Jodie Foster, who directed Wright in an episode of House of Cards, believes that Wright has finally “settled into a pair of shoes that were the ones that were always supposed to fit her.” This Princess Bride star has a history of playing beautiful characters that are full of secrets and are vulnerable beyond repair. Her portrayal of Clair Underwood in Cards, seems to surpass even the great Kevin Spacey and elevates the show to a whole new level.
Wright grew up obsessed with performing—in particular with dancing. She says. “I was really convinced that I was going to go to New York and be onstage in A Chorus Line. Then that idea was sort of usurped from my life because we moved to San Diego.”
After high school, Wright was encouraged to act by her modeling agent and auditioned for countless parts with no success whatsoever. She was hours away from quitting the business altogether and transitioning to a new job working in the kitchen of a tour boat when she got the call that she had landed a lead part on the soap opera Santa Barbara.
Though she lacked any formal acting training and often shot her scenes the same day she received a script, with no rehearsal, Wright earned three Daytime Emmy nominations for her work on the show. This drew the attention of director Rob Reiner, who decided to audition her for the lead role in his new film, an irreverent 1987 take on Robin Hood-style swashbuckler films called The Princess Bride.
Tom Hanks first met Wright when the cast did camera tests for Forrest Gump and has been quoted saying, “She possessed a degree of concentration that’s almost intimidating.”
Following the smashing critical and box-office success of Forrest Gump, Wright worked with actor Sean Penn in the film State of Grace. The two wed in 1996, and started the beginning of a passionate and often tumultuous marriage. Because Penn was the bigger box office draw (and therefore made more money), Robin put her career on the back burner to stay home and raise their two children. They moved to northern California to avoid the “celebrity bubble,” but ultimately the move north didn’t save their marriage. They divorced in 2010.
In January 2012, Robin Wright spoke out about conflict minerals and is pushing for electronic companies to ensure that the minerals used in their products do not come from mines where women’s rights are abused. Heading the initiative is ENOUGH Project through its RAISE Hope for Congo campaign.