Catherine Elise Blanchett AC is an Australian actress and theatre director. One of Australia’s most accomplished actresses, she is known for her roles in both blockbusters and independent films.
She has received numerous accolades, including two Academy Awards, three Golden Globe Awards, and three British Academy Film Awards.
Time magazine named Blanchett one of the 100 most influential people in the world in 2007 and in 2018, she was ranked among the highest-paid actresses in the world.
- Full name: Catherine Elise Blanchett AC
- Profession: Actress and theatre director
- Born: 14 May 1969 in Ivanhoe, Australia
- Height: 1.74 m
- Spouse: Andrew Upton (m. 1997)
- Children: Dashiell John Upton, Edith Vivian Patricia Upton, Roman Robert Upton, Ignatius Martin Upton
- TV shows: Mrs. America, Heartland, Bordertown, Stateless and more
About Cate Blanchett
Blanchett was born on 14 May 1969 in the Melbourne suburb of Ivanhoe. Her Australian mother, June Blanchett (born Gamble), worked as a property developer and teacher, and her American father, Robert DeWitt Blanchett, Jr., a Texas native, was a United States Navy Chief Petty Officer who later worked as an advertising executive.
The two met when Blanchett’s father’s ship broke down in Melbourne. When Blanchett was 10, her father died of a heart attack, leaving her mother to raise the family on her own.
Blanchett is the middle of three children, she has an older brother Bob Blanchett (born 1968), and a younger sister Genevieve Blanchett (born 1971). Her ancestry includes English, some Scottish, and remote French roots.
Blanchett has described herself as being “part extrovert, part wallflower” during childhood. During her teenage years she had a penchant for dressing in traditionally masculine clothing, and went through goth and punk phases, at one point shaving her head.
She attended primary school in Melbourne at Ivanhoe East Primary School; for her secondary education, she attended Ivanhoe Girls’ Grammar School and then Methodist Ladies’ College, where she explored her passion for the performing arts.
In her late teens and early twenties, she worked at a nursing home in Victoria. She studied economics and fine arts at the University of Melbourne but dropped out after one year to travel overseas.
While in Egypt, Blanchett was asked to be an American cheerleader, as an extra in the Egyptian boxing movie, Kaboria; in need of money, she accepted. Upon returning to Australia, and after working in the pocket theatres of Melbourne, including La Mama, she moved to Sydney, and enrolled at the National Institute of Dramatic Art (NIDA). She graduated from NIDA in 1992 with a Bachelor of Fine Arts.
After graduating from the National Institute of Dramatic Art, Blanchett began her acting career on the Australian stage, taking on roles in Electra in 1992 and Hamlet in 1994.
She came to international attention for portraying Elizabeth I in the drama film Elizabeth (1998), for which she won the BAFTA Award for Best Actress and earned her first nomination for the Academy Award for Best Actress.
Her portrayal of Katharine Hepburn in the biopic The Aviator (2004), earned her the Academy Award for Best Supporting Actress, and she won the Academy Award for Best Actress for playing a neurotic former socialite in the drama Blue Jasmine (2013).
Her other Oscar-nominated roles were in the dramas Notes on a Scandal (2006), Elizabeth: The Golden Age (2007), I’m Not There (2007), and Carol (2015).
Blanchett’s most commercially successful films include The Talented Mr. Ripley (1999), Peter Jackson’s The Lord of the Rings trilogy (2001–2003) and The Hobbit trilogy (2012–2014), Babel (2006), The Curious Case of Benjamin Button (2008), Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull (2008), the How to Train Your Dragon film trilogy (2014-2019), Cinderella (2015), Thor: Ragnarok (2017), and Ocean’s 8 (2018).
From 2008 to 2013, Blanchett and her husband Andrew Upton served as the artistic directors of the Sydney Theatre Company.
Some of her stage roles during this period were in revivals of A Streetcar Named Desire, Uncle Vanya, and The Maids. She made her Broadway debut in 2017 with The Present, for which she received a Tony Award nomination.
The Australian government awarded Blanchett the Centenary Medal in 2001 and appointed her a Companion of the Order of Australia in 2017.
She was appointed Chevalier of the Order of Arts and Letters by the French government in 2012. She has been presented with a Doctor of Letters from the University of New South Wales, University of Sydney, and Macquarie University.
In 2015, she was honoured by the Museum of Modern Art and received the British Film Institute Fellowship.