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Olga Kurylenko –

Kurylenko in OBLIVION.

About Olga Kurylenko (1979 – )

Kurylenko was born in Berdyansk, Ukraine, at that time part of the Soviet Union. Her father, Konstantin, is Ukrainian, and her mother, Marina is Russian. She is of Russian and Belarusian extraction.

Her parents divorced when she was three and Olga's mother raised her. Kurylenko seldom had contact with her father, meeting him for the first time after the divorce when she was eight, and then once again when she was thirteen.

Kurylenko was spotted by a female model scout while on holiday in Moscow when she was 13. At 16 she moved from Ukraine to Paris. She signed a contract with the Paris-based Madison modeling agency in 1996. The following year, by the time she was 18, she'd been on the covers of Vogue and Elle. Her modeling work allowed her to support her mother in Ukraine.

She went on to appear on the covers of Madame Figaro and Marie Claire magazines, becoming the face of such well-known brands as Bebe, Clarins, and Helena Rubinstein. She also modeled for Roberto Cavalli and Kenzo, and has been featured in the pages of Victoria's Secret catalogues.

Her first acting break came in Seal's music video, "Love's Divine" in 2003, but her film career truly began in France in 2005. The following year she won a certificate of excellence award at the 2006 Brooklyn International Film Festival for her work in L'Annulaire, and also starred in the Paris, je t'aime segment Quartier de la Madeleine alongside Elijah Wood. In 2007, she starred in Hitman with Justified star Timothy Olyphant. She was seen in a minor role in Max Payne as Natasha. She played Bond girl Camille Montes in the 2008 James Bond film Quantum of Solace, playing a Bolivian Secret Service agent who teams up with Bond to avenge the death of her parents.

She was featured on the cover of the December 2008 issue of the U.S. edition of Maxim magazine, and on the cover of the February 2009 issue of the magazine's Ukrainian edition. In Ukraine the mayor of Berdyansk suggested naming a street after her in early 2008, and she and her mother met Ukraine's First Lady in President Yushchenko's family country house.

Kurylenko appeared in Terrence Malick's To the Wonder, then co-starred with Tom Cruise in the Joseph Kosinski sci-fi pic Oblivion. She also played Alice Fournier, the main subject of the spy thriller November Man.

Kurylenko is set to star as Marie Curie in the Luc Besson biopic RAD, scheduled for release in late 2015 after being in development limbo since 2011.

Kurylenko officially became a citizen of France in 2001. In 2008, her mother observed that she'd "changed her citizenship from Ukrainian to French long ago." She married a French fashion photographer, Cedric van Mol, in 2000, but they divorced in 2004. Two years later she married American mobile phone accessory entrepreneur Damian Gabrielle, but their union ended in late 2007. In 2009 she moved to London.

Kurylenko is well-known for her philanthropic work; she is particularly concerned with helping underprivileged children in her native Ukraine.

Olga Kurylenko's movie credits include...

Year Movie Role
2001 Largo Winch Carole
2005 L'Annulaire Iris
2006 Paris, je t'aime The Vampire
2006 Le porte-bonheur Sophia
2006 The Serpent Sofia
2007 Suspectes Eva Pirès
2007 Hitman Nika Boronina
2008 À l'est de moi The Russian prostitute
2008 Max Payne Natasha Sax
2008 Quantum of Solace Camille Montes
2009 Kirot Galia
2010 Tyranny Mina Harud
2010 Centurion Etain
2011 There Be Dragons Ildiko
2011 Land of Oblivion Anya
2012 Erased Anna Brandt
2012 To the Wonder Marina
2012 Seven Psychopaths Angela
2012 Magic City Vera Evans
2013 Oblivion Julia Rusakova
2014 Vampire Academy Ellen Kirova
2014 The November Man Alice Fournier/Mira Filipova
2014 The Water Diviner Ayshe
2015 A Perfect Day Katya
2015 Momentum
2015 Empires of the Deep

Memorable Quotes

“Every one of us, no matter how damaged or abnormal or shut down, we're all looking for love. Every person needs love in this world, but our views on what love is vary enormously.”

“I hate jealousy, I hate possessiveness. I'm nobody's possession.”

“Hollywood always represents this big dream and fairy tale in people's minds, but to me, it's just hard work. Of course, we play fairy tale on the red carpet. It's all Cinderella. But when the clock strikes midnight, I turn into a gray mouse and I go home, and I take my dress off and it's over. That's Hollywood.”

“I bring spiritual books with me while traveling. I like books about thoughts and how you see the world.”

“I just went to an acting agency one day and just said, 'I would like to act. Would you take me?' And they took me.”

“Eventually there are going to be chips in brains. Imagine if you could just buy knowledge and download it into your head instead of having to learn it. Like in 'The Matrix.' Imagine all the years saved!”

“I don't like the mentality that comes with rich Russian men. Because they have money, they think they can buy a woman - and they do. They can't just meet a woman and fall in love. And it's women's fault because they allow it.”

“What I love about sci-fi is that every generation's films are based on what we know at that point in time. We make movies about the future but it's always based on what we have. Then as science grows and we discover new things, so do our ideas.”

“I love it when a man cooks; it's one of those points that makes me adore a guy. I think it's so romantic and I feel cared for when a man cooks. As long as it's good. I wouldn't let a man cook cabbage, though, because I'm pretty sure men can't cook cabbage.”

“I love fire. As a child I loved setting light to things. I'd always be in the forest putting matches to pieces of wood. I've always regarded fire as my friend.”

Did You Know

Olga Kurylenko plays the piano and speaks three languages fluently: Russian, English, and French.

Kurylenko trained as a ballerina in the Soviet Union from ages 8 to 12 and in Independent Ukraine from ages 12 to 13.

She originally believed she'd failed to impress the director and producers of Quantum of Solace after her audition.


Kurylenko in The Water Diviner (2014).


Olga Kurylenko in Vampire Academy (2014).