Gwyneth Paltrow was born in Los Angeles, California, the daughter of director Bruce Paltrow and actress Blythe Danner. Her father was of Ashkenazi and jew-Russian origin, while her mother is a Quaker of Pennsylvania Dutch community with distant descent from the whites of Barbados.
Her great-grandfather, whose last name was Paltrowicz, was a rabbi in Nowogród, Poland. Paltrow has a younger brother, Jake Paltrow, director. Gwyneth Paltrow was raised in Santa Monica, where she attended Crossroads School before moving and enrolling at the Spence School, a private girls’ school in New York City. Later, she briefly studied art history at the University of California, Santa Barbara, before abandoning the studies. At age 15 she spent seven weeks at Talavera de la Reina exchange student program (Spain), where she learned to speak Spanish. Paltrow has formed a strong bond with the family that was home to invite her “Spanish parents” to the cerimony of her first Oscar. In 2013, People magazine named her the most beautiful woman of the year.
She debuted on the screen only nineteen in Shout in 1991, where she starred opposite John Travolta, followed by other film in secondary roles. In 1991, she is playing the part of the young Wendy Darling in the movie Hook directed by Steven Spielberg. In 1995 she obtained a supporting role in David Fincher thriller Seven with Brad Pitt and Morgan Freeman, for the interpretation of which gets a Satellite Award nomination. She achieved success with her first starring role in the film Emma, film adaptation of a Jane Austen’s novel.
1998 is an important year for her career, which was also very busy in several successful films. She interprets the unfortunate girl from the double destiny in Peter Howitt’s Sliding Doors, and opposite Ethan Hawke, Robert De Niro and Anne Bancroft in Paradise Lost, based on Charles Dickens’ Great Expectations. Also starred in A Perfect Murder remake, playing the role that Grace Kelly was for Alfred Hitchcock. Also in 1998 she starred in Shakespeare in Love by John Madden, for which she earned an Academy Award and a Golden Globe, who consecrate her as a great actress. At the award ceremony, the actress wore a pink dress by Ralph Lauren, considered one of the fashion icons in the history of the red carpet of the Oscars.
In 1999 she was directed by Anthony Minghella in The Talented Mr. Ripley, opposite Jude Law and Matt Damon. In 2000 she was directed by her father in the movie Duets, which also shows her vocal quality. After winning the Oscar for Shakespeare in Love, Paltrow’s success went to decline, because of wrong choices dictated by the pressure and the expectations of the media, consolidating a certain belief that winning the statuette is a curse. Nevertheless, in the following years the actress alternates between the dramatic genre, participating in films such as Proof or Sylvia, and most brilliant comedies like the Royal Tenenbaums, Shallow Hal and View from the Top.
In 2004 she appears in science fiction Sky Captain and the World of Tomorrow: in the same year was recognized as a “remarkable woman” in entertainment from Women in Film Los Angeles with the Crystal Award. In 2006 she recites in Infamous and Running with Scissors, and, in 2008, participates in the film adaptation of Iron Man, directed by Jon Favreau, based on the comic, and also in the sequel Iron Man 2, again in the assistant’s role / secretary of Tony Stark, Pepper Potts.
In 2010 she starred in the musical film Country Strong, so has contributed to the soundtrack recording and to song Country Strong, released as a single from August 2010 in US radio during the 83rd annual Academy Awards. Paltrow is performed as another song of the soundtrack, Coming Home, which was nominated in the category for best original song.
In 2011 she took part in Steven Soderbergh’s Contagion movie, with a large cast includes, in addition to Paltrow, Matt Damon, Kate Winslet, Jude Law and Marion Cotillard. In 2012 she plays again in the role of Pepper Potts (Iron Man), in The Avengers, the Marvel’s crossover. In 2013 she appears in Iron Man 3, again opposite Robert Downey Jr, playing Pepper Potts, Tony Stark’s girlfriend.