Gary Oldman

Gary Oldman is a talented British born movie actor who played Sid Vicious in Sid & Nancy, Drexl in True Romance, and George Smiley in Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy. He starred in Dawn of the Planet of the Apes and the remake of RoboCop. He is also an English filmmaker, musician and author. Renowned f...

Born on March 21, 1958

New Cross, London, England, UK

Height 1.74m / 5' 9"

Biography

Gary Oldman is a talented British born movie actor who played Sid Vicious in Sid & Nancy, Drexl in True Romance, and George Smiley in Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy. He starred in Dawn of the Planet of the Apes and the remake of RoboCop. He is also an English filmmaker, musician and author. Renowned for his "big" acting style, Oldman is one of the most celebrated thespians of his generation, with a diverse career encompassing theatre, film and television.Gary Oldman was born on March 21, 1958 in New Cross, London, England, the son of Kathleen (Cheriton), a homemaker, and Leonard Bertram Oldman, a welder.For most of his career he was best-known for playing over-the-top antagonists such as the role of Russian terrorist Egor Korshunov in the 1997 blockbuster Air Force One, though he has recently reached a new audience with heroic roles in the Harry Potter and Dark Knight franchises. In amazing trivia, he was in Batman Begins and The Fifth Element.Oldman won a scholarship to Britain's Rose Bruford Drama College, in Sidcup, Kent, where he received a B.A. in theatre arts in 1979. He subsequently studied with the Greenwich Young People's Theatre and went on to appear in a number of plays throughout the early '80s, including "The Pope's Wedding," for which he received Time Out's Fringe Award for Best Newcomer of 1985-1986 and the British Theatre Association's Drama Magazine Award as Best Actor for 1985. Before fame, he was employed as a worker in assembly lines, and as a porter in an operating theater. He also got jobs selling shoes and beheading pigs while supporting his early acting career. He was also in the movie The Dark Knight with Heath Ledger.His film debut was Remembrance (1982), though his most-memorable early role came when he played Sex Pistol Sid Vicious in the biopic Sid and Nancy (1986) picking up the Evening Standard Film Award as Best Newcomer. He then received a Best Actor nomination from BAFTA for his portrayal of '60s playwright Joe Orton in Prick Up Your Ears (1987).In the 1990s, Oldman brought to life a series of iconic real-world and fictional villains including Lee Harvey Oswald in JFK (1991), the title character in Bram Stoker's Dracula (1992), Drexl Spivey in True Romance (1993), Stansfield in Léon: The Professional (1994), Jean-Baptiste Emanuel Zorg in The Fifth Element (1997) and Ivan Korshunov in Air Force One (1997). That decade also saw Oldman portraying Ludwig van Beethoven in biopic Immortal Beloved (1994).Oldman scored the coveted role of Sirius Black in Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban (2004), giving him a key part in one of the highest-grossing franchises ever. He reprised that role in Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire (2005) and Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix (2007). Oldman also took on the iconic role of Detective James Gordon in writer-director Christopher Nolan's Batman Begins (2005), a role he played again in The Dark Knight (2008) and The Dark Knight Rises (2012). Prominent film critic Mark Kermode, in reviewing The Dark Knight, wrote, "the best performance in the film, by a mile, is Gary Oldman's ... it would be lovely to see him get a[n Academy Award] nomination because actually, he's the guy who gets kind of overlooked in all of this."Oldman co-starred with Jim Carrey in the 2009 version of A Christmas Carol in which Oldman played three roles. He had a starring role in David Goyer's supernatural thriller The Unborn, released in 2009. In 2010, Oldman co-starred with Denzel Washington in The Book of Eli. He also played a lead role in Catherine Hardwicke's Red Riding Hood. Oldman voiced the role of villain Lord Shen and was nominated for an Annie Award for his performance in Kung Fu Panda 2.In 2011, Oldman portrayed master spy George Smiley in the adaptation of John le Carré's Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy (2011), and the role scored Oldman his first Academy Award nomination. In 2014, he played one of the lead humans in the science fiction action film Dawn of the Planet of the Apes (2014). Also in 2014, Oldman starred alongside Joel Kinnaman, Abbie Cornish, Michael Keaton, and Samuel L. Jackson in the remake of RoboCop (2014), as Norton, the scientist who creates RoboCop. Also that year, Oldman starred in Dawn of the Planet of the Apes as one of the leads alongside Jason Clarke and Keri Russell.Aside from acting, Oldman tried his hand at writing and directing for Nil by Mouth (1997). The movie opened the Cannes Film Festival in 1997, and won Kathy Burke a Best Actress prize at the festival.Oldman has three children - one with first wife Lesley Manville, and two with third wife Donya Fiorentino. He married Alexandra Edenborough on December 31, 2008 until they divorced in January 2015. He was married to actress Uma Thurman from 1990 to 1992. He married his fourth wife Alexandra Edenborough in 2008 but the couple divorced in 2015. He has three sons named Alfie, Gulliver and Charlie.Read More

