Europe South Asia Asia Pacific Americas Middle East Africa BBC Homepage World Service Education
BBC Homepagelow graphics version | feedback | help
BBC News Online
 You are in: Entertainment
Front Page 
UK Politics 
New Music Releases 
Talking Point 
In Depth 
Wednesday, 15 March, 2000, 12:56 GMT
Beckinsale's 'big break'
Kate Beckinsale
Beckinsale won her first movie role while at university
British actress Kate Beckinsale is set to break into Hollywood's big time starring opposite heart-throb Ben Affleck in a World War II epic.

The 25-year-old, whose previous films include Shooting Fish, The Last Days of Disco and last year's Brokedown Palace, is in talks to take the female lead in Pearl Harbor - a high-profile project set to begin shooting next month in Hawaii.

Ben Affleck
Already on board: Ben Affleck
According to the US entertainment newspaper, Variety, she would play a navy nurse who meets Rafe - played by Ben Affleck - during a medical exam.

After they fall in love, she is shipped off to sunny Pearl Harbour - a supposed safe haven - to join the Pacific fleet.

Directed by Michael Bay, of Armageddon fame, the cast of the Walt Disney film already includes Oscar-winner Cuba Gooding Jr and Josh Hartnett, who starred in Halloween: H20.

Affleck, who won an Oscar for Good Will Hunting, has reportedly agreed to take on the role for no upfront payment in a bid to stem the epic's $135m (85m) budget.

Hollywood insiders believe Pearl Harbor may have the makings of another Titanic - and propel Beckinsale into the Hollywood big league.

Rise to fame

The actress is the daughter of the late Richard Beckinsale - a star of the comedy series Porridge and Rising Damp, who died in March 1979 from a heart attack at the age of 31.

Last year she told US reporters: "What I like a lot about working in America is that my father was very, very famous in England and because he died so suddenly and so young, there was such a shock around him that every time I ever did anything it was always mentioned."

She was still at Oxford University when she was picked for a small part in Kenneth Branagh's Much Ado About Nothing. This was followed by the leads in the TV costume dramas Cold Comfort Farm and Emma.

Search BBC News Online

Advanced search options
Launch console
See also:

25 Dec 99 | Tom Brook
The talented Miss Paltrow
17 Dec 99 | Entertainment
'Blasphemous' movie sparks protest
Internet links:

The BBC is not responsible for the content of external internet sites

Links to other Entertainment stories are at the foot of the page.

E-mail this story to a friend

Links to more Entertainment stories