Born in: Lexington, Kentucky
Career: Actor, Director, Producer, and Screenwriter
George Clooney is one of the most popular actors in Hollywood today. Apart from being a part of the film industry as a performer, he has also been involved in direction, production and screenwriting. One of the most notable performances of George Clooney has been as ‘Dr. Douglas "Doug" Ross’, in the long-running television drama, ‘ER’ (1994-1999). He has been seen not only in glamorous roles, but also worked as a producer and director in movies related to social and liberal political activism. Clooney has been awarded Academy Award as well as Golden Globe Award for his superb performances.
George Clooney was born as ‘George Timothy Clooney’ on 6th May 1961, in Lexington, Kentucky. He is the son of Nick, a journalist, anchorman, game show host, American Movie Classics host and aspiring politician, and Nina Bruce, a former pageant queen. Clooney was the second and the youngest child of his parents and has an older sister, Adelia. He also has a niece, Alison, and a nephew, Nicholas (aka Nick). He is related to Miguel and Rafael Ferrer (cousins), singer Rosemary Clooney (aunt) and actor José Ferrer (uncle).
For his initial education, Clooney attended Blessed Sacrament School in Ft. Mitchell, Kentucky. Since he was in Ohio for majority of his childhood, he also went to St. Michael's School (Columbus), apart from and the Western Row School and St. Susanna School, both in Mason. He developed an interest in theater during his school days only. As Clooney’s parents moved to Augusta, he started attending Augusta High School and it was there only that he began his lead in several plays. He also went to Northern Kentucky University (1979-1981) and University of Cincinnati, but did not graduate from either.
Clooney made his acting debut with the American television series ‘E/R’, in the year 1984, which was followed by ‘Streethawks’ (1985). During the next couple of years, he was seen in shows, like ‘The Facts of Life’ (1985-86), ‘Murder, She Wrote’ (1987), ‘The Golden Girls’ (1987), ‘Roseanne’ (1988-91) and ‘Sisters’ (1993-94). It was in 1994 that Clooney received the role that would bring him in the top league of actors - that of Dr. Douglas "Doug" Ross’, in the TV drama ‘ER’ (1994-1999). The series also won him Emmy nomination for ‘Outstanding Lead Drama Actor’ and Golden Globe nomination for ‘Best TV Actor - Drama’.
Entry in Films
Clooney made his debut in films in 1987, with comedy/horror film ‘Return to Horror’. Thereafter, he was seen in an uncredited role in ‘Grizzly II: The Predator’, followed by ‘Combat Academy’ and ‘Return of the Killer Tomatoes’. ‘Red Surf’ (1990), ‘Unbecoming Age’ (1992) and ‘The Harvest’ (1993) were some other minor films of his career. Clooney’s first major role came with the 1996 movie ‘From Dusk Till Dawn’, which was followed by the success of ‘One Fine Day’, ‘The Peacemaker’ and ‘Batman & Robin’. In 1998, he was seen in ‘Out of Sight’ and did ‘Three Kings’ and ‘The Book That Wrote Itself’ the next year.
Exclusive Movie Focus
It was in the year 1990 that Clooney left ER, the show that made him popular, with the aim of pursuing a full-time film career. In the following days, he was seen in a number of Hollywood successes, such as ‘The Perfect Storm’ and ‘O Brother, Where Art Thou?’. For the latter, he won Golden Globe for ‘Best Musical/Comedy Actor’. The year 2001 saw Clooney pairing once again with Soderbergh and starring in ‘Ocean's Eleven’, which remains his most commercially successful movie till date. The film also had two sequels - ‘Ocean's Twelve’ (2004) and ‘Ocean's Thirteen’ (2007).
