Drop-dead gorgeous - she was voted "England's #1 Beauty" by Hello magazine in 2002 - Kate Beckinsale is equally well known for her intelligence and acting range. The Oxford-educated scion of a family of actors got off to a rough start, though, losing her father at age five and struggling with anorexia as a teenager.
Beckinsale's star turn in Kenneth Branagh's 1993 adaptation of Shakespeare's Much Ado About Nothing established her as a screen presence at the age of 20 and led to such high-brow projects as 2001's Pearl Harbor with Ben Affleck and the Howard Hughes biopic The Aviator with Leonardo DiCaprio.
At the box office, though, Beckinsale's knack for horror and vampire flicks, notably Van Helsing with Hugh Jackman and Underworld, has proven successful in both her career and personal life. In 2004, she married Underworld director, Len Wiseman.