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Although she initially gained notoriety as the sexiest victim of the vampire count in "Bram Stoker's Dracula" (1992), actress Sadie Frost became more widely known as the wife of leading man Jude Law, and as a member of a cadre of young celebrities in London's fashionable Primrose Hill district. After early stage work and roles in smaller films, she began to attract attention with turns in U.K. period pieces such as "Diamond Skulls" (1989) and "The Krays" (1990). However, it was her portrayal of the doomed Lucy Westenra in Francis Ford Coppola's "Bram Stoker's Dracula" that helped establish her as an up-and-coming film talent. After teaming with Law in his feature debut for "Shopping" (1994), the pair married and soon became England's "BrIT Couple," partying and collaborating with other young movie and music stars throughout the mid-1990s, much to the delight of the tabloids. In between a string of independent - and frequently critically assailed - film projects, Frost and Law reared three children, prior to their much-publicized breakup in 2003. Taking a break from acting, Frost concentrated on her children and her fashion design company, FrostFrench, for a time before returning to the craft in...
Although she initially gained notoriety as the sexiest victim of the vampire count in "Bram Stoker's Dracula" (1992), actress Sadie Frost became more widely known as the wife of leading man Jude Law, and as a member of a cadre of young celebrities in London's fashionable Primrose Hill district. After early stage work and roles in smaller films, she began to attract attention with turns in U.K. period pieces such as "Diamond Skulls" (1989) and "The Krays" (1990). However, it was her portrayal of the doomed Lucy Westenra in Francis Ford Coppola's "Bram Stoker's Dracula" that helped establish her as an up-and-coming film talent. After teaming with Law in his feature debut for "Shopping" (1994), the pair married and soon became England's "BrIT Couple," partying and collaborating with other young movie and music stars throughout the mid-1990s, much to the delight of the tabloids. In between a string of independent - and frequently critically assailed - film projects, Frost and Law reared three children, prior to their much-publicized breakup in 2003. Taking a break from acting, Frost concentrated on her children and her fashion design company, FrostFrench, for a time before returning to the craft in small film and stage projects by 2009. Having enjoyed her early years as an ingénue, a London party-girl, and as one-half of a British film power couple, Frost eventually found her niche as an infrequent performer and design entrepreneur.
Born Sadie Liza Vaughan on June 19, 1965 in London, England, U.K., she was the daughter of psychedelic artist David Vaughan - who once worked for the Beatles - and actress Mary Davidson. The product of a free-wheeling, bohemian childhood, Frost began her acting career at the age of three in a Jelly Tots commercial and won a scholarship at the age of 11 to London's Italia Conti Academy, a private theatrical conservatory. Deep in the throes of preteen angst, she left the academy and quit acting briefly to attend Hampstead Comprehensive at age 13. Before long, Frost returned to performing and made her film debut with the starring role in the family adventure "A Horse Called Jester" (1980). Later, while appearing in a video for the pop group Spandau Ballet in 1983, the 16-year-old Frost would meet her future husband Gary Kemp, the band's guitarist. The actress also pursued stage work, and in 1986 appeared in the Nicholas Hytner-directed play "Mumbo Jumbo" at the Manchester Royal Exchange Theatre. On screen, Frost picked up a supporting role in the urban thriller "Empire State" (1988), in addition to marrying her musician-actor boyfriend, Kemp, that same year. She attracted some attention as Gabriel Byrne's promiscuous little sister in "Diamond Skulls" (1989), a stylish melodrama about sex and violence among the British aristocracy, and also appeared in Peter Medak's based-on-fact U.K. crime film "The Krays" (1990), co-starring Kemp, who shared the title role his twin brother, Martin.
Frost's work in "Diamond Skulls" helped her land the role of Lucy Westenra, the flirtatious, aristocratic best friend of Mina Murray (Winona Ryder) who is turned into a vampire in Francis Ford Coppola's operatic "Bram Stoker's Dracula" (1992). Sinking her teeth into the vivacious, quirky portrayal of the spooky vampire victim, Frost garnered some of the film's best notices, but her compelling performance also served to typecast her as a gothic presence, making a decent follow-up project difficult to find. Her next three films went largely unnoticed by the public - the clunky Brit comedy "Splitting Heirs" (1993), co-starring Rick Moranis and Eric Idle, the fantasy adventure "Magic Hunter" (1994), in which she once again co-starred with Kemp, and the gritty crime drama "Shopping" (1994), alongside a young Jude Law in his film debut. Although "Shopping" would only draw a modicum of attention in its native country, the film would be more notable for being the mise-en-scène in which Law and Frost first met - eventually leading to her separation and divorce from Kemp and marriage to Law in 1995. That same year saw her co-starring with William Baldwin and John Leguizamo in the whimsical romance "A Pyromaniac's Love Story" (1995), a quirky fairytale of arson and misunderstandings that was largely panned by critics. Her teaming with another Baldwin brother - this time Stephen - in the generally ignored thriller "Crimetime" (1996) did little to improve her career, either. Other projects over the next few years included a small part in an acclaimed adaptation of the stage play "Bent" (1997), the odd seafaring drama "Captain Jack" (1999), and the improvisational ensemble drama, "Final Cut" (1999).
