Fascinating Facts About Kate Winslet

September 19, 2023 | Alexa Terpanjian

Fascinating Facts About Kate Winslet


Kate Winslet has been wowing American audiences since her breakout role in Titanic, a film that still brings tears to our eyes. But even before she was at the helm of the boat with Leo at sunset, Winslet was well on her way to establishing herself as a prominent English actress.

Fast forward 20 years and more than 25 films later, and Winslet is unstoppable. From Shakespearean roles to raw and emotionally charged characters, Winslet has demonstrated incredible acting talent. Read on to get at 40 fascinating facts about Kate Winslet.


1. One-way Ticket to Superstardom

The then-unknown Kate Winslet reportedly beat out Hollywood heavy-hitters Gwenyth Paltrow, Nicole Kidman, Madonna AND Cameron Diaz for the part of Rose DeWitt Bukater in Titanic,  i.e.the role that skyrocketed her career.

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2. A Show of Appreciation

Titanic director James Cameron clearly felt strongly about the budding actress, and Winslet herself felt grateful for the recognition; she sent Cameron a bouquet of roses to show her appreciation after winning the part.

Kate Winslet FactsGetty Images

3. Young Fresh Blood

At 31, Winslet became part of the esteemed "five-nomination" Oscar club, alongside other members Audrey Hepburn, Elizabeth Taylor, Cate Blanchett, and more. At 33, she earned her sixth nomination for The Reader (which she won), and was most recently nominated for her part in Steve Jobs, bringing her to seven acting nominations and one award.

Actress Kate WinsletDenis Makarenko, Shutterstock

4. Modest Beginnings

When Winslet found out about her record-breaking five nominations, she danced around in her house. As she said, "This wasn’t supposed to happen to somebody like me. I’m not the pedigree kid. I’m not classically trained. I didn’t come from the fancy home".

Kate Winslet FactsGetty Images

5. Drama Kings and Queens

Winslet comes from a rather dramatic family: her father and mother were actors, as well as her two sisters, and her maternal grandparents were both theater managers. Clearly, the theatrical gene is not recessive!

Kate Winslet FactsShutterstock

 

6. Started From the Bottom

She never thought she’d be a movie star. Winslet grew up in a home that didn’t have a VCR until she was 12, and her family was supported by the Actor’s Charitable Club to help make ends meet.

Kate Winslet FactsGetty Images

7. From the Get Go

At 11 years old, Winslet secured a part on a children’s Sugar Puffs commercial dancing with the Honey Monster; it was her first gig. She also started acting classes at this age, then went on to a performing arts school.

Mila Kunis FactsShutterstock

 

8. Who’s Laughing Now?

Her first big success was in the film Heavenly Creatures (1994), which was very well-received. However, a reviewer at the time wrote that Winslet would now be typecast, and predicted she would never become a movie star.

Kate Winslet FactsGetty Images

9. She’s Got Morals

After British GQ photoshopped images of her, Winslet criticized the publication for promoting an unhealthy body image. She says she does not want to really look like the way they made her look, and says the only reason she looks glamourous onscreen is because she’s been in makeup and hair for two hours.

Kate Winslet FactsGetty Images

10. She’s That Good

Winslet must be a good actress; she won an Emmy for playing herself in the British show Extras.

Kate WinsletPhoto Contributor, Shutterstock

11. Hidden Voice

This girl can sing. She recorded her debut single “What If” for the soundtrack to Christmas Carol: The Movie (2001).

Kate Winslet FactsShutterstock

 

12. Strike a Pose

Winslet has graced the cover of over 300 magazines around the world.

Kate Winslet FactsShutterstock

13. So Close, They’re Practically Family

While the rest of the world was falling in love with DiCaprio, Winslet has said that during the shoot for Titanic, having to kiss him was like kissing her brother.

Kate Winslet FactsGetty Images

14. Keen to Learn

For the 2015 film The Dressmaker, Winslet insisted on shadowing costume designer Margot Wilson, who was specifically hired to create Winslet’s character’s wardrobe. Winslet learned how to sew, and assisted Wilson during the whole production with her newly acquired skills.

Kate Winslet FactsGetty Images

15. What Started It All

Winslet credits Jodie Foster’s role as Iris in Taxi Driver (1976) as the role that changed the way she understood acting. After Foster's star turn, Winslet saw acting as an art form.

Martin Scorsese factsTaxi Driver (1976), Columbia Pictures Corporation

 

16. One Strange Love Triangle

In Revolutionary Road, Winslet had to engage in yet another steamy scene with co-star Leonardo DiCaprio—but this time it was in front of her then-husband, director Sam Mendes. DiCaprio was a cool customer about the whole thing, and kept telling her to get over her discomfort with the scenario, to which Winslet replied, "Yeah, a little reminder: You’re my best friend. He’s my husband. This is a bit weird."

Kate Winslet FactsGetty Images

17. These Boots Were Made for Groundin’

Forget heels, Winslet’s favorite shoes to wear are boots. She says she feels more grounded when she wears them.

Kate Winslet FactsNeedpix

18. An Old Soul

Winslet says she has felt older than she really is since her early teen years.

