Dakota was on the cover of April/May 2012 issue of Wonderland magazine.
Dakota supports the following charities:
Parkinson Society Maritime Region
St. Jude Children's Research Hospital
Variety Power of Youth
Dakota's ad for Marc Jacobs' Oh Lola! perfume was banned from the United Kingdom in the fall of 2011. It was deemed inappropriately sexy.
Dakota auditioned for the lead role of teenager Susie Salmon in the 2009 film adaptation for The Lovely Bones, but she lost the part to Irish actress Saoirse Ronan.
On October 30, 2009, 15-year-old Dakota was crowned Homecoming Princess at Campbell Hall High School in California. This is where she attended regular high school (she was a junior that year) and participated on the cheerleading squad.
In 2009, Dakota won the coveted role as the Volturi vampire Jane in the screen adaptation of New Moon, based on the best selling book written by Stephenie Meyer. She will also appear in the films for the final two books in the series, Eclipse and Breaking Dawn. Dakota loves the books and claims that she literally read all four of them in a single week.
Dakota doesn't like the rehearsal portion of acting. When she is working on a movie, it's always more difficult for her when she knows the camera isn't filming it, because she knows the scene will look and sound so much different, anyway, when it is actually filmed.
Dakota is ranked #100 in AIM's "100 Celebs Under 25".
Dakota and her grandmother both read Sue Monk Kidd's The Secret Life of Bees before there were talks of a film adaptation. When it was first announced that a movie was being planned, Dakota really wanted to play Lily, but she was still too young. Fortunately, it took a few years to get the movie ready for production, so by the time casting began, Dakota was the perfect age. In fact, she turned 14 on the final day of shooting, and her character celebrated her 14th birthday in the movie. Dakota looks back on it as "perfect timing." Those involved with production for the film have said that Dakota was always their first choice for the role, but again, it all came down to the right timing.
Dakota was 14 years old when she starred in the 2008 film The Secret Life of Bees with the likes of Queen Latifah, Jennifer Hudson, and Alicia Keyes. The older actresses on the set used to refer to young Dakota as "Mother Dakota," because she was so mature beyond her years.
As a young child, Dakota was so smart that she entered first grade at the age of four.
In October 2008, shocking articles surfaced about how Winged Creatures director Rowan Woods said 13-year-old Dakota was "naughty" on the film set and "intensely jealous" of teen co-star Josh Hutcherson, who had a much larger role in the movie. Woods also allegedly claimed that Dakota purposely turned in a performance below her potential, and many of her scenes were cut as a result. Dakota also apparently got angry when her scenes were not shot first, and she stormed into her trailer without a word to anyone. Woods later released a statement claiming that those opinions were not his, and that Dakota is an "incredible actress and a wonderful person." Woods then went on to say that Dakota's performance will speak for itself when the film is released in theaters.
Dakota went to regular school for preschool and first grade, and then she was home-schooled for the remainder of her elementary years, while her child acting career was booming. She went back to regular school in 2007, when she started the ninth grade a year earlier than most kids. In an effort to enjoy a normal high school experience, Dakota also joined the cheerleading team right away.
Dakota loves to eat boiled peanuts.
When Dakota was 10 years old, E! red carpet host Kathy Griffin made a joke that Dakota had checked into rehab for drugs and alcohol. By the next day, cast and crew of War of the Worlds (the movie that Dakota was filming at the time) tracked Griffin down until she donated money to Dakota's favorite charity.
Dakota was known to have many problems with her teeth throughout her childhood. She claims that not a single one of her teeth fell out on their own; they were all pulled, and she has also had oral surgery. This was due to a problem where she did not have a specific enzyme in her body to properly break down the roots for her teeth.
Dakota has been credited as one of the friendliest and most accommodating autograph signers in Hollywood. Many people have cited that she is graciously willing to sign multiple photos at a time.
Before she even became a teenager, Dakota was raking in a reported seven figures per movie. In 2008, she was said to be getting up to $4 million.
Dakota has credited Judy Bloom as one of her favorite authors, and she is also a huge Harry Potter fan.
