Anna Kendrick was born on Portland, Maine. She started her acting career at the age of 10, riding busses from Portland, Maine, to New York City to attend auditions.
Her first acting role was as Dinah in the Broadway musical High Society in August 1998 when she was 12 years old, a performance for which she won the Theatre World Award and was nominated for a Tony Award and a Drama Desk Award; making her the third-youngest Tony Award nominee. Afterwards, Kendrick appear in a number of other theater productions, including the musical A Little Night Music, playing Fredrika Armfeldt in the New York City Opera production.
Anna made her film debut in the 2003 musical comedy Camp, for which she was nominated in the Best Supporting Actress category at the 2004 Chlotrudis Awards and Best Debut Performance Independent Spirit Award for her portrayal of Fritzi Wagner.
In 2007, she appeared in her next film, Rocket Science, in which she portrayed Ginny Ryerson, a fast-talking high school debater. Although Kendrick said she found the role intimidating and challenging after watching an actual national collegiate championship debate, her performance was praised by critics, and she was nominated for an Independent Spirit award for Best Supporting Actress.
In late 2007, she auditioned for the role of Jessica Stanley in Twilight, NS reprised her role as Jessica in the first three Twilight sequels.
Kendrick's theatre singing experience gave her the opportunity to star in her next project, 2009's The Marc Pease Experience, where she appears opposite Jason Schwartzman and Ben Stiller as a high school senior involved in musical theater.
She appeared in the 2009 films Elsewhere, and in director Jason Reitman's Up in the Air, based on Walter Kirn's 2001 novel of the same name, alongside George Clooney and Vera Farmiga. For her performance, in Up in the Air, the National Board of Review named her Best Supporting Actress, and she also picked up nominations from numerous critics awards, The Golden Globes, The Screen Actors Guild and the Academy Awards.
In 2010, Kendrick appeared in LCD Soundsystem's music video "Pow Pow" as a "shape-shifter" who collects "the souls of wicked men." In 2011, she starred in the dramatic comedy 50/50, alongside Joseph Gordon Levitt, Bryce Dallas Howard, and Seth Rogen.
In 2012, she played the part of Rosie in the screen adaptation of the baby guide, What to Expect When You're Expecting, and starred in Pitch Perfect as Beca (along with Rebel Wilson and Alexis Knapp), a rebellious college student who discovers her voice in her school’s female a cappella group, and she is featured on the film's soundtrack. Kendrick also appeared in the police drama End of Watch, playing Janet, and is set to appear in the political thriller The Company You Keep, starring Robert Redford and Shia LaBeouf. She will also star alongside Jeremy Jordan in a film adaptation of The Last Five Years.