Celebrity Then And Now
Posted by Jake Frost
Celebrity Then And Now
Publication: Stanton Daily. Posted by Jake Frost
April 29, 1970
Currently Known For:
Actress and model
Pulp Fiction, Kill Bill, Smash
“I was an escapee of childhood. I always wanted to grow up.” Born in Boston, Massachusetts on April 29, 1970, Uma Thurman was raised by a fashion model mother and a writer father where she had a fairly normal childhood. Unfortunately, some of that normal childhood involved a lot of bullying, which many of us had to deal with. Thurman was much taller and thinner than a lot of the other girls at school, which said caused her to be picked on, even if that’s hard to imagine now.
Thurman said that “I felt terrible. When I was 10, someone told me I had an ugly smile, so I spent the whole of my younger years feeling embarrassed and never smiling with my mouth open, but what are you going to do?” She added that “I spent the first 14 years of my life convinced that my looks were hideous…I know adolescence is painful for everyone, but mine was plain weird. There were nonstop changes of school, no friends and only acting to hide behind.”
Despite hearing negative comments and even a suggestion that she undergo plastic surgery at just 10 years old by her mother’s friend, Thurman decided that she wanted to be an actor. While she was very young, Thurman impressed people on the stage, and even dropped out of high school so that she could become an actor.
Thurman would get her started as a model just like her mother when she was a teenager, though, and then made the jump to acting in 1987 with the film “Kiss Daddy Goodnight”. That would help Thurman to land more notable roles over the next year, including in “Dangerous Liaisons”. Over the next couple of years, Thurman was struggling to find roles that would resonate with audiences, even being nominated for a Golden Raspberry for Worst Actress in the film “Even Cowgirls Get the Blues”.
Things would take a turn for the better in 1994, though, as Thurman first met director Quentin Tarantino, who immediately cast her in the film “Pulp Fiction”. The film would be a surprise smash hit, making more than $200 million worldwide and putting Thurman on the map as an improved actress that was nominated for an Oscar for her performance.
Thurman would appear in the high budget film “Batman & Robin” that was met with a lot of criticism from film experts, though it did make a decent budget at the box office., but was able to reestablish herself in the late 1990s thanks to movies such as “Les Miserables” and “Sweet and Lowdown”. Then, we’d see Thurman reunite with Tarantino for the successful pair of “Kill Bill” films in the early 2000s.
In recent years, Thurman has starred in films such as “Percy Jackson & The Olympians”, “Playing for Keeps” and “Burnt”, just to name a few. She’s also established herself on television in recent years with appearances in “The Slap” and “Imposters”, even returning to the stage to star in “The Parisian Woman”.
Over the past year, however, it’s unfortunately not her performances that have landed Thurman in the news. Instead, she was involved with the sexual abuse allegations against producer Harvey Weinstein, and was asked about the incident in 2017 when it had been well known that she had worked with Weinstein on several occasions. At the time, Thurman said she had no comment, saying that she was too angry to talk about it.
Later, Thurman would reveal that she was one of the women that had been abused by Weinstein. “I am one of the reasons that a young girl would walk into his room alone, the way I did,” she said. “Quentin used Harvey as the executive producer of ‘Kill Bill,’ a movie that symbolizes female empowerment. And all these lambs walked into the slaughter because they were convinced nobody rises to such a position who would do something illegal to you, but they do.”
She added that “I used the word ‘anger’ but I was more worried about crying, to tell you the truth. I was not a groundbreaker on a story I knew to be true, so what you really saw was a person buying time.” During that very same interview where she had talked about Weinstein, she also revealed that she had a serious car accident while filming her own stunts in “Kill Bill” that has caused permanent injuries, though she and director Quentin Tarantino are still on good terms.
Outside of acting, Thurman has become quite involved in activism, speaking out not only against the assault that women have faced in Hollywood, but also for the Human Rights Campaign and helping to save black rhinos in Africa.
Regarding her film roles, Thurman has said that “All I want to do (now) is explore the sensitive side of human beings. There isn’t that much to explore about a**-kicking. You just do it.” She’s set to appear in many more films in the upcoming year, which are likely to take a more serious look at human nature, compared to her action sequences that we saw in “Kill Bill”.