Little Miss Sunshine
“What I like about it is being a different person. Every character is different, so you're able to be that person and when you leave, you're yourself again. It's kind of weird to be two different people, but I think that's kind of fun too. My mom always told me that the best way to learn is to watch and kind of learn from other people, so that's what I try to do.” Abigail Breslin (on acting)
Academy Award nominated American actress Abigail Breslin picked up her nomination at age 10 thanks to her performance of Olive Hoover in the successful independent film “Little Miss Sunshine” (2006). Breslin also netted many awards and other nominations for her work in the film. Kicking off her career at age 3, the New York native first attracted attention in M. Night Shyamalan's “Signs” (2002), in which she portrayed Bo Hess. She continue to offer worthy performances in such films as Garry Marshall's “Raising Helen” (2004), Lodge Kerrigan's “Keane” (2004), “Family Plan” (2005, TV), Michael O. Sajbel's “The Ultimate Gift” (2006), “The Santa Clause 3: The Escape Clause” (2006), “No Reservation” (2007, earned a Young Artist nomination), “Definitely, Maybe” (2008), “Nim's Island” (2008, received a Teen Choice nomination), “Kit Kittredge: An American Girl” (2008, nabbed a Young Artist Award) and “My Sister's Keeper” (2009). She has also guest starred in TV series like “Law and Order: Special Victims Unit,” “Navy NCIS: Naval Criminal Investigative Service,” “Ghost Whisperer” and “Grey's Anatomy.”
Breslin was named one of Entertainment Weekly's “30 Under 30 Actresses” and ranked No. 8 in TV Guide’s list of “Top 10 Teen Star Countdown” (both 2008). With a net income of over $1 million in 2006, she got the Top 8 spot on Forbes Magazine's list of “Young Hollywood's Top-Earning Stars” in 2007. Breslin was also the recipient of the ShoWest Award for Female Star of Tomorrow (2008) and Young Hollywood Award for Hottest Coolest Young Veteran (2009).
Breslin lives in New York with her family. She is good friends with fellow young actress Skye McCole Bartusiak, Sammi Hanratty and Dakota Fanning.
Childhood and Family:
Named after the former First Lady of the United States Abigail Adams, Abigail Kathleen Breslin was born on April 14, 1996, in New York City, New York. She is the daughter of Michael Breslin, a telecommunication expert, computer programmer and consultant, and Kim Breslin, who once managed her career. She has two older brothers, Ryan Breslin (born in 1985), and Spencer Breslin (born on May 18, 1992), who is also an actor.
Abigail, whose nickname is Abbie, is home schooled. She hates math but loves reading and history. She has two dogs, a turtle and a cat. She collects American Girl dolls and stuffed animals.
Abigail Breslin began acting in television commercials when she was three years old. Her big break arrived when she was discovered by M. Night Shyamalan and cast in his popular science thriller “Signs,” which was released on August 2, 2002. Playing the daughter of Mel Gibson, Bo Hess, a solemn adolescent girl coping with the painful death of her mother, she was outstanding and nominated for a Phoenix Film Critics Society (PFCS) Award and Young Artist Award in the categories of Best Performance by a Youth in a Leading or Supporting Role - Female and Best Performance in a Feature Film - Young Actress Age Ten or Under, respectively.
Following a brief venture on the small screen with guest spots in CBS' “Hack” and The WB's “What I Like About You” (both 2002), Breslin returned to films as Sarah, one of three orphaned children being raised by their aunt, in the Garry Marshall directed “Raising Helen” (2004). The comedy also starred Kate Hudson, Joan Cusack, Hayden Panettiere, John Corbett, Helen Mirren, and her brother, Spencer Breslin. Later that same year, she was reunited with the director for the Anne Hathaway starring “The Princess Diaries 2: Royal Engagement” (2004), where she had a cameo role, and costarred with Damian Lewis and Amy Ryan in the low budget independent film “Keane” (premiered at the Telluride Film Festival on September 3, 2004). Directed by Lodge Kerrigan and produced by Steven Soderbergh, “Keane” won the Critics Award and Jury Special Prize at the 2005 Deauville Film Festival before receiving a limited New York theater release on September 9, 2005. Still in 2004, she was also cast with Makenzie Vega in “Chestnut: Hero of Central Park,” which premiered at the Heartland Film Festival on October 21, 2004. She then portrayed Patty Branson in an episode of “Law and Order: Special Victims Unit” called “Birthright” and Sandy Watson in “See No Evil,” an episode of “Navy NCIS: Naval Criminal Investigative Service.”
