The lone ranger cowboy rides into the screen, with a cigar in his mouth, and also with a stunning background score by Ennio Morricone, sets the pulses racing. The definition of a cool persona in the movies was a standard set by Clint Eastwood. Today, with a diverse career that spans over six decades from television and blockbuster movies, to writing screenplay, directing, and winning Academy Awards, Clint Eastwood has established himself as one of the most respected actor and a brilliant versatile director.
- Born in San Francisco on 31st May 1930. His family frequently moved California, before settling in Oregon. He moved to Seattle in 1951 and worked as a lifeguard and swim instructor for the military for two years, before returning to California.
- He also worked as a logger and a gas station attendant, among other things, before coming to Hollywood in the mid-1950's. In 1953, he was encouraged by fellow Army friends, to move to Los Angeles and try acting. They saw that he had the rugged good looks and mysterious aura that might impress the big shots in Hollywood.
- After his arrival, he played small roles in several Universal features. But he was soon dropped when some execs decided his Adam's apple was too big. He swallowed his pride and, over the next few years, he dug swimming pools between playing bit parts in movies and on TV.
- Then, in 1958, whilst going to visit a friend, it seemed his luck had finally changed. He was approached by a man in a suit, a studio executive. He took a long look at Eastwood and asked, “Are you an actor?” It turned out that they were looking for someone to play the second lead in a western series called 'Rawhide' and Eastwood looked just like a cowboy. He could be the handsome cattle-driver!, Eastwood accepted and filming started shortly after.
- Throughout the '70s, he was the world's biggest box-office draw, but his critical reputation didn't begin to turn until 1980, when New York's Museum of Modern Art honored him with a career retrospective.
- As a filmmaker, Eastwood learned his lessons from the best of his previous directors, Don Siegel and Sergio Leone. Their approaches perfectly suited Eastwood's restrained acting style, and he integrated their them into his filmmaking technique with startling results, culminating in 1993 with his "Best Director" Oscar for The Unforgiven (1992).
- Trade Mark : Known on-set as a director for filming very few takes and having an easy shooting schedule. His characters are often men struggling to overcome their past and atone for their crimes. Frequently uses shadow lighting in his films.
- Ranked #2 in Empire (UK) magazine's "The Top 100 Movie Stars of All Time" list. He was voted the 16th "Greatest Movie Star of All Time" by Entertainment Weekly. Premiere Magazine ranked him as #43 on a list of the Greatest Movie Stars of All Time in their Stars in Our Constellation feature.
- His performance as Blondie in The Good, the Bad and the Ugly (1966) is ranked #50 on Premiere Magazine's 100 Greatest Movie Characters of All Time. His performance as "Dirty" Harry Callahan in Dirty Harry (1971) is ranked #42 on Premiere Magazine's 100 Greatest Movie Characters of All Time.
- Received the Career Golden Lion at the Venice Film Festival. Received an honorary César Award in Paris, France, for his body of work. He was awarded the American National Medal of the Arts on February 25, 2010 for his services and contributions to the arts. President of the jury at the Cannes Film Festival in 1994.
- He has Won four Oscars. On February 27, 2005, at age 74, he became the oldest person to win the Best Director Oscar for Million Dollar Baby (2004). His 96-year old mother was in attendance at the ceremony. He directed 10 different actors in Oscar-nominated performances.
- Has 7 children with 5 different women. Six of his children have appeared in his films. Sondra Locke, one of his wife wrote an autobiography titled "The Good, the Bad, and the Very Ugly", which included details about her 14-year relationship with him.
- Supports various charities and foundations , including : Artists for Peace and Justice, Best Buddies International, Best Friends Animal Society, City of Hope, Film Foundation, Image of Change, Red Cross, Unite for Japan.
- Dislikes hunting, saying that he doesn't enjoy killing an animal for no reason. Although he has been associated with violent movies throughout his career, he personally detests it.
- He has always disliked the reading of political and social agendas in his films, which has occurred from Dirty Harry (1971) to Million Dollar Baby (2004). He has always maintained that all of his films are apolitical and what he has in mind when making a film is whether it's going to be entertaining and compelling.
- Claimed that the trait he most despised in others was racism. Contrary to rumors, he is not a vegetarian. However, he does keep to a strict lowfat diet.
Clint Eastwood Quotes :
"Most people who'll remember me, if at all, will remember me as an action guy, which is OK. There's nothing wrong with that. But there will be a certain group which will remember me for the other films, the ones where I took a few chances. At least, I like to think so."
"They say marriages are made in Heaven. But so is thunder and lightning."
"Every movie I make teaches me something, and that's why I keep making them. I'm at that stage of life when I could probably stop and just hit golf balls. But in filming these two movies about Iwo Jima, I learnt about war and about character. I also learnt a lot about myself."
"If you believe in reincarnation you're putting too much on the other side. I believe you have just one shot at life, and you should do the best you can with that shot. And I suppose you should be thankful that you've been given the ability to do certain things in life, and not be greedy enough to want to stay around forever."
"I've always had the ability to say to the audience, watch this if you like, and if you don't, take a hike."
Clint Eastwood, even though 81 years old is still at the peak of creative powers. Although he is cutting back on screen time, Eastwood does not appear ready to down his tools yet behind the scenes and directed J.Edgar recently. The dominant movement in Eastwood’s career as a director has been towards a focus on characters and interpersonal relationships, deepening an investigative project begun many years before. Looking back over Eastwood’s impressive career, there is no doubt that his success on both sides of the camera has assured him a place in cinema history. The lean legend shows no signs of tiredness yet, with more projects still in the pipeline.
The sheer classical elegance of Clint Eastwood's screen presence is a delight for all movie-lovers to behold.
Clint Eastwood - Wikipedia