Brendan Fraser

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Brendan Fraser
Brendan Fraser cropped.jpg
Fraser in November 2009
BornBrendan James Fraser
(1968-12-03) December 3, 1968 (age 45)
Indianapolis, Indiana, U.S.
NationalityCanadian/American
OccupationActor
Years active1988–present
Spouse(s)Afton Smith (1998–2007)
Children3
Website
Official Website
 
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Brendan Fraser
Brendan Fraser cropped.jpg
Fraser in November 2009
BornBrendan James Fraser
(1968-12-03) December 3, 1968 (age 45)
Indianapolis, Indiana, U.S.
NationalityCanadian/American
OccupationActor
Years active1988–present
Spouse(s)Afton Smith (1998–2007)
Children3
Website
Official Website

Brendan James Fraser (/ˈfrzər/ FRAY-zər;[1] born December 3, 1968) is an American[2][3] film and stage actor. Fraser portrayed Rick O'Connell in the three-part Mummy film series (1999, 2001, and 2008), and is known for his comedic and fantasy film leading roles in major Hollywood films, including Encino Man (1992), George of the Jungle (1997), Looney Tunes: Back in Action (2003), Journey to the Center of the Earth (2008), and Inkheart (2009). Has also appeared in numerous dramatic roles, including Gods and Monsters (1998), The Quiet American (2002), Crash (2004), and Gimme Shelter (2013).

Early life[edit]

Fraser was born in Indianapolis, Indiana, the son of Canadian parents. His mother, Carol Mary (née Genereux), was a sales counselor, and his father, Peter Fraser, was a former journalist who worked as a Canadian foreign service officer for the Government Office of Tourism.[2][4][5] His maternal uncle, George Genereux, was the only Canadian to win a gold medal in the 1952 Summer Olympics.[6] Fraser has three older brothers: Kevin, Regan, and Sean.[7] His surname is properly pronounced /ˈfrzər/, not /ˈfrʒər/.[8] The correct pronunciation of his surname is a running gag in Dickie Roberts: Former Child Star, in which his character's surname is pronounced /frɛrəˈʒʊər/. His ancestry includes Irish, Scottish, German, Czech, and French Canadian.[7]

His family moved often during his childhood, living in Eureka, California, Seattle, Ottawa, the Netherlands, and Switzerland. Fraser attended the private boys' boarding school,[9] Upper Canada College, in Toronto. While on vacation in London, Fraser attended his first professional theatrical performance at the West End. He graduated from Seattle's Cornish College of the Arts in 1990.[4][10] He began acting at a small acting college in New York. He originally planned on attending graduate school in Texas but stopped in Hollywood on his way south and decided to stay in Los Angeles and work in movie productions.

Career[edit]

Fraser's first film role was a brief appearance in an America's Most Wanted reenactment (1988), playing a friend of murder victim Rodney Mark Peterson. He has since appeared in over 30 films. He had his first lead role in Encino Man (1992). That same year, he starred opposite Matt Damon and Chris O'Donnell in School Ties. In 1994, he co-starred alongside Steve Buscemi and Adam Sandler in the comedy Airheads along with playing Steve Nebraska in the movie The Scout and Montgomery "Monty" Kessler in With Honors. He went on to play supporting roles such as starring alongside Viggo Mortensen and Ashley Judd in Philip Ridley's The Passion of Darkly Noon (1995) and Jennifer Beals in The Twilight of the Golds (1997).

He got his breakthrough role with the hit comedy film George of the Jungle (1997). He went on to appear in several comedy films such as Blast from the Past (1999), Bedazzled (2000) and Monkeybone (2001). He has starred in two films based on Jay Ward creations, George of the Jungle and Dudley Do-Right although he did not reprise his role in the former's sequel.

Fraser also played dramatic roles in Gods and Monsters (1998),[11] alongside Ian McKellen and The Quiet American (2002) alongside Michael Caine. Gods and Monsters was based on the life of the filmmaker James Whale (McKellen), who made the 1931 film Frankenstein. This film was written and directed by Bill Condon (Dreamgirls) and was a story about the loss of creativity, ambiguous sexuality and unlikely bonds between a heterosexual gardener (played by Fraser) and a homosexual, tortured and ailing filmmaker.

His biggest commercial success came with the action adventure film (co-starring Rachel Weisz) The Mummy (1999) and its sequel The Mummy Returns (2001), both of which were hugely successful at the box office. In 2004, he appeared in the Academy Award-winning film Crash. He has also made guest appearances on the television shows Scrubs, King of the Hill, and The Simpsons.

