Winona Ryder (October 29, 1971-) is an actress famous for playing kooky, slightly awkward characters in a number of movies. Some of her most famous roles have been the Love Interest of the eponymous character in Edward Scissorhands (1990), Veronica Sawyer in Heathers (1989), Lydia Deetz in Beetlejuice (1988), Jo March in Little Women (1994), Susanna Kaysen in Girl Interrupted (1999), Star Trek (2009), The Private Lives of Pippa Lee (2009) and a supporting role in Black Swan (2010). She was involved with the actor Johnny Depp for three years before they later split, and was linked with Matt Damon in the early Noughties.
This actress' roles provide examples of:
- Awesome, Dear Boy: She has said that she took the role in Alien: Resurrection before even reading the script, because she had always wanted to be in an Alien movie and could brag about it to her brothers.
- Boyish Short Hair: Had short Spiky Hair in her youth and was mistaken for a boy by a lot of her classmates.
- Career Resurrection: After taking a few years off from acting while she was on probation for shoplifting from Saks Fifth Avenue, she starred in a film rendition of Philip K Dick's A Scanner Darkly, which was critically acclaimed.
- Dawson Casting: Averted early in her career, when she was close in age to most of her teenaged characters. She was sometimes criticized for playing teen roles ("I'm like, 19. What do they want me to play, a judge?"). She became a straighter example of the trope as she grew older. She was 28 in Girl Interrupted whilst her character was 18. Her petite frame and wide eyes contribute to looking much younger.
- Dye Hard: Her hair is naturally blonde. She was required to dye it brown for her first film Lucas - and has alternated between that and blonde over the years.
- Eerie Pale-Skinned Brunette : Often, but Lydia Deetz is the best example.
- Fatal Method Acting: A near miss—she nearly drowned during the shooting of the underwater scene in Alien: Resurrection.
- Former Child Star: Aversion. She started acting at thirteen but enjoyed far more success in adulthood.
- I Am Very British: Adopts this type of accent for Bram Stokers Dracula.
- One of Us: Her movie choices seem to indicate this (see Awesome, Dear Boy above). She is also a massive fan of J. D. Salinger and The Catcher in the Rye, and collects rare editions of the book.
- Playing Against Type: In Edward Scissorhands she played a Girl Next Door. Also as Spirited Young Lady Jo March in Little Women.
- Romance on the Set: Briefly dated Christian Slater during the filming of Heathers. She also dated Johnny Depp, her co-star in Edward Scissorhands.
- Type Casting: Early in her career, she found herself playing a lot of moody adolescents - Beetlejuice, Heathers, Mermaids and Reality Bites. She also found herself playing a lot of 'innocence lost' characters - Bram Stokers Dracula, Girl Interrupted, Alien: Resurrection, The Crucible.
- What Could Have Been : She was cast as Mary Corleone in The Godfather: Part III, but withdrew. The part went to Sofia Coppola.