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CATALINA SANDINO MORENA made her screen debut as the title character in the critically-acclaimed film MARIA FULL OF GRACE from Fine Line Features/HBO. For her performance, Sandino was nominated for an Academy Award for Best Actress in a Leading Role, a Screen Actors Guild Award for Performance by a Female Actor in a Leading Role and won an Independent Spirit Award for Best Female Lead. The film debuted in the U.S. at the 2004 Sundance Film Festival, where it won the Audience Award, and opened in limited release in July 2004. The film won the Grand Special Prize at the 2004 Deauville Film Festival. Sandino has earned other awards and nominations for her performance, including the Silver Berlin Bear for Best Actress at the 2004 Berlin International Film Festival, the Golden Space Needle Award for Best Actress at the 2004 Seattle International Film Festival and the award for Breakthrough Actor at the 2004 Gotham Awards. She was named ShoWest's International Star of the Year for 2005.

Sandino has recently appeared in THE TWILIGHT SAGA: ECLIPSE, the third installment of the series based of the best-selling novels by Stephenie Meyer. She portrayed ‘Maria,' a vampire that started a newborn army and changes ‘Jasper Cullen' into a vampire.

Next, Sandino will appear in STRANGER IN PARADISE alongside Colin Egglesfield and Stuart Townsend. The film follows a multibillion-dollar hedge fund executive being investigated for insider trading who is forced into a well-timed "vacation” in Bangkok with a price on his head. It is set to be released in the U.S. on May 10, 2012. Sandino will begin shooting MAGIC, MAGIC in Chile opposite Juno Temple, Emily Browning and Michael Cera in the coming months. The film, directed by Sebastian Silva, is a thriller that follows a girl vacationing with her friends in a remote area of Chile who slowly starts losing her mind.

Sandino also appeared opposite Matthew Broderick in the Off-Broadway world premiere of Kenneth Lonergan's "The Starry Messenger.” The play, which received rave reviews, follows an astronomy teacher whose midlife crisis is thrown into relief by an unexpected affair that changes everything.

In 2009, Sandino starred opposite Benecio Del Torro in Steven Soderbergh's two part biopic, CHE. The film, which chronicled the life of Cuban revolutionary Ernesto "Che” Guevara, premiered at the Cannes Film Festival and was released by IFC Films that January.

Sandino has also been seen in LOVE IN THE TIME OF CHOLERA, directed by Mike Newell, where she played the role of Hildebranda Sanchez alongside Javier Bardem and Benjamin Bratt. The film was released by New Line in November of 2007.

Shortly thereafter, Sandino shot PARIS, JE T'AIME with director Walter Salles. The film is about the plurality of cinema in Paris, the City of Love. Twenty filmmakers, including the Coen brothers, Alexander Payne and Wes Craven, were given five minutes to tell a narrative, underlining the wide variety of styles, genres, encounters and the various atmospheres and lifestyles that prevail in the neighborhoods of Paris. PARIS, JE T'AIME showcased at the Cannes Film Festival and was released by First Look on May 4th, 2007.

In 2006, Sandino starred in the Ethan Hawke directed film, THE HOTTEST STATE. The film, which also stars Ethan Hawke, Laura Linney, Michelle Williams and Mark Webber, tells the story of a young actor from Texas (Webber) who is trying to make it in New York while struggling in his relationship with a beautiful singer/songwriter (Sandino). The film premiered at the Venice Film Festival in August 2006 and was released by ThinkFilm.

Also in 2006, Sandino was seen in FAST FOOD NATION. Directed by Richard Linklater, FAST FOOD NATION is an ensemble piece examining the health risks involved in the fast food industry and its environmental and social consequences as well. The film is a fictional take on the non-fiction, best selling novel by Eric Schlosser and also stars Patricia Arquette, Ethan Hawke, Bobby Cannavale and Greg Kinnear. The film premiered at the Cannes Film Festival and was released by 20th Century Fox.

Born in Bogotá, Colombia, Sandino became interested in theatre and stage at an early age. In 1997, while still in high school, she enrolled in the Ruben Di Pietro theatre academy in Bogotá. During her four years at the academy, she acted in such productions as "Acuerdo para Cambiar de Casa” by Griselda Gambaro, "The Dark Room” by Tennessee Williams, and "Laughing Wild” by Christopher Durang.

After making her film debut in MARIA FULL OF GRACE, Sandino relocated to New York City, where she attended The Lee Strasberg Institute. She made her New York stage debut in the Frog & Peach Theatre Company's production of Shakespeare's "King John.”

Sandino resides in Los Angeles.

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