Currently wowing audiences in her daring role as Lisbeth Salander in the Hollywood remake of Stieg Larsson’s “The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo”, here are some facts about the 26-year-old New York actress that will surprise you.
1. Her full name is Patricia Rooney Mara.
2. The Rooney family trace their roots to Co. Down.
3. She is the great-granddaughter of both Pittsburgh Steelers founder Art Rooney, Sr. and New York Giants founder Tim Mara. Her great-uncle is Dan Rooney, the current U.S. ambassador to Ireland.
4. She played Juliet in a high-school production of the Shakespeare love story Romeo and Juliet. Speaking about her role recently, she told Allure, “I would have much preferred to be Romeo; it's a much better part. That was my first and only part in a play in high school."
5. Her older sister Kate Mara (28) is also a successful actress, currently starring in FX's creepy American Horror Story. Rooney brought her big sister as her date to the New York premiere of “The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo” last week.
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6. She doesn’t smoke, but while in character as Lisbeth, the New Yorker said she craved cigarettes: “If I had to go to set right now and work, I would crave a cigarette. But otherwise, I don't”.
7. She studied psychology and international social policy at New York University’s Gallatin School of Individualized study.
8. She has made several trips to Kibera, in Nairobi, Kenya, where she founded the Faces of Kibera charity, which aimed to provide housing, food, and medical care for orphans in Kibera, a Nairobi, Kenya slum.
9. She played the role of a girl who hated fat people in the the New York City staple, Law & Order: SVU.
10. Got her big break playing Nancy in Samuel Bayer's re-imagining of the original A Nightmare on Elm Street.