Milla Jovovich: born in Ukraine, now a successful Hollywood actress
She was born in Kyiv and worked her way up to the top of international showbiz. Milla Jovovich is a Ukrainian actress with an amazing career who never forgot about her roots.
Since the beginning of the war in Ukraine, Jovovich has been sharing posts and useful links on her social media to help her home country. She recently released a video with photos from the war singing a Ukrainian version of Tina Turner's 'Proud Mary'.
Among other things, she wrote: "I wanted to make a post that would hopefully uplift the besieged people in my birthplace of Ukraine. To invigorate them, give them strength and hope. To tell them how proud we all are of their spirit and skills during this unspeakable invasion."
Photo: Instagram @millajovovich
The actress has not lived in Ukraine since she was a little girl. Do you know her incredible life journey?
Milla Jovovich was born in December 1975 in Kyiv, in the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics (USSR). Her mother was a Russian actress who rose to some fame in USSR times, and her father was a Serbian pediatrician. When she was five years old, the small family moved to California.
She started acting classes at the age of nine and developed a real passion for art. In parallel, she took part in castings to become a photo model. She was discovered very quickly and started an active career as a teenager.
Milla Jovovich was discovered by Herb Ritts, a well-known fashion photographer from Los Angeles, and posed for her first magazine cover at the age of 11. It was the Italian magazine, 'Lei'. She later appeared on the cover of the American magazine 'Mademoiselle,' which was criticized for having such a young girl on the cover.
Ever since she was discovered, Milla Jovovich has been doing commercial after commercial and has been on many magazine covers. In fact, by the time she was 12, she had already filled 10 covers. The job brought in money - a lot of money even! By the time she was 13, her family was very rich.
Her acting career began when she was 13 years old. She starred in the film 'Two Moon Junction' directed by Zalman King. The film was released in France in 1991 but not a huge hit.
Everything seems to be going very fast for Milla Jovovich, both in her professional and personal life. Maybe even too fast? At just 16, she married her then-boyfriend, actor Shawn Andrews, four years her senior, in Las Vegas. Her mother was very angry and was able to have the marriage annulled.
After finding fame in advertising, Milla Jovovich attempted to break into the film business in the early 1990s. She starred in films such as 'Return to the Blue Lagoon' (1991), 'Chaplin' (1992), and 'Dazed and Confused' (1993). However, it was a famous French director who launched her career a few years later.
Milla became world-famous when she starred with Bruce Willis in 'The Fifth Element' (1997).
Two years later, her first role in the film 'The Messenger: The Story of Joan of Arc' (1999) confirmed her talent on the big screen.
Both films were directed by Luc Besson, a man who was particularly important in her life...
Milla Jovovich met Luc Besson when she was 19 and auditioning for her role in 'The Fifth Element.' "When he sent me to audition, Besson asked me to do very strange things: sing a stupid song without dancing to music, laugh without taking a breath," she told Gala magazine.
"In hindsight, I know this angelic role taught me a lot about myself. I was 19 and thought I knew everything, but I knew nothing. He helped me break away from myself."
Love at first sight happened during the filming of the film. Luc Besson married Milla in December 1997, a few months after the film's release, which was a huge hit with critics and audiences alike. However, their marriage was short-lived and they divorced in 1999. Despite their split, the actress and director have still had a very good relationship afterward.
In 2002, she starred in the horror film 'Resident Evil,' based on video games of the same name. It was the beginning of a long film saga and a new love story.
Milla met her now-husband, director Paul WS Anderson while filming 'Resident Evil.' She married him a few years later, in 2009.
The two were a well-rehearsed team on the set of the five 'Resident Evil' films, with Milla developing her role of Alice each time.
In 2002, as a guest of Thierry Ardisson on the French talk show 'Tout le monde en parle' ('Everyone talking'), Milla endured practical jokes by the host and his columnist Laurent Baffie while she was promoting the film 'Resident Evil.' Then, at once, the show went off the rails.
When Thierry Ardisson asked her a question about her father, who served eight years in prison for tax fraud, the actress, undoubtedly annoyed by the presenter's sarcasm from the beginning of the program, threw down her glass of water and left the stage. The scene was amply covered by the media.
In addition to the 'Resident Evil' films, Milla Jovovich has also been in other films directed by her husband. These are usually action films, the couple's favorite discipline. Jovovich was last seen in the film 'Monster Hunter' (2020).
Alongside her acting career, Milla has always had one foot in the fashion industry. For example, she was the face of L'Oréal Paris in 1998 and was part of an advertising campaign for the H&M x Isabel Marant collaboration in 2013.
Fashion remained a real passion for the actress. Incidentally, she designed the sets and costumes for the roles in some of the films she starred, such as 'The Three Musketeers.'
In addition, in 2003 she founded her own women's fashion collection together with her friend Carmen Hawk. The brand, Jovovich-Hawk, thrived for a few years and was worn by fashionistas like Victoria Beckham.
Due to a lack of time, the two designers decided to give up their brand in 2008.
Milla Jovovich has three daughters with her husband Paul WS Anderson. Ever Gabo was born in 2007, Dashiel Edan in 2015 and their youngest daughter, Osian Lark Elliot, was born in February 2020.