Keisha Castle-Hughes was born in Donnybrook, Western Australia.
Her mother, Desrae Hughes, is New Zealand Maori and her father, Tim Castle, Australian. At age of four, Keisha's family moved
from Australia to New Zealand. Keisha has two younger brothers, Rhys (age 11 as of Feb 1, 2004) and Liam (age 7 as of Feb 1, 2004).
She was discovered for the movie Whale Rider (2002) by the casting director and the casting assistant
who visited her primary school in Mt. Wellington, New Zealand. Keisha was chosen among several hundred to
star in the main role of Paikea. She was discovered by the same agent who discovered Anna Paquin.
Keisha Castle-Hughes has never starred in a movie before acting in Whale Rider.
During an interview with Jay Leno, she confirmed that she did not even know how to
swim before starring in the movie.
Keisha is the youngest person ever nominated for the Academy Awards' Oscar in
the "actress in a leading role" category.
The Whale Rider official website provides a few quotes of Keisha. See them here.
Keisha's father Tim Castle (age 34 as of Feb 2004), a sheet-metal worker who now lives in New Plymouth, New Zealand, is
currently separated from Keisha's mother, Desrae. Tim Castle is a former Australian
Rules player and was born in Fremantle.
Sources: The Age