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Paz de la Huerta

Paz de la Huerta
Paz de la Huerta at the 2009 Toronto International Film Festival
María de la Paz Elizabeth Sofía Adriana de la Huerta[1]

(1984-09-03) September 3, 1984 (age 35)
Years active1998–present

María de la Paz Elizabeth Sofía Adriana de la Huerta y Bruce (born September 3, 1984), known by her stage name Paz de la Huerta [pas de la ˈweɾ.ta], is an American actress and model. De la Huerta is notable for her roles in the films The Cider House Rules (1999), A Walk to Remember (2002), Choke (2008), Enter the Void (2009), Nurse 3D (2013) and as Lucy Danziger in the HBO drama series Boardwalk Empire.

Early life

De la Huerta was raised by her mother, with her older sister Rafaela de la Paz (born November 5, 1981), in the New York City neighborhood of SoHo, located in Lower Manhattan. Her parents are Spanish nobleman Ricardo Ignacio de la Huerta y Ozores, 17th Duke of Mandas and Villanueva (born November 17, 1944, in San Sebastián, Basque Country, Spain),[2] and Judith Bruce (born October 23, 1946, in Minneapolis, Minnesota, United States).[3] De la Huerta was born with recurrent cystic hygroma under her arm, which she has had treated with multiple surgeries. Her mother worked as an authority on birth control and women's issues in Third World countries.[4] She attended private Saint Ann's School in the New York City borough of Brooklyn, with fellow student and future fashion designer, Zac Posen, for whom she has since modeled.[4] She also attended the performing arts camp Buck's Rock. De la Huerta spent summers with her father in Spain while attending high school.[5]


De la Huerta began modeling in her adolescence and became a runway model before transitioning into film. She made her film debut with a small role in the 1998 romantic comedy The Object of My Affection, and the next year appeared opposite Michael Caine and Charlize Theron in The Cider House Rules.

In 2002, she appeared opposite Shane West and Mandy Moore in A Walk to Remember, an American coming-of-age romantic drama film based on the Nicholas Sparks' novel. The film opened at No. 3 at the U.S. box office raking in $12,177,488 in its opening weekend, behind Snow Dogs and Black Hawk Down. Even though not a critical success, it was a modest box office hit, earning $41,281,092 in the United States alone,[6] and a sleeper hit in Asia. The total revenue generated worldwide was $47,494,916.[7]

In 2007, de la Huerta was cast in the role of Linda for the film Enter the Void, a psychedelic melodrama set in neon-lit nightclub environments of Tokyo. Director Gaspar Noé found her after holding auditions in New York City.[8] "I met Paz and I really liked her. She had the profile for the character because she likes screaming, crying, showing herself naked—all the qualities for it."[9] The crew filmed in Tokyo from 19 October to 15 December 2007. Flashback scenes were shot in Montreal over the course of four weeks the following spring, until 16 May 2008.[8][10]

Gaspar Noé and Paz de la Huerta answering questions about the film at the Toronto International Film Festival

A 163-minute version of the film competed in the main competition of the 2009 Cannes Film Festival.[11][12] Festival screenings of subsequent versions followed throughout the year, including the Toronto, Sitges, London, and Stockholm international film festivals.[13] The final 154-minute cut premiered at the 2010 Sundance Film Festival.[9][14] It premiered in France on 5 May 2010 through Wild Bunch Distribution.[15] The Japanese release followed ten days later.[16] Distribution rights for the United States were picked up at Sundance by IFC Films.[17]

Enter the Void holds a 70-percent approval rating on review aggregator website Rotten Tomatoes, based on 88 English-language reviews, with an average rating of 6.7/10.[18] On Metacritic, the film holds a score of 69 out of 100, based on 19 critics, indicating "generally favorable reviews."[19] Peter Bradshaw included the film in The Guardian's top 50 films of the decade so far,[20] and gave it five stars out of five. In a 2016 international critics' poll conducted by BBC, three critics listed Enter the Void as one of the greatest motion pictures since 2000.[21]

In 2009, de la Huerta was cast in the HBO pilot Boardwalk Empire, set in Atlantic City during the Prohibition era, as Enoch "Nucky" Thompson's mistress, a former Ziegfeld Follies dancer.[22] On September 1, 2009, HBO picked up the series for an additional 11 episodes.[23] The series premiered on September 19, 2010 and concluded on December 5, 2010.[24] The first season was met with widespread praise. On the review aggregator website Metacritic, the first season scored 88/100 based on 30 reviews, indicating "universal acclaim."[25] The American Film Institute named Boardwalk Empire one of the ten "best television programs of the year."[26]

