Naomi Ellen Watts was born on September 28th, 1968, in Kent, England. Her mother, who is of English and Welsh ancestry, worked as a costume and set designer as well as an antiques trader. Peter Watts, her father, served as a sound engineer for Pink Floyd. When she was four years old, her parents split, and she spent her childhood in Southern England with her mother and older brother.
Watts’ father died of an alleged heroin overdose when she was eight years old, in 1976. The family then moved to Wales to live with Watts’ grandmother for a short while before returning to Suffolk after her mother remarried. Her mother started a career as a costume designer for a soap opera in Sydney, Australia, when she was 14. Watts attributes her ability to pick up accents as an actress to her geographically and linguistically diverse childhood homes.
Early on in your career
Watts began taking acting lessons after coming to Sydney, encouraged by her mother, and soon became friends with Nicole Kidman. She dropped out of high school and chose to work odd jobs while pursuing her acting career. She tried to get employment as a model when she was eighteen and signed with an agency that sent her to Japan, but she returned to Australia after not receiving any callbacks.
Her debut film was “For Love Alone,” which she starred in in 1986. After meeting director John Duigan at a film premiere for pal Nicole Kidman, she earned her first break in the industry. Watts had a minor role in Duigan’s independent film “Flirting,” which was voted one of Roger Ebert’s greatest films of 1992. She moved to the United States in 1993 and, despite being well embraced by the film world, she returned to Australia to work on a few films before returning to LA and feeling as if she had to start over.
Watts struggled to create a name for herself as an actor during the most of the 1990s, which put her in a perilous financial condition. Kidman, she adds, was a huge source of support and encouragement for her during that difficult time in her life, and it wasn’t without effort. She appeared in the box office flop “Tank Girl” and the 1998 feature “Dangerous Beauty” as a supporting actress.
She finished the decade with a role in the low-budget romantic comedy Strange Planet before being cast as the leading lady in David Lynch’s Mulholland Drive, which was originally intended to be a television series.
“Mulholland Drive” was critically acclaimed when it was released in 2001. Watts would go on to star in the surrealist short film “Rabbits,” directed by David Lynch. She rose to prominence after appearing in the box office success “The Ring” in 2002, and she proceeded to advance her career with her performance in the film “21 Grams” in 2003.
Watts’ performance in the film was nominated for an Oscar, a BAFTA, a Screen Actors Guild award, and a slew of other honors, signaling that she had finally broken through as a trustworthy, brilliant Hollywood actress. She went on to star in the commercially successful sequel to The Ring, and in 2005, she starred with Black and Adrien Brody in Peter Jackson’s critically praised blockbuster “King Kong.” The picture earned more than $210 million in the United States and more than $340 million worldwide.
Her other significant performances in the mid-2000s were in the drama “Painted Veil” (2006), the gangster film “Eastern Promises” (2007), and the horror film “Funny Games” (2007). She finished the decade by co-starring with Clive Owens in the 2009 criminal film “The International,” which was a moderate box office hit.
Watts continued to feature in major and indie films in the early 2010s, but it wasn’t until 2014 that she had her next critical and economic triumph with the film “Birdman.” With a budget of only $18 million, the low-budget dark comedy starring her, Edward Norton, Michael Keaton, Zach Galifianakis, and Emma Stone grossed over $100 million at the box office.
It got positive reviews from critics and was nominated for four Academy Awards, including Best Picture. The film was also nominated for and won multiple additional awards, including a Screen Actors Guild Award and a Golden Globe. Watts was nominated for a Screen Actors Guild Award for her part in the independent comedy “St. Vincent” the same year.
In 2015 and 2016, she starred in the second and third parts of the Divergent franchise, which received mixed reviews. She collaborated with David Lynch once more in 2017 for Showtime’s remake of his 1990s cult smash television series “Twin Peaks.” In 2019, she portrayed Gretchen Carlson in “The Loudest Voice,” a Showtime docu-drama miniseries about Roger Ailes’ tumultuous tenure as Fox News chairman.
Watts started dating actor Liev Schreiber in 2005 and gave birth to a baby with him in the summer of 2007. In the winter of 2008, the couple had their second child. They announced their separation in 2016, and there have been no known custody battles for the children since then. Watts met actor Billy Crudup on the set of Netflix’s “Gypsy” and began dating him in 2017. From 2002 to 2004, she dated late actor Heath Ledger. She gained an interest in Buddhism after filming the “Painted Veil” in 2009, but acknowledged that she did not practice it.
Purchasing Real Estate
Naomi purchased a property in LA’s Brentwood district for $4.2 million in 2004. Naomi began renting the house at $20,000 per month after she and Liev split up. She owns the house to this day. It’s worth $7 million, according to estimates. Sally Field, an actress, had owned the house since 1993, and Naomi bought it from her.
Naomi and Liev paid $6 million for two New York City apartments side by side in 2007.
In 2016, it was announced that Liev and Naomi had paid $5.4 million for a 3,500-square-foot property in Montauk, New York.
The current owners of the New York properties are unknown. The Montauk house appears to have been purchased by Liev. Naomi now owns her Brentwood home outright.
Naomi Watts is a British-Australian actress with a $35 million net worth. She is most recognized for her appearances in Peter Jackson’s “King Kong” from 2003, the award-winning “21 Grams” from 2003, and David Lynch’s surrealist 2001 cult blockbuster “Mulholland Drive.”