Known For

TradeMarks

Characters are usually borderline psychotics. Also known for playing a wide variety of roles that often requires a variety of different accents.

Often plays real-life individuals or iconic fictional characters

Often plays reluctant Heroes who assist the main character

His ability to change his appearance and voice to make every character unique

Trivia

Considered a career in music.

His film Nil by Mouth (1997) is loosely based upon his own life growing up in London.

Has played Lee Harvey Oswald in both JFK (1991) and Frontline: Who Was Lee Harvey Oswald? (1993).

He was awarded the 1985 London Critics Circle Theatre Award (Drama Theatre Award) for Best Actor for his performance in "The Pope's Wedding".

He and Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban (2004) and Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire (2005) co-star Timothy Spall have both played the character of Rosencrantz; Spall in Kenneth Branagh's Hamlet (1996), Oldman in Rosencrantz & Guildenstern Are Dead (1990).

Has used a different speaking voice (i.e. accent) in practically every movie he's ever been in.

His library includes essays on Bertolt Brecht, poetry by Roger McGough, a biography of Montgomery Clift, The Elizabethan World Picture, all things William Shakespeare and Jane Austen.

On 8 August 1991, he was arrested for drunk driving in L.A. and released on bail the next morning. His passenger in the car was pal, Kiefer Sutherland.

Sons, with Donya Fiorentino: Gulliver Flynn Oldman, born 20 August 1997 and Charlie John, born 11 February 1999.

Has one son, Alfie Oldman, born in 1988, from his first marriage to Lesley Manville.

Quotes

I don't think Hollywood knows what to do with me. I would imagine that when it comes to romantic comedies, my name would be pretty low down on the list.

[on the shooting for his writing/directing debut Nil by Mouth (1997)]: I set aside three weeks for rehearsals. Those long scenes are like a play. But I wanted things loosely structured, more like jazz. Though there was very little improv on screen, sometimes we'd improvise, rev up, to get the energy before shooting. One rule that I broke was that you need to leave a little air between people's lines, that you can't overlap dialogue because you'll clip words on a cut. But you can overlap dialogue, even though editors don't like it. Otherwise, it's your turn to talk, my turn. Another thing: I used only one camera! I'd say to the cameraman, "I need it from this angle!" From my brief association with Isabella Rossellini, I got a new appreciation of Pier Paolo Pasolini and how he was religious about where the camera should go, whether it was too high, too low. I would ask questions on the set, quietly: "For this emotion, is the camera angle too wide, is the camera too low?" I wanted night to look like night! I bullied the cameraman a bit until he got into the swing. You could pick up the light metre and say, seeing how little light, "You've got to be fucking joking!"

I used to be under the impression that in some kind of wanky, bullshit way, acting was like therapy: you get in and grapple with and exorcise all those demons inside of you. I don't believe that anymore. It's like a snow shaker. You shake the thing up, but it can't escape the glass. It can't get out. And it will settle until the next time you shake it up.

Any actor who tells you that they have become the people they play, unless they're clearly diagnosed as a schizophrenic, is bullshitting you.

I guess what I'm trying to say is, it's not Dracula crying, it's Gary Oldman, but using the technique of the character. The emotion is mine, because I don't know what it's like to be undead and live 300 years.

I had this idea of myself as a shy, kind, sweet chap. I was working with Winona Ryder and she turned to me and said, "Fuck, man, you're really intense!" I was so shocked, I went, "What do you mean? I'm not intense, I'm sweet!" My passion and energy get mistaken for anger.

[on making Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban (2004)]: I've done so much R-rated work, it's nice to have a job you can show your kids.

