The GBH Drama Club loves everything about the Pride and Prejudice miniseries from 1995. It may be famous for a certain wet shirt scene, but it’s a truth universally acknowledged that Jennifer Ehle’s portrayal of Elizabeth Bennet was the real reason for its success. In our opinion, it’s still the best of all adaptations of the famous novel by Jane Austen.

Here are 10 facts you may not have known about Ehle, our favorite Elizabeth Bennet.

1. Her portrayal of Elizabeth Bennet was a career-defining role.
Ehle’s portray of Elizabeth Bennet was iconic, launching her into the spotlight as a young actress. At 26, she played the intelligent and independent Austen heroine. “I thought I was the luckiest person in the world to spend an entire summer being Elizabeth Bennet,” Ehle said about the experience.

2. Romance blossomed off screen between Firth and Ehle.
One of the reasons this Pride and Prejudice works so well is the palpable chemistry between Colin Firth and Ehle as Mr. Darcy and Elizabeth Bennet. The couple dated for about a year after filming, but Firth admitted that two actors dating each other can be a challenge. “I actually find that if you're involved with an actress that you're having to tell a love story with, it's more difficult,” Firth has said. “I don't find it easy to draw on it. Your relationship, your feelings aren't the same as those of the characters."

3. When the coronavirus pandemic began, Ehle read Pride and Prejudice live on Instagram.
In a time of uncertainty, Ehle provided comfort by opening up her copy of Pride and Prejudice and reading the entire book to her followers on Instagram. Tens of thousands of people tuned in to watch her as she read the book over the course of 44 videos.

4. Acting runs in the family.
Ehle’s mother is British actress Rosemary Harris, and the mother-daughter duo is an acting powerhouse. When she was four years old, Ehle appeared on stage in the Broadway production of A Streetcar Named Desire, where her mother portrayed Blanche DuBois. And when Ehle was nominated for a Tony Award in 2000, her mother was also nominated — in the same category.

5. She almost starred in Game of Thrones.
When HBO wanted to adapt the hit fantasy book series for television, Ehle was cast as Lady Catelyn, matriarch of the Stark family, and filmed the pilot episode. Ehle had recently given birth to her daughter, and departed before the series was greenlit by HBO, afterwhich the role went to Northern Irish actress Michelle Fairley.

6. She has won numerous acting awards.
It’s no surprise to us that Ehle’s talents have been rewarded. She picked up a BAFTA Award for Best Actress for her turn as Elizabeth Bennet in Pride and Prejudice. She won two Tony Awards for leading roles in The Real Thing and The Coast of Utopia, and won a Screen Actors Guild Award for the ensemble in The King’s Speech.

7. Hollywood’s recent embrace of older actresses is a welcome change for Ehle.
Ehle has said that although many actresses in Hollywood can struggle to find significant roles as they age, she has been lucky to have a thriving career. “In the last few years I’ve found some really wonderful roles that are not necessarily defined by the fact that they are women. It’s a bit of a revolution with the stories being told,” she said. “There are many more interesting female roles, certainly for women my age, than there used to be.”

8. Her role in Contagion feels eerily relevant now...
In 2011, Contagion told a terrifying story of a pandemic that was making people sick all over the world. Ehle played a scientist racing to produce a vaccine and save humanity. She co-starred along with Matt Damon, Gwenyth Paltrow, Jude Law, Marion Cotillard and Laurence Fishburne. The movie became one of the most-requested on demand movies when quarantine began.

9. ...And the cast had a virtual reunion to raise public health awareness.
The Contagion stars partnered with scientists at Columbia University Mailman School of Public Health to record a series of PSAs about the coronavirus. “The scientists who helped me prepare for that movie want us to know some things that keep us all safe,” Ehle says in her video, and encouraged people to listen to the experts.

10. You'll see her next in a political role.
Ehle is dipping her toes into American politics, as she's set to star in the Showtime series The Comey Rule as Patrice Comey, wife of former FBI Director James Comey. The two-part series comes out in late September and is based on Comey’s bestselling book A Higher Loyalty.

Stream Pride and Prejudice now on GBH Passport.