘La Casera’, together with Javier Sardà (199); Coca Cola (TV ad, 2003); L’Oréal (2006); Mango, for whose label she and her sister Mónica present her designs for Spain and the United States, and for Lancôme. She is the most international Spanish actress and the only one who, in addition to the Oscar and three Goya Awards, has obtained a British BAFTA Award and the Italian David de Donatello Award. In August 2013, she made her debut as a director of a short starring Miguel Ángel Silvestre and Irina Shayk. Penelope became a mother for the second time on July 22, 2013. Her daughter is called Luna.

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