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Sienna Tiggy Guillory ( ; born 16 March 1975) is an Englishmarker actress, and a former model. She is the daughter of Isaac Guillory, an Anglo-Cubanmarker folk guitarist, and the family environment gave her an interest in the entertainment industry. She has been featured in numerous British and American productions. More recently, Guillory has appeared in a number of science-fiction and fantasy themed films aimed at teenage audiences.

Guillory, who was sixteen and still at school, began her career with a role in the television series Jilly Cooper's Riders. Following more small television and film roles, she modelled for a few years to support her acting. She was featured in campaigns by Armani, Dolce & Gabbana, Burberry, and Paul Smith, but her biggest job was as the face of the Hugo Boss fragrance campaign from 1999 to 2002. Afterwards, Guillory focused her career in mostly Englishmarker and BBC productions; the BBC adaptation of Take a Girl Like You, a three-part miniseries broadcast in November 2000, was something of a breakthrough role. In 2003, Guillory played the title role in the US miniseries Helen of Troy. She went on to gain lead roles in films with a broader audience in the video game adaptation Resident Evil: Apocalypse (2004) as Jill Valentine and in the fantasy novel adaptation Eragon (2006) as elf princess Arya Dröttningu.

Guillory appeared in yet another fantasy novel adaptation, the film Inkheart, as Resa. She was cast in the pilot for Fox television series The Oaks as Jessica, a woman with Asperger syndrome. The pilot was filmed on 5 November 2007. She is currently cast as Rika Goddard in the pilot for Virtuality, also for the Fox network.

Personal life

Early life and family

Guillory at the VX Auteur Theory awards at the 4th Halloween Short Film Festival, London, January 2007.
Born in Northamptonshiremarker, Englandmarker, Guillory is the daughter of the Americanmarker folk guitarist Isaac Guillory and his first wife, Tina Thompson, whom he married in 1973. Isaac Guillory was of Jewish heritage and born at the Guantanamomarker naval base in Cubamarker, the son of Easton Joseph Guillory, an American sailor, and Victoria Ojalvo, who was from a Cubanmarker-Turkishmarker family.

Her parents moved to Fulhammarker, Londonmarker when Guillory was two, then later to Norfolk when she was eleven. At the age of ten, she went to stay with cousins in Mexicomarker to learn Spanish. She has a half-brother named Jace, whom her father had adopted and with whom she shares the same mother. Her parents divorced in 1990 when she was fourteen, and in 1993 her father married Vickie McMillan, which resulted in a much younger half-sister and half-brother, Eleanor and Jacob. Guillory attended Gresham's Schoolmarker in Holt, Norfolkmarker, where she took part in numerous school productions. She was later expelled from the school for stealing.

Guillory has been an equestrian since the age of two. At fourteen, she was given a horse, which she named The Night Porter, or "Porty", after the film The Night Porter; Guillory was a fan of its leading actress Charlotte Rampling. She still often rides horses with her mother.

In 1995, a few years after separating from Guillory's father, her mother, Tina, established her own business, 'The Carrier Company', designing and making country clothes, which she still runs from a 17th century farmhouse at Wightonmarker in Norfolk.

In December 2000, Guillory's father died of cancer at the age of fifty-three. When diagnosed, doctors told him he had had the cancer for six years. About her father's health, she has explained that the cancer was supposedly brought on when Isaac was performing in Walesmarker shortly after the nuclear incident at Chernobylmarker. After his show, Isaac Guillory wore a jacket soaked in rain from the Welsh location for a five-hour drive. He learned afterwards that the rain contained fallout from the incident. Isaac's cancer was on his back and shoulders, where he believed the rain had caused it.

Relationships

Guillory began dating fellow actor Nick Moran in 1997. The couple broke up after 3 years in 2000. Later that year, she began dating Enzo Cilenti. Cilenti and Guillory married in 2002, and during the ceremony Guillory wore her grandmother's wedding dress. They resided in Los Angelesmarker and London, but in 2007, the couple settled in Los Angeles.

Interests

Guillory and her husband are ex-smokers. She is interested in homoeopathy and natural remedies, saying that when she was a child her mother worked at a health food shop and was hesitant to give antibiotics. Guillory is also a fan of acupuncture. She goes to The Joint Gym on Hollywood Boulevard. She also enjoys Latin and Japanese cuisine and eats at a variety of restaurants in the Los Angeles area.

Guillory describes herself as eclectic and a "magpie" dresser. She is a fan of the fashion line Moschino, but is not keen on what she describes as "fashion jeans".

Guillory has said that outside acting she "really enjoy[s] writing. Much more than other people enjoy reading it." She has also claimed that the novels Jonathan Livingston Seagull, The Man Who Planted Trees and The Master and Margarita, have played large roles in her life.

