Olivia Wilde (born Olivia Jane Cockburnnote ; March 10, 1984 in New York City, New York) is an American actress and director.
She is known for starring in TV series including The O.C., House and Vinyl, and as well as films including TRON: Legacy, Alpha Dog, Cowboys & Aliens, The Change-Up, The Lazarus Effect and Year One. She began work in writing and directing films with her 2011 short Free Hugs, and made her feature directorial debut in 2019 with Booksmart; her second film, Don't Worry Darling was released in 2022. In 2020, she signed on to direct an unannounced film in Sony's Spider-Man Universe.
Wilde is the daughter of Andrew Myles Cockburn, a British journalist; her mother, Leslie Cockburn, is an American-born former 60 Minutes producer and who unsuccessfully ran for Congress in Virginia in 2018. Her uncles, Alexander Cockburn and Patrick Cockburn, also worked as journalists, as have her cousins, Stephanie Flanders and Laura Flanders (daughters of her aunt Claudia Cockburn by Michael Flanders). Her older sister, Chloe Cockburn, is a civil rights attorney in New York; her aunt, Sarah Caudwell, was a writer, and her paternal grandfather, Claud Cockburn, was a novelist and journalist.
As many of her family are writers, and writers with pen names, she lifted the surname of Oscar Wilde to create her current name, and changed it properly while in high school.
Wilde has notable and diverse ancestral history. Her father's upper-class British ancestors lived in several countries during the height of colonialism and the British Empire, including Beijing (where her paternal grandfather was born), Kolkata, Mumbai, Cairo, and Tasmania (one of her paternal great-great-grandfathers, Henry Arthur Blake, was Governor of Hong Kong). Wilde's father's ancestors include abolitionist and Anglican minister James Ramsay, politician George Arbuthnot, lawyer, judge, and literary figure Henry Cockburn, Lord Cockburn, Lord Provost of Edinburgh Sir William Arbuthnot, 1st Baronet, and Sir Thomas Osborne, 9th Baronet (and therefore current Conservative Chancellor of the Exchequer, George Osborne). Wilde's ancestry includes English, Irish, Scottish, Manx, and German; she is also of more distant Sephardi Jewish descent from a paternal ancestor, Ralph Bernal (1783–1854), a British Whig politician and actor.
She lived in Ireland when she was a child and studied acting at Gaiety School of Acting in Dublin. She has dual citizenship in America and Ireland.
Her parents were friends of Mick Jagger. When Olivia was 4 years old, she was eavesdropping one night on a conversation between diplomat Richard Holbrooke and singer Mick Jagger, until Jagger noticed her and shooed her to bed. She later played one of the leading roles in Vinyl, which Jagger co-created and executive-produced (and whose son, James, is a co-star).
She also married Italian prince Tao Ruspoli in 2003 (when she was 19), but divorced him in 2011. She became engaged to Jason Sudeikis in 2013, but in 2020 announced they had separated. Sudeikis and Wilde have a son named Otis (born in 2014) and a daughter named Daisy (born in 2016). From 2021 to 2022, she was in a high-profile relationship with Harry Styles, who she directed in Don't Worry Darling.
- The Girl Next Door (2004) as Kellie
- Conversations With Other Women (2005) as Bridesmaid
- Alpha Dog (2006) as Angela Holden
- Bickford Shmecklers Cool Ideas (2006) as Sarah Witt
- Turistas (2006) as Bea
- The Death And Life Of Bobby Z (2007) as Elizabeth
- Fix (2008) as Bella
- Year One (2009) as Princess Inanna
- The Next Three Days (2010) as Nicole
- TRON: Legacy (2010) as Quorra
- Weird: The Al Yankovic Story (2010) as Madonna
- Butter (2011) as Brooke Swinkowski
- The Change-Up (2011) as Sabrina McKay
- Cowboys & Aliens (2011) as Ella Swenson
- Free Hugs (2011) as Head Hooper
- In Time (2011) as Rachel Salas
- On The Inside (2011) as Mia Conlon
- Deadfall (2012) as Liza
- People Like Us (2012) as Hannah
- The Words (2012) as Daniella
- Drinking Buddies (2013) as Kate
- her (2013) as Blind Date
- The Incredible Burt Wonderstone (2013) as Jane
- Rush (2013) as Suzy Miller
- Third Person (2013) as Anna Barr
- Better Living Through Chemistry (2014) as Elizabeth Roberts
- The Longest Week (2014) as Beatrice Fairbanks
- The Lazarus Effect (2015) as Zoe McConnell
- Love the Coopers (2015) as Eleanor Cooper
- Meadowland (2015) as Sarah
- Black Dog Red Dog (2016) as Sunshine
- Life Itself (2018) as Abby Dempsey
- A Vigilante (2018) as Sadie
- Richard Jewell (2019) as Kathy Scruggs
- Ghostbusters: Afterlife (2021) as Gozer
- Don't Worry Darling (2022) as Bunny (also directed)
- Babylon (2022) as Ina Conrad
- TRON: Evolution (2010) as Quorra
- Robot Chicken (2012) as Various voices
- TRON: Uprising (2012) as Quorra
- The Annoying Orange (2013) as Rainbow Fairy / Fruit Bat
- American Dad! (2014) as Denise
- BoJack Horseman (2014 — 2020) as Charlotte Moore
- Son of Zorn (2017) as Radiana
- Escape From Virtual Island (2020) as Bianca
- DC League of Super-Pets (2022) as Lois Lane
Tropes associated with Olivia Wilde:
- Advertised Extra: She is fourth-billed in her, yet receives about five minutes of screen time.
- Brainy Brunette: Actually she's blonde but dyed her hair brunette. Most of her roles are fairly intelligent as well. In regards to the trope, she's said:"I'm a natural blonde, but I feel like a brunette. I feel like people treat me now how I should be treated. People used to be shocked, when I was blonde, that I wasn't stupid. I used to get these comments that I swear people thought were compliments. Like, 'Oh! You're smart!' — like they couldn't believe it."
- Fake Brit: Played the British Suzy Miller in Rush (2013).
- Ms. Fanservice: Frequently flaunts her body in works, from lesbian scenes as a Hospital Hottie in House, to skin tight bodysuits in TRON: Legacy, to tanktops and Skinny Dipping in Drinking Buddies, to Streaking with Toplessness from the Back in Third Person to full-frontal nudity in Vinyl.
- Romance on the Set: She dated Harry Styles after they met on the set of Don't Worry Darling, which Wilde directed and Styles starred in.
- Stage Name: She chose the surname of "Wilde" after Oscar Wilde.
- Star-Making Role: While she has appeared in film and TV throughout the mid-2000s onward, her roles in House and TRON: Legacy were the ones that ultimately kick-started her career.
- What Could Have Been:
- She auditioned for the role of Naomi in The Wolf of Wall Street, but was deemed too old to play Leonardo DiCaprio's wife, even though he's ten years older than she is (the part went to Margot Robbie).
- She screen-tested for the role of Catwoman in The Dark Knight Rises, but didn't get the part. In the DC Extended Universe she was also considered for the role of Lois Lane for Man of Steel (the part went to Amy Adams) and Harley Quinn for Suicide Squad (the part went to Margot Robbie. Again).
- An early draft of the script for Under the Skin included a Scottish married couple, who'd turn out to be aliens in disguise and Wilde was among the actresses considered for the role.
- She was once considered for the role of Gamora in Guardians of the Galaxy, but she turned down the role.