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Emma Watson is a household name, and a generation grew up not only knowing her but also following her journey as Hermione Granger, one of the Golden Trio in the hit film adaptation of the seven-book series Harry Potter. Over the years, this widely acknowledged actress has managed to build a legacy and cement her reputation as a multi-faceted artist through her roles in blockbusters and independent films. Although much of her prominence hails from her domination of the entertainment industry, the English powerhouse also made a mark through her work as an activist and philanthropist.
Born in Paris, France, Emma Watson knew that she wanted to become an actress from the age of six. She trained at the Oxford branch of Stagecoach Theatre Arts for a couple of years, honing her acting, singing, and dancing skills. When 1999 rolled, and the casting started for the first installment of the Harry Potter series — Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone — the passion-fueled personality joined Daniel Radcliffe and Rupert Grint to grace screens all over the world as the lead cast.
Since her cinematic debut, Emma Watson continued to bag one role after another, earning critical acclaim and the devotion of millions of people. In 2005, she also ventured into modeling, demonstrating another side of her through her photoshoot for Teen Vogue. Highly considered among the most influential women worldwide, the Burberry brand ambassador solidified her standing even further by wielding her power to make a difference in people and communities.
Heavily involved in promoting education for girls, Emma Watson served as an ambassador for Camfed International, which is a movement that aims to educate girls in rural Africa. In 2014, she was appointed a UN Women Goodwill Ambassador, a position that she capitalized on to inspire more people, empower young men, and advocate for gender equality, particularly through the UN Women’s HeForShe campaign.
Apart from her efforts in pushing for gender parity, Emma Watson, who starred in the live-action adaptation of Beauty and the Beast, also went all-out in the fight against child marriage, traveling to several countries to gain a deeper understanding of the issue and send across the message about the importance of outlawing this global crime.
As a champion for women’s rights, Emma Watson launched an initiative designed to help in breaking down the barriers faced by women in the workplace. In collaboration with Time’s UP U.K. and the nonprofit organization Rights of Women, the activities introduced a helpline that offers free legal advice to women. The phone line, which is accessible to those in England and Wales, aims to help women gain pertinent knowledge regarding the identification of sexual harassment, the process involved in filing a complaint against an employer, and the laws in terms of non-disclosure agreements and settlement.
Attached to Emma Watson’s name is a long list of accomplishments and career milestones. Despite the heights that she has reached so far, she shows no sign of slowing down, going the extra mile both in her work as an actress and humanitarian efforts.