, Toledo, Ohio, U.S.
Kate Noelle "Katie" Holmes is an American actress who first achieved fame for her role as Joey Potter on The WB television teen drama Dawson's Creek from 1998 to 2003. Her movie roles have ranged from art house films such as The Ice Storm to thrillers such as Abandon to blockbusters such as Batman Begins. Holmes was born in Toledo, Ohio, the youngest in a family of five children of Kathleen A, a homemaker and a philanthropist, and Martin Joseph Holmes, an attorney specializing in divorces. In early 2005, Holmes began a highly publicized relationship with actor Tom Cruise. In June, two months after they first met, Holmes and Cruise were engaged. Their relationship made Holmes the subject of international media attention. Holmes joined the Church of Scientology shortly after the couple began dating. On April 18, 2006, Holmes gave birth to their daughter, Suri. On November 18, 2006, she and Cruise married in Italy.
In January 1997, Holmes went to Los Angeles for pilot season, when producers cast and shoot new programs in the hopes of securing a spot on a network schedule. The Toledo Blade reported she was offered the lead in Buffy the Vampire Slayer but she turned it down. Columbia Tri-Star Television, producer of a new show created by screenwriter Kevin Williamson, asked her to come to Los Angeles to audition, but there was a conflict with her schedule. "I was doing my school play, Damn Yankees. And I was playing Lola. I even got to wear the feather boa. I thought, 'There is no way I'm not playing Lola to go audition for some network. I couldn't let my school down. We had already sold a lot of tickets. So I told Kevin and The WB, 'I'm sorry. I just can't meet with you this week. I've got other commitments.'"
The producers permitted her to audition on videotape. Holmes read for the part of Joey Potter, the tomboy best friend of the title character Dawson, on a videotape shot in her basement, her mother reading Dawson's lines. The Hollywood Reporter claimed the story of Holmes's audition "has become the stuff of legend" and "no one even thought that it was weird that one of the female leads would audition via Federal Express."
Holmes won the part. Paul Stupin, executive producer of the show, said his first reaction on seeing her audition tape was "That's Joey Potter!" Creator and executive producer Kevin Williamson said Holmes has a "unique combination of talent, beauty and skill that makes Hollywood come calling. But that's just the beginning. To meet her is to instantly fall under her spell." Williamson thought she had exactly the right look for Joey Potter. "She had those eyes, those eyes just stained with loneliness."
Her first leading role came in Disturbing Behavior (1998), a Scream-era Stepford Wives-goes-to-high school thriller, where she was a loner from the wrong side of the tracks. Roger Ebert of the Chicago Sun-Times wrote her character, Rachel, "dresses in black and likes to strike poses on the beds of pickup trucks and is a bad girl who is in great danger of becoming a very good one." The actress won a MTV Movie Award for Best Breakthrough Performance for the role, though Holmes said the film was "just horrible."
Holmes played a disaffected supermarket clerk in Doug Liman's ensemble piece Go (1999).
She had an uncredited cameo with Dawson's Creek co-star Joshua Jackson in Muppets from Space (1999), which was also filmed in Wilmington.
In Kevin Williamson's Teaching Mrs. Tingle (1999), which he wrote and directed, Holmes played a straight-A student whose vindictive teacher (Helen Mirren) threatens to keep her from a desperately needed scholarship.
"Joey Potter is a headstrong, vibrant, wily, sultry, and determined go-getter. And yet, in a gloriously contradictory manner, in spite of her tough-as-nails exterior demeanor, Joey's also a frail, sometimes uncertain, emotionally sensitive, in-need-of-love person", said the show's official book. Joey, named for Jo in Little Women, for years had been climbing in Dawson's bedroom window and platonically sharing his bed. Joey's mother had died from cancer when Joey was thirteen and her father, Mike (Gareth Williams), was in prison for "conspiracy to traffic in marijuana in excess of 10,000 pounds." Her harried, unmarried, and very pregnant sister, Bessie (Nina Repeta), about ten years older than Joey,[n 2] was raising her while running the Ice House restaurant, where Joey worked as a waitress. GQ described Joey as "kind of an uptight fussbudget—one who's always twisted up over doing the right thing and bungling-up ways to hook up with her crush and across the creek neighbor, Dawson."
"I'm a lot like Joey", said Holmes. "I think they saw that. I come from a small town. I was a tomboy. Joey tries to be articulate and deny that she doesn't have a lot of experience in life. Her life parallels mine, which is all about new everything—relationships, personal perceptions—and about being guarded." Holmes filmed the pilot of Dawson's Creek in Wilmington, North Carolina, during spring break of her senior year of high school in 1997.
The 5 ft 9 in (1.75 m) tall brunette enchanted the press, writers of both sexes commenting how Holmes was the sort of girl one wants to bring home to meet the parents and to marry. "The Audrey Hepburn of her generation", was one typical comment. Time called her "impossibly lovely" and Entertainment Weekly said she was "next up for idolhood." Variety, reviewing the pilot, said Holmes "is a confident young performer who delivers her lines with slyness and conviction."
