Back in 2001, the world was introduced to a new kind of heroine in Legally Blonde: Elle Woods. Fashion extraordinaire, friend to the underdog, and proof that hard work is one of your greatest assets. As viewers watched Elle go from sorority socialite to Harvard student, they were equally charmed by Reese Witherspoon’s winsome heroine and the heart warming message that, whether it’s book smarts or knowledge of last season’s Pradas (or both), everyone has something to bring to the table.
However, while Witherspoon was without a doubt the star, Legally Blonde does boast a strong ensemble cast. As the comedy turns 15 on Wednesday, let’s take a look at what the stars have been up to since Harvard graduation.
Reese Witherspoon — Elle Woods
Witherspoon really ascended to “America’s Sweetheart” status with the good-natured Elle, a “dumb” blonde we could all believe in. While she would reprise the role of Elle Woods in the lesser sequel, Legally Blonde 2: Red, White, and Blonde (and is pushing to make it a trilogy), Witherspoon would go on to forge an extremely successful career beyond the signature pink.
A few years and a couple romantic comedies (The Importance of Being Earnest and Sweet Home Alabama) later, Witherspoon starred in Walk the Line as June Carter Cash, a role which would earn her a slew of awards notices, including the Academy Award for Best Actress. She went back to the romantic comedy route following her win, but found her feet again with indie fare like Mud, Wild (for which earned her a second Academy Award nomination), and Inherent Vice. She most recently starred in Hot Pursuit with Sofia Vergara, and is starring in an upcoming Tinker Bell live adaptation.
On top of her acting accolades, Reese Witherspoon has a prodigious amount of hustle offscreen. Not only did she co-found a production company, Pacific Standard (previously Type A Films), but she has a preppy clothing line called Draper James, as well. Witherspoon is also a mother to two children, Ava (who looks exactly like her mom) and Deacon, both with her ex-husband Ryan Phillippe.