Maria Sharapova Profile
Name: Maria Sharapova
Birth Name: Maria Yuryevna Sharapova
Height: 6' 2''
Birth Date: April 19, 1987
Birth Place: Nyagan, Russia
Profession: Model, Tennis Player
Education: Keystone High School (home schooling program via correspondence on
Nick Bollettieri's Tennis Academy, in Brandenton, Florida, USA
Claim to fame: Third youngest Wimbledon women's champion in 2004, defeated two-time
defending champion Serena Williams 6-1, 6-4
Maria Sharapova Biography
Maria Yuryevna Sharapova (born April 19, 1987) is a former World No. 1 Russian professional tennis player. As of August 18, 2008, she is ranked World No. 6 by the Women's Tennis Association (WTA).
Sharapova has won three Grand Slam singles titles. In 2004, at the age of 17, she won Wimbledon, defeating Serena Williams in the final. She has since won the 2006 US Open, defeating Justine Henin in the final, and the 2008 Australian Open, defeating Ana Ivanovic in the final.
As of July 2008, she is the world's highest-paid female athlete. She is currently coached by her father, Yuri Sharapov, and former player Michael Joyce.
Sharapova is a power baseliner, with power, depth, and angles on her groundstrokes. Instead of using a traditional volley or overhead smash, she often prefers to hit a powerful "swinging" volley when approaching the net or attacking lobs. Sharapova is thought to have good speed around the court, especially considering her height. At the beginning of the 2008 season, some observers noted that Sharapova had developed her game, showing improved movement and footwork and the addition of a drop shot and sliced backhand to her repertoire of shots.
Sharapova's preferred surfaces are the fast-playing hard and grass because her game is not as well-suited to the slower-playing clay. She lacks confidence in her ability to move and slide on this surface and once described herself as like a "cow on ice" after a match on clay. Her limitations on this surface are reflected in her career results, as she did not win a WTA tour title on clay until April 2008 (despite having won 18 titles on other surfaces) and because the French Open is the only Grand Slam singles title she has not yet won.
Sharapova's first and second serve are powerful. She is often able to produce an ace or a service winner; otherwise, a powerful serve often results in a weak reply from her opponent, which allows her to take control of the rally immediately. A serious shoulder injury in early 2007, however, reduced the effectiveness of her serve for several months, as she routinely produced eight to ten double faults in many of her matches during this period. She later changed her service motion to a more compacted backswing (as opposed to her traditional elongated backswing) in an attempt to put less stress on her shoulder, but she nevertheless periodically experienced problems with her serve throughout the rest of the year, most notably producing 12 double faults in her third-round loss at the US Open. Her serve appeared to be more effective at the 2008 Australian Open, as she produced just 17 double faults in seven matches while winning the tournament. Her serving problems resurfaced, however, during the spring of 2008, as she produced 43 double faults in just four matches at the French Open and eight double faults during her second round loss at Wimbledon. Observers, including Tracy Austin, believe that when Sharapova experiences problems with her serve, she often loses confidence in the rest of her game, and as a result, produces more unforced errors and generally plays more tentatively.
Sharapova is known for on-court "grunting," reaching 101 decibels (near the volume of a police siren) during a match at Wimbledon in 2005.
Saturday, August 23, 2008
Liv Tyler Profile
Name: Liv Tyler
Birth Name: Liv Lundgren
Height: 5' 10
Birth Date: July 1, 1977
Birth Place: Portland, Maine, USA
Profession: actress, model
Education: York Prep, New York City, New York
Husband/Wife: Royston Langdon (former Spacehog frontman-bassist ; born on May 1, 1972; began dating fall 1998; married on March 25, 2003; separated in May 2008)
Relationship: Joaquin Phoenix (actor; born on October 28, 1974; together from 1995 to November 1998), Johnny Whitworth (together from 1994 to 1995)
Father: Steven Tyler (lead singer of Aerosmith; born on March 26, 1948)
Mother: Bebe Buell (former model; born on July 14, 1953)
Half Sister: Chelsea Tyler (born in 1988), Mia Tyler (model; born on December 22, 1978; daughter of Steven Tyler and model Cyrinda Foxe)
Half Brother: Rex Rundgren and Randy Rundgren
Step Father: Coyote Stevens (musician; married in June 1992; filed for divorce in 1998), Todd Rundgren (musician; born on June 22, 1948; raised her until 1988)
Step Mother: Cyrinda Foxe (model; born in 1952; died on September 7, 2002)
Son: Milo William Langdon (born on December 14, 2004 in Manhattan; weighed in 8 lb; father: Royston Langdon)
Claim to fame: as Grace Stamper in Armageddon (1998)
Liv Tyler Biography
Liv Rundgren Tyler (born July 1, 1977) is an American actress and model. She is the daughter of Aerosmith's frontman, Steven Tyler and model, singer Bebe Buell. Tyler began a career in modeling at the age of fourteen, but quickly decided to focus on acting. Her first notable role was appearing alongside Alicia Silverstone in the music video for Aerosmith's song "Crazy" in 1993.
