Neil Patrick Jordan is an Irish film director, screenwriter, novelist and short-story writer. His first book, Night in Tunisia, won a Somerset Maugham Award and he won an Academy Award for The Crying Game. He also won the Silver Bear for Best Director at the Berlin International Film Festival for The Butcher Boy, Jordan was born in County Sligo, the son of Angela, a painter, and Michael Jordan, a professor. He was educated at St. Pauls College, Raheny, later, Jordan attended University College Dublin, where he studied Irish history and English literature. Of his religious background, Jordan said in a 1999 Salon interview, I was brought up a Catholic and was religious at one stage in my life. But it left me with no scars whatever, it just sort of vanished and he said about his current beliefs that God is the greatest imaginary being of all time. Along with Einsteins General Theory of Relativity, the invention of God is probably the greatest creation of human thought, when John Boorman was filming Excalibur in Ireland, he recruited Jordan as a creative associate. During the 1980s, he directed films that won him acclaim, including The Company of Wolves and Mona Lisa, the Company of Wolves became a cult favorite. He was also the force behind the cable TV series The Borgias. While Lestat is depicted in an attractive but villainous manner, his partner Louis, in the remake of The End of the Affair, two people engage in a love affair that will end as suddenly as it started, with both not wanting its end. In addition to the sexuality of Jordans films, he frequently returns to the Troubles of Northern Ireland. The Crying Game and Breakfast on Pluto both concern a transgender character, both concern the Troubles, and both feature frequent Jordan leading man Stephen Rea. The two films, however, are different, with Crying Game being a realistic thriller/romance and Breakfast on Pluto a much more episodic, stylized. Jordan also frequently tells stories about children or young people, such as The Miracle, the critical success of Jordans early pictures led him to Hollywood, where he directed High Spirits and Were No Angels, both were critical and financial disasters. He later returned home to make the more personal The Crying Game, Jordan won the Academy Award for Best Original Screenplay for the film. Its unexpected success led him back to American studio filmmaking, where he directed Interview with the Vampire and he also directed the crime drama The Brave One starring Jodie Foster. Neil Gaiman announced during his The Today Show appearance on 27 January 2009, Jordan also wrote and directed the Irish made film Ondine, starring Colin Farrell and Alicja Bachleda-Curuś. He also directed Byzantium, an adaptation of the play of the same name starring Saoirse Ronan, Gemma Arterton
Bruce Robinson is an English director, screenwriter, novelist and actor. As an actor, he has worked with Franco Zeffirelli, Ken Russell, Bruce Robinson was born in London. He grew up in Broadstairs Kent, where he attended The Charles Dickens Secondary Modern School and his parents were Mabel Robinson and American lawyer Carl Casriel, who had a short-term relationship during World War II. His father was a Lithuanian Jew, as a child, Robinson was constantly brutally abused by his stepfather Rob, who knew the boy wasnt his son. He had an elder sister Elly, whom he asked to him some French. In his youth, Robinson aspired to be an actor and was admitted to the Central School of Speech and his first film role was as Benvolio in Franco Zeffirellis film adaptation of Romeo and Juliet. He then appeared in Ken Russells The Music Lovers, Barney Platts-Millss Private Road, after spending several years out of work, and living on social security payments, he became disenchanted and began writing screenplays. He was soon commissioned by David Puttnam to write the screenplay for Roland Joffés The Killing Fields, Robinson was nominated for an Academy Award and won a BAFTA for his work. In 1989, Robinson wrote again for Joffé on Fat Man and he returned to acting briefly in 1998, taking a role in the film Still Crazy. He is perhaps best known as the force behind the loosely autobiographical film Withnail. The character Withnail is reportedly based on his friend, Vivian MacKerrell, though unsuccessful at the box office, because of its success on video it has since been described as one of Britains biggest cult films. The film also launched the career of Richard E. Grant. Robinsons next two outings as a director were not as well received, Robinson became disillusioned with the restrictive film-making practices of Hollywood and stopped directing to concentrate solely on writing. He wrote the screenplays for the films Return to Paradise and In Dreams, Robinson eventually returned to directing with an adaptation of Hunter S. Thompsons novel The Rum Diary, with the main role performed by Johnny Depp. With Aaron Eckhart and Richard Jenkins also on board, filming started on 25 March 2009 in Puerto Rico, in 2012, Robinsons comic novella Paranoia in the Launderette was substantially filled out and adapted for the screen as A Fantastic Fear of Everything starring Simon Pegg. Robinson is also a successful author and his first published work was the semi-autobiographical novel The Peculiar Memories of Thomas Penman in 1998. In 2000, Smoking in Bed, Conversations with Bruce Robinson, edited by Alistair Owen, was published, meanwhile, since becoming a father, Robinson has also written two childrens books, The Obvious Elephant and Harold and the Duck, both illustrated by his wife. The former is available as an audiobook edition, read by Lorelei King