The same year, he founded a production studio with Steven Soderbergh, known as ‘Smoke House’. In 2002, Clooney turned into a director with ‘Confessions of a Dangerous Mind’ and later made his debut in production, with ‘Welcome to Collinwood’. In 2003, he starred in two movies - ‘Intolerable Cruelty’ and ‘Spy Kids 3-D: Game Over’. He directed, produced and acted in 2005 flick ‘Good Night, and Good Luck’. The movie got him Academy Award, BAFTA Award and Golden Globe Award nomination for ‘Best Director’ as well as ‘Best Original Screenplay’.
The same year, Clooney was seen in ‘Syriana’, for which he won Academy Award and Golden Globe Award for ‘Best Supporting Actor’, apart from a BAFTA Award nomination in the same category. In 2007, he starred in ‘Michael Clayton’ (also produced), ‘Darfur Now’ and ‘Ocean's Thirteen’. For the first one, he received National Board of Review Award ‘Best Actor of 2007’ and was also nominated for Academy Award and Golden Globe Award, for ‘Best Actor’. Clooney is one of only two people to have been given the title of ‘Sexiest Man Alive’ twice by ‘People’ Magazine, first in 1997 and again in 2006.
Clooney married Talia Balsam in the year 1989, but the couple got divorced in 1993. Since mid-2007, he has been dating Sarah Larson, a winner of ‘Fear Factor’. During his time in high school, he suffered from Bell's palsy for a time. In 2004, he got injured on the set on Syriana and suffered from agonizing headaches and short term memory loss. However, Clooney fully recovered from the injury later. Though he was never a heavy smoker, he quit the habit a long time back. He is a self-described political liberal and is fond of his pets - two bulldogs, named Bud and Lou.
Awards and Nominations
1994 - Emmy Nomination for ‘Outstanding Lead Drama Actor’ and Golden Globe Nomination for ‘Best TV Actor - Drama’ (ER)
2000 - Golden Globe for ‘Best Musical/Comedy Actor’ (O Brother, Where Art Thou?)
2005 - Academy Award and Golden Globe Nomination for ‘Best Director’ and ‘Best Original Screenplay’ and BAFTA Award Nomination for ‘Best Direction’, ‘Best Original Screenplay’ and ‘Best Supporting Actor’ (Good Night, and Good Luck)
2005 - Academy Award and Golden Globe Award for ‘Best Supporting Actor’ and
BAFTA Award Nomination for Best Supporting Actor (Syriana)
2006 - American Cinematheque Award
2007 - National Board of Review ‘Best Actor of 2007’, Academy Award and Golden Globe Award Nomination for ‘Best Actor’ (Michael Clayton)
2008 - Named by United Nations as a "Messenger of Peace"
1984 - E/R
1985 - Streethawk
1985-1986 - The Facts of Life
1987 - Return to Horror, Grizzly II: The Predator (uncredited), Combat Academy, Murder, She Wrote, The Golden Girls
1988 - Return of the Killer Tomatoes
1988-1991 - Roseanne
1990 - Red Surf
1992 - Unbecoming Age
1993 - The Harvest
1993-1994 - Sisters
1994-1999 - ER
1995 - Friends
1996 - From Dusk Till Dawn, One Fine Day, Curdled (uncredited)
1997 - Full-Tilt Boogie, The Peacemaker, Batman & Robin, South Park (voice)
1998 - The Thin Red Line, Out of Sight, Waiting for Woody
1999 - Three Kings, The Book That Wrote Itself, South Park: Bigger, Longer & Uncut (voice), The Limey
2000 - The Perfect Storm, Fail Safe, O Brother, Where Art Thou?
2001 - Ocean's Eleven, Spy Kids
2002 - Confessions of a Dangerous Mind (also director), Solaris, Welcome to Collinwood (producer), Starbuck
2003 - Intolerable Cruelty, Spy Kids 3-D: Game Over
2004 - Ocean's Twelve (also executive producer)
2005 - Good Night and Good Luck (also director and producer), Syriana (also producer)
2006 - The Good German
2007 - Michael Clayton (also producer), Darfur Now, Ocean's Thirteen