9 Milestones in the Evolution of Kate Winslet

Little Children (2006)

While we're on the subject of Kate Winslet and Academy Award nominations, I'll mention that the British actress earned her fifth Oscar nod for her role in Little Children -- as a lonely housewife who begins an affair with her handsome neighbor (Patrick Wilson). Just 31 years old at the time, Winslet broke the record for the youngest actress to have been nominated for five little gold men. This Todd Field film would also mark the first project in which Winslet plays a wife unhappy with her suburban existence. (See also: Revolutionary Road)

The Holiday (2006)

After a decade plus of serious roles and dramatic characters, Kate Winslet tried something different in 2006. A romantic comedy. And not just a romantic comedy but a romantic comedy that didn't earn her multiple award nominations. In this Nancy Meyers rom-com, Winslet played a British newspaper editor who attempts to heal her broken heart by swapping homes with Cameron Diaz over the holiday. Unsurprisingly, Winslet's character falls in love with her new L.A. existence and a music composer played by Jack Black. Even though critics noted that this film lacked substance -- and I walked out after the first fifteen minutes -- it became a commercial success after grossing over $200 million worldwide.

The Reader (2008)

The same year that Winslet drew rave reviews for her onscreen reunion with Titanic co-star Leonardo DiCaprio in Revolutionary Road (for which David Denby called her "the best English-speaking film actress of her generation."), Winslet turned in another powerful performance in Stephen Daldry's drama The Reader. As a woman who faces life in prison for war crimes fifteen years after an affair that could actually help her in trial, her performance opposite Ralph Fiennes earned her her first Academy Award. Finally! It is worth noting that the Academy could not offer Winslet a nomination for her Revolutionary Road performance that same year because, by their standards, her role qualified as a leading one and Oscar rules prohibit an actor from being nominated more than once in a given category.

Carnage (2011)

After an Emmy-winning turn in this year's HBO miniseries Mildred Pierce, Winslet returns to the big screen for Roman Polanski's ensemble drama. Winslet plays an investment banker, who with the help of her husband (Christoph Waltz), tries to reach an agreement with another couple (Jodie Foster and John C. Reilly) after their sons get into an argument at the park. For her role, Winslet has already been nominated for a Golden Globe.

Next up, the actress is slated to appear in Movie 43, a feature film comprised of comedy shorts co-starring everyone from Emma Stone and Naomi Watts to Justin Long and Seann William Scott. After that, we're not sure what the future holds for Winslet aside from presumably more award nominations -- oh, and that 3-D Titanic re-release.

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