At age seventeen she made her film debut in the 1994 film Silent Fall. Following her performance in Silent Fall, Tyler starred in her breakthrough performance in 1996's Stealing Beauty. In 1998, she starred opposite Ben Affleck in Armageddon, which became a summer blockbuster. Tyler then went on to portray elf princess Arwen Undómiel in Peter Jackson's The Lord of the Rings trilogy. After a brief hiatus she returned to acting, starring in the horror-thriller The Strangers and portraying Betty Ross in The Incredible Hulk.
Tyler was born Liv Rundgren at Mount Sinai Hospital in New York City, New York. She is the first born daughter of Bebe Buell, a model, singer, and former Playboy Playmate (Miss November 1974), and Steven Tyler, the lead singer of Aerosmith. Her maternal grandmother, Dorothea Johnson, founded the Protocol School of Washington. Her mother named her after Norwegian actress Liv Ullmann after seeing Ullmann on the cover of the March 5th 1977 issue of TV Guide. At birth, Buell claimed that rock star Todd Rundgren was Tyler's biological father. Tyler discovered her true parentage at age nine. She discovered that she was Steven Tyler's daughter after meeting him and noticing a resemblance she shared with his other daughter, Mia. When she asked her mother about the similarity, the secret was revealed. The truth about Tyler's paternity did not become public until 1991, when she changed her name from Rundgren to Tyler, but kept the former as a middle name. Buell's alleged reason for the initial decision was that Steven was too heavily addicted to drugs at the time of her birth. Since learning the truth about her paternity, Tyler and Steven have developed a close relationship. They have also worked together professionally, once when she performed in Aerosmith's video for "Crazy" and again when Aerosmith wrote and performed many of the songs in the film Armageddon, in which Tyler starred.
Tyler attended the Congressional School of Virginia, Breakwater Elementary and Waynflete schools in Portland, Maine, before returning to New York City with her mother at the age of twelve. She went to York Prep in New York City for Junior High and High School, graduating in 1995. One month later Tyler set off for Italy to star in Stealing Beauty.
Hayden Panettiere Profile
Name: Hayden Panettiere
Birth Name: Hayden Leslie Panettiere
Height: 5' 4¼''
Birth Date: August 21, 1989
Birth Place: Palisades, New York, USA
Education: South Orangetown Middle School in New York (but in 8th grade started home schooling)
Relationship: Stephen Colletti (actor; born on February 7, 1986)
Father: Skip Panettiere
Mother: Leslie Vogel
Brother: Jansent Panettiere (younger)
Claim to fame: Her portrayal of Lizzie Spaulding on CBS' drama series The Guiding Light
Hayden Panettiere Biography
Hayden Leslie Panettiere (born August 21, 1989) is an American actress and singer. Hayden plays the character Claire Bennet on the NBC television program Heroes. The advertising campaign and slogan for the program known as "Save the Cheerleader, Save the World" has helped make Panettiere famous.
Born and raised in Palisades, New York She has one younger brother, fellow actor Jansen Panettiere.
Panettiere attended South Orangetown Middle School in New York but following seventh grade, finished her high-school education via home schooling and has postponed higher education in favor of an acting career, although she has expressed an interest in "continuing to learn."
