Joshua Jackson - Biography

He made his name on the hit TV series Dawson's Creek but down-to-earth actor Joshua Jackson outgrew his teen hero status to become a respected dramatic talent and Hollywood heart-throb .

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Born in Vancouver, British Columbia, on June 11, 1978, to an American father and an Irish-born casting director mother, Joshua lived in LA and Seattle until his parents divorced when he was eight. After their split he moved back to his BC hometown with his mother and younger sister, Aisleagh. "My parents getting divorced was obviously a very traumatic experience," said the young star, later. "I went from being a very well-off little kid to having a couple of rough years rebuilding. My mother did that. She and I are very close."

It was his mum who introduced Joshua to the starry world of showbiz. At just seven-months-old he made his first on-screen appearance in the feature film The Changeling, on which his mother served as assistant director. Aged nine the budding talent was a stand-in on 1989's The Fly II and had appeared as an extra on several episodes of TV show MacGyver.

But it was two years later that Joshua really caught the acting bug, deciding this was where his future lay. His dream quickly started to take shape when he landed a series of high-profile TV commercials. And three years later he had his first proper movie role under his belt - the 1992 blockbuster hit The Mighty Ducks, during the filming of which he was mentored by the movie's lead man, Emilio Estevez.

"He was the one who taught me that if I had respect for my job if I showed up on time, if I showed respect to those who had come before me as well as to the crew behind the cameras I would have respect for myself," says Joshua. "He taught me how to become an actor. I didn't know what the hell I was doing."

After graduating from high school and a stint traveling in Europe he landed the part of teenage smart-mouth Pacey Witter in the hit TV series Dawson's Creek. Although already in his 20s when he landed the role, Joshua essentially grew up while shooting the series. "I was broke when I started that show, and then I got to put my sister through college (and) paid my mortgage," he said. Not only did his financial situation improve, but his love life blossomed as well. In a case of life copying art, he enjoyed an off-screen romance with his Dawson's Creek co-star Katie Holmes, with whom he remains good friends.

Joshua's big-screen career was also heating up. In 1999, he starred alongside Ryan Phillippe and Reese Witherspoon in the thriller Cruel Intentions, followed by The Skulls in 2000 and, two years later, The Laramie Project. He was getting in some experience of live theatre, too. In January 2005, after Dawson's Creek ended, he joined Patrick Stewart in a 12-week run of A Life In The Theatre at London's Apollo Theatre.

He returned to the big screen in the Robert Kennedy biopic Bobby, for which he was hand picked by his former mentor Emilio Estevez. And while attending a glitzy premiere for the flick in which he played one of the politician's idealistic campaign managers he admitted that he'd been star-struck by its star-studded cast. Seeing his name appearing alongside those of Anthony Hopkins, Sharon Stone, Helen Hunt and William H Macy, he couldn't resist sending the film's poster home to his mum. "That's a pretty good list to be on… it was heart-warming to be there," he says.

Joshua has found similar success in his love life, romancing Copying Beethoven model-turned-actress Diane Kruger since early 2006. While the pair spend a lot of time in Paris, where the German stunner is based, Joshua still has a soft spot for his native land. "I have a place where I stay in LA…so I spend time in California," the hunk told HELLO!, "but if home is where the heart is, then Vancouver is home."