Kate Winslet FactsGetty Images

19. Kate in the Flesh

Winslet has bared it all in over 15 films. She says she feels very comfortable in her own skin, and feels that if the character requires her to remove her clothes, then so be it. It’s all about portraying the character authentically.

Jackie Chan FactsShutterstock

20. Expose Yourself

Bare-all scenes and beyond, Winslet has expressed how important it is to expose herself. She doesn't get embarrassed easily, and refers to herself as the kind of actor who believes in putting herself out there.

Kate Winslet FactsGetty Images

21. Mind the Gap

Even after appearing in some very major films, Winslet has said that she still takes London’s public transit.

Kate Winslet FactsPxHere

22. Made in England

Winslet says it’s imperative that she not lose her identity and British roots. She keeps her pulse on the British film industry, and would prefer a role in a British production over a small part in an American film. Not that she has much trouble in either department.

Kate Winslet FactsGetty Images

 

23. True to Her Roots

Winslet says there is no way she will move out of England, and she doesn't want to live in Los Angeles. She currently lives in West Wittering, Sussex, UK.

Kate Winslet FactsWikimedia Commons, ogwen

24. A Quirky Original

Of all the films Winslet has starred in, from blockbuster hits, to indie movies, to the lesser-known films, she feels that Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind (2004) was her best performance. Indeed, Winslet’s role as Clementine Kruczynski in the film earned her the 81st spot on Premiere magazine’s 100 Greatest Performanes of All Time.

Kate Winslet FactsGetty Images

25. Dame Kate is Next

In 2012 at Buckingham Palace, Winslet was awarded a very prestigious honor by Queen Elizabeth II herself, a CBE Award. CBE stands for The Commander of the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire, and the accolade was given for outstanding “services rendered to drama".

Kate Winslet FactsGetty Images

26. Okay Then

Winslet’s husband's legal name is Ned Rocknroll.

Kate Winslet FactsGetty Images

27. A Story for the Grandkids

Winslet's third child is Bear Blaze Winslet, a son. A little odd, but the name Blaze is an ode to the day she met Rocknroll on Richard Branson’s private Caribbean island and they rescued Branson's 90-year-old mother from a house that had caught on fire. "Bear" comes from the nickname of an old friend.

Kate Winslet FactsShutterstock

28. What Does He Do..?

Rocknroll, originaly born Abel Smith, is Winslet’s third husband, and the nephew of Richard Branson. He works for Uncle Richard’s Virgin Galactic company.

Kate Winslet FactsGetty Images

 

29. Eyes on the Prize

In order to pursue other indie films that she had her eye on, Winslet reportedly turned down roles in both in Shakespeare in Love (1998) and Anna and the King (1999).

Jerry Lewis FactsShutterstock

 

30. On to the Next

Winslet was heavily considered for the role of Bridget Jones in Bridget Jones’ Diary. However, in the end, the production wanted someone who appeared to be a little older.

Rom-com factsGetty Images

 

31. Good Career Move

Before her big break, Winslet worked at a deli. In fact, she was making a pastrami sandwich when her excited agent phoned to tell her that she had landed the part of Juliet Hulme in Heavenly Creatures.

Kate Winslet FactsFlickr

32. Bold Choice

Winslet was so elated to have secured the leading lady role in Titanic, she refused to wear a wetsuit while filming. She wanted to remain authentic, but eventually came down with a case of pneumonia. Understandably!

Kate Winslet FactsGetty Images

33. Hair Chameleon

Winslet’s hair color has changed so many times, it’s hard to keep up. Her natural hair color? Strawberry blonde.

Kate Winslet FactsGetty Images

34. Her Shoes Will Be Big to Fill

The actress has large feet for her height. Standing at pretty average 5'7", she’s got surprising size 11 feet!

Kate Winslet FactsGetty Images

35. Strange Interest

Nonetheless, Winslet is into her own feet, maybe even a bit obsessive. Winslet let the cat out of the bag in an interview with Good Housekeeping when she confessed that she likes to pick at them any time she can.

Kate Winslet FactsGetty Images

 

36. Lovely Idea

Kate Winslet keeps her Oscar in the bathroom so people will make up thank you speeches while “taking care of business".

Alfred Hitchcock factsLibreShot

 

37. Best Uncle Ever

All of Winslet's three children refer to DiCaprio as Uncle Leo.

Kate Winslet FactsGetty Images

38. She’s Got Her Priorities Straight

Winslet missed the premier of Titanic (1997) to attend her ex-boyfriend’s funeral.

Paul Walker factsShutterstock

39. But She Is!

She has a hard time being referred to as a movie star. She considers Julia Roberts to be of that ilk, but feels ridiculous when she’s called that. Winslets takes it as a compliment, but also as a huge responsibility.

julia roberts factsGetty Images

40. When Fans Go Too Far

Winslet says she is still disturbed and “haunted” by her bare-all scene in Titanic with Leonardo DiCaprio, only recently revealing that fans still go after her with images of the drawing of her body and ask her to sign it. She always refuses.

Kate Winslet FactsGetty Images

 

Sources: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11


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