Panettiere began modeling at the age of five months. She then began appearing in commercials at 11 months, first appearing in an advertisement for Playskool. She landed a role as Sarah Roberts on the ABC soap opera One Life to Live (1994- 1997) and later as Lizzie Spaulding on the CBS soap opera Guiding Light when she was seven years old (1996 - 2000). While on Guiding Light, Panettiere's character Lizzie battled leukemia. The show received a Special Recognition Award from the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society for bringing national awareness of the disease to the attention of daytime viewers.
Panettiere appears as Claire Bennet in the NBC series Heroes as a high school cheerleader with regenerative healing powers. Due to her role on Heroes, she became a regular on the science fiction convention circuit, invited to attend conventions around the world in 2007, including GenCon, New York Comic-Con and Fan Expo Canada. In regard to the roles she has played, Panettiere admitted that options are sometimes limited because "people look at [her] as either the 'popular cheerleader' type or just 'the blonde'."
She has appeared in over a dozen full-length feature films, as well as several made-for-TV movies. She provided the voice for Dot in the Pixar CGI animated movie A Bug's Life. She also played the role of Coach Yoast's daughter, Sheryl, in the 2000 Disney film Remember The Titans. In addition, she appeared as the voice of Kairi in the Kingdom Hearts series of video games for the Playstation 2. Panettiere appeared on FOX's Ally McBeal as Ally McBeal's daughter, and had a recurring guest role on Malcolm in the Middle and guest starred in Law & Order: SVU. She starred in Bring It On: All or Nothing as a cheerleader and had a supporting role as Adelaide Bourbon in the recently released independent film Shanghai Kiss. She also appeared in the Disney Channel Original Movie Tiger Cruise playing the main role of a Navy brat.
She appeared in the drama film Fireflies in the Garden as a younger version of Emily Watson's character, Jane Lawrence. In June 2007, she signed with the William Morris Agency, after previously being represented by United Talent Agency. Forbes estimated that she earned $2 million in 2007.
In early 2007, Panettiere appeared on the syndicated Ashton Kutcher-produced show, Punk'd. The appearance was engineered by her mother and involved a male "fan" discussing her work with her, instigating a jealous reaction from the man's spouse.
Drew Barrymore Profile
Name: Drew Barrymore
Birth Name: Drew Blythe Barrymore
Height: 5' 4''
Birth Date: February 22, 1975
Birth Place: Culver City, California, USA
Profession: Actress, Producer, Director
Education: Didn't complete high school
Husband/Wife: Tom Green (comedian; born July 30, 1971; engaged July 2000; married July 7, 2001; divorced October 15, 2002), Jeremy Thomas (bar owner; married March 20, 1994; divorced April 28, 1994)
Relationship: Justin Long (actor; born June 2, 1978; dated August 2007-July 2008), Fabrizio Moretti (drummer of The Strokes; born June 2, 1980; broke up January 10, 2007), Jamie Walters (actor; born June 13, 1969; engaged August 1992; broke up January 1993)
Father: John Drew Barrymore Jr. (aka John Drew; actor; born on June 4, 1932; died on November 29, 2004 in Los Angeles)
Mother: Ildiko Jad Barrymore (aka Jaid; actress, author; born in 1947)
Half Brother: John Blyth Barrymore (actor; born on May 15, 1954)
Grand Father: John Barrymore Sr. (actor; died on May 29, 1942; pneumonia and
cirrhosis of the liver)
Grand Mother: Dolores Costello (actress; died on March 1, 1979; emphysema)
Aunt: Diana Barrymore (actress; b. March 3, 1921; d. January 25, 1960)
Claim to fame: As Gertie in the E.T.: Extra-Terrestrial (1982)
Drew Barrymore Biography
Barrymore was born in Culver City, California to American actor John Drew Barrymore and Ildiko Jaid Barrymore (n��e Mak��), an aspiring actress born in a refugee camp in Brannenburg, West Germany to Hungarian World War II refugees. Her parents divorced after she was born. She has a half-brother John Blyth Barrymore, also an actor, and two half-sisters Blyth Dolores Barrymore and Brahma (Jessica) Blyth Barrymore.
