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15 Years of Reese Witherspoon

15 Years of Reese Witherspoon

Reuters

Reese Witherspoon turned 36 this year, and to celebrate, we compiled our favorite shots of "America's Sweetheart" through the years. The actress, who reportedly earned $12 million for her last movie, "This Means War," has skyrocketed from her New Orleans roots to become Hollywood's golden girl. Here's some of our favorite Witherspoon moments from the past 15 years.

(Reuters)
"Twilight" Premiere in New York, 1998

At just 20 years old, Witherspoon starred alongside Paul Newman and Susan Sarandon in the film "Twilight" — the one without the vampires. Here they are posing for photographers at the world premiere in New York City.

(Reuters)
"Election" Premiere in Hollywood, 1999

Pregnant with her first child, Ava (born September 9, 1999), Witherspoon arrived for the Hollywood premiere of "Election." In the film, a high school election goes awry when the student government adviser (Matthew Broderick) sabotages the campaign of an over-achieving high school student (Witherspoon) running for student body president. Her performance as Tracy Flick was ranked #45 on Premiere magazine's 100 Greatest Performances of All Time.

(Reuters)
Independent Spirit Awards, 2000

Witherspoon waved to photographers and fans as she arrived at the Independent Spirit Awards in Santa Monica. Her film "Election" won best feature film at the awards show.

(Reuters)
"Legally Blonde" Premiere, 2001

As the star of "Legally Blonde," Witherspoon waved at screaming fans at the Los Angeles premiere. Her portrayal of Elle Woods drew throngs of moviegoers to the box office, establishing her as one of the top female draws in Hollywood.

(Reuters)
Golden Globe Awards, 2002

Witherspoon posed during arrivals at the 59th Annual Golden Globe Awards in Beverly Hills. She was nominated for Best Actress in a Motion Picture Musical or Comedy for her role in "Legally Blonde." 

(Reuters)
UK Premiere of "Legally Blonde 2: Red, White & Blonde," 2003

At the U.K. premiere of "Legally Blonde 2: Red, White & Blonde" in central London, Witherspoon was pregnant with her second child, Deacon (born October 23, 2003). She took home an estimated $15 million for her role in the film.

(Reuters)
"Vanity Fair" Premiere in New York, 2004

Witherspoon posed for photographers at the "Vanity Fair" premiere in New York. She ditched her classic blonde locks to portray June Carter in "Walk the Line" —  a role that would win her an Oscar two years later.
 

(Reuters)
"Just Like Heaven" Premiere in Hollywood, 2005

As star of the film "Just Like Heaven," Witherspoon arrived for the premiere in Hollywood wearing a stunning white gown. That same year, she was ranked #40 in FHM's list of the 100 Sexiest Women in the World.

(Reuters)
Academy Awards, 2006

Witherspoon gave her acceptance speech after winning the Best Actress award for her role in "Walk the Line" at the Academy Awards in Hollywood. This achievement made her one of nine actresses to have won the Academy Award, BAFTA Award, Critics' Choice Award, Golden Globe Award and SAG Award for the same performance. Later that same year, she filed for divorce from husband Ryan Phillippe, demanding sole custody for their children Ava and Deacon.

(Reuters)
Golden Globe Awards, 2007

Witherspoon arrived at the 64th Annual Golden Globe Awards in Beverly Hills. In 2007, she was also ranked as one of the highest-paid actresses in Hollywood, according to The Hollywood Reporter.

(Reuters)
Japan, 2008

After being named the first ever Avon Global Ambassador in 2007, Witherspoon traveled to Tokyo to promote the Avon Women's Empowerment Bracelet. The project raised money for the UNIFEM-managed trust fund to end violence against women.

(Reuters)
Vanity Fair Oscar Party, 2009

Witherspoon arrived at the 2009 Vanity Fair Oscar Party in West Hollywood wearing this stunning royal blue gown. Later that year, she debuted her perfume, "In Bloom" by Avon.

(Reuters)
Hollywood Walk of Fame, 2010

Witherspoon was awarded the 2,425th star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame by James L. Brooks and James Mangold. She was accompanied by her children, Ava and Deacon Phillippe, and boyfriend Jim Toth.
 

(Reuters)
Tusk Trust's U.S. Patron's Circle, 2011

In a meeting of "royalty," Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge, was introduced to Hollywood's princess, Reese Witherspoon, during a reception to mark the launch of Tusk Trust's U.S. Patron's Circle in Beverly Hills.

Prince William and his new wife Catherine made their U.S. premiere on the world's stage in Los Angeles, but they weren't the only newlyweds at the event: Witherspoon and Jim Toth had recently tied the knot, too. We can't help but love the nervous look on Witherspoon's face — proving that even celebrities get starstuck.
 

(Reuters)
Golden Globes, 2012

We know why Witherspoon was glowing as she posed on the red carpet at the 69th Annual Golden Globe Awards in Beverly Hills: She was reeling from over a decade of success. In addition, she had recently been honored with the MTV Generation Award at the 2011 MTV Movie Awards, becoming the second female in history to receive the award following Sandra Bullock in 2010.

As her 36th birthday celebration draws to a close, one can only wonder what the future holds for Reese Witherspoon. We almost can't wait to see what "America's Sweetheart" has in store for the years to come.

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