Holmes made such an impression in Hollywood, The New York Times Magazine claimed everyone was seeking to cast a "Katie Holmes type", who, the reporter claimed, "is a throwback to the 1950s: she is a smart girl next door (as opposed to the babe-o-rama blondes)". But her "type" was no less attractive, Arena magazine declaring her "the most coquettishly sexy woman on television. Anywhere."
Holmes was soon on the covers of magazines such as Seventeen, TV Guide, and Rolling Stone. Jancee Dunn, an editor at Rolling Stone said she was chosen for the cover because "every time you mention Dawson's Creek you tend to get a lot of dolphin-like shrieks from teenage girls. The fact that she is drop-dead gorgeous didn't hurt either."
Reviews of Dawson's Creek were mixed. The Toledo Blade said the characters "just talk like they came from a planet ruled by Manhattan psychologists, one where small talk is punishable by death." Holmes herself needed help with the dialogue. "Sometimes before we read a script, I have to get my dictionary and call people to make sure I'm pronouncing some of the words correctly." The show brought her national attention and many fans back home; Toledo's Thanksgiving Day parade in November 1998 had record attendance when Holmes was named grand marshal.
Dawson's Creek ran from 1998 to 2003, and Holmes was the only actor to appear in all 128 episodes. "It was very difficult for me to leave Wilmington, to have my little glass bubble burst and move on. I hate change. On the other hand it was refreshing to play someone else", she said in 2004. Holmes confirmed that, as often happens on soaps, the character was a caricature of the actor:
“I miss her spirit, and her spunk, and I miss her anxiety. She always had these long speeches about her fears and her future and love. It was a great tool for me personally because I got to get it all out. I was able to psychoanalyze all of it every day with her and then I wouldn't have to do it on my own. So much of me is in Joey and it really felt like I grew up on television.”
"As Joey", said Life magazine, "Holmes has had seismic influences on teen life... Through it all, Joey has managed to hang on to her integrity... The show—and Katie's character in particular—has touched a nerve."
This article is missing information about reception of Holmes' performances in Go, Teaching Mrs Tingle, Phone Booth, The Singing Detective, The Extra Man, The Romantics, Don't Be Afraid of the Dark, The Son of No One. Please expand the primary text and the lead to include this information. (September 2011)
In 2005, Holmes characterised her film career as being a string of "bombs." "Usually I'm not even in the top ten", she said, the highest grossing film of her career then being Phone Booth. She lamented "It's not like I have a lot of stuff that's great just waiting for me to sign on to."
In Wonder Boys (2000), directed by Curtis Hanson from the novel by Michael Chabon, Holmes had a small role (six and one-half minutes of screen time) but nevertheless attracted the attention of numerous film critics with her performance as Hannah Green, the talented student who lusts after Professor Grady Tripp (Michael Douglas), her creative writing instructor and landlord. Kenneth Turan of the Los Angeles Times said she was "just right as the beauty with kind of a crush on the old man."
In The Gift (2000), a Southern Gothic story directed by Sam Raimi and starring Cate Blanchett, she played the antithesis of Joey Potter: a promiscuous rich girl having affairs with everyone from a sociopathic wife-beater (Keanu Reeves) to the district attorney (Gary Cole), and is murdered by her fiancé (Greg Kinnear). Holmes did her first nude scene for the film, in a scene where her character was about to be murdered. Her appearance was lamented by Variety's Steven Kotler. In Ohio, the scene met with disapproval from Russ Lemmon writing in the Toledo Blade.
Holmes hosted Saturday Night Live on February 24, 2001, participating in a send-up of Dawson's Creek where she falls madly in love with Chris Kattan's Mr. Peepers character and singing "Big Spender" from Sweet Charity. On the November 9, 2003 episode, she was Punk'd by Ashton Kutcher and the next year she was the subject of an episode of the MTV program Diary.
In Abandon (2002), written by Oscar winner Stephen Gaghan, Holmes was a delusional, homicidal college student named "Katie." Todd McCarthy of Variety and Roger Ebert commended her performance, but other critics and audiences savaged it. The actress played the mistress of the public relations flack played by Colin Farrell in Phone Booth (2002) and Robert Downey, Jr.'s nurse in The Singing Detective (2003). Holmes's next starring role was in Pieces of April (2003), a gritty comedy about a dysfunctional family on Thanksgiving. Variety said it was "one of her best film performances." "Each actor shines", wrote Elvis Mitchell, "even Ms. Holmes, whose beauty seems to have fogged the minds of her previous directors" in playing "a brat who is slaving to find her inner decency and barely has the equipment for such an achievement, let alone to serve a meal whose salmonella potential could claim an entire borough. Yet it is her surliness, as well as her intransigent determination to make Thanksgiving work, that keeps the laughs coming."
In 2003, Holmes was a contender for the role of Christine Daaé in 2004's The Phantom of the Opera, but lost the role to Emmy Rossum.
