Mary Elle Fanning (born April 9, 1998) is an American actress, model, and singer. She is best known for her recent works in a number of independent films, and her portrayal as Aurora in the Maleficent film series. As the younger sister of actress Dakota Fanning, she made her film debut as the younger version of her sister's character in the drama film I Am Sam (2001). As a child actress, she appeared in a string of films including Because of Winn-Dixie (2005), Babel (2006), Phoebe in Wonderland (2008), and Somewhere (2010). Fanning's breakthrough came in 2011 with her starring role in J. J. Abrams' science-fiction film Super 8, for which her performance was praised by critics and earned her a Spotlight Award at the Hollywood Film Festival. In the wake of this success, she had leading roles in the films We Bought a Zoo (2011) and Ginger & Rosa (2012). She portrayed Princess Aurora in Maleficent (2014) and Maleficent: Mistress of Evil (2019). In recent years, she has made a transition into independent cinema with lead and supporting roles in films such as 3 Generations (2015), The Neon Demon (2016), 20th Century Women (2016), Mary Shelley (2017), The Beguiled (2017), I Think We're Alone Now (2018), Galveston (2018), and Teen Spirit (2018).