Career

Modelling

In 1997, Guillory accompanied a ballerina friend to the London modelling agency Select and was soon signed. She modelled solely to support her acting career. As a model, she worked in campaigns for Armani, Dolce & Gabbana, Burberry, and Paul Smith and appeared on the covers of British, German and Italian Vogue, among other fashion magazines. In 1999, she became the face of the Hugo Boss fragrance campaign, succeeding model Karen Ferrari and continuing the campaign for three years. After modelling for a few years, Guillory returned her focus to acting in 2000. She is signed to Independent Models in Londonmarker.

Acting

Guillory explained that she "became an actor because I wanted to know what it was like to be other people. Because possibly I don't like myself," and later said "I hate acting, really hate it. I kind of fell into it sideways ... I started acting because I got offered a job when I was 16, and they wanted to pay me £8,000, and we'd always lived on Family Support..." She went on to say that her frustration with later film roles left her bitter, but after seeing Helen Mirren onstage she was inspired again.

In 1993, Guillory made her screen debut in a TV adaptation of Jilly Cooper's Riders, for which the casting directors needed a young actress who was able to ride a horse. Her performance landed her in another small role in the miniseries The Buccaneers, opposite Mira Sorvino.

Before becoming a model to support her acting career, Guillory waited tables at a club. In an interview in 2000, she said about the experience "Supporting my acting habit with waitressing was probably the most useful thing I've done." During her time as a model, she studied acting at the New World School of the Arts and the Paris Conservatoire, also taking small television and film roles in The Future Lasts a Long Time (1996), The Rules of Engagement (1999), Star! Star! (1999), Kiss Kiss (Bang Bang) (2000), The 3 Kings (2000), and Two Days, Nine Lives (2000). During this time, Guillory decided to go on with her acting career because "I was so scared of going to university and being with people my own age again, having been with that tiny little sect of girls in Norfolk whose daddies were farmers and politicians, who didn't trust me and didn't know where I was coming from."

After deciding to focus her career on acting, she returned to film with a more substantial role in the thriller Sorted (2000). Guillory went on to appear in the BBC production Take a Girl Like You, a television adaptation of Kingsley Amis's novel of the same name. She portrayed Jenny Bunn, the story's virginal heroine, and gained critical attention for her part in the period piece. Guillory was pleased to have played a more innocent character, saying "I've played floozies, psychopaths, assassins, crackheads.... It's nice to do something with a lighter touch." The production did not fare well in the ratings.

In 2001, Guillory continued with other roles in predominantly British films, including Oblivious, Late Night Shopping (with husband Enzo Cilenti), The Last Minute, and Superstition. 2002 saw Guillory appear in The Time Machine, alongside Guy Pearce and Jeremy Irons. She was pleased to take on a larger scale film, after having worked on low-budget independent films, and compared the experience with "finding an unicorn in your sock drawer." She played Emma, the fiancée of Pearce's character, who was killed early in the film and whose death set off its main events.

In 2003, after a friend had received a script for The Principles of Lust, Guillory claims she "read it and couldn't put it down, and begged to read for the part". She was impressed by director Penny Woolcock's unconventional style of shooting, without rehearsing the actors, using raw takes and improvisational performances. For the role of Juliette, Guillory performed nude in the film's sex scenes which were filmed during the first week of filming, making her somewhat nervous. She later went on to say that it was one of her favourite acting experiences. Afterwards, Guillory had a small role in the romantic comedy Love, Actually before taking the starring role in the television miniseries Helen of Troy. The series was mostly based on Homer's epic poem Iliad and focuses on the mythological life of Helen. Helen of Troy was nominated for best miniseries at the Satellite Awards.

In May 2004, Guillory starred in a new stage production of The Shape of Things at the New Ambassadors Theatremarker in London, with husband Cilenti. 2004 also saw Guillory in her first big Hollywoodmarker role. She was cast as Jill Valentine, one of the lead characters in the video game adaptation sequel Resident Evil: Apocalypse. The film makers had searched widely for an actress to portray the video game character and found her in Guillory, who had to "please not only the movie-going audience but also the gamers". She was, however, "a dead ringer for Jill Valentine." Guillory was reported to have studied the original character's movements by watching playthroughs of the video game Resident Evil 3: Nemesis. Before getting the script for the film, she had not been familiar with the video games or seen Resident Evil. She said about her role:Resident Evil: Apocalypse, although it was not well received by critics, grossed $23,036,273 on its opening weekend (10–12 September 2004) and took a total of $51,201,453 in the United Statesmarker and $129,394,835 worldwide.

