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The Evolution Of Naomi Watts

The International (2009)

It’s time for the running shoes, as Watts plays an assistant district attorney in this political thriller from director Tom Twyker. She's Eleanor Whitman, who’s investigating the IBBC for money laundering and terrorism alongside Interpol agent Louis Saliner (Clive Owen).

Their hunt leads them into a bitter battle against corrupt organisations that takes them from Germany to New York. Despite Watt’s earnest turn, the film remains most famous for its shoot-out in the Guggenheim Museum, and garnered only moderate reviews.

Star Wattage:

Mother And Child (2009)

Debuting at the Sundance Film Festival, Mother And Child had Watts taking on the role of Elizabeth, a young woman who was given up for adoption at birth by her teenage mother. Now a successful lawyer, Elizabeth meets Paul (Samuel L. Jackson) and falls pregnant by him.

Watts gives her all in an uncompromising indie that was eventually award the Grand Prix du Jury at the Deauville American Film Festival. Its bee sting ending is unapologetic and haunting.

Star Wattage: Murky but mesmerising.

Fair Game (2010)

Back to politics again, this time Watts playing real-life CIA agent Valerie Plame, and co-starring with Sean Penn for a third time. Set in the aftermath of the 9/11 terrorist attacks, Plame has her cover blown by White House officials and scrambles to get her life back into working order.

Next up for Watts is Woody Allen’s You Will Meet A Tall Dark Stranger (out next week), horror film Dream House , Marilyn Monroe biopic Blonde and Clint Eastwood’s J. Edgar . Fair Game opens in cinemas today, 11 March.

Star Wattage: Steady glow.