Hilary Ann Swank is an American actress and film producer. She is the recipient of numerous awards, including two Academy Awards and two Golden Globe Awards. Swank made her film debut with a minor role in Buffy the Vampire Slayer, before receiving her breakthrough role in the fourth installment of The Karate Kid franchise, The Next Karate Kid. Take a look below for 27 more awesome and fascinating facts about Hilary Swank.
1. Swank was born on July 30, 1974, in Lincoln, Nebraska, the younger of two children.
2. Her mother, Judy Kay, was a secretary and dancer, and her father, Stephen Michael Swank, was a Chief Master Sergeant in the Oregon Air National Guard and later a traveling salesman.
3. She has a brother, Daniel, who is eight years her senior.
4. Many of Swank’s family members are from Ringgold County, Iowa.
5. Her maternal grandmother, Frances Martha Clough, was born in El Centro, California, and was of Mexican descent.
6. Swank’s paternal grandmother was born in England; her other ancestry includes Dutch, German, Scots-Irish, Scottish, Swiss-German, and Welsh.
7. The surname “Swank”, originally “Schwenk”, is of German origin.
8. After living in Spokane, Washington, Swank’s family moved into a home near Lake Samish in Bellingham, Washington, when Swank was six.
9. She attended Happy Valley Elementary School, Fairhaven Middle School, then Sehome High School in Bellingham until she was 16.
10. She also competed in the Junior Olympics and the Washington state championships in swimming, and she ranked fifth in the state in all-around gymnastics.
11. Swank made her first appearance on stage when she was nine years old, starring in The Jungle Book.
12. When she was 15, her parents separated, and her mother, supportive of her daughter’s desire to act, moved with her to Los Angeles, where they lived out of their car until Swank’s mother saved enough money to rent an apartment.
13. Swank has called her mother the inspiration for her acting career and her life.
14. In California, Swank enrolled in South Pasadena High School, later dropping out.
15. She described her time at South Pasadena High School, “I felt like such an outsider. I didn’t feel like I fit in. I didn’t belong in any way. I didn’t even feel like the teachers wanted me there. I just felt like I wasn’t seen or understood.”
16. She explained that she became an actor because she felt like an outsider, “As a kid I felt that I belonged only when I read a book or saw a movie, and could get involved with a character. It was natural that I became an actor because I longed so much to be those other people, or at least to play them.”
17. While filming Quiet Days in Hollywood, Swank met actor Chad Lowe.
18. They married on September 28, 1997.
19. They announced their intention to divorce on January 9, 2006, which was finalized on November 1, 2007.
20. In 2007, Swank began dating her agent, John Campisi, but they ended their relationship in May 2012.
21. On March 22, 2016, Swank announced her engagement to Ruben Torres, a financial advisor with UBS and former professional tennis player.
22. The two had been dating since May 2015.
23. In June 2016, Swank’s representative confirmed she and Torres had ended their engagement.
24. On August 18, 2018, she married entrepreneur Philip Schneider after two years of dating.
25. Swank made her film debut in the 1992 comedy horror film Buffy the Vampire Slayer, playing a small role, after which she acted in the direct-to-video drama Quiet Days in Hollywood, where she co-starred with Chad Lowe, who would become her husband for a time.
26. Her first leading film role was in the fourth installment of the Karate Kid series, The Next Karate Kid (1994), which utilized her gymnastics background and paired her with Pat Morita.
27. In 2017, she appeared in Steven Soderbergh’s heist comedy Logan Lucky, as Special Agent Sarah Grayson, alongside Channing Tatum and Daniel Craig, and portrayed lawyer Colette Hughes in Bille August’s drama film 55 Steps.