Saoirse Ronan –

Saoirse Ronan in BROOKLYN.

About Saoirse Ronan (1994 – )

Saoirse Una Ronan was born in The Bronx, in New York City, Ronan is the only child of Irish parents Monica (née Brennan) and Paul Ronan, who were living in New York City at the time. Her father is also an actor, and her mother had acted as a child. Ronan's family moved to County Carlow, Ireland, when she was three years old, before moving to Howth, County Dublin when she was a teen.

Ronan made her screen debut on Irish public service broadcaster RTÉ, in the 2003 prime time medical drama The Clinic and then appeared in the mini-serial Proof. At the same time, Ronan auditioned to play Luna Lovegood in Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix, a role she eventually lost out to Evanna Lynch.

At the age of twelve, Ronan was asked to attend a casting call for Joe Wright's 2007 film adaptation of Ian McEwan's 2001 novel Atonement. She auditioned for and won the part of Briony Tallis, a 13-year-old aspiring novelist, who irrevocably changes the course of several lives when she accuses her older sister's lover of a crime he did not commit. She starred alongside Keira Knightley and James McAvoy. Wright grew more and more impressed with Ronan on-set, and Ronan declared her role a "fantastic part ." Budgeted at US$30 million, the film became a financial and critical success. Ronan herself received rave reviews for her performance, with Ty Burr of The Boston Globe calling her "remarkable, eccentric".

Ronan's next film was Amy Heckerling's often-delayed romantic comedy I Could Never Be Your Woman. Initially shot in 2005 in Los Angeles and London, the film went straight-to-DVD after struggling to attract financing and several deals disintegrated during its post-production despite its large budget. In the film, Ronan portrayed the character of Izzie Grossman, the pubescent daughter of a television show screenwriter, played by Michelle Pfeiffer, who falls for a younger man (Paul Rudd), while Izzie falls in love for the first time herself. Upon its release, the independent project garnered generally lukewarm reviews.

In 2008, Ronan starred in both Death Defying Acts and the science-fiction fantasy film City of Ember. In Gillian Armstrong's supernatural romantic thriller Death Defying Acts, she played Benji McGarvie, the daughter of an impoverished and uneducated psychic, played by Catherine Zeta-Jones, who begins a passionate affair with magician Harry Houdini at the height of his career. Ronan was awarded an Irish Film & Television Award for her performance. Released to a mixed reception, the film was not a success at the box office, barely grossing US$8.3 million worldwide. In Gil Kenan's City of Ember Ronan starred as Lina Mayfleet, a teenager who must save the people of the fictional underground city named Ember. Based on the 2003 novel by Jeanne DuPrau, it received mixed reviews from critics, and grossed US$17 million worldwide, well below its US$55 million budget.

In 2009, Ronan was cast to star in Ridley Scott's Robin Hood but dropped out to star alongside Rachel Weisz, Mark Wahlberg, Susan Sarandon and Stanley Tucci in Peter Jackson's The Lovely Bones (2009), an adaptation of the book of the same name by Alice Sebold. Ronan plays 14-year-old Susie Salmon, who, after being murdered, watches from the "in-between" as her family and friends struggle to move on with their lives while she comes to terms with her own death. Ronan and her family were originally hesitant for Ronan to accept the role because of its subject matter, but agreed after meeting with Jackson, who described her as "just amazing on-screen". The Lovely Bones was released to mixed reviews from critics, who faulted the film's story and its message. Critics praised the acting however, particularly Ronan's, whose performance Richard Corliss of Time described as "magic". The film garnered various accolades, winning Ronan a Critics' Choice Award and a Saturn Award as well as a second BAFTA Award nomination the following year.

In 2010's The Way Back, directed by Peter Weir, Ronan played the character of Irena, a Polish orphan, who joins a group of prisoners who escape from the gulag in Siberia in 1940 and attempt to make a 4,000-mile trek to India. Shot on location in Bulgaria, India and Morocco alongside Jim Sturgess, Colin Farrell and Ed Harris, the war drama film received generally positive reviews.

