Following breakout roles in Desperate Choices: To Save My Child (1992) and Jack the Bear (1993), she starred in the comedy-drama Pleasantville (1998), for which she won the Young Hollywood Award for Breakthrough Performance.
Her leading role of Tracy Flick in Election (1999) was nominated for a Golden Globe Award.
Witherspoon was raised as an Episcopalian, and has said she is proud of the "definitive Southern upbringing" which she received.
She received a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame in 2010.
as Nicole Walker, a teenage girl who starts dating a man with obsessive tendencies, and the black-comedy thriller Freeway, alongside Kiefer Sutherland and Brooke Shields, where she held the lead role. Among them was the San Francisco Chronicle, with Mick La Salle commenting, "Witherspoon, who does a Texas accent, is dazzling, utterly believable in one extreme situation after the other." In Pleasantville, she starred with Tobey Maguire in a tale about 1990s teenage siblings who are magically transported into the setting of a 1950s television series.
She portrayed Jennifer, the sister of Maguire's character who is mainly concerned about appearances, relationships and popularity.
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