After the success of Resident Evil: Apocalypse, Guillory went on to appear in other film and television roles, including Beauty (2004), Marple: A Murder Is Announced (2005), In the Bathroom (2005), The Virgin Queen (2005), Silence Becomes You (2005), and Rabbit Fever (2006).

In 2006, Guillory was a lead in the ensemble cast of the fantasy Eragon, the film adaptation of the novel by Christopher Paolini; the role had reunited her with The Time Machine co-star Jeremy Irons. She portrayed Arya Dröttningu, an elf princess. She hadn't read the novels before filming, but after accepting the role she soon became a fan of Paolini's work. Although Arya is a key character in the film, Guillory had little screen time and went on to say jokingly: "I've been trying to explain to friends who've seen the trailer [...] I'm like, "[...] but that's my whole part!"" Eragon was not well received by the critics, but was nominated as Best Fantasy Film at the 2006 Saturn Awards. The film went on to gross approximately $75 million in the US and $173.9 million elsewhere, totalling $249 million worldwide. Guillory was also invited to reprise her role as Jill Valentine in Resident Evil: Extinction, the sequel to Resident Evil: Apocalypse, but could not accept due to scheduling conflicts with Eragon.

In 2007, she starred in the Spanish production El Corazón de la tierra, or The Heart of the Earth, and later in the year finished filming the horror/thriller Victims and the fantasy novel adaptation Inkheart. In Inkheart, she plays Resa, the wife of Brendan Fraser's character and the mother of Eliza Bennett's. Inkheart sees Guillory acting alongside Helen Mirren, a friend of the Guillory family who was a role model when she first had aspirations towards acting.

Guillory will be a lead in the forthcoming television series The Oaks, expected to begin airing in 2008. She joins Bahar Soomekh, Matt Lanter, Romy Rosemont, Jeremy Renner, Michael Rispoli and Shannon Lucio in the series which follows the intertwining stories of three families — a young couple in 1968 that have lost a child, a family of four in 1998, and a pregnant couple in 2008 — who are haunted by the same spirit in their house. The television series began filming on 5 November 2007 on location in Pasadena, Californiamarker. Guillory will play Jessica, the 2008 couple's neighbour, a woman who has Asperger syndrome who went to school with the husband (and father-to-be) and shares a secret with him.

Milla Jovovich, star of the Resident Evil series and who acted alongside of Guillory in Resident Evil: Apocalypse recently revealed via her Twitter page that Guillory's character Jill Valentine may return in the latest installment, Resident Evil: Afterlife, though it is unknown whether Guillory herself will return or if the role will be recast.

Media

In 2001, readers of Esquire UK voted Guillory "Britain's Most Eligible Woman" and featured her in a pictorial in the magazine. Guillory was photographed for the cover and shoot by photographer Jonathan Glynn Smith. In 2002, she was number 89 on Maxim's list of "The 100 Sexiest Women", and in 2007 Guillory was voted number 54 at Askmen.com's Top 99 Countdown.

Guillory has also been quoted as disliking the Hollywoodmarker culture, saying she does not wish to be part of it:

Charity

In August 2004, Guillory and Cilenti cycled five stages of the Tour de France to raise money for charity. Guillory said "I used to be a long-distance runner when I was younger, but this is ten times more exhausting". Guillory supports Amnesty International and Shelter.

Filmography

Films

Year Film Role Other notes
1996 The Future Lasts a Long Time Blue
1997 The Rules of Engagement Denise
Star! Star! Lu
2000 Sorted Sunny
Two Days, Nine Live Kate
The 3 Kings Roxana
Kiss Kiss Kat
2001 Oblivious Jessica
Late Night Shopping Susie
The Last Minute Kayak Girl
Superstition Julie
2002 The Time Machine Emma
2003 The Principles of Lust Juliette
Love, Actually Jamie's Girlfriend
Helen of Troy Helen
2004 Resident Evil: Apocalypse Jill Valentine
2005 In the Bathroom The Woman
Silence Becomes You Grace
2006 Rabbit Fever Newscaster
Eragon Arya Dröttningu
2007 El Corazón de la tierra Katherine English title:

The Heart of the Earth
2008 Perfect Life TBA
Inkheart Resa


Television

Year Title Role Other notes
1993 Riders Fenella Maxwell TV series
1995 The Buccaneers Lady Felicia TV miniseries
1999 Out of Sight Ingrid 2 episodes
Dzvirpaso M 4 episodes
2000 Take a Girl Like You Jenny Bunn TV miniseries
2003 Helen of Troy Helen TV miniseries
2004 Beauty Cathy Wardle TV film
2005 Marple: A Murder Is Announced Julia Simmons 1 episode
The Virgin Queen Lettice Knollys TV miniseries
est. 2008 The Oaks Jessica TV series
2008 Virtuality Rika Goddard TV series


References

External links




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