Rosario Dawson is the tough talking, multiethnic actress best known for her roles in Kids, Rent, He Got Game, and Sin City.

Raised on the Lower East Side the Puerto Rican/ Cuban/ Irish/ African-American/Native-American Dawson landed her big break at the age of 15, when director Larry Clark famously plucked her off a stoop and put her in his gritty 1995 film Kids. Dawson enrolled at the Lee Strasberg Institute and was soon cast in Spike Lee's He Got Game. Following appearances in a couple of small indie films, she scored her first big-budget role in 2001 with the masterpiece Josie and the Pussycats. More recently, she's veered towards both macabre and indie fare, appearing in pics like Sin City, Kevin Smith's Clerks II, and Death Proof, as well as more crowd-pleasing hits like Rent and Seven Pounds.

Given that she grew up in an East Village squat, it's no surprise that Dawson's a hard-core lefty. She was arrested (while wearing a handkerchief and a mask covering her face, no less) for protesting near the Republican National Convention in 2004. Although Dawson dated Jay-Z in her late teens and spent several years dating Jason Lewis (of Sex and the City fame), she reportedly broke up with her squeeze Mathieu Schreyer, a French DJ, in 2011. [Image via Getty]