Childhood & Early Life
Rosamund Mary Ellen Pike was born on January 27, 1979, in Hammersmith, London to Caroline and Julian Pike. Her mother is an opera singer and her father is a professor of music and head of operatic studies at the Birmingham Conservatoire. Rosamund is the only child of her parents.
Until the age of seven, young Rosamund spent much of her childhood accompanying her parents all over Europe, where their professional commitments took them. During this time, seeing her parents rehearse and perform on stage, she became enamored with acting and wanted to take it up as a career.
She enrolled at the Badminton School in Bristol at the age of 11, having won a scholarship. She learned to play the piano and the cello and took up acting in real earnest at the age of 16 after joining The National Youth Theatre.
Her performance onstage as Juliet in a production of ‘Romeo and Juliet’ when she was 18 caught the eye of a theatrical agent, who assisted her to commence her professional acting career.
Disappointingly, she was refused by all the drama schools she applied to, leaving her with no alternative but to seek admission to Oxford University's Wadham College to study English literature. During her college days, she often took up acting roles to pay her way through.
In 1998, she appeared in ‘A Rather English Marriage’, a British television movie, and the next year, in a mini-series ‘Wives and Daughters’. She also acted in the pilot of ‘Seven Days’, a science fiction series, and in an episode of ‘Foyle’s War’, a British detective-drama television series.
A good student, she got a First Class in her first-year examinations and took a year off to pursue her passion for acting. She performed in quite a few Shakespearean productions besides Arthur Miller's ‘All My Sons’ and David Hare's ‘Skylight’.
Rosamund returned to Wadham College and graduated in 2001 with an Upper Second-class degree. The same year, she acted in a British television serial drama ‘Love in a Cold Climate’ based on novels by Nancy Mitford.
Rosamund continued to act in dramatic productions, often appearing in lead roles in ‘Oxford Playhouse’ productions. She also went to Tokyo, where she took part in Shakespearean productions ‘Macbeth’, and ‘The Taming of the Shrew’.
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After graduating, she found the lack of acting opportunities dismaying and decided to work at Waterstone's bookshop but life changed radically in late 2001, when she was offered a role in a James Bond film, ‘Die Another Day’ as a ‘Bond’ girl alongside Pierce Brosnan.
The first ‘Bond’ girl to have an Oxford degree, she also appeared in ‘Bond Girls Are Forever’, a special show, and in a tribute to the ‘James Bond’ series by ‘BAFTA’.
In 2003, following the huge release of ‘Die Another Day’ that brought her international fame, she again took to the stage to act in a play, ‘Hitchcock Blonde’. Her performance was acclaimed but somewhat controversial as in one scene; she appeared in nothing else but high-heeled shoes.
In 2004, she played an important role in ‘The Libertine’ that starred Johnny Depp. For her performance in the film, she received critical acclaim and the award for the ‘Best Supporting Actress’ at the’ British Independent Film Awards’. In the same year, she appeared in two more films, ‘The Promised Land’, and the cinematic adaptation of the computer game series ‘Doom’.
In 2005, she played the part of ‘Jane’ alongside Keira Knightley who played the character of ‘Elizabeth’ in ‘Pride and Prejudice’.
In 2007, she acted alongside Anthony Hopkins and Ryan Gosling in ‘Fracture’. In the same year, she also acted in the movie ‘Fugitive Pieces’, an adaptation of the book of the same name by Anne Michaels that was the inaugural film at the ‘Toronto Film Festival’.
After her brief stint in Hollywood, she returned with some truly exceptional performances in smaller films like ‘An Education’ (2009), ‘Made in Dagenham’ (2010), and in ‘Barney's Version’ (2010) opposite Paul Giamatti.
Rosamund’s association with ‘James Bond’ continued with her narrating ‘The Spy Who Loved Me’ for a new series of ‘James Bond’ audiobooks.
In 2010, she also lent her voice to the character of ‘Pussy Galore’ in an adaptation of ‘Goldfinger’ by ‘BBC Radio 4’. In 2011, she acted in ‘Johnny English Reborn’, a ‘James Bond’ spoof, which proved to be a major commercial success.
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In 2012, she appeared in the fantasy epic ‘Wrath of the Titans’. In the same year, she played the lead role opposite Tom Cruise in the movie ‘Jack Reacher’. The film was a critical and commercial success.
Her performance in a supporting role in her next film ‘The World’s End’ (2013) too received critical acclaim.
Her career reached new heights when she appeared opposite Ben Affleck in the 2014 thriller ‘Gone Girl’ based on the novel of the same name by Gillian Flynn. Her performance as a woman who goes missing on her fifth wedding anniversary earned accolades from the critics and ‘SAG’, ’BAFTA’, ‘Golden Globe’, and ‘Academy Award’ nominations. The film also became a major box office hit.
In 2014, she had three other releases, ‘A Long Way Down’, ‘Hector and the Search for Happiness’, and ‘What We Did on Our Holiday’.
Since 2015, she has been the voice of ‘Lady Penelope Creighton-Ward’ in the British animated science fiction television show ‘Thunderbirds Are Go’, a remake of the 1960s television series ‘Thunderbirds’.
She starred in ‘Voodoo in My Blood’, a music video by ‘Massive Attack’ in February 2016 that was inspired by the subway scene in the 1981 movie ‘Possession’.
Her recent films include ‘Return to Sender’ (2015), a psychological thriller; ‘A United Kingdom’ (2016), a British biographical romantic drama film; ‘The Man with the Iron Heart’ (2017), biographical war drama-thriller; and ‘Hostiles’ (2017), an American Western.
2018 is a busy year for Pike; two films have already been released, ‘Seven Days in Entebbe’ based on the 1976 dramatic rescue mission of the ‘Air France’ flight and ‘Beirut’, an espionage thriller film set in the 1982 Lebanese Civil War. Her upcoming films include ‘A Private War’, a biographical drama in which, Rosamund plays the character of journalist Marie Colvin.
2019 will see the release of ‘Three Seconds’, a British action crime thriller film adapted from the book of the same name by Roslund/Hellström.
Personal Life & Legacy
While studying at Oxford, Rosamund had a relationship with Simon Woods who in 2005 played her love interest in ‘Pride and Prejudice’. She later was engaged to Joe Wright, the film’s director, however, in 2008, the marriage was called off at the last minute.
She has been in a relationship with Robie Uniacke, a businessman and math researcher since December 2009. The couple has two sons, Solo (born May 6, 2012), and Atom (December 2, 2014) while, Robie Uniacke, 16 years her senior, has four other children from two previous relationships.
A skilled cellist, she speaks German and French fluently and lives in West End, London.
Rosamund Pike got the ‘Die Another Day’ role against competition from stars like Alicia Silverstone, Saffron Burrows, and Sophie Ellis-Bextor.
In order to act in ‘Pride & Prejudice’, she turned down the role of Rita Skeeter in ‘Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire’.
She was chosen for ‘Gone Girl’ in preference over Natalie Portman, Emily Blunt, Charlize Theron, Abbie Cornish, Julianne Hough, Olivia Wilde, and even one of the film’s producers, Reese Witherspoon.
Rosamund Pike underwent a rigorous training in boxing with welterweight champion Holly Lawson for her ‘Gone Girl’ role.