Jessica Brown Findlay is a beautiful and aspiring English actress. This young and talented star dreamt of pursuing a life in the field of ballet at the tender age of three, and hence, began tasting glamour and success since childhood. She was put into spotlight, initially through her dancing skills followed by performing arts. Despite being injured in her teens and forced to change her career path, she didn’t lose heart and was inspired by her art teacher to take up fine arts. She took up this new challenge and just as she began taking interest in her classes, she started being spotted by casting agents. She was signed on a few films and television drama shows, but rose to fame with the highly-acclaimed TV series Downtown Abbey for her infamous role as Lady Sybil Branson nee Crawley. This was just the beginning of her yet-to-be established acting profession. In just about a handful of projects, this highly-spirited and determined superstar has already tried her hands at a diverse range of roles.
Childhood & Early Life
Jessica Rose Brown-Findlay, professionally known as Jessica Brown Findlay, was born on September 14, 1989 in Cookham, Berkshire, into a multiracial family with roots in both Scotland and England.
Her father, Christopher Brown-Findlay, formerly into investment banking, now works as a financial advisor, while her mother, Beverley, is a teacher’s assistant and nurse.
Since childhood, she set her eyes on becoming a ballerina and convinced her parents to chase her dreams of making it big in this profession.
She completed her initial training from the National Youth Ballet and the Associates of the Royal Ballet. She even performed with the Kirov Ballet at the Royal Opera House, London, for one summer season.
She took admission in Furze Platt Senior School, Maidenhead, to complete her formal education. Thereafter, she rejected offers from a number of ballet schools to attend the Arts Educational School, Tring Park, Hertfordshire.
Her dream was short-lived after she developed issues with her ankles in the third year of the course and underwent three operations, with the third one being unsuccessful.
With a heavy heart not being able to dance again, she managed to complete her course and enrolled in a Fine Arts course at Central Saint Martins College of Art and Design.
She was soon noticed by casting agents and was selected for the lead role of Emelia in the film Albatross.
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She auditioned a number of times while at college and was chosen for the British comedy-drama Albatross, directed by Niall MacCormick, opposite Hollywood actress Julia Ormond. The movie released in 2011.
In 2009, she appeared in two episodes of the television series, Misfits.
A series of television roles came along her way – a single episode with Black Mirror in 2011, and the novel-based miniseries Labyrinth in 2012 where she played Alais Pelletier.
She was cast in the John McKay directed British rom-com film ‘Not Another Happy Ending’ in 2013.
In 2013, she bagged the female lead in the film adaptation of Mary Shelley’s horror novel Frankenstein, opposite James McAvoy and Daniel Radcliffe. The film is slated for a 2015 release.
In April 2014, Jessica appeared in the TV miniseries Jamaica Inn, based on the novel of the same name written by Daphne du Maurier, where she played the lead character, Mary Yellan.
She starred in the American drama film Lullaby, opposite Amy Adams and Garrett Hedlund, which hit the silver screens on June 13, 2014.
Findlay is best known for her role as Lady Sybil Branson nee Crawley in the international hit series Downtown Abbey, in 2010, which she portrayed for three series before moving ahead to concentrate on her film career.
Although the show Labyrinth received a cold response from viewers, but she was highly appreciated for her short yet confident performance.
She came into limelight when she was chosen to portray Beverly Penn in the movie adaptation of Mark Helprin’s novel Winter’s Tale, starring Will Smith, Russell Crowe and Jennifer Connelly. The film released in February 2013.
Awards & Achievements
She was nominated for the ‘Most Promising Newcomer’, for her role of Emelia in Albatross, by the British Independent Film Awards in 2011 and Evening Standard British Film Awards in 2012.
In 2013, Findlay, along with her entire cast, was honored with the Outstanding Performance by an Ensemble in a Drama series at the Screen Actors Guild (SAG) Awards.
Personal Life & Legacy
Since 2012, Findlay is the brand ambassador of the England based jewelry brand, Dominic Jones.
This British beauty was notably referred to as ‘the new Keira Knightly’ at Screen International, apart from being mentioned as ‘a new talent to watch’ in Vanity Fair.