Dakota auditioned for the title role in the 2003 film Eloise at the Plaza, but she was unsuccessful. The role went to Sofia Vassilieva, who, ironically, replaced Dakota for a role as a leukemia patient in the 2008 film My Sister's Keeper, when Dakota declined the job.
It was reported in February 2008 that Dakota and her younger sister Elle were chosen to star in the film adaptation of Jodi Picoult's book My Sister's Keeper, but both girls backed out when Dakota refused to shave her head for the role. Dakota's part went to young actress Sofia Vassilieva, who is two years older than Dakota, and Abigail Breslin was chosen to replace Elle in what is to be the lead role. Interestingly, Cameron Diaz--whom Dakota has dreamed of working with for many years--is slated to play the mother in the movie.
Dakota credits Gone With the Wind as one of her all-time favorite movies, and when she was 11 years old, she dressed up as film star Scarlett O'Hara for Halloween. She dressed up as that character the following year, too.
There have been reports that Dakota was considered for the lead role of Leslie Burke in the 2007 film Bridge to Terabithia, but she declined. The part went to AnnaSophia Robb instead.
Before she became famous, Dakota used to roleplay around her house all the time. One of her favorite things to do was stuff a pillow under her shirt and pretend to be going through labor, then use her sister Elle as the baby.
Taco Bell and Panda Express are some of Dakota's favorite fast food restaurants. At Taco Bell, she loves to order a Nacho Bell Grande with meat and cheese only.
Dakota's adult co-stars have been known to give her lavish gifts. Most notably, War of the Worlds co-star Tom Cruise gave her a cell phone for her 11th birthday, and on-screen father Kurt Russell gave her a horse after filming Dreamer, , which she named Goldie (after Russell's partner, actress Goldie Hawn).
When the Broadcast Film Critics Association gave Dakota a Best Young Actor/Actress Award for her work in the 2001 film I Am Sam, the seven-year-old was too small to reach the microphone. Actor Orlando Bloom had to lift her up so she could make her acceptance speech, which turned out to be very long as she thanked everyone from her family to the secretaries at her agent's office. The crowd roared with laughter every time the first grader came up with somebody new to thank as Orlando held her up to the microphone.
At the age of eight, Dakota was nominated for a Screen Actors Guild Award for her work in the 2001 I Am Sam (her first feature film), and she is the youngest person ever to receive that honor.
Dakota allegedly learned to read at the age of two. Since then, she has been an avid reader, enjoying books such as Harry Potter, Lemony Snicket, and the Nancy Drew mysteries.
Dakota's full name is Hannah Dakota Fanning. Her mother wanted to name her Dakota, but her father liked Hannah, so they compromised this way, and now she is known by her middle name. Her younger sister, whose full name is Mary Elle, is also best known by her middle name.
In 2001, Dakota played the 7-year-old daughter of a single father with a severe mental disability in the movie I am Sam. During her audition, Dakota informed the film director that her aunt "is like Sam," and "everyone just treats her like a normal person." The director of the movie said that this helped Dakota land the role, because it was obvious that she would bring a lot of important compassion and empathy to the character.
While filming Charlotte's Web, Dakota told her on-screen younger brother, Louis Corbett, "Don't mess with me, because Tom Cruise taught me how to punch!" Dakota got to practice her punching skills on Corbett for one scene in Charlotte's Web.
It's been said that the directors and crew working on the film Charlotte's Web knew they wanted Dakota for the role of Fern before the movie even formulated. "There was never anyone else we wanted, not even close," the director once said.
In 2007, it was reported that Dakota was earning $3 million per movie. At that time, all of her films--from I am Sam to Charlotte's Web--had earned an alleged $600 million total.
Many audiences will agree that Dakota had some difficult emotional scenes to do as a 6-year-old in I Am Sam, but Dakota claims that it is easy for her to cry in movies, and for this particular film, all she had to do was think of her goldfish dying, and she welled up.
In response to Dakota's movie choices, her agent Cindy Osbrink has said, "Dakota likes real. She is the oldest soul I have ever worked with."
Actor Kurt Russell, who played Dakota's father in the 2005 film Dreamer, has been quoted saying "I've worked with them all. I've worked with Meryl Streep! I guarantee you, Dakota Fanning is the best actress I will work with in my entire career." In response to that, Dakota has said, "That's just one person's opinion. I don't really think that's for me to worry about."
