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Rachel McAdams

McAdams at the Toronto Film Festival, September 2007
Born Rachel Anne McAdams
November 17, 1978 (1978-11-17) (age 31)
London, Ontario, Canada
Occupation Actress
Years active 2001–present

Rachel Anne McAdams (born November 17, 1978)[1][2] is a Canadian actress. Her breakout role was playing the "Queen Bee" in 2004's Mean Girls. She then starred in the film adaptation of The Notebook and the hit comedy Wedding Crashers. Her other film credits include The Family Stone, Red Eye and The Time Traveler's Wife. More recently she starred in Guy Ritchie's 2009 adaptation of Sherlock Holmes.


Early life

McAdams was born in London, Ontario, Canada and grew up in the nearby city of St. Thomas. Her father, Lance, is a truck driver, and her mother, Sandra, is a nurse.[3] She has a younger brother, Daniel, and a younger sister, Kayleen. She took up competitive figure skating at the age of four and acting at age 12[4] at a summer theatre camp in St. Thomas, Ontario named Original Kids. When the company extended to a year-round company (and eventually relocated to London, Ontario), she was invited to continue with them. She attended the Myrtle Street Public School[5] and the publicly-funded secondary school Central Elgin Collegiate Institute in St. Thomas from grade nine to OAC and starred in the Award-winning student production I Live in a Little Town. She graduated from York University in Toronto with Honours and a BFA degree in Theatre in 2001.[6] During her fourth year at York, she played a child in The Piper – a workshop led by a creative team from Toronto's Necessary Angel Theatre Company. She also attended Original Kids Theatre Company in London, Ontario, as well as David Rotenberg's on-camera acting class in Toronto with fellow actors Scott Speedman, Kenneth Mitchell, Polly Shannon and David Sutcliffe.[citation needed].


With Robert Downey, Jr. at San Diego Comic-Con, July 2009.

McAdams played a leading role in the film The Hot Chick alongside Rob Schneider, but her career really progressed when she starred as Regina George in 2004's Mean Girls. She was much older than the character she played. McAdams had previously appeared in the Canadian television series Slings and Arrows, co-starring Paul Gross. She played a main role in the first season, but due to her rising stardom was written out of the second season, appearing in only the first episode. She followed Mean Girls with the film adaptation of Nicholas Sparks' novel The Notebook, with Ryan Gosling, with whom she would later begin an off-screen romance.[7]

In 2005, she played Owen Wilson's love interest in Wedding Crashers and then starred in the suspense thriller Red Eye as Lisa Reisert, where she played a young woman held captive aboard a red-eye flight by criminal-for-hire and assassin Jackson Rippner (Cillian Murphy). Rachel also starred in The Family Stone where she was part of an ensemble cast alongside Diane Keaton, Craig T. Nelson, Sarah Jessica Parker, Dermot Mulroney, Luke Wilson, Brian J. White and Claire Danes. McAdams auditioned for the role of Sue Storm in Fantastic Four and only just lost the part to Jessica Alba.[8]

McAdams' career slowed down in 2006. She was originally signed on as the female lead in The Last Kiss but had to drop out due to scheduling conflicts, and the role was given to Jacinda Barrett. She decided to take a year off from acting, to spend time with friends and family. McAdams then agreed to star in the drama Married Life with Pierce Brosnan and Patricia Clarkson. She turned down the role of Bond girl Vesper Lynd in the James Bond film Casino Royale. She stated in an interview in May 2006 that she did not want to star in a big-budget action film because she wanted to pursue other projects.

McAdams opted out of a cover shoot for Vanity Fair—in which she was to appear alongside two other young Hollywood actresses, Scarlett Johansson and Keira Knightley—upon finding out it was to be nude. When McAdams appeared on set and discovered it was nude, she politely declined, according to Knightley.

In her interview with PARADE Magazine, McAdams states, "When you're playing a fictional character, it's as normal and mundane as eating breakfast. What bothers me is our culture's obsession with nudity. It shouldn't be a big deal, but it is. I think this overemphasis with nudity makes actors nervous. There's the worry about seeing one's body dissected, misrepresented, played and replayed on the Internet."[9] McAdams next starred in the political thriller State of Play alongside Academy Award winners Ben Affleck, Russell Crowe and Helen Mirren. Production wrapped in April 2008 and the film was released theatrically April 17, 2009.

McAdams arrives at The Lucky Ones premiere during the 2008 Toronto International Film Festival

In 2009, McAdams starred in Guy Ritchie's film Sherlock Holmes,[10] based on Sir Arthur Conan Doyle's classic stories. McAdams played the role of Irene Adler alongside Robert Downey, Jr. and Jude Law. Filming began in October 2008. Sherlock Holmes was released on Christmas Day 2009.

McAdams also played the title role of Clare Abshire in The Time Traveler's Wife opposite Eric Bana, which was released on August 14, 2009. The film was based on Audrey Niffenegger's 2003 novel of the same name.

