Adrien Brody was born on April 14, 1973, in New York City.
Father's name: Elliot Brody
Mother's name: Sylvia Plachy
Race or Ethnicity: White
Sexual orientation: Straight
An actor who hovered far too long on the brink of stardom before getting his due recognition, Adrien Brody spent much of his early career falling victim to the slings and arrows of outrageous PR. Possessing undeniable talent and looks that recall both the wasted elegance of an Aubrey Beardsley illustration and a young and hungry Al Pacino, Brody spent much of the 1990s as a candidate for his generation's "next big thing." But despite roles in two high-profile movies -- Terrence Malick's The Thin Red Line (1998) and Spike Lee's Summer of Sam (1999) -- and the publicity that accompanied them, it was not until Brody was cast as the lead in Roman Polanski's The Pianist (2002) that he won the recognition which had previously eluded him. Born on April 14, 1973, in New York City, Brody was raised in Queens. The son of a schoolteacher and a celebrated photojournalist, he was drawn to acting from an early age. Brody's first taste of show business came when he was 12-years-old and performed as a magician at children's parties; with his mother's encouragement, he subsequently enrolled in acting classes, attending both the American Academy of Dramatic Arts and the High School for the Performing Arts.
He found his earliest work in off-Broadway productions, and made his television debut in 1998 with a PBS movie and a turn as Mary Tyler Moore's son in the comedienne's ill-fated sitcom Annie McGuire. Following his professional debut, the actor returned to school and attended a year of college before being cast in Steven Soderbergh's 1993 Depression-era drama King of the Hill. The film, which cast Brody as its protagonist's delinquent mentor, met with wide critical acclaim and presented him with new opportunities. He won roles in several films, including 1994's Angels in the Outfield and 1997's The Last Time I Committed Suicide, a paean to the beat generation that co-starred Keanu Reeves, Gretchen Mol, and Claire Forlani. That same year, Brody had lead parts in The Undertaker's Wedding and Six Ways to Sunday, two fairly obscure films that paved the way for both more high-profile work and a turn as one of Vanity Fair's "Hot, Young, and Full of Fun" cover boys. With the 1999 cover and principal roles in two highly anticipated films, The Thin Red Line and Summer of Sam, Brody seemed perfectly positioned to step into the limelight. Unfortunately, his scenes in the former ended up on the cutting room floor, victims of time constraints. But Brody's turn as a bisexual punk in the latter earned positive notices, and was hailed by numerous critics as one of the strongest points in Lee's flawed but compelling film. Brody continued to do solid work in films like Barry Levinson's Liberty Heights (1999) and Ken Loach's Bread and Roses (2000), but it wasn't until he was cast as the eponymous protagonist of Roman Polanksi's The Pianist that critics -- and the Academy -- really took notice of his work. For his portrayal of the real-life Wladyslaw Szpilman, a Polish pianist struggling to survive the Holocaust in the Warsaw Ghetto, Brody invested himself mentally, emotionally, and physically in the role, and was rewarded for his dedication with numerous honors, including the French César and an Oscar that made him the youngest-ever recipient of the Best Actor award. Many observers felt the quality of his performance in the film was matched by that of his acceptance speech, given only days after the U.S. went to war with Iraq: after bestowing a long kiss on a very surprised Halle Berry, who presented him with the award, he went on to give a speech that managed to combine heartfelt gratitude with an eloquent plea for peace and goodwill. It was an accomplishment that brought much of the ceremony's audience to a standing ovation and ensured that although fame had eluded him in the past, Brody had finally and deservedly won his time in the limelight. Brody followed up his triumph as The Village idiot in M. Night Shyamalan's allegorical film, and starred in the little-seen psychological thriller The Jacket. However, in 2005, Brody starred in Peter Jackson's gargantuan remake of King Kong. He returned to more independent films as a man attempting to unravel the mysterious death of George Reeves in Hollywoodland, and teamed with Todd Haynes in his unconventional Bob Dylan biopic I'm Not There: Suppositions on a Film Concerning Dylan. Brody would cement himself as a leading in Hollywood over the coming years, with appearances in everything from precocious, indie-fare like Darjeeling Limited and The Brothers Bloom to action explosions like Predators and Wrecked.
