English actor Matthew Goode took his Hollywood bow on a prestigious note, as Casper, one of the key characters in the well-received Alliance Atlantis telemovie Confessions of an Ugly Stepsister (2002). The film constituted a revisionist update of the Cinderella story, adapted from the best-selling novel by Gregory Maguire, and premiered on ABC to stellar ratings, virtually guaranteeing success for Goode and his fellow players. The young actor achieved his next coup not long after, landing a role in the romantic comedy Chasing Liberty (2004), opposite pop diva and heartthrob Mandy Moore. In that movie, Goode portrayed a British playboy who falls for the first daughter of the U.S. president (Moore), wholly unaware of her identity -- meanwhile guarding a little secret of his own.
Goode demonstrated his versatility as Tom Hewett in Woody Allen's deadly serious, British-borne thriller Match Point (2005) and returned to romantic comedy as a groom whose bride (Piper Perabo) falls for another woman on the day of their wedding, in the 2006 Imagine Me & You. Following a critically praised appearance in Scott Frank's 2007 caper thriller The Lookout (opposite Jeff Daniels and Joseph Gordon-Levitt), Goode hearkened back to England for a much-anticipated portrayal of Charles Ryder in the 2008 big-screen adaptation of Evelyn Waugh's Brideshead Revisited. He was also cast as Ozymandias in the hotly anticipated comic-book superhero film Watchmen (2009), adapted from the acclaimed Alan Moore graphic novel. He followed that up with an appearance in Tom Ford's directorial debut A Single Man. The romantic comedy Leap Year came the next year, and the Australian comedy drama Burning Man in 2011.