Dissatisfied with the quality of roles she was being offered, Frost formed Natural Nylon with fellow "Primrose Hill mobsters" Law, Jonny Lee Miller, Sean Pertwee and Ewan McGregor. The since-defunct production company received its first producing credit on David Cronenberg's virtual-reality nightmare "eXistenZ" (1999), starring Law and Jennifer Jason Leigh. Frost reteamed with the crew from "Final Cut" for another improvised effort, the mob farce "Love, Honor & Obey" (2000), followed by the aptly-named "Rancid Aluminum" (2000). She took on the role of a governess attempting to protect the children in her care from malevolent spirits in "Presence of Mind" (2001), an adaptation of Henry James' oft-filmed classic novella The Turn of the Screw. On television in the U.S., Frost played the part of a dedicated Jewish freedom fighter battling Nazis in the WWII-era drama "Uprising" (NBC, 2001). Although her professional careers as an actress, producer and fashion designer (in 1999 she and friend Jemima French launched the label FrostFrench) were progressing smoothly, Frost's personal life would soon hit a rough patch. While filming the remake of Michael Caine's iconic romantic comedy "Alfie" (2004) in 2003, husband Law began a torrid affair with his young co-star, Sienna Miller. By year's end, Frost and Law were divorced after a split lasciviously covered by the British tabloids. After a period away from the spotlight, she returned to screens as an attorney in the suspenseful terrorism drama "Shoot on Sight" (2008), followed by a small turn in the hit man thriller "The Heavy" (2009). Frost returned to the stage with a one-woman show, "Touched... For the Very First Time" in 2009, and in a production of Sam Shepard's "Fool For Love" in 2010. In 2011, she also unveiled a line of high-tech kitchen designs for an upscale London real estate development.
By Bryce Coleman
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With her friend Jemima French, Frost designs a small clothing line, FrostFrench. Products include scented knickers and vests, bikinis, suits with magic symbols, and the like.
In early 2002, Frost appeared in an anti-fur advertising campaign, including a TV spot directed by Jude Law.
On Hollywood: "I have spent time there, but I don't want to be involved with that sort of film. You know, you've got some Hollywood star playing a down-and-out, you just know that they're part of that whole Hollywood system--they've got this person styling, they're going to this hairdreser, that person's done their make up. I don't see any realism in it. It's just about glamour and superficiality. As soon as people get over there, they change, they become part of the system.
"When I went over there people said 'Sadie Frost is flat-chested'--you know, directors, because I didn't walk in there with my tits standing there like this ... It's all to do with what waist size you are, how pert your breasts are; I don't think there's any substance. People here have more fun, have a laugh and don't take themselves so seriously." --Frost to The Guardian December 10, 1998.
"I never thought I'd spend all my life with Gary [Kemp]. I suppose I was quite cynical about marriage. But with Jude [Law], I knew right from the beginning: there was an electricity I'd never felt before. It was so easy, we talked for hours. It was a relief, really.
"Jude meets a lot of plain sex kittens, but I can make him laugh till he's in stitches on the floor--I dance, I do impressions. I'm a bit bonkers and he loves that. There are people out there who want me to fail, who want Jude to fail, who want our relationship to fail. I have to try not to mind when people come up and say, 'My partner fancies you,' or 'I split up with my girlfriend because she hates you because you're married to Jude.' I don't understand how people can say those things!" --Frost quoted in the Daily Telegraph, August 30, 1999.
"I feel my age in terms of experience. And I feel like a woman. I'm comfortable with it all. I'm a grown-up. This is my life, and it's a lovely life. I used to care about what other people thought. I was quite defensive, as Jude was getting so successful and people were saying nasty things about me. But it doesn't affect me any more, it really doesn't." --Sadie Frost in an interview with The Daily Telegraph, February 13, 2002.
Frost experienced severe post-partum depression following the premature birth of her fourth child, Rudy, in 2002. In early 2003 she was treated at a clinic in the U.K. Prior to the official explanation from Frost's publicist on Jan. 28, 2003, British tabloids previously reported that the actress was admitted to a hospital with injured wrists and suggested she had attempted suicide.
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