Julia Karin Ormond is a British actress who has appeared in film and television and on stage.
Ormond was born in Epsom, Surrey, England, the daughter of Josephine, a laboratory technician, and John Ormond, a successful computer software designer who became a millionaire by age thirty. Ormond's father left his wife and children when Julia was still young. She attended Guildford High School and Cranleigh School (a private school), and then studied acting in London at the Webber Douglas Academy of Dramatic Art, from which she graduated in 1988.
Ormond's stage credits include The Rehearsal, Wuthering Heights, The Crucible, Christopher Hampton's Faith, Hope and Charity, for which she won the London Drama Critics' Award for Best Newcomer, and David Hare's My Zinc Bed, for which she earned a Laurence Olivier Award nomination.
Her film credits include Jerry Zucker's First Knight, Captives with Tim Roth, Legends of the Fall with Brad Pitt, Anthony Hopkins and Aidan Quinn, Sydney Pollack's Sabrina with Harrison Ford, "Resistance" and Smilla's Sense of Snow. She also had a major role in the controversial Peter Greenaway film The Baby of Mâcon with Ralph Fiennes.
Her TV credits include HBO's Stalin and Iron-Jawed Angels, the drama series Traffik, Varian's War and Animal Farm. She also has an independent production company, Indican Productions, based in New York City, and she executive produced the Cinemax Reel Life documentary Calling the Ghosts: A Story of Rape, War and Women, which won a CableACE Award and a Robert F. Kennedy Journalism Award, and was an official selection of the Toronto and Berlin Film Festivals. Ormond also appears as a guest star during the 2008-09 season of the CBS police procedural series, CSI:NY.
In the 2000s, Ormond has worked in various projects, albeit in more supporting roles. She appeared in David Lynch's 2006 film Inland Empire and in 2007's I Know Who Killed Me alongside Lindsay Lohan.
She will be featured in four projects slated for release in 2008. Ormond will be reunited with Brad Pitt in The Curious Case of Benjamin Button. She also will appear with Benicio del Toro in Guerrilla, Abigail Breslin in Kit Kittredge: An American Girl Mystery and Bill Pullman in Surveillance, working with acclaimed directors such as David Fincher and Steven Soderbergh in two of the these projects.
She has been quoted, "My sense is that Hollywood is something in the past. I've escaped it".
Ormond has produced film projects through her Indican Productions company located in New York City.
Ormond married Rory Edwards, an actor she had met while performing in a production of Wuthering Heights. The marriage ended in 1994. She was romantically linked to actor Gabriel Byrne during the filming of Smilla’s Sense of Snow in 1996. In 1999 she married political activist Jon Rubin. The couple's first child, daughter Sophie, was born in the autumn of 2004.
Ormond has been an activist engaged with fighting human trafficking since the mid-1990s, and has recently partnered with the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime. She is also an advocate for Transatlantic Partners Against Aids, which attempts to raise awareness about Aids in Russia and Ukraine, and is founding co-chairman of FilmAid International.
On 2 December 2005, Ormond was appointed as a United Nations Goodwill Ambassador by Executive Director Antonio Maria Costa. Her focus has been on anti human-trafficking initiatives, raising awareness about this modern form of slavery and promoting efforts to combat it In her capacity as ambassador, Ormond has appeared as council to the United States House of Representatives, Committee on International Relations, Subcommittee on Africa, Global Human Rights and International Operations, and has travelled the world as an ambassador.