Anna Helene Paquin born 24 July 1982 is a Canadian-born New Zealand film and theatre actress. Paquin's first critically successful film was The Piano, for which she won the Academy Award for Best Supporting Actress in 1994 at the age of 11 – the second youngest winner in history.
Her acting career took off almost half a decade later when she appeared in a string of successful films including She's All That, Almost Famous and the X-Men franchise.
Paquin is well-known for her role as Sookie Stackhouse in the HBO series True Blood.
It was in New Zealand in 1991 that Paquin became an actress by chance. Director Jane Campion was looking for a little girl to play a key role in The Piano, set to film in New Zealand, and a newspaper advertisement was run announcing an open audition. Paquin's sister read the ad and went to try out with a friend; Paquin herself tagged along because she had nothing better to do.
When Campion met Paquin—whose only acting experience had been as a skunk in a school play—she was very impressed with the nine-year-old's performance of the monologue about Flora's father, and she was chosen from among the 5000 candidates.
When The Piano was released in 1993 it was lauded by critics, won prizes at a number of film festivals, and eventually became a popular movie among a wide audience. Paquin's debut performance in the film earned her an Academy Award for Best Supporting Actress at the age of eleven, making her the second-youngest Oscar winner in history after Tatum O'Neal.
The Piano was made as a small independent movie and wasn't expected to be widely known, and Paquin and her family did not plan to continue in the acting circles.
However, she was invited to the William Morris Agency, and she kept receiving offers for new roles. She systematically refused them, but she did appear in three commercials for the phone company MCI (now Verizon) in 1994.
She later made a series of television commercials for Manitoba Telecom Systems in her birth city of Winnipeg. She also appeared as a voice in an audio book entitled The Magnificent Nose in 1994.
In 1996, she appeared in two movies. The first role was as young Jane in Jane Eyre. The other was a lead part in Fly Away Home playing a young girl who, after her mother dies, moves in with her father and finds solace in taking care of orphaned goslings.
As a teenager, she had roles in films including A Walk on the Moon, Amistad, Hurlyburly, She's All That and Almost Famous.
X-Men and beyond
Paquin returned to worldwide prominence with her role as the mutant superheroine Rogue in the Marvel Comics movie X-Men in 2000,
its sequel X2 in 2003, and its third instalment, X-Men: The Last Stand, in 2006.
Between 2006 and 2007, she starred in, as well as executive-produced Blue State. The film is made by Paquin Films, a production company formed by both her and her brother, Andrew Paquin. In November 2006, she completed the film Margaret, which was released in 2011. And played Elaine Goodale in HBO's made-for-TV movie Bury My Heart at Wounded Knee, based on Dee Brown's best-seller.
Paquin was cast as waitress Sookie Stackhouse in the HBO series True Blood in 2008, her first role in a TV series. The show is based on The Southern Vampire Mysteries series of novels by Charlaine Harris, set in the fictional town of Bon Temps, LA. While working on True Blood, she started dating co-star Stephen Moyer and later married in 2010.
In 2009, Paquin played Irena Sendler, a Polish woman hailed as a heroine of the Holocaust, in The Courageous Heart of Irena Sendler, a CBS TV film biographical film based on the book Mother of the Children of the Holocaust: The Irena Sendler Story, by Anna Mieszkowska. The film was made in Latvia, and was a Hallmark Hall of Fame presentation for the network.
In 2010, Paquin's film The Romantics, a romantic comedy with Josh Duhamel and Katie Holmes, was released in the US at selected theatres in September. She played a cameo role in Scream 4, alongside Kristen Bell in 2011.
And played the voice of Kristin on an episode of Phineas and Ferb.
Upcoming projects for her in 2012 include Straight A's, co-starring Ryan Phillippe, and Free Ride with Cam Gigandet. Also Black Wings Has My Angel, alongside Tom Hiddleston, set to start shooting in fall of 2012, and released in 2013.
Thanks to Wikipedia