At 9, Paquin answers a newspaper ad for the part of Holly Hunter's daughter in director Jane Campion's sweeping drama, The Piano. The precocious child actress eventually beats out 5,000 kids for the role, which earns her an Oscar (for Best Supporting Actress) in 1994. "I was completely overwhelmed," she said of her win at age 11. "I just thought I was going to sit there and go clap, clap, clap, and the other person goes up and gets it."
After making supporting turns in the teen comedy She's All That and Cameron Crowe's Almost Famous, Paquin lands the part of mutant hero Rogue in the blockbuster X-Men trilogy. "There's a lot of fun stuff that you get to do in those movies that you wouldn't get to do in any other straight, normal film," she says of the record-breaking comic-book adaptation.
There Will Be Blood
As clairvoyant Sookie Stackhouse, Paquin finds herself at the center of a cult hit on HBO's True Blood. The supernatural vampire drama, which introduces Paquin to costar Stephen Moyer (whom she eventually begins dating), earns her a best dramatic TV actress Golden Globe in 2009.
Moyer, 39, proposes to Paquin, 27, and she accepts. "There's a song Bill listens to in the car about a white sandy beach," Moyer tells Glamour of how he popped the question. "So we decided to go away for a break – to a white sandy beach – and that's where it happened."
With True Blood in its second season (and now a bona fide TV hit), Paquin headlines Nylon magazine's TV issue. "The thing about vampirism is that it taps into a female point of view – you have an old-fashioned gentleman with manners who is a f---ing killer," she says of the show's sexy appeal.
The Secret's Out
No one saw this coming: Paquin reveals she's bisexual in a PSA video featuring celebrities speaking out for equality. "I'm Anna Paquin. I'm bisexual and I give a damn," says the bride-to-be days before the third season premiere of True Blood. Later, she downplays her public revelation, saying, "It wasn't like it was a big secret."
It's True – They're Married!
After a year-long engagement, Paquin, 28, weds her True Blood beau Stephen Moyer, 40, in Malibu surrounded by family and friends, including costars Ryan Kwanten, Sam Trammel and Rutina Wesley. "It was a beautiful evening to get married and the sunset was gorgeous. Anna and Stephen seemed very excited to celebrate their wedding day," a source tells PEOPLE of the couple's nuptials, which takes place at a beachside villa under a white tent.
Baby on Board
Paquin, 29, and Moyer, 42, announce that they're expecting their first child together in the fall. The British actor has two children – Lilac, 10, and Billy, 12 – from a previous relationship.
Baby, Take Two
Paquin gives birth to twins a few weeks ahead of schedule. "The babies … are in good health and both Mom and Dad are overjoyed," a rep for the True Blood stars tells PEOPLE exclusively.
BIOGRAPHY (top to bottom): Anna Luken/Getty; Everett; Skip Bolen/HBO; Axelle Woussen/Bauer-Griffin; Lester Cohen/Wireimage; Angela Weiss/Getty; Splash News Online
- Anna Paquin
- Date of Birth
- July 24, 1982
- Birth Place
- Winnipeg, MB, Canada
- Stephen Moyer, husband (2009 to present)