Boardwalk Empire was renewed for a second season, with de la Huerta returning as Lucy. Discussing the second season she said; "The first season was very different from the second season. With the first season, nobody really knew how the show was going to be received. With the second season, we had gotten lots of accolades and great reviews, so it was work, work, work, where we were shooting two episodes at a time."[27] Season two premiered on September 25, 2011 and concluded on December 11, 2011, consisting of 12 episodes. The second season of Boardwalk Empire received positive reviews from critics. On the review aggregator website Metacritic, the second season scored 81/100 based on 14 reviews.[28] Another aggregator website, Rotten Tomatoes, reported 85 percent of critics gave the second season a "Certified Fresh" rating, based on 13 reviews with an average score of 8/10.[29] After the second season ended, de la Huerta and fellow co-stars Michael Pitt, Aleksa Palladino, and Dabney Coleman all departed the cast. In 2012, she commented on her departure from the series, stating she wanted to put her focus on other things.[27] In 2013, she commented on how she would like to return to the hit series. "I’m still close with the producers. Terry (Terence Winter) always says it's possible for me to come back." Also adding; "I would love to come back with Lucy as a loving, doting mother."[30]

In 2011, Lana Del Rey, an American singer, received widespread attention when the music video for her single "Video Games" became a viral internet sensation.[31] The video—directed and edited by Del Rey—included paparazzi footage of de la Huerta falling down while intoxicated.[32] When asked if she was upset about the video, de la Huerta stated, "No, no. I don't get hung up about anything really. That's insignificant. I didn't really care."[27]

In April 2011, she was sued by MTV reality show actress Samantha Swetra after an altercation at a bar.[33] De la Huerta was arrested, issued a desk appearance ticket, and released.[34] In July 2011, she pleaded guilty to harassment and, in exchange, misdemeanor charges against her were reduced to a non-criminal violation. A judge ordered her to complete 12 weeks of alcohol counseling, one day of community service, and to stay away from Swetra.[35]

In July 2011, de la Huerta signed on to play Abby Russell, the protagonist in the horror film Nurse 3D.[36] Principal photography began in Toronto on September 6, 2011 and wrapped on October 21. Following completion, the film was shelved for two years before its rights were acquired by Lionsgate. Critical reception of the film has been mixed; the film holds a 55-percent "fresh" rating on Rotten Tomatoes (based on 20 reviews)[37] while also holding a rating of 29 on Metacritic (based on 7 reviews).[38] Much of the film's criticism centered upon the film's script,[39] which Neil Genzlinger commented "doesn’t have any of the wit that a film like this needs to give it campy coolness."[40] A sequel for Nurse had been rumored by de la Huerta on her Twitter page with her stating that Nurse 2 would start shooting soon.[41] However, In 2015, it was reported that de la Huerta was suing the filmmakers, for ruining her career and injuring her when a speeding ambulance driven by a stunt driver struck her while shooting.[42]

In 2014, she completed filming in Las Vegas for the movie Death in the Desert, cast as Margo and co-starring with Michael Madsen and Shayla Beesley.[43] The film was directed by Josh Evans.[44] The movie was inspired by the book Death in the Desert by Cathy Scott[45] with the screenplay by John Steppling.[43] The film premiered in October at the Tucson Festival of Films[46] and was released in February 2016 by Osiris Entertainment.[47] She had a supporting role in the 2014 Canadian horror film The Editor.[48] Set in the 1970s, a film editor gets embroiled in a string of murders, she played Josephine Jardin, the film editor's mentally-ill wife. The film received a mixed reception, with a 55 percent rating at Rotten Tomatoes.[49] Mark L. Miller of Ain't it Cool News ranked it the 25th best horror film released between Oct 1 of 2014 & 2015, deeming it Astron-6's "most successful and entertaining film to date."[50] She later appeared in Louis Theroux's 2015 documentary My Scientology Movie when she "crashed" an interview.[51]

