Penélope Cruz arrived in the United States at age 20, knowing only two English phrases beyond dialogue she’d memorized for casting calls. One of them—“Thank you”—would come in handy 15 years later when she accepted an Academy Award for her supporting role in 2008’s Vicky Cristina Barcelona, the first Oscar won by a Spanish actress. Cruz’s American breakout was as Tom Cruise’s love interest in Vanilla Sky, a remake of a Spanish film (Open Your Eyes) in which she also starred. Cruz still maintains parallel careers on both sides of the Atlantic. Currently she’s enjoying back-to-back American releases with Zoolander No. 2 and The Brothers Grimsby (in theaters March 11).