Joshua Hartnett was born in San Francisco, California and was
raised mostly by his father, Daniel Hartnett, and stepmother,
Molly. His birth mother moved back to her native San Francisco
after divorcing his father. Hartnett has three younger siblings,
named Jessica, Jake and Joe. He grew up in Saint Paul, Minnesota
and attended Nativity of Our Lord Catholic Grade School, where
he played Huck Finn in an eighth grade production. He later
attended Cretin-Derham Hall High School before switching to
South High School in Minneapolis, Minnesota, from which he
graduated in June 1996. Hartnett played football in high school,
but stopped because of an injured left knee.
Joshua Hartnett attended SUNY in Purchase, New York. His first job was working at a Mr. Movies in St. Paul. He got his start acting at Youth Performance Company in Minneapolis.
In April 1997, Joshua Hartnett made his screen debut playing the role of Michael Fitzgerald on the short-lived television series, Cracker. He also performed in small plays and on national television commercials, before being cast in his first feature film, playing the son of Jamie Lee Curtis' character in Halloween: H20, which was released on August 5, 1998 and performed well at the box office.
Hartnett has since developed a steady film career, having appeared in several successful Hollywood films, including The Faculty, Black Hawk Down, and Pearl Harbor. He was originally set to play the role of Tino in Deuces Wild, but dropped out to star in Pearl Harbor. Hartnett was chosen as one of Teen People Magazine's 21 Hottest Stars Under 21 in 1999, one of Teen People's 25 Hottest Stars under 25 and one of People Magazine's 50 Most Beautiful People, both in 2002, and was voted Bliss Magazine's 3rd s--iest male.
Joshua Hartnett most recent film is the drama-mystery The Black Dahlia, in which he plays a detective investigating the notorious real-life murder of actress Elizabeth Short. Among his upcoming roles are Resurrecting the Champ, a drama also starring Samuel L. Jackson, and the graphic novel-based 30 Days of Night, in which he plays a small-town sheriff; Hartnett describes the film as "supernatural, but kind of a western". Another film, The Prince of Cool, in which Hartnett would play trumpet player Chet Baker, is currently in the early stages of development and may begin filming in 2007.
Hartnett is a former vegetarian. He dated his high school sweetheart, Ellen Fenster, for a number of years; the two bought a $2.5 million mansion in Minneapolis, but split in February of 2004. Hartnett has since been linked to actress Scarlett Johansson and various fashion and swimsuit models.
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