Amy Lou Adams (born August 20, 1974) is an American actress. Known for both her comedic and dramatic performances, she has placed three times in annual rankings of the highest-paid actresses in the world. Her accolades include two Golden Globes, and nominations for six Academy Awards and seven British Academy Film Awards.

Adams was born while her father was stationed with the United States Army at the Caserma Ederle military complex in Vicenza, Italy. She is the middle of seven children, with four brothers and two sisters.

After moving from one army base to another, Adams's family settled in Castle Rock, Colorado. After leaving the army, her father sang professionally in nightclubs and restaurants. Adams has described going to her father's shows as among her fondest childhood memories.

Adams was raised as a Mormon until her parents divorced in 1985. Her father moved to Arizona and remarried, while the children remained with their mother. Her mother became a bodybuilder who took the children with her to the gym when she trained.

Adams has compared her uninhibited early years with her siblings to 'Lord of the Flies'. Describing herself as a "scrappy, tough kid", she has said she fought frequently with other children.

She trained to be a ballerina, but at age 18, she found musical theater a better fit, and from 1994 to 1998, she worked in dinner theater. She made her feature film debut with a supporting part in the 1999 satire 'Drop Dead Gorgeous'.

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