Injecting both sexy vitality and strong-minded intelligence into every role she plays, Rachel Griffiths is one of the screen's most interesting and unpredictable actresses. Since her breakthrough role as Rhonda in the 1994 Muriel's Wedding, Griffiths -- whose looks recall an off-kilter amalgam of Juliette Lewis and Juliette Binoche -- has earned international appreciation for her work, particularly in the form of the Oscar nomination she received for her performance in Hilary and Jackie (1998).
Born in Newcastle, New South Wales, Australia, in 1968, Griffiths grew up in Melbourne with her art consultant mother and two older brothers. A 1990 graduate of Victoria College, where she earned a Bachelor of Education degree in drama and dance, she began her career as a member of Woolly Jumpers, Inc., a community theatre group. She had her first success as the creator and performer of Barbie Gets Hip, which played at the 1991 Melbourne International Film Festival.