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Winona Ryder is a film actress known for dark, quirky roles in such films as Heathers and Girl, Interrupted.
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Winona Ryder made her debut in the drama Lucas (1986). In many of her early films, she played quirky roles: the eccentric Lydia in 1988's horror comedy Beetlejuice and a teenager who falls for the title character in Edward Scissorhands. In 2001, she started making headlines for her trouble with the law, but she has since returned to acting in such films as A Scanner Darkly and The Darwin Awards.
Actress Winona Laura Horowitz was born on October 29, 1971, in Winona, Minnesotta. While in her early teens, Ryder was enrolled in the American Conservatory Theater in San Francisco. She made her film debut in the coming-of-age drama Lucas (1986). In many of her early films, she played a variety of roles. She was the eccentric, gothic Lydia in 1988's horror comedy Beetlejuice directed by Tim Burton. Ryder soon appeared as teenager who falls for the unusual title character in Edward Scissorhands (1990) with then-boyfriend Johnny Depp. In the dark comedy Heathers (1989), she played a high school girl battling for her place in the popularity food-chain.
Ryder graduated to more grown-up roles with Bram Stoker's Dracula (1992). Her work on The Age of Innocence (1993) earned her an Academy Award nomination for Best Supporting Actress. Two years later, she received another nod from the academy with a Best Actress nomination for her role as Jo in Little Women (1995). While she gave a strong performance in Girl, Interrupted (1999) as a young woman in a mental institution, Ryder made several forgettable films around this time, including the box office dud Autumn in New York (2000).
Ryder found herself under intense public scrutiny in December 2001 after she was charged with shoplifting more than $5,000 worth of merchandise from Saks Fifth Avenue in Beverly Hills, California. Several types of prescription medication were found in her possession at the time of the arrest. Every step of Ryder's journey through the judicial process made the news. Despite pleading not guilty, she was convicted of vandalism and grand theft in November 2002. Ryder was sentenced to 480 hours of community service and three years' probation. She was also ordered to pay several fines and undergo counseling.
Since then, Ryder has kept a relatively low profile and appeared in only a handful of films. In 2006, she had a leading role in A Scanner Darkly, the animated adaptation of a Philip K. Dick novel. The futuristic story explores the impact of Substance D, a mysterious, addictive drug, on its main characters. That year, Ryder also had a lead role in the independent film The Darwin Awards, which was shown at the Sundance Film Festival.
In a recent interview, Ryder stated that she has decided to be very selective about new projects.
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Learn more about the stars of the wildly popular Star Trek television and film franchise. Created by Gene Roddenberry in the early 1960s, this otherworldly series debuted on the small screen in '66 and has since seen dozens of installments, most recently the J.J. Abrams-directed Star Trek Into Darkness (2013), starring Chris Pine, Zoe Saldana and Zachary Quinto. Learn more about other cast members of the franchise, including William Shatner, Walter Koenig, Nichelle Nichols, Leonard Nimoy, Patrick Stewart, LeVar Burton, George Takei, Kirstie Alley and Winona Ryder. Who knows, you might even discover your inner-Trekkie.
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