Dakota is a born-again Christian.
Dakota loves to find out what her name is going to be for the movie roles she plays. When she looks at a script, that is always one of the first things she wants to find out about. She certainly has gotten some distinctive on-screen names: Pita in Man on Fire, Rae in Uptown Girls, Cale in Dreamer, etc...
On March 31, 2007, 13-year-old Dakota won the award for "Favorite Movie Actress" at the annual Nickelodeon Kids Choice Awards.
Dakota has indicated a true admiration for Tom Cruise, whom she co-starred with in the 2004 flick "War of the Worlds." When she appeared on "Regis and Kelly" in December 2006, she talked about how upset she was when her new puppy tore apart the "Vanity Faire" issue that had Tom, Katie Holmes, and their baby daughter Suri on the cover. Also, when Suri was born, Dakota bought her Baby Crocs as a gift.
Around the 2006 Christmas season, 12-year-old Dakota got her very first dog, which she's wanted for a long time--a white Schnoodle (half schnauzer, half poodle) with "blonde streaks down her back." During an appearance on Regis and Kelly, Dakota admitted that she carries the dog around in her purse and dreams of getting a pink doggie stroller for him (which is, ironically, the exact same thing that her "Charlotte's Web" character Fern used to tote around her baby pig Wilbur).
In response to people criticizing her parents for allowing her to act in films like "Hounddog," Dakota has argued that it would be irresponsible of her parents to shelter her from these types of realities in life. Dakota believes that playing parts like this teaches her about the difficulties of life and encourages her (and other kids too) to be mindful of them.
Many of Dakota's adult co-stars have commented on her impeccable manners. She allegedly writes wonderful thank-you letters, and when she worked with Steven Spielberg on "War of the Worlds," she maintained letter correspondence with his daughter throughout filming, and Steven hand-delivered the letters back and forth. Dakota has also been said to give very nice gifts to the hosts of all the talk shows she appears on.
When asked who she would love to work with, Dakota's "wish list" has included Cameron Diaz, Morgan Freeman, and Meryl Streep, among others. When Dakota was much younger, she used to rave that Diaz was one of her favorite actresses, and that she really wanted to do a movie with her someday.
Thomas Curtis is the first boy that Dakota ever kissed. This was during the first scene of the 2002 film Sweet Home Alabama, where Dakota (eight years old at the time) played a young Reese Witherspoon.
Prior to getting started with filming for a movie, Dakota loves to first skim the script and find out what her name is going to be. She has definitely had some distinctive names in her movies, like Cale, Ray, Lewellen, etc.....
Dakota carries a book of baby names wherever she goes.
Dakota is of Scandinavian descent.
Dreamer film director John Gatins says that he thinks Dakota has "Bette Davis Eyes," and since then, he has taken to calling her "Bette."
(2006) Won a broadcast critics award for "War of the Worlds" for Best Young Actress
Because Dakota always enjoyed doing normal kid stuff, she joined the Girl Scouts of America at the age of 12. At the time, she belonged to a troop in the San Fernando Valley (Los Angeles, California). This was around the time when her film Dreamer hit theaters, and she invited her entire troop to the Hollywood premiere.
Dakota had braces during 2005. She proudly stated that her orthodontist was Dr. Jacobson.
Dakota loves to knit.
Dakota is one of fourteen grandchildren.
Some of Dakota's co-stars from War of the Worlds have funny memories of her doing perfect impersonations of people like Paris Hilton and Napoleon Dynamite.
In 2000, she debuted on an episode of the NBC medical drama "ER," playing a child in need of a bone marrow transplant. She was also seen as the 5-year-old incarnation of Calista Flockhart's title character on "Ally McBeal" and appeared as guest star in "CSI: Crime Scene Investigation" and "Spin City."
Dakota's scene in Nine Lives4 was done in one take. She got to work on the movie only for one day.
Tom Cruise would carry Dakota on his arms, everywhere on the set of 'War of the Worlds'. It started one day when Steven Spielberg said, 'Tom, I think you should be carrying her.' Every day after that Tom joked to Dakota, asking if she was feeling a little heavier than in the day before.