Barrymore was born into the acting profession, coming from a long line of acting talent stretching back nearly 200 years; her great-great grandparents John Drew, Louisa Lane Drew, her great-grandparents Maurice Barrymore, Georgiana Drew and Maurice Costello, and her grandparents John Barrymore and Dolores Costello were all highly successful actors; John Barrymore was arguably the most acclaimed actor of his generation. She is the grand-niece of Lionel Barrymore, Ethel Barrymore (whom Winston Churchill once proposed to), and Helene Costello, and the great grandniece of John Drew, Jr., actress Louisa Drew, and silent film actor/writer/director Sidney Drew. Her father and half-brother are also actors. She is also the goddaughter of director Steven Spielberg.
Her first name, Drew, was the maiden name of her paternal great-grandmother, Georgiana Drew; her middle name, Blyth, was the original surname of the dynasty founded by her great-grandfather, Maurice Barrymore.
Avril Lavigne Profile
Name: Avril Lavigne
Birth Name: Avril Ramona Lavigne
Height: 5' 2"
Birth Date: September 27, 1984
Birth Place: Napanee, Ontario, Canada
Husband/Wife: Deryck Whibley (lead vocalist of Sum 41; born on March 21, 1980;
engaged on June 25, 2005; married July 15, 2006)
Father: John Lavigne
Mother: Judy Lavigne
Sister: Michelle Lavigne
Brother: Matt Lavigne
Avril Lavigne Biography
Avril Lavigne Whibley better known by her birth name of Avril Lavigne (born September 27, 1984) is a Canadian Grammy award-nominated pop punk singer, musician, fashion designer and actress. In 2006, Canadian Business Magazine ranked her the seventh most powerful Canadian in Hollywood.
Lavigne's debut album, Let Go, was released in 2002. Over 16 million copies were sold worldwide and it was certified six times platinum in the United States. Her second and third albums, Under My Skin (2004) sold 8 million copies and The Best Damn Thing (2007) currently over 5 million copies sold respectively, reached number one on the U.S. Billboard 200. Lavigne has scored six number one songs worldwide to date and a total of eleven top ten hits, including "Complicated", "Sk8er Boi", "I'm with You", "My Happy Ending", and "Girlfriend" which became #1 hits in the ARC Top 40. In December 2007, Lavigne was ranked at #7 in the Forbes "Top 20 Earners Under 25", with an annual earnings of $12 million Currently, Avril Lavigne has sold about 30 million albums worldwide.
Lavigne was born in Belleville, Ontario on September 27, 1984, the daughter of Judy and John Lavigne. Lavigne's birth name is usually pronounced in an anglicized way as above ("La-Veen"). In French, it is commonly pronounced /av��il la��vi��/ (help��info)). Avril is French for "April", while la vigne means "the vineyard". Her French-Canadian parents are devoutly Baptist. She has an elder brother, Matthew, and a younger sister, Michelle. Lavigne's mother was the first to spot young Lavigne���s talent. At the age of two, Lavigne began singing along with her mother on church songs. The family moved to Napanee, Ontario, when Lavigne was five years old.
In 1998, Lavigne won a competition to sing with fellow Canadian singer Shania Twain on her first major concert tour. She appeared alongside Twain at her concert in Ottawa, appearing on stage to sing "What Made You Say That". She was discovered by her first professional manager, Cliff Fabri, while singing country covers at a Chapters bookstore in Kingston, Ontario. During a performance with the Lennox Community Theatre, Lavigne was spotted by local folk singer Steve Medd, who invited her to sing on his song "Touch the Sky" for his 1999 album Quinte Spirit. She also sang on "Temple of Life" and "Two Rivers" for his follow up album, My Window to You, in 2000.
At the age of sixteen she was signed by Ken Krongard, the artists-and-repertoire (A&R) representative of Arista Records, who invited the head of Arista, Antonio "L.A." Reid, to hear her sing at the New York City studio of producer Peter Zizzo.
She then completed work on her first album, Let Go. The Matrix, who worked extensively with Lavigne on the album, commented on her songwriting, saying, "We had a fabulous and unique experience with Avril, who was then a 16-year-old rapidly growing songwriter with tremendous raw talent. The songs were conceived on piano and guitar by four people: The Matrix (3) and Avril. Avril was instrumental in the songs' creation. We were all very close during the making of the record.