Sandra Bullock has finally tasted Oscar glory after a diverse and up-and-down film career.
The 45-year-old shot to fame in 1994 as the feisty heroine in Speed, charming audiences with the way she managed to keep driving a bus quickly for much of the film.
Starring roles then beckoned for Hollywood's latest darling, including in movies like While You Were Sleeping, The Net, A Time To Kill and Miss Congeniality.
But Bullock's career flatlined in the late 1990s and early 2000s before she landed a supporting role in 2004's Oscar-winning Crash.
The thought-provoking portrayal of modern-day Los Angeles gave her some of the best reviews of her career, and a mini-renaissance which led to her Academy Award-winning turn in The Blind Side.
In that she played a tough Southern woman who adopts a black child, and was quickly installed as an Oscar favourite.
Bullock was born in a suburb of Washington DC, to a German opera singer and a voice teacher.
She grew up on the road with her parents and younger sister, and often performed in the children's chorus of productions her mother was in.
Her family moved back to the Washington area when she was a teenager, and she later enrolled in East Carolina University, where she studied acting.
After a series of TV performances, she broke through into films with roles in films like The Vanishing.
Last night's success does not mask the fact that she became the first person to win an Oscar and a Golden Raspberry Award for Worst Actress on the same weekend.
She attended the Razzie ceremony to pick up her gong for the comedy All About Steve, arriving good-humouredly with a trailer filled with DVDs of the film to give to the audience.