Dakota and her sister Elle are afraid of thunderstorms and lightning.
Dakota and Elle tried to be vegetarians, but that didn't work out because they don't like vegetables.
Dakota likes to pretend she's on a cell phone when, actually, there is nobody there. She also enjoys joking around, pretending she has messages and that people are calling her.
For her the hardest thing at the end of a movie is to have to say goodbye to all the cast.
Dakota says that it wasn't too hard for her to get through her emotional scenes in I Am Sam because she just thought of her goldfish dying, and that was enough to make her cry. (She was about six or seven years old in the movie.)
Won an MTV Movie Award for her work in Hide and Seek (2005)
Nominated for the following awards for her role in the film I am Sam:
Young Artist Award- "Best Actress in a Feature Film"
Chicago Film Critics Award
Dakota won the following for her work in I am Sam:
Golden Satellite Award, "Outstanding New Talent"
Critic's Choice Award
Dakota Fanning: I definitely grew up differently. I mean, I've been working since I was six, and I mean, I have a very different life than other people my age when I'm working, but, I mean, when I come home, it's so normal...I just go home and have a completely normal family that's not involved in the business in any way, except my sister, so I think that it's nice to maintain that, and that helps. So no, I don't think I've grown up faster. I think I've been so lucky to have had the childhood that I had, and seeing so many things, and I've met so many people, and I think my life has only been better because of it.
Dakota Fanning: (at age 16) For me, because people have seen me grow up since I was six, I think people feel like they own a part of me in a way. That's completely understandable because now I'm 16, so it's been 10 years from when I was a little girl. I'm not grown up yet, but I'm a lot older, and I think sometimes people don't want to see you in certain positions. But you have to understand I'm an actress, and I'm going to do all different things, and it's not me personally. It's just a movie, and it's just acting...so many young girls are in worse positions than what I could do in a movie.
Dakota Fanning: (on emerging into an adult actress) I can't change the speed that I'm growing up at. I know what I was meant to do, and I feel at home.
Dakota Fanning: (about child stars growing up too quickly) I'm so blessed in my life. I don't want this time of my life to end, and I don't take anything for granted. I don't want to grow up too fast, so I'm just enjoying every minute of my life.
Dakota Fanning: (on rumors that she is becoming a spoiled brat) My parents wouldn't allow me to get above myself – ever. They never pushed me into acting. They just want me to do whatever makes me happy. If I had chosen something else as a career, they would have been just as supportive.
Dakota Fanning: (when asked if she regrets not having a normal life) No. What is "normal," anyway? I don't want to be normal. This is my childhood. I've been to Australia, traveled, and learned about different cultures. Some people never leave the country in their entire lifetime. My job has opened my mind up and enriched my childhood. I have friends like anyone else, and I go shopping at the mall and do everything everyone else does.
Dakota Fanning: (defending her rape scene in "Hounddog") It's a movie, and it's called acting. What drew me to the film was that my character shows people that you can overcome adversity in life, and it doesn't define you. My character has so many other interests and talents that just because something terrible happened to her doesn't mean she can't have a great life.
Dakota Fanning: (about co-starring with Tom Cruise at the age of 10) I was really excited about meeting Tom for the first time, and I remember he was coming out of all this dirt and explosions and black smoke [while filming the movie], and he walked out, and he came over, and he put his hands on my shoulders and said, "We're making War of the Worlds, baby!" It's a story that I will tell my children and grandchildren someday. He made me a better actress.
Dakota Fanning: (about playing a 12-year-old rape victim in "Hounddog) I really don't understand the controversy of it all. People were going into the movie with a lot of preconceived notions about what it was gonna be, and I don't think that it fulfilled what everybody thought the rape scene was gonna be. It was very unfortunate. It was very disappointing. I really loved making that movie. I had a great experience. I really do hope that people see it, and I hope that people can go with an open mind and unbiased opinion, and watch it and enjoy it. If not, then I know everybody likes different kinds of things.
Dakota Fanning: (about playing more adult roles) I don't really do it intentionally. As you get older, the roles that you can do are limited, but they are also expanded at the same time. I don't really try to make conscious decisions about it. I just try and let it happen naturally. And, as I get to certain ages, some things are right, and some things are not. I've been lucky to find the right things. I just hope I can continue to make movies forever. It's what I love to do.
