Michelle Williams’ parents didn’t approve of their daughter’s interest in acting, so she emancipated herself at age 15 and left school to start her 6-season stint on Dawson’s Creek. She’d already appeared in several popular shows—Baywatch, Step by Step and Home Improvement to name a few—but first achieved fame portraying Jen Lindley, the big-city-wild-child who moved to the Creek. Michelle met Heath Ledger while they were starring together in Brokeback Mountain and the two had a daughter, Matilda Rose, in 2005. A single mom since Heath’s passing in 2008, Michelle’s doing her best to find a balance between work and motherhood.  Seen here taking a peaceful stroll in the city while wearing her Persol sunglasses, Michelle’s already been nominated for countless awards for her latest film, 2010’s Blue Valentine.

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