The next year, de la Huerta played Pepper in the drama film Bare, opposite Diana Agron. The film follows a young woman living in a small desert town in Nevada, who becomes romantically involved with a female drifter who leads her into a life of drugs, stripping, and psychedelic spiritual experiences. Director Natalia Leite wanted to cast two women who were willing to be totally raw and exposed on camera in the leading roles. She stated: "I wanted to find two women who were very different from each other to put those two contrasting energies together."[52] The film had a world premiere at the Tribeca Film Festival on April 19, 2015.[53] The film was scheduled to be released in a limited release and through video on demand on October 30, 2015.[54] Rotten Tomatoes reports that 43 percent of seven surveyed critics gave the film a positive review; the average rating is 5.9/10.[55] Frank Scheck of The Hollywood Reporter wrote that de la Huerta was perfectly cast for her role as Pepper, though the film has a "mundane storyline."[56] John Stewart of The Slanted wrote, "The film is an wonderful departure for Glee’s Dianna Agron and her performance with Paz de la Huerta is sure to spark a lot more work in the future for both rising stars."[57]

Me Too movement

De la Huerta, at the height of the Me Too movement, said in an interview with Vanity Fair that movie mogul Harvey Weinstein raped her on two separate occasions in 2010, once after demanding to enter her apartment and have a drink, and once showing up after she had been subjected to repeated phone calls and had been drinking. De la Huerta came forward to police in 2017, within the New York state statute of limitations for rape in the first degree, and the New York District Attorney's Office was considering bringing charges against Weinstein.[58] While charges have yet to be filed in de la Huerta's case, Weinstein has been charged in New York with the rape of another woman. More than 75 women have accused Weinstein, who has denied all allegations.[59]

In November 2018, de la Huerta filed a $60 million lawsuit in Los Angeles Superior Court accusing Weinstein of raping her in 2010 and then embarking on a campaign of harassment that she contends damaged her career.[59]

Personal life

De la Huerta lived in New York City in an apartment on Gay Street, and then moved into an apartment adjacent to her mother in the Tribeca neighborhood.[60]



Appearances in films
Year Title Role Notes
1998 The Object of My Affection 13-year-old Sally
1998 Luminous Motion Beatrice
1999 The Cider House Rules Mary Agnes
2000 Looking for an Echo Nicole Delgado
2001 Bailey's Mistake Becca Donovan Television film
2001 Chelsea Walls Girl
2001 Riding in Cars with Boys Phone call flirt
2002 A Walk to Remember Tracie
2002 A Girl's Guide to the Galaxy Maxie Short film
2003 Bringing Rain Dakota Cunningham
2003 Rick Vicki
2004 Homework Sara
2005 Steal Me Lily Rose
2005 Fierce People Jilly
2006 Hollywood Dreams Guest at wedding
2006 5up 2down Allie
2006 Nail Polish Becky Burns
2006 The Tripper Jade
2007 Anamorph Young woman
2007 Light and the Sufferer Annette
2007 Neal Cassady Tonya Novak
2008 The Guitar Constance "Cookie" Clemente
2008 Choke Nico
2008 Deception List member #1
2009 The Limits of Control Nude
2009 Enter the Void Linda
2009 Nothing Personal Tess Short film
2009 42 One Dream Rush N/A
2011 4:44 Last Day on Earth Woman on street
2012 Getting high Ally
2012 30 Beats Laura
2013 Nurse 3D Abby Russell
2013 In the Woods N/A Part of The Being Experience trilogy by
Jennifer Elster
2014 The Editor Josephine Jardin
2015 Bare Pepper
2015 The Girl Is in Trouble Maria
2015 Aimy in a Cage Caroline
2015 Death in the Desert Margo
2016 Streets of East L.A. The Nun
2017 A Midsummer Night's Dream Hippolyta
2018 Puppy Love[61] Carla


Appearances in television series
Year Title Role Notes
2000 Law & Order Chloe Episode: "Loco Parentis"
2000 The Practice Jenny Holbrook Episode: "Black Widows"
2000 Law & Order: Special Victims Unit Karen Raye Episode: "Chat Room"
2008 X Femmes Miss Lingerie Episode: "Le bijou indiscret"
2010–2011 Boardwalk Empire Lucy Danziger Main cast (seasons 1–2); 13 episodes
2013 Eagleheart Tess 2 episodes

Music videos

Appearances in music videos
Year Title Artist Notes
2007 "By the Time I Get Home There Won't Be Much of a Place for Me" Grand National
2011 "Video Games" Lana Del Rey paparazzi footage


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External links