Dakota Fanning: I recently saw a play that I did when I was five, and it's so funny. I played a little blue fish, and I took it so seriously! I think I loved doing it [acting] even then, and I just wanted to do the best job that I could.
Dakota Fanning: (about filming "I Am Sam" at the age of six) Well, I have an aunt who's disabled, so she has some of the same tendencies that Sean Penn's character does, so I could really relate to that character, because I had grown up with someone who was mentally challenged, and that just made me want to do the film even more, so I could let my feelings out.
Dakota Fanning: I learned something different on all my movies. With Sean Penn, he taught me how to adlib. Then I learned from Denzel Washington; he's just so focused on his work and puts his whole thoughts into it. And then Mike [Myers], he's just so hilarious. He's so fun to be around. Brittany [Murphy], she's so nice to everybody, and she's so funny, but then also she's very dedicated to her work and just does a fantastic job.
Dakota Fanning: It's an honor even to get to be in movies and have the opportunity to work with the people that I have worked with. I worked with Denzel Washington in Mexico City, and it's hard to believe that I've worked with him, and Sean Penn, and Brittany Murphy, and everybody else.
Dakota Fanning: I've never asked for anyone's autograph. It's not that I'm embarrassed. It's just like, the actors I've worked with have become friends, so it would be like asking a friend for their autograph, and I know them so well. When you ask someone for their autograph, it's like you don't know them, but I do.
Dakota Fanning: I think one of the fun things about getting older is that more roles open up for you to do. I'm excited that there are so many more stories out there. I'm looking forward to that. I love what I'm doing, and I can't imagine doing anything else but acting. I know I want to act always.
Dakota Fanning: You know, I don't have an allowance. My mom and dad just didn't think that I needed one, and also, they want me to do chores around the house because I want to do them, and not because, "Oh, you're not gonna get your allowance this week if you don't clean your room!" When my sister and I do the dishes, we pretend we're waiters, and we're like "Here, we have tacos!" and things like that. We do things to make things fun.
Dakota Fanning: (about acting) I really like all the parts of it, but one of my favorites is that you get to be somebody else, unlike yourself, and you get to meet new people and go to different locations. Like, I'm going to Australia, and I'd probably never do that otherwise. And with Mexico, I probably would have never gone there if I didn't do the movie Man on Fire, and you get to meet wonderful people, and memories you'll have for the rest of your life.
Dakota Fanning: I think most people think that kids in the business are brats, but you don't have to be a brat to be an actress. I just enjoy it so much that there is no time to do anything like that. And why would I want to?
Dakota Fanning: (about being called a bigger box office draw than Julia Roberts) I'm a little bit embarrassed when I hear things like that. I don't think of myself that way. When people say that, it's really nice, but I don't even think that's true.
Dakota Fanning: I try and learn something knew on every movie I do. I try to better myself from everything and from everyone on the film and from my characters. I've been very fortunate to play all different kinds. I just try and portray the character and the themes I fell in love with in the script.
Dakota Fanning: (about playing a rape victim in "Hounddog") I'm going to be a freshman in high school in September , and I think it would be irresponsible of my parents not to let me know of things that happen and to try not to get yourself in uncomfortable situations. It's educational.
Dakota Fanning: (on criticisms of her rape scene in "Hounddog") When it gets to the point of attacking my mother, my agent ... my teacher, who were all on the set that day, that started to make me mad. I can let other things go, but when people start to talk about my mother, like, that's really bad in my opinion ... that's an attack, and that's not fair. They hadn't seen the movie.
Dakota Fanning: I just feel so blessed to be able to [act], because it's unbelievable to work with these great actors that I have worked with and I have all these friends that I've made on sets that I'll have all my life. That's the best part about it.
Dakota Fanning: It's what I want to do, it's what I've been so lucky to have done for almost seven years now. And I am getting older. February 23 is my birthday, I'll be 13 years old. And I will be playing different kinds of roles. I won't be able to do the things I did when I was 6 years old when I'm 14. And that's what I look forward to - getting to play new roles that aren't too old for me and aren't too young for me, that are just at the right time.
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