In March 2006, he was inducted into Canada's Walk of Fame,[2] the first American-born actor to receive the honor. However, as of 2014, he does not have a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame. After a six year hiatus in the franchise, Fraser returned for the second sequel to The Mummy released in August 2008 and titled The Mummy: Tomb of the Dragon Emperor. Filming started in Montreal on July 27, 2007 and also starred Jet Li as Emperor Han. His other releases in 2008 were the 3D film adaptation of Jules Verne's Journey to the Center of the Earth and the fantasy film Inkheart (chosen personally for the lead role by the novel's author Cornelia Funke). In 2010 he starred in the drama Extraordinary Measures alongside Harrison Ford.

Fraser also starred as "Brick" in the West End production of Tennessee Williams's Cat on a Hot Tin Roof in September, 2001, directed by Anthony Page. Castmates included Ned Beatty, Frances O'Connor, and Gemma Jones. The show closed on January 12, 2002, with Fraser garnering many excellent reviews.[12]

Fraser recently starred in a Broadway production of Elling, but the play closed after 9 performances due to lackluster reviews.[13]

After appearing in the critically panned Furry Vengeance in 2010, Fraser moved from being represented by William Morris Endeavor to the Creative Artists Agency.[14]

He starred in Whole Lotta Sole directed by Terry George and is set to play William Tell in The Legend of William Tell: 3D, which will be directed by Eric Brevig.[15]

Personal life[edit]

Fraser met actress Afton Smith while attending a barbecue at Winona Ryder's house on July 4, 1993, after his arrival in Los Angeles.[4] Fraser married Smith on September 27, 1998, and they have three sons: Griffin Arthur Fraser,[1] born in 2002, Holden Fletcher Fraser, born in 2004, and Leland Francis Fraser, born in 2006. On December 27, 2007, Fraser's publicist announced the couple had decided to divorce.[16][17] He currently resides in Kent, Connecticut. In early 2013, Fraser petitioned the courts for a reduction of his alimony and child support payments, asserting that he was unable to meet the annual obligation of $900,000; his ex-wife, in turn, accused Fraser of hiding financial assets.[18]

Fraser speaks fluent French,[19] and serves on the Board of Directors for FilmAid International.[20] He is an accomplished amateur photographer,[2] and has used several Polaroids in movies and on TV shows, most notably on his guest roles on Scrubs. In his first appearance he used a folding pack camera; and on his second appearance he used a Holga with a Polaroid back, a Japanese-only model. The book Collector's Guide to Instant Cameras has a dedication to Fraser.

Filmography[edit]

Film[edit]

YearTitleRoleNotes
1991DogfightSailor No. 1
1992Encino ManLink
1992School TiesDavid Greene
1993Twenty BucksSam Mastrewski
1993Younger and YoungerWinston Younger
1993Son In LawLinkCameo
1994With HonorsMontgomery 'Monty' Kessler
1994AirheadsChester 'Chazz' Darby
1994In the Army NowLinkCameo
1994The ScoutSteve Nebraska
1995The Passion of Darkly NoonDarkly Noon
1995Now and ThenVietnam veteranUncredited
1996Brain CandyPlacebo patientCameo
1996Mrs. WinterbourneBill/Hugh Winterbourne
1996Glory DazeDougCameo
1997George of the JungleGeorgeNominated – Blockbuster Entertainment Award for Favorite Actor – Action
1997Still BreathingFletcher McBrackenSeattle International Film Festival Award for Best Actor
Nominated – Blockbuster Entertainment Award for Favorite Actor – Action
1998Gods and MonstersClayton BooneNominated – Chlotrudis Award for Best Supporting Actor
1999Blast from the PastAdam Webber
1999The MummyRichard 'Rick' O'ConnellNominated – Saturn Award for Best Actor
Nominated – Blockbuster Entertainment Award for Favorite Actor – Action
1999Dudley Do-RightDudley Do-Right
2000BedazzledElliot Richards / Jefe / Mary / Abraham Lincoln
2000Sinbad: Beyond the Veil of MistsSinbadVoice
2001MonkeyboneStu Miley
2001The Mummy ReturnsRichard 'Rick' O'ConnellNominated – Kids' Choice Award for Favorite Male Movie Star
Nominated – Teen Choice Award for Film – Choice Actor
2002The Quiet AmericanAlden Pyle
2003Dickie Roberts: Former Child StarHimselfuncredited
2003Looney Tunes: Back in ActionDJ Drake / Himself /
Voice of Tasmanian Devil and She-Devil
2004CrashRick CabotBlack Reel Award for Best Ensemble
Critics' Choice Award for Best Acting Ensemble
Screen Actors Guild Award for Outstanding Performance by a Cast in a Motion Picture
Nominated – Gotham Award for Best Ensemble Cast
2006Journey to the End of the NightPaul
2006The Last TimeJamieExecutive producer
2007The Air I BreathePleasure
2008Journey to the Center of the EarthProf. Trevor AndersonExecutive producer
2008The Mummy: Tomb of the Dragon EmperorRichard 'Rick' O'ConnellNominated – National Movie Award for Best Male Performance
2009InkheartMortimer Folchart
2009G.I. Joe: The Rise of CobraSgt. StoneCameo
2010Extraordinary MeasuresJohn Crowley
2010Furry VengeanceDan SandersExecutive producer
2012Stand OffJoe MaguireExecutive producer[21]
2013Escape from Planet EarthScorch SupernovaVoice
2013A Case of YouTony
2013HairBrainedLeo Searly
2013Pawn Shop ChroniclesRicky Baldoski
2013BreakoutJack DamsonProducer
Direct-to-DVD
2013Gimme ShelterTom Fitzpatrick
2014The Nut JobGraysonVoice