Annette Carol Bening is an American actress. She began her career on stage with the Colorado Shakespeare Festival company in 1980 and she was nominated for the 1987 Tony Award for Best Featured Actress in a Play for her Broadway debut in Coastal Disturbances. She is a four-time Academy Award nominee, for the films The Grifters, American Beauty, Being Julia, in 2006, she received a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame. After her film debut in the 1988 film The Great Outdoors, she starred in Valmont, Bugsy, The American President, The Siege, Open Range, Bening was born in Topeka, Kansas, the daughter of Shirley Katherine and Arnett Grant Bening. Her mother was a singer and soloist, and her father was a sales training consultant. Her parents, natives of Iowa, were practicing Episcopalians and conservative Republicans and she is of mostly German and English descent. Bening has one sister, Jane, and two brothers, Bradley and Byron, the family moved to Wichita, Kansas in 1959, where she spent her early childhood. In 1965, her father took a job with a company in San Diego, California and she began acting in junior high school, playing the lead in The Sound of Music. She graduated in 1975 from Patrick Henry High School, where she studied drama and she then spent a year working as a cook on a charter boat taking fishing parties out on the Pacific Ocean, and scuba diving for recreation. Bening attended San Diego Mesa College, then completed a degree in theatre arts at San Francisco State University. Bening began her career on stage with the Colorado Shakespeare Festival company in 1980 and she was a member of the acting company at the American Conservatory Theater in San Francisco while studying acting as part of the Advanced Theatre Training Program. There, she starred in productions as Shakespeares Macbeth as Lady Macbeth. Bening also starred in productions of Pygmalion and The Cherry Orchard at the Denver Center Theatre Company during the 1985–86 season and she made her Broadway debut in 1987, garnering a Tony Award nomination for Best Featured Actress in a Play for her performance in Coastal Disturbances. Bening made her debut in The Great Outdoors. Her second film appearance was as the Marquise de Merteuil in Valmont and her breakthrough role was in The Grifters, which starred John Cusack and Anjelica Huston, and earned Bening a nomination for the Academy Award for Best Supporting Actress. In 1991, she portrayed Virginia Hill in Barry Levinsons biopic Bugsy, later, she appeared in Regarding Henry with Harrison Ford. In 1994, Bening and Beatty starred in Love Affair, which also featured Katharine Hepburn, in 1995, Bening appeared in The American President, followed by Tim Burtons sci-fi spoof Mars Attacks. In 1998, she co-starred with Denzel Washington and Bruce Willis in The Siege, the biggest critical and commercial success of her career thus far was the 1999 film American Beauty, which won the Academy Award for Best Picture and was directed by Sam Mendes
Aidan Quinn is an Irish-American actor, who made his film debut in Reckless. Quinn has received two Primetime Emmy Award nominations for his work in An Early Frost and Bury My Heart at Wounded Knee and he currently plays Captain Thomas Tommy Gregson in the CBS television series Elementary. His first significant film role was in Reckless, followed by a role in Desperately Seeking Susan as the character Dez. Quinn next starred in the television film An Early Frost. He received his first Emmy Award nomination for the role allowed him to gain recognition in Hollywood. He made an impressive contribution as Robert De Niros brother in The Mission. He played escaped convict Richard Stick Montgomery in the action comedy Stakeout opposite Richard Dreyfuss, in 1983, Quinn lost the role of Jesus Christ when Paramount Pictures dropped the distribution rights to the Martin Scorsese movie The Last Temptation of Christ. When Universal Pictures picked up the film, the role went to Willem Dafoe, in the meantime, Quinn starred as protagonist in the film Crusoe, finished in 1989. During the 1990s, he appeared in Legends of the Fall, Benny & Joon, The Handmaids Tale, Haunted and he also starred in Michael Collins, Song for a Raggy Boy, This Is My Father, and Evelyn. He played a cameo as the captain of a doomed Arctic vessel in the Francis Ford Coppola-produced adaptation of Frankenstein. In 2000, Quinn portrayed Paul McCartney in the VH1 television drama, Quinn appeared in the 2005 movie The Exonerated a true story about people on death row who had been freed in which Quinn played Kerry Max Cook. Quinn played the character on the NBC drama The Book of Daniel. The show was canceled after the first three weeks of its run, and its last five episodes never aired, in 2007, Quinn received his second Emmy nomination for the television movie Bury My Heart at Wounded Knee. In 2010, he played a role as William Rainsferd in the French-made film Sarahs Key. He starred as Dermot opposite Taylor Schilling in the Canadian-Irish drama film Stay, Quinn currently co-stars in the CBS Television series Elementary. Quinn was raised in Chicago and Rockford, as well as in Dublin and Birr, in 1987, Quinn married his Stakeout co-star, Elizabeth Bracco. They have two daughters, Mia and Ava Eileen, who has autism, Ava appeared as the baby David in Avalon, and Mia played a ghost in The Eclipse. Former residents of Englewood, New Jersey, Quinn and his family now live in Palisades, Rockland County, New York and Marbletown in the Catskills / Woodstock region of Ulster County, New York
