English actress Natascha McElhone was born on December 14, 1969 in London, England. Born to journalist parents, she took lessons in Irish dancing as a child, and moved on to study at the London Academy of Music and Dramatic Art, graduating in 1993. She began her career on stage, appearing in productions of Richard III, The Count of Monte Cristo, A Midsummer Night’s Dream and The Cheery Orchard in the West End. She later started appearing on British television shows, debuting in the detective series Bergerac in 1991, and later in an episode of the original series of Absolutely Fabulous.
McElhone made her film debut in 1996, appearing alongside Anthony Hopkins in Surviving Picasso. She has made relatively few films—Ronin, Love’s Labour’s Lost, Killing Me Softly, Solaris—but she achieved wide recognition for her role in the 1998 drama The Truman Show. She played Sylvia, a screen extra who becomes romantically involved with Truman Burbank (Jim Carrey), and attempts to reveal the truth about his (nationally-televised) life.
McElhone, however, is still more known for her roles in television. She appeared opposite Dennis Hopper in the miniseries Karaoke, which aired in 1996. In 2003, she played Mary Boleyn in the television film The Other Boleyn Girl, which predated the later film release. More recently, she appeared in the short-lived mystery drama Revelations, where she played the female lead, nun Josepha Montafiore. She then starred in the drama series Californication, where she played the role of Karen van der Deek, the ex-girlfriend of troubled novelist Hank Moody (David Duchovny).
"I always think I love work. And I knew early on that I wanted to be an actress. Then I meet people who have truly dedicated their lives to acting, and I realize that I'm so completely in the back seat."
"I remember going to premieres and always going in the side entrance of the cinema. It wasn't till much later that I made it up the red carpet. I wasn't being defiant, I just didn't get it."