Famke Janssen biography
Hansel & Gretel: Witch Hunters
Date of Birth: November 5, 1964
Beginning her career as a model in her native Holland, Famke Janssen moved to the USA in 1984. Working for clients such as Chanel wasn't much of an intellectual challenge, so Janssen began taking literature and writing classes at Columbia University and studied acting with Harold Guskin. The tall (5'11") Dutch beauty left Columbia after two years to pursue her acting career, and went to Los Angeles, where she continued to study acting under Roy London. Janssen made her feature film debut with Jeff Goldblum in Fathers and Sons , followed by The Leading Man, a low-budget independent project starring Jon Bon Jovi and Thandie Newton. Following her first starring role in Lord of Illusions, she landed the female lead in the James Bond movie, Goldeneye , in which she starred with Pierce Brosnan.
However, she's probably best known for playing Phoenix in the X-Men movies, including X2: X-Men United (2003) and X-Men: The Last Stand (2006).
Janssen has thought about getting into screenwriting and directing, but had said, "I want to do that in the future, it's just that at the moment I'm so busy acting, it's difficult to combine anything, and I kind of want to focus on one thing right now." Clearly all she needed was time because in 2011, she wrote and directed the feature film Brining Up Bobby starring Milla Jovovich and Bill Pullman. The following year she returned to acting to play Liam Neeson's ex-wife in the sequel Taken 2 .In 2013, Janssen starred alongside Jeremy Renner and Gemma Arterton in Hansel & Gretel: Witch Hunters. She also reprised her role as Phoenix in The Wolverine (2013). Currently, she stars on the Netflix series, Hemlock Grove.
Famke, who speaks Dutch, German, English and French, provides the Dutch language narration for the Studio Tram Tour at the Disney theme parks.