Stephen Rea is an Irish film and stage actor. Rea has appeared in films such as V for Vendetta, Michael Collins, Interview with the Vampire. Rea was nominated for an Academy Award for his performance as Fergus in the 1992 film The Crying Game. He has during later years had important roles in the Hugo Blick TV series The Shadow Line and The Honourable Woman, Rea was born in Belfast, Northern Ireland, to Protestant parents, his father was a bus driver and his mother a housewife. He attended Belfast High School and the Queens University Belfast, taking a degree in English, Rea trained at the Abbey Theatre School in Dublin. In the late 1970s, he acted in the Focus Company in Dublin with Gabriel Byrne and he is a frequent collaborator with Irish film-maker Neil Jordan. Rea has long associated with some of the most important writers in Ireland. His association with playwright Stewart Parker, for example, began when they were together at the Queens University of Belfast. Rea helped establish the Field Day Theatre Company in 1980 with Tom Paulin, Brian Friel, Seamus Heaney, in recognition for his contribution to theatre and performing arts, Rea was given honorary degrees from both the Queens University Belfast and the Ulster University in 2004. Rea returned to the Abbey in 2009 to appear in the world première of Sebastian Barrys Tales of Ballycumber, Rea was hired to speak the words of Gerry Adams when Sinn Féin was under a 1988–94 broadcasting ban. In 2011, Rea featured in the BBC crime drama The Shadow Line, in April 2012, Rea read James Joyces short story The Dead on RTÉ Radio 1. He also narrated for the BBC Radio 4 production of Ulysses for Bloomsday,16 June 2012, Rea starred in Enda Walshs 2014 play Ballyturk and portrayed Jordan in Out of the Dark, in which he co-stars Julia Stiles, Scott Speedman and Alejandro Furth. Rea was married for 17 years to Dolours Price, a former Provisional Irish Republican Army bomber and hunger striker who later became a critic of Sinn Féin and they had been divorced when she died on 23 January 2013. Rea is an Ambassador for UNICEF Ireland, Stephen Rea at the Internet Movie Database Stephen Rea at the Internet Broadway Database Stephen Rea at the Internet Off-Broadway Database
Robert Downey Jr.
Robert John Downey Jr. is an American actor. His career has included critical and popular success in his youth, followed by a period of abuse and legal troubles. For three consecutive years from 2012 to 2015, Downey has topped the Forbes list of Hollywoods highest-paid actors, making an estimated $80 million in earnings between June 2014 and June 2015. He starred as the character in the 1992 film Chaplin. This earned him a Golden Globe Award and his character was written out when Downey was fired after two drug arrests in late 2000 and early 2001. After his last stay in a drug treatment program, Downey achieved sobriety. Each of these films has grossed over $500 million at the box office worldwide, four of these—The Avengers, Avengers, Age of Ultron, Iron Man 3 and Captain America, Downey Jr. has also played the title character in Guy Ritchies Sherlock Holmes and its sequel. Downey was born in Manhattan, New York, the younger of two children and his father, Robert Downey Sr. is an actor and filmmaker, while his mother, Elsie Ann, was an actress who appeared in Downey Sr. s films. Downeys father is of half Lithuanian Jewish, one-quarter Hungarian Jewish, and one-quarter Irish descent, while Downeys mother had Scottish, German, Downey and his older sister Allyson grew up in Greenwich Village. As a child, Downey was surrounded by drugs and his father, a drug addict, allowed Downey to use marijuana at age six, an incident which his father has said he now regrets. Eventually, Downey began spending every night abusing alcohol and making a phone calls in pursuit of drugs. During his childhood Downey had minor roles in his fathers films and he made his acting debut at the age of five, playing a sick puppy in the absurdist comedy Pound, and then at seven appeared in the surrealist Greasers Palace. At the age of ten, he was living in England and he attended the Stagedoor Manor Performing Arts Training Center in upstate New York as a teenager. When his parents divorced in 1978, Downey moved to California with his father, Downey and Kiefer Sutherland, who shared the screen in the 1988 drama 1969, were roommates for three years when he first moved to Hollywood to pursue his career in acting. Downey began building upon theater roles, including in the short-lived off-Broadway musical American Passion at the Joyce Theater in 1983, rolling Stone magazine named Downey the worst SNL cast member in its entire run, stating that the Downey Fail sums up everything that makes SNL great. That same year, Downey had a dramatic acting breakthrough when he played James Spaders sidekick in Tuff Turf and he was considered for the role of Duckie in John Hughes film Pretty in Pink, but his first lead role was with Molly Ringwald in The Pick-up Artist. Because of these and other coming-of-age films Downey did during the 1980s, in 1987, Downey played Julian Wells, a drug-addicted rich boy whose life rapidly spirals out of his control, in the film version of the Bret Easton Ellis novel Less Than Zero. In 1992, he starred as Charlie Chaplin in Chaplin, a role for which he prepared extensively, learning how to play the violin and he had a personal coach in order to help him imitate Chaplins posture and way of carrying himself