Kirsten Dunst was born in Point Pleasant, New Jersey, to Klaus and Inez Dunst.
Dunst's parents separated several years ago. Her father, Klaus Dunst, a German
medical services executive, remained in New Jersey. Her mother, Inez Dunst, a
Swedish former art gallery owner, moved to California. Dunst has a younger
brother, Christian, born in 1986.
Kirsten Dunst graduated from Notre Dame High School, a private Catholic high school in Sherman Oaks, in 2000.
Kirsten Dunst started dating fellow actor Jake Gyllenhaal in September 2002, after meeting him through his sister, Maggie Gyllenhaal (her co-star in Mona Lisa Smile). They broke up in July 2004 and have been on-again, off-again since.
Dunst began acting at the age of three in television commercials. In a 1988 episode of Saturday Night Live, she played the role of President George H.W. Bush's granddaughter, in a sketch in which Dana Carvey acted as President Bush. Years later, Dunst brought this to light when she hosted the show.
Dunst moved to the big screen in 1989's New York Stories. Soon after, she landed a small part in The Bonfire of the Vanities as Tom Hanks's daughter.
In 1993, Kirsten Dunst played Hedril in the seventh season episode of Star Trek: The Next Generation called "Dark Page".
Kirsten Dunst's breakthrough came in Interview with the Vampire, a 1994 film based on Anne Rice's novel starring Tom Cruise, Brad Pitt, Antonio Banderas, and Christian Slater that was directed by Neil Jordan. This movie features a somewhat controversial scene in which Dunst, then aged eleven, had to kiss Brad Pitt, who was 29. Her most well-known performances to date have been in The Virgin Suicides, the cult hit Bring It On, and as Mary Jane Watson in Spider-Man and Spider-Man 2.
Kirsten Dunst won the 2002 Best Actress Silver Ombú at the Mar de Plata Film Festival for her performance as Charlie Chaplin's love interest Marion Davies in Peter Bogdanovich's The Cat's Meow.
Kirsten Dunst made her singing debut in the 2001 film, Get Over It, performing two songs written by Marc Shaiman. She also lent her musical voice to the end credits of The Cat's Meow by singing the old standard, "After You've Gone."
More recently, Dunst has played the role of doomed 18th-century royal, Queen Marie Antoinette, in the forthcoming motion picture, titled Marie-Antoinette, which is scheduled for release in Autumn 2006. It is the third film directed by Sofia Coppola (the second to feature Dunst), and is based on British historian Lady Antonia Fraser's biography of Marie-Antoinette.
A new project has been announced on the life of peace activist Marla Ruzicka in which Dunst will play the title lead. Few details are available on the project at this time.
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