Kirsten Caroline Dunst was born on April 30, 1982 in Point Pleasant, New Jersey, USA to Klaus Dunst, a German medical-services exec. who's now stationed in New Jersey while the rest of his family lives on the West Coast. Klaus separated from Kirsten's mother Inez Dunst, a former art-gallery owner. She also has a brother named Christian, who was born in 1986. Kirsten started out in showbiz at the age of three, where she began filming television commercials (a grand total of more than 70). She made her feature film debut in a segment of Woody Allen's 1989 film New York Stories (1989). Shortly after in the same year her family moved to Los Angeles, where her film career took off.
In 1994 she made her breakthrough performance in Interview with the Vampire: The Vampire Chronicles (1994) alongside such stars as Brad Pitt and Tom Cruise. Her performance earned her a Golden Globe nomination, the MTV Award for Best Breakthrough Performance and the Saturn award for Best Young Actress. In 1995, she was named one of People Magazine's 50 Most Beautiful People. Over the next few years she made a string of hit movies including Little Women (1994), Jumanji (1995) and Small Soldiers (1998).