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Happy birthday, Rachel Weisz!

Starting her career in the drama department of Britain’s posh Cambridge university, Weisz soon caught the eyes of casting directors around the world and has become one of the U.K. most glamorous exports.

From action queen to indie dream, Weisz has fought ancient enemies in The Mummy films, proved her comic timing in Fred Claus and provided an Oscar-winning turn in The Constant Gardner.

And as the actress moves into her forties, we have come up with 10 terrific facts to quench your thirst for Rachel.

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– Weisz’s film career could have started a lot earlier – she was offered a part in Richard Gere’s movie King David in 1985 when she was just 14 – but her parents wouldn’t let her do it.

– She gets her dark good looks from her mother’s Italian ancestry.

– She’s multi-talented: not only did she gain a degree from Cambridge – one of England’s most revered universities – she is fluent in German.

– For all those who have struggled saying her last name, it’s pronounced Vice.

– She has been linked to Bond star Daniel Craig after splitting from Black Swan director Darren Aronofsky last year (10). He is the father of her son, Henry.

– Weisz took over from supermodel Kate Moss as the face of Burberry in 2006.

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– Gemma Arterton is Rachel’s biggest fan – insisting she’d “love” a career like the actress.

– She was voted the woman most men want as their wife by British magazine Esquire.

– Sienna Miller missed out on Weisz’s Oscar-winning role in The Constant Gardner in 2005 after a home dye disaster left her hair green at the audition.

– She was a radical feminist in her student days.

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