In 2011, Ronan starred as the title character in the action thriller Hanna about a 15-year-old girl who has been brought up in the Arctic wilderness to be the perfect assassin. Co-starring Cate Blanchett and Eric Bana, the film marked her reunion with Atonement director Joe Wright, who was consulted after Ronan prompted the producers to consider him. Driven by prominent dark fairy tale elements, Hanna earned generally positive reviews by critics, while Ronan garnered acclaim for her performance, winning her an PFCS Award and another IFTA Award. That same year, Ronan was cast in the title role for Hiromasa Yonebayashi's Arrietty's United Kingdom release. She was also in talks to play the woodland elf Itaril in Peter Jackson's The Hobbit film series, but eventually withdrew, citing schedule issues. The character was never recast and does not appear in the Hobbit films. She was cast as Kitty in Joe Wright's Anna Karenina but dropped out due to scheduling.

Ronan's next film was Andrew Niccol's film adaptation of Stephenie Meyer's novel The Host, in which she plays the dual main characters of Wanderer and Melanie Stryder, a human rebel who was captured and implanted with a parasitic alien soul. The film debuted in cinemas in March 2013 and was generally panned by critics, who called it "poorly scripted and dramatically ineffective". Also in 2013, Ronan starred in director Neil Jordan's vampire film Byzantium, an adaptation of the play of the same name, and in Geoffrey S. Fletcher's directorial debut Violet & Daisy, where she again played a teen assassin.

Ronan's last film in 2013 was the film adaptation of the 2004 novel How I Live Now by Meg Rosoff, in which she plays a New York City teenager who is sent to stay with cousins on a remote farm in the United Kingdom during the outbreak of a third world war. Directed by Kevin Macdonald, it was screened in the Special Presentation section at the 2013 Toronto International Film Festival.

Ronan appeared in Wes Anderson's The Grand Budapest Hotel as the female lead, Agatha, which co-starred Bill Murray, Ralph Fiennes, Adrien Brody, Jude Law and Owen Wilson, and in Lost River, the directorial debut of Ryan Gosling. In 2014, Ronan starred as Leia in the psychological thriller Stockholm, Pennsylvania directed by Nikole Beckwith. Ronan was considered for the titular role in Disney's 2015 remake of Cinderella, but the part eventually went to English actress Lily James.

Ronan played the lead role of Eilis Lacey in the universally acclaimed film Brooklyn, directed by John Crowley. It is based on the novel of the same name by Colm Toibin. The film was released in November of 2015, and Ronan's performance earned her widespread acclaim. In January 2016, Ronan received a nomination for the Academy Award for Best Actress, while the film was nominated for Best Picture and Best Adapted Screenplay awards.

On her name, Ronan said, "'Searsha' is how Irish people pronounce it, but I would pronounce it 'Sersha,' like 'inertia' ... It's Irish for 'freedom.'"

She holds dual citizenship of Ireland and the United States. Since January 2016, Ronan has resided in Manhattan, New York City.

Saoirse Ronan's movie credits include...

Year Movie Role
2007I Could Never Be Your WomanIzzie Mensforth
2007The Christmas Miracle of Jonathan ToomeyCelia Hardwick
2007AtonementBriony Tallis
2007Death Defying ActsBenji McGarvie
2008City of EmberLina Mayfleet
2009The Lovely BonesSusie Salmon
2010ArriettyArrietty (voice)
2010The Way BackIrena Zielińska
2011HannaHanna Heller
2011Violet & DaisyDaisy
2012ByzantiumEleanor Webb
2013The HostMelanie Stryder / Wanderer "Wanda"
2013How I Live NowDaisy
2013Justin and the Knights of ValourTalia
2014The Grand Budapest HotelAgatha
2014Muppets Most WantedHerself
2014Lost RiverRat
2015Stockholm, PennsylvaniaLeia Dargon
2015BrooklynÉilis Lacey
2016The SeagullNina Zarechnaya
2016Loving VincentMargaret Gachet

Saoirse Ronan's television credits include...