High School: LaGuardia High School of Music & Art and Performing Arts (1991)
Adrien Brody is an actor and film producer. Taking acting classes as a youth, by age thirteen, he appeared in an Off-Broadway play and a PBS television film. Brody hovered on the brink of stardom, receiving an Independent Spirit Award nomination for his role in the 1998 film Restaurant and later praise for his roles in Spike Lee's Summer of Sam and TerrenceMalick's The Thin Red Line. He received widespread recognition when he was cast as the lead in Roman Polanski's The Pianist (2002). To prepare for the role, Brody withdrew for months, gave up his apartment and his car, was left by his then-girlfriend, learned how to play Chopin on the piano, and lost 29 lbs (13 kg). The role won him an Academy Award for Best Actor, making him, at 29, the youngest actor ever to win the award, and to date the only winner under the age of 30. He also won a César Award for his performance.Brody appeared on Saturday Night Live on May 10, 2003, his first TV work, but he was banned from the show after giving an improvised introduction while wearing faux dreadlocks for Jamaican reggae musical guest Sean Paul (the show's producer, Lorne Michaels, is notorious for hating unscripted performances). However, the unscripted intro remains in reruns of the episode. Other TV appearances include NBC's The Today Show and on MTV's Punk'd after being tricked by Ashton Kutcher.After The Pianist Brody appeared in four very different films. In Dummy (released in 2003 but originally shot in 2000, just prior to his work in The Pianist) he portrayed Steven Schoichet, a socially awkward aspiring ventriloquist in pursuit of a love interest (his employment counsellor). He learned ventriloquism and puppetry for the role (under the tutelage of actor/ventriloquist Alan Semok) convincingly enough to perform all of the voice stunts and puppet manipulation live on set in real time, with no subsequent post dubbing. He played Noah Percy, a mentally disabled young man, in the film The Village, by M. Night Shyamalan, shell-shocked war veteran Jack Starks in The Jacket, writer Jack Driscoll in the 2005 King Kong remake, and father-to-be Peter Whitman in The Darjeeling Limited by Wes Anderson. King Kong was both a critical and box office success; it grossed $550 million worldwide and is Brody's most successful film to date in monetary terms. Additionally, Brody played a detective in Hollywoodland. He has also appeared in Diet Coke and Schweppes commercials as well as Tori Amos' music video for "A Sorta Fairytale". He was also in "Bullet" with Tupac Shakur and Mickey Rourke. This film was released in 1997.In 2011, Brody starred in a Stella Artois beer ad called "Crying Beans[Heinz]," that premiered right after half-time of the Super Bowl XLV as part of Stella's "She Is a Thing of Beauty” campaign. He appeared in Woody Allen's 2011 Academy Award-winning comedy Midnight in Paris as Salvador Dali. On January 16, 2012, Brody made his runway debut as a model for Prada Men Fall/Winter 2012 show. Also in January, he was named ambassador for the Gillette Fusion ProGuide Styler which the company began marketing the following month. In December 2012, Brody attended the grand reopening of the Siam Center Shopping Mall in central Bangkok, Thailand during his tour of Angkor Wat. On January 5, 2006, Brody confirmed speculation that he was interested in playing the role of The Joker in 2008's The Dark Knight. However, Christopher Nolan and Warner Bros. decided instead to cast Heath Ledger in the role. He was also in talks with Paramount to play Spock in J. J. Abrams Star Trek XI, but it ultimately went to Zachary Quinto. In 2010, he starred in Splice, a science fiction film written and directed by Vincenzo Natali. Originally a Sundance film, Splice was adopted by Dark Castle Entertainment and distributed by Warner Bros. Most recently, he played the star role of Royce in Predators (a sequel to the original Predator), directed by Nimród Antal and produced by Robert Rodriguez.
Academy Award for Best Actor, César Award for Best Actor, Black Reel Award for Best Ensemble, National Society of Film Critics Award for Best Actor, Boston Society of Film Critics Award for Best Actor
You'd be surprised how difficult it is relinquish a cell phone.
Obviously I'm not there to pick up anybody, but I'm not afraid to hang out in a predominantly gay establishment.
It's interesting, winning an Academy Award as a young man... life-changing, but I'm just me within that. It's been very helpful for my career, but I'm trying to stay on the path I was on before.
War is chaotic and when you start having a larger scale film and you have a lot of safety protocols and choreography, I would imagine it becomes more difficult.
What guides me is to do work that's more avant-garde - things that I think are special. You can easily become a celebrity and get caught up in all that blur. I just want to work and surprise myself.
It's interesting because you feel on the one hand, we understand people from what the say, and in another sense, and you’d think that you'd be able to convey more through dialogue.
My dad told me, 'It takes fifteen years to be an overnight success', and it took me seventeen and a half years.