Holmes played the President's daughter in First Daughter, which was originally to be released in January 2004 on the same day as Chasing Liberty, another film about a president's daughter, but was ultimately released in September 2004 to dismal reviews and ticket sales. First Daughter, directed by Forest Whitaker, also starred Michael Keaton as her father and Marc Blucas as her love interest. The Hollywood Reporter's Kirk Honeycutt called her character, Samantha Mackenzie, "a startling example of how a studio film can dumb down and neutralize the comic abilities of a lively young star." In the 2005 film Batman Begins, the most successful film of her career to date, she played Rachel Dawes, an attorney in the Gotham City district attorney's office and the childhood sweetheart of the title character. Variety was unenthusiastic. "Holmes is OK", was its critic's sole remark on her performance. She was nominated for a Golden Raspberry for "worst supporting actress" for the film.
In 2005, she appeared in the film version of Christopher Buckley's satirical novel Thank You for Smoking about a tobacco lobbyist played by Aaron Eckhart, whom Holmes's character, a Washington reporter, seduces. Variety wrote one of the film's "sole relatively weak notes [came] from Holmes, who lacks even a hint of the wiliness of a ruthless reporter" and The New York Times said the cast was "exceptionally fine" except for Holmes, who "strain[ed] credulity" in her role.
Holmes had agreed to play in Shame on You, a biopic about the country singer Spade Cooley written and directed by Dennis Quaid, as the wife whom Cooley (played by Quaid) stomps to death. But the picture, set to shoot in New Orleans, Louisiana, was delayed by Hurricane Katrina, and Holmes dropped out because of her pregnancy.
In 2008, Holmes appeared in an episode of Eli Stone as Grace, a lawyer, and her singing and dancing was praised by Tim Stack of Entertainment Weekly.
After speculation about Holmes reprising her role in The Dark Knight, the sequel to Batman Begins, it was finally confirmed that she would not appear. Her role was later recast with Maggie Gyllenhaal in her place. Instead, Holmes decided to star in the comedy Mad Money, opposite Diane Keaton and Queen Latifah. The Canadian Press criticized Katie Holmes's performance "While Keaton has long done zany and giddy well, and she and Latifah have an interesting contrast of personalities, Holmes' presence feels like an afterthought." The New York Post, The New York Times and Variety also criticized Katie Holmes's performance in the film, and The New York Times called Holmes "the movie's weakest link."
In early July 2009, Holmes began filming a remake of the 1970s ABC telemovie Don't Be Afraid of the Dark; the film was released in August 2011.
Holmes and Chace Crawford have been cast as the leads in the romantic comedy Responsible Adults, to begin shooting in Los Angeles in "fall 2011".
In 2011, Katie Holmes played the role of Jackie Kennedy in The Kennedys. Linda Stasi felt that Holmes took a while to get into the role, but was ultimately convincing as Kennedy. Bob Owen felt that while Holmes resembled Kennedy, Holmes could not perform her accent correctly. Dorothy Rabinovitz felt that while Holmes had Kennedy's "whispery tone", that she could not pull off Kennedy's class.
In October 2011, she also played the role of the "Slutty Pumpkin" (Naomi), in the TV show How I Met Your Mother, episode "The Slutty Pumpkin Returns".
Holmes made her Broadway debut in the revival of Arthur Miller's All My Sons in October 2008. She opened to mixed reviews. Ben Brantley of The New York Times claimed "the neophyte Ms. Holmes" is a "sad casualty" of director Simon McBurney's "high concept approach" to the play. He adds that "Ms. Holmes delivers most of her lines with meaningful asperity, italicising every word." Clive Barnes of the New York Post was similarly unimpressed by Holmes – and had few compliments for her co-stars. He wrote, "Lithgow starts in a sunny, benign fashion, but eventually finds himself screeching alongside Holmes, looking tough under a glossy wig."
However, The New York Daily News' Joe Dziemianowicz was won over by the actress' first stint on stage, writing, "Holmes, a TV and film vet, makes a fine Broadway debut. Her rather grand speech pattern takes getting used to, but she seems comfortable and adds a fitting glint of glamour." In 2009, Holmes appeared in the National Memorial Day Concert on the Mall in Washington, D.C. in a dialogue with Dianne Wiest celebrating the life of an American veteran seriously wounded in Iraq, José Pequeño.
Holmes was annually named by both the British and American editions of FHM magazine as one of the sexiest women in the world from 1999 forward. She was named one of People's "50 Most Beautiful People" in 2003; its sibling Teen People declared her one of the "25 Hottest Stars Under 25" that year; and in 2005, People said she was one of the ten best dressed stars that year. She has appeared in advertisements for Garnier Lumia haircolor, Coach leather goods, and clothing retailer The Gap.
After much speculation, in late November 2008, it was confirmed that she would be the new face of the spring 2009 campaign for the high-end fashion line Miu Miu.
In 2008, Holmes started a high fashion clothing line called Holmes &Yang with longtime stylist Jeanne Yang.
In July 2009, Holmes, Nigel Lythgoe, Adam Shankman, and Carrie Ann Inaba announced the launch of a dance scholarship fund called the Dizzy Feet Foundation.
Beginning January 2011, she became the new face of Ann Taylor Spring 11 collection. In April 2011, she ranked 6th in People magazine's annual 100 Most Beautiful issue
In June 2011 Katie Holmes received the Women in Film Max Mara Face of the Future Award.