Reese Witherspoon attends the 30th Annual Screen Actors Guild Awards at Shrine Auditorium and Expo Hall on February 24, 2024 in Los Angeles, California.

“As if” you can find an actress as entertaining and whose career hasn’t slowed down over the last thirty years. The person we are talking about is the iconic Reese Witherspoon, of course. Born Laura Jeanne Reese Witherspoon on March 22, 1976, in New Orleans, Louisiana, Reese began her career as a teenager.

The 'Fear' Film Premiere In Sydney

(Photo by Patrick Riviere/Getty Images).

In 1991, 15-year-old Reese Witherspoon attended an open casting call for The Man in the Moon, intending to audition for a role with no more than five lines of dialogue. Instead, she was cast for the lead role of Dani Trant, a country girl who falls in love for the first time with her 17-year-old neighbor. For her debut film performance in the film, Witherspoon was nominated for a Young Artist Award. Later that year, she made her television debut in Wildflower with Patricia Arquette.

Reese’s breakthrough came in 1999 with a supporting role in Cruel Intentions. In a 2018 appearance on Watch What Happens Live, the mother of three was asked if she would let her children watch the dark comedy film. Wanting to initially take them to a play of the movie, she changed her mind. Then, when it came to showing them the movie, she said she didn’t have “any interest” in them seeing her in a “weird” setting with their father, the film’s star, Ryan Philippe.

Reese’s Career Highlights

She gained wider recognition for playing Elle Woods in 2001’s Legally Blonde (2001) and its 2003 sequel. For 2005’s Johnny Cash musical biopic Walk the Line, she won the Academy Award for Best Actress for portraying June Carter Cash. A few companies approached Reese to record music after she provided her own singing voice for the film.

Following a career downturn in the next few years, her sole box-office success was the romantic drama Water for Elephants (2011). Witherspoon made a comeback by producing and starring as Cheryl Strayed in the drama Wild (2014), which earned her a second nomination for Best Actress at the Oscars.

RELATED: Reese Witherspoon Shares Rare Set Photos From ‘Legally Blonde’

The actress and producer is the recipient of various accolades, including an Academy Award, a Primetime Emmy Award, and two Golden Globe Awards. Time magazine named her one of the 100 most influential people in the world in 2006 and 2015.

Meanwhile, Forbes listed her among the World’s 100 Most Powerful Women in 2019 and 2021. In 2021, Reese was dubbed the world’s highest-earning actress by the publication. Two years later, Reese Witherspoon was named one of the richest women in America, with an estimated net worth of $440 million.

Take a look below at our top 6 favorite Reese Witherspoon roles of all time:

  • 6. 'Cruel Intentions'

    In this cult classic 1999 teen romance-thriller, Reese met her ex-husband and father of her two kids, Ryan Philippe on set. Funnily enough, Philippe’s character makes a bet to deflower Witherspoon’s naive and virgin character. No wonder she doesn’t want her kids to watch this movie of hers. She also met her future Legally Blonde co-star, Selma Blair, in this film. Everyone knows the infamous makeout scene between Blair and Sarah Michelle Gellar. The film is a modern retelling of a famous 1782 novel Les Liaisons dangereuses, set in New York City among bored, rich, and cruel high schoolers.

  • 5. 'Walk The Line'

    We aren’t big fans of biopics, so this musical romance being more of a dramatization of Johnny Cash’s early life is what made us like this 2005 film. Witherspoon plays singer and love interest June Carter. Joaquin Phoenix stars as a handsome but oh-so-very troubled Cash, with his rise in country music and his struggle with drug addiction. Witherspoon’s June is asked to tour with Johnny, who was married at the time to someone else. That doesn’t stop the two from sleeping with each other, but upon finding out Johnny’s got a drug problem, June disposes of his drugs and begins to write the iconic “Ring of Fire,” describing her feelings for him and her pain at watching him descend into addiction.

  • 4. 'Little Fires Everywhere'

    Sadly, this standalone miniseries is just that: one season. Regardless, Witherspoon and co-star Kerry Washington portray mothers from two completely different socioeconomic backgrounds raising teenage daughters in a small suburban town in Ohio in the ’90s. What we like about this show is that its opening scene is a wild, dramatic unfolding in the future before we are taken back into the past and wonder how things got this way. This show has so many layers as to what it is like to raise children in a suburban town, the pressures and struggles of being a mother, and the distrust and pettiness between two women who have really turbulent pasts, trying their best to navigate what they believe is right.

  • 3. 'Big Little Lies'

    We were so devastated when this HBO series was cancelled after two seasons. The ensemble cast consists of Witherspoon, Nicole Kidman, Meryl Streep, Laura Dern, Shailene Woodley, and Zoë Kravitz. Thankfully, after more than five years, the drama series has been renewed for a third season! The show is based on the same-titled bestseller by Liane Moriarty, which weaves a darkly comedic tale of murder and mischief in the tranquil beachfront town of Monterey, California. Told through the eyes of the three “mothers of Monterey:” Madeline (Witherspoon), Celeste (Kidman), and Jane (Woodley), the series explores society’s myths regarding perfection and its romanticization of marriage, sex, parenting and friendship.

  • 2. 'The Morning Show'

    As one of our all-time favorite AppleTV shows, Reese goes back to her southern roots playing the role of Bradley Jackson. The series, which has three completed seasons and more on the way, starts out with Witherspoon’s Jackson being a local reporter. Jackson becomes an internet viral sensation after a video of her angrily fact-checking a coal mine supporter at a protest is posted on social media. She quits her local network, and, after an argument with her family, is asked to appear on The Morning Show for an interview. Her dynamic with Jennifer Aniston’s Alex Levy from enemies to besties is one of the best thing about the show, which tackles real-life political topics and current events.

  • 1. 'Legally Blonde'

    It’s been over 20 years since Reese Witherspoon graced us with her hard-working determination to overcome blonde stereotypes in becoming a Harvard-grad lawyer. Her Legally Blonde character, Elle Woods, was a sorority girl who wanted to win back her pretentious ex-boyfriend by getting a Juris Doctor degree at Harvard Law School. Her iconic character ends up triumphing as a successful lawyer through strong self-confidence and fashion expertise. The film taught audiences how to “bend and snap,” a cultural phenomenon that we still think about to this day.

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