Television[edit]

YearTitleRoleNotes
1991My Old SchoolChevyUnsold TV Pilot
1991Child of Darkness, Child of LightJohn's friendTV Movie
1991Guilty Until Proven InnocentBobby McLaughlinTV Movie
1997DuckmanSammons CagleVoice
Episode: "Dammit, Hollywood"
1997The Twilight of the GoldsDavid GoldTV Movie
1998The SimpsonsBradVoice
Episode: "King of the Hill"
2000King of the HillDavid Kalaiki-AliVoice
Episode: "Peggy Makes the Big Leagues"
2002-2004ScrubsBen SullivanEpisodes: "My Occurrence", "My Hero" and "My Screwup"
2005King of the HillIrv Bennet
Jimmy Beardon
Voice
Episode: "Gone with the Windstorm"
2009WishologyTurbo ThunderVoice
TV Movie

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b "Brendan Fraser's Looney Adventure". CBS. November 13, 2003. Retrieved 2008-08-24. 
  2. ^ a b c d "2006 Inductees – Brendan Fraser". Canada's Walk of Fame. 2006. Retrieved 2008-08-24. 
  3. ^ Beale, Lewis (November 1, 1998). "In The Know Brendan Up To Buff In 'Gods And Monsters'". New York: NY Daily News. Retrieved 2008-08-08. 
  4. ^ a b c Lynch, Lorrie (October 26, 2003). In tune with himself. USA Weekend. Retrieved 2007-12-27 [dead link]
  5. ^ "Brendan Fraser Biography (1968–)". Filmreference.com. Retrieved 2008-11-02. 
  6. ^ "Daily Highlights – January 10 – Brendan Fraser Interview". Late Night with Jimmy Fallon. 
  7. ^ a b Rota, Kara (January 22, 2010). "Brendan Fraser on playing the real John Crowley in 'Extraordinary Measures'". Irish Central. Retrieved 2010-05-01. 
  8. ^ Dougherty, Margot. "Brendan Fraser Comes Up For Air". LA Mag. Retrieved 2010-05-01. 
  9. ^ Diamond, Jamie (June 21, 1992). "UP AND COMING: Brendan Fraser; A Man Schooled for Success". New York Times. Retrieved 2008-01-08 
  10. ^ Halpern, Lisa (February 10, 2005). Fraser's Edge. Cornish College of the Arts. Retrieved 2007-12-27 
  11. ^ "Gods and Monsters Credits". Gods and Monsters Official site. Retrieved 2008-08-24. 
  12. ^ "Albemarle – Archive". Albemarle-london.com. Retrieved 2008-11-02. 
  13. ^ "Brendan Fraser Broadway debut shuts after one week". BBC. November 26, 2010. Retrieved 2010-11-29. 
  14. ^ Masarella, Linda (March 27, 2011). "Fraser finds 'Sole' in Ireland". Toronto Sun. Retrieved 2011-03-27. 
  15. ^ "Eric Brevig Re-Teaming with Brendan Fraser for ‘William Tell 3D’". TheFilmStage.com. 2011-09-07. Retrieved 2012-04-22. 
  16. ^ "Brendan Fraser and Wife to Divorce". The Insider. December 27, 2007. Retrieved 2007-12-27. [dead link]
  17. ^ "Mummy Star Brendan Fraser, Wife Split After Nine Years". US Magazine. December 27, 2007. Archived from the original on 2008-04-21. Retrieved 2008-08-24. 
  18. ^ "Brendan Fraser Broke, Can't Afford $900,000 Child Support Payment To Ex-Wife", Huffington Post, 15 February 2013, accessed 16 May 2013
  19. ^ "BBC – Films – Brendan Fraser". BBC. Retrieved 2008-02-27. 
  20. ^ "filmaid.org Newsletter". FilmAid International. 2006. Retrieved 2008-02-27. 
  21. ^ "TFF 2012: Spotlight". tribecafilm.com, Inc. March 8, 2012. Retrieved 2012-03-28. 

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