Ellen Page

Ellen Page

Ellen Page returns to the big screen this week with her latest movie Whip It, which is Drew Barrymore's directorial debut.

In her short career the actress has moved between TV and movies as well as dabbling in the big budget blockbuster alongside the smaller and more independent pictures.

She made her acting debut back in 1997 when  she appeared in television movie Pit Pony, she was only ten years old.

This led to a string of roles in her native Canada in movies such as Marion Bridge and Touch & Go.

But it was 2005 when her career really started to pick up with roles in Mouth to Mouth and hard Candy.

In Hard Candy, Page stars as Hayley, smart, charming teenage girl. Hayley probably shouldn't be going to a local coffee shop to meet Jeff, a 30-something fashion photographer she met on the Internet.

But Hayley's ready to have fun, and soon she's mixing screwdrivers at Jeff's place and stripping for an impromptu photo shoot. It's Jeff's lucky night, until his vision blurs and he passes out.

Turns out Hayley isn't as innocent as she looks after all. In fact, she has a lot on her mind. Like getting Jeff to confess to his penchant for teenage girls, and to what he did to Donna Mauer, the girl who disappeared from Jeff's favourite coffee shop.

When Jeff awakens, he's tied to a chair. If he doesn't cooperate, Hayley has something to help him along, a little surgical procedure she picked up on the Internet. All she needs is an ice pack. And a knife.

The movie was well met by the critics and Page's performance saw her go on to win the Austin Film Critics Association Award for Best Actress.

It was a change of pace for the actress a year later as she took on the role of Kitty Pryde in X-Men: The Last Stand.

But it was 2007 and her performance that really made people sit up and take notice. Directed by Jason Reitman and penned by Diablo Cody, Page took on the central role of Juno MacGuff in the indie movie.

Juno is a whip-smart teen confronting an unplanned pregnancy by her classmate Bleeker.

With the help of her hot best friend Leah, Juno finds her unborn child a "perfect" set of parents: an affluent suburban couple, Mark and Vanessa, longing to adopt.

Luckily, Juno has the total support of her parents as she faces some tough decisions, flirts with adulthood and ultimately figures out where she belongs.

The movie was met with rave reviews, as was Page's performance as she went on to be nominated for the Bafta, Golden Globe and Best Actress Oscar.

Juno was also nominated for Best Picture while Reitman picked up a best Director nod. On the night Diablo Cody walked away with the Best original Screenplay gong.

Since then Page's career has gone a little quiet appearing in The Stone Angle and Smart people since her success with Juno.

But this week she is back with Whip It. Bringing together a cast that includes Marcia Gay Harden, Kristen Wiig, Drew Barrymore, Juliette Lewis the movie follows a teenager who is tired of being pushed into beauty pageants by her parents, and finds herself after joining a female roller derby team.

And 2010 looks set to be a busy year for the actress as she has also worked with Christopher Nolan on Inception.

Released later this year the movie also stars Leonardo DiCaprio, Cillian Murphy, Marion Cotillard and Michael Caine.

Also watch out for Peacock and Super which are both in post production.

Whip It is released 7th April.

FemaleFirst Helen Earnshaw

by for www.femalefirst.co.uk
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