Amy Adams (born Amy Lou Adams) was born on August 20th, 1974 in Veneto, Italy. Her father, Richard Adams, is an American Army veteran; he was stationed in Italy when Adams was born. Adams, who was one of seven siblings, frequently moved as a child due to her father being stationed at different army vases. However, when Adams was eight, her family finally settled down in Colorado after her father was discharged from the Army. After his army career, her father began a career as a professional restaurant singer while her mother worked as a bodybuilder.
Adams was involved in creative arts from an early age. In high school, she was part of the school choir and trained at a dance company with the hopes of one day becoming a ballerina. She continued to pursue a career in ballet until shortly after graduating from high school; her decision to leave ballet was due to the fact that she believed she was not talented enough to work as a professional ballerina, and that ballet was too “disciplined and restrained” for her personality.
Adams then decided to pursue her interest in theater. She performed at various community and dinner theaters, while supporting herself with various odd jobs, before she was spotted by a dinner theater director who paid her to relocate and work at the Chanhassen Dinner Theatre in Minnesota. It was here that she decided to audition for a film called Drop Dead Gorgeous; she was cast in a supporting role, which became her very first feature film role.
After her work in Drop Dead Gorgeous, Adams decided to move to Los Angeles to pursue a career in film and television. She found her first months in Los Angeles difficult because of a lack of work and the absence of her friends and “theater family” in Minnesota.
Over the next few years, Adams was cast in various small roles, including a role in the television version of Cruel Intentions, which was cancelled due to production problems; supporting roles in That 70s Show, The Office, Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Smallville, and Charmed. Her next significant role was that of Brenda in Catch Me If You Can, which director Steven Spielberg noted “should have launched her career,” although Adams did not find another role for almost a year after the film was made.
Adams’ critical film break came with her role in the indie film Junebug, which did not receive a wide release or achieve much box office success; however, her performance in the film was universally praised and caused her to gain the attention of several prominent film directors.
Since Junebug, Adams has acted in numerous successful films; including Miss Pettigrew Lives for a Day, Doubt, Julie & Julia, Enchanted, American Hustle, and an award-winning performance as Margaret Keane in Tim Burton’s Big Eyes.
Adams is currently engaged to artist Darren Le Gallo, whom she met in 2001 while working on a film; the couple has one daughter, who was born in 2010.