Sienna Guillory (born May 31, 1975) is a British actress and model. She was named after the color ‘’Sienna’’. Though it is generally the trend for models to turn to acting, it was the other way round for her. Guillory had been acting since the age of 16, and it was quite by chance that she got her first modeling assignment at the age of 20.
Born in Fulham, London, Guillory is the daughter of Cuban-born guitarist Isaac Guillory and Victoria Guillory, she has two sisters, Ellie and Jace, and a brother Jacob. They grew up in a traditional Bohemian household. Having grown up being surrounded by performers, it is quite natural that she took up acting. Guillory made her screen debut in the UK TV series Riders. Though the role was small, she made her mark. Her performance landed her in another small role in the miniseries The Buccaneers. Guillory took a short break from acting in 1995, to continue with studies. She had to even work as a waitress to fund her studies. At the age of 21, Guillory had returned after an independent film in Russia with a friend, a ballerina who aspired to become a model. She accompanied her to a modeling agency, Select Models, which signed both of them on the spot, instead. Guillory became one of Britain's most sought after models in the four years she had been modelling. In 2000, Esquire magazine voted Guillory to be Britain's Most Eligible Woman. And in 2002, she was number 89 on Maxim's list of Top 100 Sexiest Women. Still, it was acting she was interested in. Hence, to study the art more closely, she went to study at the New World School of the Dramatic Arts, as well as at the Paris Conservatoire. By the time she had returned to the screen in 2000 with a thriller, Sorted, she had developed a unique style of her own. Soon, she took to Hollywood, with movies like The Time Machine and Resident Evil: Apocalypse. Sienna is still apprehensive to Hollywood. She has learnt fickle producers and directors can be in Tinseltown. "That experience of Hollywood taught me a lot", says Guillory "but I still feel like I'm a Hollywood virgin."
Guillory has been touted as a rising star. However, she has been cautious in distinguishing between being an actor, and being a star. She wishes to be known for her skill and acting prowess, rather than by her name and face. As such, she eschews star status and fame in favor of being an (almost) unknown actor. In her interview on the Chatshow Network in 2000, Guillory discussed that her love of acting was for its therapeutic quality. Whereas stereotypically, actors are lured by fame and fortune, Sienna is unique in that she enjoys acting for more humble reasons.
Her career has not been one without controversies. Guillory made headlines for publicly condemning fellow British actress Kate Beckinsale for allegedly joining the "bitchy Hollywood" set and undergoing breast enhancement surgery.
Guillory married British actor Nick Moran in July, 1997, but they got divorced in 2000. Later she married actor and director Enzo Cilenti, with whom she is living in London.
Guillory made her first appearance on the small screen in 1993, with the UK television series Riders, and followed it up with The Buccaneers, opposite Mira Sorvino. Since 1995, she took a break from acting and started working as a model for the agency, Select Models. As a model, she worked for respected labels like Armani, Dolce & Gabbana, Burberry, Paul Smith, and also the face of Hugo Boss's fragrance campaign for three years. She returned to acting in 2000, by beating 200 hopefuls, with the BBC television series Take a Girl Like You. She garnered critical acclaim for playing the coveted role of the virginal heroine, Jenny Bunn, in the series, based on Kingsley Amis' novel of the same name.
Her potential as an elite actress is evident in the quality of the roles that she has attracted. Guillory is best known for her role as Jill Valentine in Resident Evil Apocalypse and in the TV miniseries Helen of Troy, opposite Rufus Sewell, enacting the title role of Helen, considered to be the most beautiful woman to have graced the earth. About the latter, she has said, "I can't think of a bigger compliment than to be cast as the woman whose beauty has become legendary." The role of Helen required some partial nudity. Though Guillory didn't mind too much, she is quoted in Playboy magazine as saying that she "didn't like [her] nipples showing because they [looked] like targets”.
Guillory took to the big screen as a natural progression. She starred in movies like The Time Machine, Principles of Lust and Love Actually, amongst others. But it was Resident Evil: Apocalypse, which Guillory did with Milla Jovovich, that gave her a firm footing in Hollywood. She is currently shooting for the movie Eragon, based on the novel by Christopher Paolini, in which she plays the role of Arya, an elven princess, a role for which she had to beat 2000 hopefuls to get.