With Beethoven [Immortal Beloved (1994)] I said I wanted a role where I didn't have to do anything stupid with my hair. My agent said "Read it again!".

[on portraying famous people]: It's a double-edged sword because, in one sense, you have a lot of material to work with, but in a strange kind of way, that puts up a framework that you have to keep within. You can't play Beethoven with pink hair but, to an extent, because no-one has ever met him, who's going to tell me that's not Beethoven?

We're given a code to live our lives by. We don't always follow it but it's still there.

Spouses

Donya Fiorentino Donya Fiorentino February 16, 1997 - April 13, 2001 (divorced) (2 children)
Lesley Manville Lesley Manville - present (divorced) (1 child)
Uma Thurman Uma Thurman October 1990 - April 30, 1992 (divorced)

Salaries

Lost in Space  Lost in Space  $ 5,000,000
The Dark Knight  The Dark Knight  $ 3,000,000
Die Bibel - Jesus  Die Bibel - Jesus  $ 1,000,000

Filmography

Today Today Himself-Guest(1episode,2004)
Knots Landing Knots Landing DonRoss(1episode,1989)
Entertainment Tonight Entertainment Tonight Himself(2episodes,2014)
Dramarama Dramarama Ben(1episode,1984)
Morgan's Boy Morgan's Boy Colin(4episodes,1984)
Sidewalks Entertainment Sidewalks Entertainment Himself-Guest(1episode,2011)
We Think the World of You  We Think the World of You  Johnny
Live! with Kelly Live! with Kelly Himself-Guest(1episode,2012)
Henry & June  Henry & June  Pop(asMauriceEscargot)
Rosencrantz & Guildenstern Are Dead  Rosencrantz & Guildenstern Are Dead  Rosencrantz
Heading Home Heading Home IanTyson
JFK  JFK  LeeHarveyOswald
The Tonight Show with Jay Leno The Tonight Show with Jay Leno Himself-Guest(2episodes,1998-2001)
Beyond 'JFK': The Question of Conspiracy  Beyond 'JFK': The Question of Conspiracy  Himself
Fallen Angels Fallen Angels PatKelley(1episode,1993)
Late Night with Conan O'Brien Late Night with Conan O'Brien Himself-Guest(1episode,2008)
Late Show with David Letterman Late Show with David Letterman Himself-Guest(1episode,1995)
True Romance  True Romance  DrexlSpivey
Dennis Miller Live Dennis Miller Live Himself-Guest(1episode,2001)
Friends Friends RichardCrosby(2episodes,2001)
Léon: The Professional  Léon: The Professional  Stansfield
The Scarlet Letter  The Scarlet Letter  Rev.ArthurDimmesdale
Tracey Takes On... Tracey Takes On... Hairdresser(1episode,1999)
Air Force One  Air Force One  IvanKorshunov
The Fifth Element  The Fifth Element  Jean-BaptisteEmanuelZorg
Lost in Space  Lost in Space  Dr.ZacharySmith/SpiderSmith
The Magic Sword: Quest for Camelot  The Magic Sword: Quest for Camelot  Ruber(voice)
The Thin Red Line  The Thin Red Line 
The View The View Himself-Guest(1episode,2008)
Frontline Frontline LeeHarveyOswald(1episode,1993)
Plunkett & Macleane  Plunkett & Macleane 
Interstate 60: Episodes of the Road  Interstate 60: Episodes of the Road  O.W.Grant
Inside Edition Inside Edition Himself(1episode,2014)
Die Bibel - Jesus  Die Bibel - Jesus  PontiusPilate
Hannibal  Hannibal  MasonVerger
Nobody's Baby  Nobody's Baby  BufordDill
Nobody's Baby  Nobody's Baby 
Charlie Rose Charlie Rose Himself-Guest(4episodes,1995-2012)
7th Annual Screen Actors Guild Awards  7th Annual Screen Actors Guild Awards  Himself
Screen Two Screen Two BexBissell/...(3episodes,1986-1991)
Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban  Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban  SiriusBlack
V Graham Norton V Graham Norton Himself-Guest(1episode,2003)
HBO First Look HBO First Look Himself(5episodes,1994-2007)
Jimmy Kimmel Live! Jimmy Kimmel Live! Himself-Guest/...(8episodes,2012-2015)
Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire  Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire  SiriusBlack
Anthony Hopkins: A Taste for Hannibal  Anthony Hopkins: A Taste for Hannibal  Himself
