Jennifer Lawrence: A mini-profile

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Jennifer Lawrence is a versatile actress known for her roles in Winter’s Bone, The Hunger Games, X-Men and Joy. She won an Oscar for her role in Silver Linings Playbook. She was born in Louisville, Kentucky, on August 15, 1990. She got her big break at 14, when she was discovered while vacationing in New York City with her family. She quickly landed a part in the TV series The Bill Engvall Show, followed by roles in films that included The Burning Plain, Winter’s Bone, X-Men: First Class and The Hunger Games. She later reprised her role playing Katniss Everdeen in Catching Fire and the two-part Mockingjay. Lawrence won an Academy Award for her work in David O. Russell’s Silver Linings Playbook (2012) and continued to work with the director on American Hustle and Joy, winning Golden Globes for all three projects as well.

Jennifer Shrader Lawrence was born on August 15, 1990, in a suburb of Louisville, Kentucky. She has two older brothers, Blaine and Ben, and her parents, Karen and Gary, owned a farm just outside the city.

Lawrence was an athletic child, involved in cheerleading, field hockey and softball, and thought she might be a doctor when she grew up. She did some modeling and community theater, but never dreamed that she’d become an actress.

Lawrence’s big break came when she was discovered at 14 while on spring break in New York with her family. A stranger asked to take her picture and took her mother’s phone number, then called the next day to ask her to do a screen test. Things happened quickly after that: Lawrence stayed in New York City for the summer, acting in commercials for MTV and filming the 2007 thriller Devil You Know with Lena Olin. (The film was shelved due to lack of distribution and was eventually released in 2013.) Soon after, Lawrence and her family moved to Los Angeles, where she had small roles on the series Medium, Monk and Cold Case, before landing a part on the TBS series The Bill Engvall Show. While working on the series, she also appeared in feature films including The Poker House and The Burning Plain alongside Charlize Theron and Kim Basinger.

After The Bill Engvall Show was canceled, Lawrence went on to appear in the critically acclaimed Winter’s Bone in 2010, which earned her nominations for an Academy Award, a Golden Globe and a Screen Actors Guild Award. Opportunities continued to pour in, and in 2011 Lawrence appeared in The Beaver with Mel Gibson, Jodie Foster and Anton Yelchin. She also took on the role of Mystique in X-Men: First Class.

In 2012, Lawrence became a box-office sensation as Katniss Everdeen, the lead in The Hunger Games, the film adaptation of the bestselling novel by Suzanne Collins. Set in a post-apocalyptic state, Lawrence’s character must participate in an event in which 24 teens fight to the death as televised entertainment. The film broke box-office records on opening weekend, and Lawrence reprised her role in 2013’s The Hunger Games: Catching Fire as well as the two-part Mockingjay (2014 and 2015). As of late 2015, the franchise has earned more than $2.8 billion dollars at the global box office.

For the complete coverage of Lawrence’s life and career, please click here.

To learn all about each of her films, please click here.

 

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