Birth name: Rachel Clare Hurd-Wood
Date of Birth: 17 August 1990
Birth Place: London, England, UK
Parents: Philip and Sarah Hurd-Wood
Siblings: Patrick (younger bother)
Height: 5’6″ (1.7m)
Hair Colour: Brown
Eye Colour: Blue
Social Media: Twitter & Instagram
Rachel Clare Hurd-Wood was born on the 17th August 1990, to Philip and Sarah Hurd-Wood, in Streatham, South London. She lived in London until the age of eight, when she and her family moved to a Victorian cottage in Godalming, Surrey. Rachel attended Rodborough Technology College in Milford, Surrey from 2001 to 2006 and later attended the sixth-form at Godalming College from 2006 to 2008 and took her a-levels at the age of 18 in Art, English Literature, Psychology and Philosophy.
Rachel’s career in acting started in 2002 when she was picked for the role of Wendy Darling, after her grandparents spotted a television clip that said P.J. Hogan was searching for a “young English rose” for the feature film Peter Pan. She travelled to the Gold Coast in Australia for eight months to film. Her performance received good reviews and was nominated for a Saturn Award for Best Performance by a Younger Actor, and a Young Artist Award for Best Performance in a Feature Film by a Leading Young Actress. While filming, she had tutored lessons on set.
It’s like a dream … one minute I am walking across the playground to maths and next, I’m flying to Hollywood to meet the world’s press.
Following on from her success in Peter Pan, Rachel portrayed the character Imogen Helhoughton in the 2004 TV film Sherlock Holmes and the Case of the Silk Stocking, as a 13-year-old victim of a serial killer. Also in 2004, she took on the lead role of Betsy Bell in the thriller An American Haunting, a girl who is haunted and tormented by an unrelenting ghost. She was nominated for the 2006 Teen Choice Award – Choice Scream, for her role.
In 2005 she appeared in an adaptation of the best-selling novel by German writer Patrick Süskind; Perfume: The Story of a Murderer. Set in 18th century France, Rachel portrayed Laura Richis, the red-headed virgin daughter of a politically connected merchant played by Alan Rickman. She had her brunette hair dyed red for the part. She was nominated for the “Best Supporting Actress” award at the 33rd Saturn Awards by The Academy of Science Fiction, Fantasy and Horror Films for her role.
The year 2007 saw Rachel starring as a waitress in the music video for the song “A Little Bit” by Madeleine Peyroux. She also appeared alongside the musicians in the music video for “Fatherhood/Motherhood” by Ox.Eagle.Lion.Man.
Throughout her early acting career, Rachel considered other pathways for her future and considered becoming a marine biologist because of her love for dolphins. She gave up on the idea when she discovered that it would require studying science, because she thought she was not very good at it. She later became interested in working with children who have special needs or disabilities. In 2008, Rachel studied linguistics at the University College London, but left the course after a year before travelling to Australia for the filming of Tomorrow, When the War Began, and it was then that she decided to focus entirely on her career in acting.
In the 2008 film Solomon Kane, she played Meredith Crowthorn, a Puritan captured by a band of marauders who killed her family and whom Kane sought to rescue. Her younger brother Patrick also appeared in the film as her brother Samuel. During filming, Rachel studied for her A-levels at Godalming College in Surrey. Later the same year she appeared in the film Dorian Gray, based on the Oscar Wilde novel, The Picture of Dorian Gray. She was in the small but key role of the young budding actress Sibyl Vane, with whom Gray falls in love.
In her first contemporary role, Rachel was cast as Corrie Mackenzie, one of the principal characters in the 2009 Australian action-adventure film Tomorrow, When the War Began, based on the novel by John Marsden. (The novel was one of the books she read while being tutored for the filming of Peter Pan.) She learned an Australian accent for the role and the film became the highest grossing movie for that year in Australia.
Jumping full force into her acting career, Rachel portrayed the lead character Mae-West O’Mara in the 2010 film Hideaways, narrating a story to her six-year-old daughter about the strange powers of the men in the Furlong family. Her performance was well-received by critics, calling her “charismatic” and “…the heart and soul of the film”. Later in the year, she played the a young Isabel, in the short film The Mapmaker. Towards the end of 2010, she was featured in the music video for “Revolver” by Warehouse Republic.
Rachel kicked off 2011 by playing the role of the babysitter in the teaser for a proposed feature-length film, Let’s Go Play at the Adams, based on the book of the same name by Mendal Jonhson. She then played the role of the daughter, in the short film It Ends Here, directed by her friend Zimon Drake.
In 2012, Rachel played the female lead role of Elisabeth James in the film Highway to Dhampus, a story about the effect foreigners in Nepal and Nepali expatriates have on the locals. Later in the year, she starred alongside the singers Tyler James and Kano in the music video for the single “Worry About You” (feat. Kano) by Tyler James.
Rachel currently lives in London, where she moved to when she was 21. In December of 2017, Rachel married fellow actor Russ Bain in a small ceremony amongst friends and family. When she is not acting, Rachel enjoys writing poetry and articles for alternative online news sites.
Last updated: 2nd January 2018