The dynamic young actress next supported Tori Spelling, Greg Germann and Jordan Bridges in the made-for-television film “Family Plan” (Hallmark Channel, 2005). However, it was not until she was cast as Olive Hoover, Greg Kinnear and Toni Collette's daughter and a beauty pageant participant in Valerie Faris and Jonathan Dayton's “Little Miss Sunshine” that Breslin charmed the hearts of audiences and critics alike. For her acclaimed performance, she was awarded a Screen Actors Guild for Outstanding Performance by a Cast in a Motion Picture, a Young Artist for Best Performance in a Feature Film - Young Actress Age Ten or Younger, Broadcast Film Critics Association's Critics Choice Award for Best Young Actress, an Online Film Critics Society for Best Supporting Actress, Las Vegas Film Critics Society's Sierra Award for Youth in Film, the Best Actress Award at the 2006 Tokyo International Film Festival and two Phoenix Film Critics Society awards. She also collected a string of nominations such as a BAFTA nomination for Best Actress in a Supporting Role, a MTV Movie nomination for Breakthrough Performance, a SAG nomination for Outstanding Performance by a Female Actor in a Supporting Role, a Chicago Film Critics Association nomination for Best Supporting Actress, and an Oscar nomination for Best Supporting Actress, to name a few. At age 10, Breslin became the fifth youngest actress ever to receive an Oscar nomination. Meanwhile the film, which premiered at the Sundance Film Festival on January 20, 2006, before its wide release in August 2006, was a critical success and emerged as one of the most substantial sleeper hits of that year, with an international box office gross of over $100 million.
Still in 2006, Breslin also appeared in episodes of “Ghost Whisperer” and “Grey's Anatomy,” portrayed Hally in Marcello Daciano's “Imaginary Friend” and provided the voice of Rosebud in the direct-to-video release “Air Buddies.” She delivered additional memorable performances in the little seen “The Ultimate Gift,” an adaptation of Jim Stovall's bestselling novel of the same name, and the sequel “The Santa Clause 3: The Escape Clause,” which starred Tim Allen. The next year, Breslin portrayed Catherine Zeta-Jones' niece, Zoe Armstrong, in Scott Hicks' “No Reservation” (2007) and earned a 2008 Young Artist nomination in the category of Best Performance in a Feature Film - Leading Young Actress for the performance. She followed it up with memorable performances in the films “Definitely, Maybe” (2008), a romantic comedy written and directed by Adam Brooks and starring Ryan Reynolds, Jennifer Flackett and Mark Levin's “Nim's Island” (2008), with Jodie Foster and Gerard Butler, and “Kit Kittredge: An American Girl” (2008), a comedy directed by Patricia Rozema. She was nominated for a Teen Choice for Choice Movie Actress: Action Adventure for “Nim's Island” and a Young Artist for Best Performance in a Feature Film - Leading Young Actress for “Kit Kittredge: An American Girl.” The latter film also brought her a Young Artist Award for Best Performance in a Feature Film - Young Ensemble Cast.
In 2009, Breslin starred with Cameron Diaz, Sofia Vassilieva, Alec Baldwin, Jason Patric, Evan Ellingson and Joan Cusack in “My Sister's Keeper,” directed by Nick Cassavetes. The screenplay, written by Jeremy Leven, is based on the novel of the same name by Jodi Picoult. In the movie, she played Anna Fitzgerald. The gifted actress will play Little Rock in the horror film “Zombieland” (scheduled to be released on October 2, 2009), opposite Amber Heard, Emma Stone, Bill Murray, Woody Harrelson and Mike White, and Bethie Maguire in Harold Becker's big screen adaptation of Joyce Carol Oates' novel “Vengeance: A Love Story” (2009), with Samuel L. Jackson and Heather Graham. She is rumored to be portraying Max in “Dear Eleanor,” a family movie from director Gary Marshall that is set for a 2010 release. Breslin will also do voice over work in the films “Quantum Quest: A Cassini Space Odyssey” (2009), “The Wild Bunch” (2010) and “Rango” (2011).
“I want to do wardrobe. I want to do hair. I want to do makeup. I want to do writing. I want to do directing. I want to do all of it. I like it and I want to do producing.” Abigail Breslin
Young Hollywood: Hottest Coolest Young Veteran, 2009
Young Artist: Best Performance in a Feature Film - Young Ensemble Cast, “Kit Kittredge: An American Girl,” 2009
ShoWest Convention: ShoWest Award, Female Star of Tomorrow, 2008
Broadcast Film Critics Association: Critics Choice Award, Best Young Actress, “Little Miss Sunshine,” 2007
Online Film Critics Society (OFCS): Best Supporting Actress, “Little Miss Sunshine,” 2007
Screen Actors Guild: Outstanding Performance by a Cast in a Motion Picture, “Little Miss Sunshine,” 2007
Young Artist: Best Performance in a Feature Film - Young Actress Age Ten or Younger, “Little Miss Sunshine,” 2007
Las Vegas Film Critics Society: Sierra Award, Youth in Film, “Little Miss Sunshine,” 2006
Phoenix Film Critics Society (PFCS): Best Ensemble Cast, “Little Miss Sunshine,” 2006
Phoenix Film Critics Society (PFCS): Best Performance by a Youth in a Lead or Supporting Role - Female, “Little Miss Sunshine,” 2006
Tokyo International Film Festival: Best Actress Award, “Little Miss Sunshine,” 2006