Catherine Zeta-Jones: Snapshot

Catherine Zeta-Jones
Date of Birth
September 25, 1969
Birth Place
Swansea, Wales
Steven Spielberg saw Catherine Zeta-Jones in the 1996 TV movie Titanic, and said he "immediately sensed that she was worth rescuing from that ship." He cast her in The Mask of Zorro, where she captivated viewers worldwide, including future husband Michael Douglas.

A child performer in Wales, Zeta-Jones sang and danced as the lead in a London revival of 42nd Street and later became a U.K. sexpot in the Brit TV hit The Darling Buds of May. However, her sexy pairing with Antonio Banderas in Zorro turned her into a star in America, and set her up for her villainous role as murderess Velma Kelly in Chicago, which made her an Oscar winner.

The stunning mother of two, who supported her husband as he battled cancer in 2010, fought her bravest battle months later when she sought treat for bipolar II disorder. The couple endured more heartbreak in 2013, when they decided to separate. But after some time apart, they decided to give their relationship another chance.

Catherine Zeta-Jones: Video

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Catherine Zeta-Jones: Five Fun Facts

  1. Catherine Zeta-Jones loves karaoke and keeps a machine in her trailer while on movie sets.
  2. At 12, Catherine Zeta-Jones won a British tap dancing championship, and on one of her first dates with Michael Douglas, he asked her to prove it. She granted his wish and danced in the actor's bathroom so she wouldn't scratch his newly refinished wood floors.
  3. When Catherine Zeta-Jones gave birth to Dylan in 2000, the people of her hometown of Swansea, Wales, put up Welsh flags over a local arcade, lined up to sign the town's book of congratulations, and popped champagne corks.
  4. Catherine Zeta-Jones says she's obsessed with smoked salmon sandwiches on brown bread with crushed potato chips in the middle. "I had it with each of my pregnancies," she said in 2007. "It's one of those comfort foods."
  5. Catherine Zeta-Jones is an avid golfer, playing at least twice a week at a golf course next door to her house in Bermuda. "I have a whole bunch of girlfriends who I play with," she told PEOPLE in 2007. "We have a girls' day which is always fun because it's like, 'Oh, we're not playing well. Let's go for lunch and have a glass of wine!'"

Catherine Zeta-Jones: Biography


Catherine Zeta-Jones

A Performer is Born

As a child, Catherine Zeta-Jones, the middle child of David, who dealt in candy, and Patricia Jones, a seamstress and homemaker, has a love for movie-musicals. "I was really hyperactive as a kid and no one knew how or where I got all this energy," Zeta-Jones tells Newsday in 1999. "Anyway, they had to harness all this craziness, so I started taking lessons when I was four. And by the time I was 11, I was doing musicals on stage." By 12, she's a British national tap dance champ, and her parents let her live in London with a tutor and perform in shows like Annie and 42nd Street (left).

mid 1980s

Catherine Zeta-Jones

"15 Going on 25"

Zeta-Jones, 15, quits school and leaves home for London. "I remember growing up knowing I wanted to be on the stage," she tells the Ottawa Sun in 2002. "I wanted to get to London as soon as possible and start auditioning for theater." Zeta-Jones (pictured with her parents) adds to Harper's Bazaar in 2000, "My life was my work. I was 15 going on 25. [My parents] didn't want me turning around and pointing my finger saying, 'if only you'd let me go, maybe this or maybe that would have happened'. I always knew I could go back. But I never went back."


A U.K. Sensation

Zeta-Jones plays a sexpot farm girl on the TV show The Darling Buds of May. "Within one hour of television, my whole life changed," she tells the Sunday Times in 1998. "After that, every person I had a cup of coffee with was the 'new love of my life.'" Some of her high-profile loves include: director Nick Hamm, actors John Leslie and Angus Macfadyen (who broke off their 15-month engagement in 1996), and Simply Red singer Mick Hucknall. Sick of the media hoopla surrounding her in the U.K., she packs up and moves to L.A. at 24.

Read More on Catherine Zeta-Jones' Life

Photo Credits

Top Left: Carlo AllegriGetty

BIOGRAPHY (top to bottom): John Evans/Retna; RexUSA

Edited by Julia Wang

Catherine Zeta-Jones

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