Year Show/Series Role
The ClinicRhiannon Geraghty
2005ProofOrla Boland
2014Robot ChickenVarious voices

Academy Nominations/Awards won by Saoirse Ronan include...

Year Movie Award
2016 Brooklyn Nominated for
Best Supporting Actress

Memorable Quotes by Saoirse Ronan

[On being nominated for an Oscar] “It's unbelievable. Mom and I were in bed and dad was waiting up for the announcements again, because that's the way my daddy is. It's kind of a bit weird actually, in a good way, in a fantastic way. I never expected this in a million years to happen. I can't believe it. I'm really proud as well that two Irish paddies have been nominated for an Oscar for the same film. It's really great for Ireland, great. - ”

“It's not work, it is more of a passion. It is so much fun and it is really makes you feel great at the end of the day. You feel like you are really after doing something good and you are after accomplishing something. Acting is one of these things that I can't really describe - it's just like, why do you love your mum and dad? You know, you just do.”

“I like books that are exciting and that make you think about things, as well. I like things that have a twist - like Atonement (2007), which I haven't read obviously, as I'm a bit young.”

“I know a lot of people must think that The Lovely Bones is a pretty dramatic film and it's going to be really deep and dark and everything, but I promise you it's not. It's really humorous and funny and bright and happy. Then this awful thing happens and it kind of makes everyone really sad, obviously, but they have to get on with things. It's like the journey that Susie takes to learn to let go and realize that she can't be with her family anymore, and the same for her family. They have to let go and they know that they can't be with Susie. But it's a really funny, lighthearted thing.”

[on developing a voice pattern for the character Wanda in 'The Host'] “We looked at people like Jane Fonda in the '70s, just intonations in their speech and how well-spoken they all were. Jane Fonda doesn't sound like an alien, but she was very, very well-spoken, she still is. She has a quite beautiful way of speaking. We don't really have that today with young women.”

“Be the person I'm playing. That's what acting is. You're pretending to be someone else.”

Things You May Not Know About Saoirse Ronan

In 2008, at the age of 13, she became the seventh youngest actress to be nominated for an Academy Award for Best Supporting Actress for her role in Atonement. The only actresses younger than her to be nominated are Tatum O'Neal, Mary Badham, Quinn Cummings, Abigail Breslin, Patty McCormack and Anna Paquin.

Peter Jackson cast her with the intent of having an "unknown" play the lead role of Susie Salmon, but things changed when in the middle of filming The Lovely Bones, Ronan was nominated for an Oscar, BAFTA, and Golden Globe for her performance in Atonement.

Peter Jackson cast her as the lead character in his film The Lovely Bones based on an audition tape she sent in from Ireland. They were so impressed by the tape that they did not even meet her prior to offering her the role.

TIME Magazine ranked her performance in The Lovely Bones as the 3rd greatest female performance of 2009 just behind Mo'Nique and Carey Mulligan, and ahead of Meryl Streep.

She was the first choice for the role of Wanda Maximoff/Scarlet Witch in The Avengers: Age Of Ultron but turned it down. Elizabeth Olsen was later cast.

She includes Eraserhead and Three Amigos amongst her favorite films.

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Saoirse Ronan in The Lovely Bones (2009)... bottom picture with Nikki Soohoo.
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Ronan in The Host (2013).
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Ronan in The Grand Budapest Hotel (2014)... pictures four and five with Tony Revolori.
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In How I Live Now (2013)... with George MacKay in bottom two pictures.
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In Hanna (2011).
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Ronan with Harry Treadaway in City of Ember (2008).
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Ronan in Byzantium (2012).
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In Brooklyn (2015)... with Emory Cohen in picture three.
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Saoirse Ronan in Atonement (2007)... bottom picture with James McAvoy.