Kate Beckinsale Loe was born on July 26th, 1973, in London to two seasoned British television actors, and has spent most of her life in her place of birth. Girl made her acting debut in a television WWII drama called One Against the Wind and was soon cast in a short corporate film about industrial accidents. In 1991, Kate attended Oxford University's New College, where she majored in French and Russian Literature. Beckinsale already knew that she was going to pursue a career in drama, but in order to broaden her horizons she decided to attend a regular university rather than a school geared towards drama and other fine arts.
In 1992, she landed the role of Hero in the film adaptation of Shakespeare's Much Ado About Nothing (co-starring Kenneth Branagh, Emma Thompson, and Keanu Reeves). Upon receiving three more roles in European productions, Kate dropped out of her studies. Up next for Kate was a role in the 1994 BBC television satire, Cold Comfort Farm (with Ian McKellen), which opened to rave reviews in American art-house theaters and was a smash hit by indie standards. Beckinsale continued performing in British theater for the next few years and added some more films to her resum, including Emma, Haunted, and Marie-Louise ou la permission.
In 1998, Beckinsale returned to American shores in the film Brokedown Palace, with Claire Danes and Bill Pullman, and starred in the indie films Shooting Fish and The Last Days of Disco, co-starring Chlo? Sevigny. After a role in The Golden Bowl, Kate had a stellar year, being cast in the $150-million Touchstone pic, Pearl Harbor and the romantic comedy Serendipity, co-starring John Cusack. Beckinsale also starred in the thriller Underworld, in which she plays a vampire warrior playing an assistant vampire hunter to Hugh Jackman in Van Helsing. Also, Beckinsale is currently shooting a film entitled The Aviator, co-starring Cate Blanchett and Leonardo DiCaprio.