Possessed of a willowy physicality that belied her formidable inner strength, British actress Keira Knightley rose to international prominence after starring in an independent film and a big-budget action-adventure movie, but it was her nuanced work in both period pieces and contemporary dramas that placed her at the top of the list of film's most talented young stars. Having begun her professional career by the age of seven, Knightley was already a veteran by the time she landed a cameo as Natalie Portman's double in "Star Wars: Episode I - The Phantom Menace" (1999). It was, however, the one-two punch of the soccer-themed comedy-drama "Bend It Like Beckham" (2002) followed by the swashbuckling juggernaut "Pirates of the Caribbean: Curse of the Black Pearl" (2003) and its two sequels that truly cemented Knightley as an international star. Refusing to be pigeonholed, she continually broadened her range as an actress with lauded work in such films as "Pride and Prejudice" (2005), "Atonement" (2007), "Never Let Me Go" (2010) and "A Dangerous Method" (2011). Far more than a delicate, pretty face, Knightley never failed to challenge both herself and the audience with riveting performances in some of the most thought-provoking films of the day.