Beat the Devil  Beat the Devil  Devil
Breaking the Silence: The Making of 'Hannibal'  Breaking the Silence: The Making of 'Hannibal'  Himself
The 100 Greatest Movie Stars  The 100 Greatest Movie Stars  Himself
Batman Begins  Batman Begins  JimGordon
Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix  Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix  SiriusBlack
Tavis Smiley Tavis Smiley Himself-Guest(1episode,2011)
At the Movies At the Movies Himself(1episode,2011)
Le grand journal de Canal+ Le grand journal de Canal+ Himself(2episodes,2012-2014)
Omg! Insider Omg! Insider Himself(2episodes,2014)
The Perfect Sleep  The Perfect Sleep 
The Late Late Show with Craig Ferguson The Late Late Show with Craig Ferguson Himself-Guest(1episode,2014)
The Secret World of Superfans  The Secret World of Superfans  Himself
Me and Graham: The Soundtrack of Our Lives  Me and Graham: The Soundtrack of Our Lives  Himself
The Dark Knight  The Dark Knight  Gordon
Attack of the Show! Attack of the Show! Himself(1episode,2011)
Intolerance Intolerance Himself-Guest
On Your Tod On Your Tod Ben
Dead-End for Delia Dead-End for Delia PatKelley
'Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban': Something Wicked this Way Comes 'Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban': Something Wicked this Way Comes Himself
'The Contender': The Making of a Political Thriller 'The Contender': The Making of a Political Thriller Himself
Hair Hair Hairdresser
Episode #5.13 Episode #5.13 Himself-Guest
Planète 51  Planète 51  GeneralGrawl(voice)
Blood Lines: Dracula - The Man. The Myth. The Movies.  Blood Lines: Dracula - The Man. The Myth. The Movies.  Himself
The One Show The One Show Himself-Guest(1episode,2011)
The Tonight Show with Conan O'Brien The Tonight Show with Conan O'Brien Himself-Guest(1episode,2010)
Made in Hollywood Made in Hollywood Himself(5episodes,2010-2014)
The Graham Norton Show The Graham Norton Show Himself-Guest(1episode,2014)
Head to Shrunken Head  Head to Shrunken Head  Himself
Chelsea Lately Chelsea Lately Himself-Guest(1episode,2011)
'Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix': Fulfilling a Prophecy 'Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix': Fulfilling a Prophecy Himself
Rachel and the Roarettes Rachel and the Roarettes Gary
The Hidden Secrets of Harry Potter  The Hidden Secrets of Harry Potter  Himself
The 50th British Academy Film Awards  The 50th British Academy Film Awards  Himself-Winner:BestOriginalScreenplay
A Christmas Carol  A Christmas Carol  BobCratchit/Marley/TinyTim
The Costumes Are the Sets: The Design of Eiko Ishioka  The Costumes Are the Sets: The Design of Eiko Ishioka  Himself
Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 2  Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 2  SiriusBlack
Tyrannosaur  Tyrannosaur 
Rain Fall  Rain Fall  WilliamHoltzer
Episode dated 14 July 2008 Episode dated 14 July 2008 Himself-Guest
Kung Fu Panda 2  Kung Fu Panda 2  Shen(voice)
Call of Duty: World at War  Call of Duty: World at War  Sgt.Reznov(voice)
Making of... Making of... Dr.Smith/...(1episode,1998)
The Dark Knight Rises  The Dark Knight Rises  CommissionerGordon
Up Close with Carrie Keagan Up Close with Carrie Keagan Himself-Guest(6episodes,2008-2014)
The 7PM Project The 7PM Project Himself(1episode,2010)
Red Riding Hood  Red Riding Hood  Solomon
Countdown to Zero  Countdown to Zero  Narrator
Episode #1.136 Episode #1.136 Himself-Guest
Janela Indiscreta Janela Indiscreta Himself(1episode,2014)
Nubes y claros - Rodando 'Bosque de sombras'  Nubes y claros - Rodando 'Bosque de sombras'  Himself
Conan Conan Himself-Guest(3episodes,2011-2014)
Daybreak Daybreak Himself-Guest(1episode,2011)
Episode #1.4 Episode #1.4 Colin
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