Mori started work modeling and later became a telenovela actress with TV Azteca, when she starred in the soap opera Azul Tequila. Her big break came in 2004, with the telenovela Rubí (a remake of the 1968 series) by rival network Televisa, in which she played the main character.
Bárbara Mori Ochoa was born on 2 February 1978. She is of Uruguayan-Japanese, Basque and Lebanese heritage. her Japanese ancestry is from her paternal grandfather. She has two siblings, actress Kenya Mori and brother Kintaró Mori. Her parents Yuyi Mori and Rosario Ochoa divorced when she was three years of age. Mori spent her early childhood between Mexico and Uruguay and finally settled in Mexico City at the age of twelve.
One day, while working as a waitress at the age of fourteen, fashion designer Marcos Toledo invited her to work as a model. She became independent by the age of seventeen and went to live with her cousins. At nineteen she met actor Sergio Mayer, who would later become father to their son Sergio, born in 1998. They never married.
She later studied acting in El Centro de Estudios de Formación Actoral. She made her acting debut in the Mexican telenovela Al norte del corazón. She then participated in the comedy series Tric Tac and Mirada de mujer the following year. She obtained her first TVyNovelas Award for her role in Mirada de mujer for Best New Actress.
In 1998, Bárbara Mori got her first leading role as "Azul" in the series Azul Tequila, co-starring with Mauricio Ochmann. A year later she filmed the series Me muero por tí in Miami, with Peruvian actor Christian Meier. She participated in her first film in 2000, in the Mexican comedy Inspiración. Later, she acted in various other telenovelas, including the Telemundo telenovela Amor descarado and the highly–rated Mexican soap opera, Rubí, which earned her another TVyNovelas Award.
In 2005 she obtained the starring role in the blockbuster film La mujer de mi hermano as Zoe, and her husband was portrayed by Christian Meier, with whom she had previously co-starred in Me muero por tí. She also won the leading role in "Pretendiendo", a Chilean/Mexican-backed movie which was critically panned.
Indian film producer Rakesh Roshan signed her as the leading lady for his movie Kites opposite his son, Bollywood star Hrithik Roshan. It was shot in New Mexico, Las Vegas and Los Angeles, it went into production by the end of July 2008, and was released on May 21, 2010.
Mori was diagnosed with early stage cancer and is now a proud survivor. She talks about her journey in UniGlobe Entertainment's docu-drama titled 1 a Minute, scheduled for release on 6 October 2010 in the USA and 29 October 2010 in India. The documentary is being made by actress Namrata Singh Gujral and will also feature cancer survivors Olivia Newton-John, Diahann Carroll, Melissa Etheridge, Namrata Singh Gujral, Mumtaz and Jaclyn Smith as well as William Baldwin, Daniel Baldwin and Priya Dutt, whose lives have been touched by cancer. The feature is narrated by Kelly McGillis. The film will also star Lisa Ray, Deepak Chopra and Morgan Brittany.
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