Awards and achievements

McAdams received popular acclaim for roles in both Mean Girls and The Notebook and was honored for her work, including a record[citation needed] five nominations and three wins at the MTV Movie Awards in 2005. McAdams beat competition including Beyoncé Knowles and Jessica Alba. She won the MTV award for "Best Kiss" along with Ryan Gosling in The Notebook.

McAdams was nominated for a Genie Award for her role in Perfect Pie. She was also nominated for the BAFTA's Orange Rising Star award, which acknowledges the new talents in the acting industry. The award went to James McAvoy.

She hosted the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences's 2006 Scientific and Technical Awards. McAdams received a Civic Award for her contribution to culture from the city of St. Thomas in 2006.

In April 2009, she was awarded the Female Star of The Year by ShoWest.

Personal life

McAdams dated Ryan Gosling, whom she had met during the making of The Notebook in 2004; they ceased dating in February 2007.[11][12]

McAdams dated actor Josh Lucas for four months in 2009.[13]


Year Title Role Notes
2002 My Name is Tanino Sally Garfield
Perfect Pie Patsy Grady (age 15)
The Hot Chick Jessica Spencer/Clive Maxtone
2004 Mean Girls Regina George
The Notebook Allison "Allie" Hamilton
2005 Wedding Crashers Claire Cleary
Red Eye Lisa Reisert
The Family Stone Amy Stone
2008 Married Life Kay Nesbitt
The Lucky Ones Colee Dunn
2009 State of Play Della Frye
The Time Traveler's Wife Clare Abshire
Sherlock Holmes Irene Adler Nominated — Saturn Award for Best Supporting Actress
2010 Morning Glory Becky Fuller
Year Title Role Notes
2001 Shotgun Love Dolls Beth Swanson Pilot Episode
The Famous Jett Jackson Hannah Grant Season 3, Episode 19: Food for Thought
2002 Guilt by Association Danielle Mason TV Movie
Earth: Final Conflict Christine Bickwell Season 5, Episode 12: Atavus High
2003 Slings and Arrows Kate McNeil Lead role for 1 season


External links


Up to date as of January 14, 2010

From Wikiquote

Rachel McAdams (born October 7, 1976) is a Canadian actress.


  • A friend of mine had this great theory about the Teletubbies, that it's preparing us for being mindless. And getting us ready for living in an underground world. When they build the underground world because we can no longer breathe the air that it will look like Teletubbie land.
  • As strange as movie making is, doing love scenes for the first time with someone you've never even said hello to does work in terms of having a fresh quality to a relationship.
  • I don't know, I like to go on really different types of dates. Going someplace new or some new part of the city, something that's not your average thing. Something where you just go have an adventure together.
  • I guess you have to be really open to your acting partners and believe in the story.
  • I have a certain curiosity for life that drives me and propels me forward.
  • I once made a - it was supposed to be a 30 minute - bean salad that took me like 6 hours.
  • I was just like 'Yeah, bring it on!,' I mean I'd never had a director say that to me, where, you know, he wanted to bring me down two months early and just totally immerse [me] in the culture and, you know, so I went down and right away; tennis, ballet, swing, I would play piano, I took art classes, horseback riding, just did the run of it, I just felt like a little debutante; I had to go here and I had my whole datebook...I'd never had a datebook in my life and I definitely needed one on this film, so by the time I started I'd just felt like I'd already been living that for two months.
  • I want to try a lot of things that I haven't tried. You know, I did a thriller ([[1]]) after this, because it was so different and it was a genre I hadn't worked in yet. Then I did a beautiful family ensemble drama. And next? I don't know. I might go off to do a small independent in New York. I'm not sure. The quality of material is important, but, basically, I'm open to anything. I like to stay open to anything.
  • I want to work with great directors and try not to put too much pressure on myself and just read things for the story and recognize when I'm drawn to something for the right reasons and try to maintain some sanity.
  • I've discovered as I've grown up that life is far more complicated than you think it is when you're a kid. It isn't just a straightforward fairytale.
  • I've sort of heard that "it" girl thing, but not really. Hearing it from a few people doesn't solidify it in my mind and I wouldn't know how to solidify that title. It's so elusive and what does it mean, I don't know?
  • It takes a lot of time, commitment and a choice. I've chosen this path, but it's not to say I'm not open to love or whatever comes my way. You never close doors.
  • The craziest thing I've ever done to get a guy's attention? I admit I stalked someone. I showed up at a restaurant where I knew the guy worked, and we were actually good friends and had lost touch, and I pretended that I didn't know he worked there. And then ran into him and, "Oh my God, you work here? I had no idea." It's the most manipulative thing I've done in my entire life, but it all worked out very well, so I have no regrets.
  • The most romantic thing, a lovely boy bought me a dress once. He got my measurements, actually they were from The Notebook (2004) and I had them sitting somewhere, and he found them and bought me this dress, tailor-made, this beautiful little black cocktail dress. And I thought that was very, very classy.
  • Yeah. I still live in Canada, so it's not quite the same. And when I'm in L.A., I'm in a car; you don't have the contact with the public. It's not so bad. It's still pretty much the same. I still feel pretty normal-ish.

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