Colin Farrell

Colin Farrell

Actor
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Life Story

Colin Farrell is one of Ireland's biggest stars in Hollywood and abroad. His film presence has been filled with memorable roles that range from an inwardly tortured hit man, to an adventurous explorer, a determined-but-failing writer, and the greatest military leader in history.

Farrell was born on May 31, 1976 in Castleknock, Dublin, Ireland, to Rita (Monaghan) and Eamon Farrell. His father and uncle were both professional athletes, and for a while, it looked like Farrell would follow in their footsteps. Farrell auditioned for a part in the Irish Boy Band, Boyzone, but it didn't work out. After dropping out of the Gaiety School of Acting, Farrell was cast in Ballykissangel (1996), a BBC television drama. "Ballykissangel" was not his first role on screen. Farrell had previously been in The War Zone (1999), directed by Tim Roth and had appeared in the independent film Drinking Crude (1997). Farrell was soon to move on to bigger things.

Exchanging his usually thick Dublin accent for a light Texas drawl, Farrell acted in the gritty Tigerland (2000), directed by Joel Schumacher. Starring Farrell amongst a number of other budding young actors, the film portrays a group of new recruits being trained for the war in Vietnam. Farrell played the arrogant soldier Boz, drafted into the army and completely spiteful of authority. The film was praised by critics, but did not make much money at the box office. It was Farrell's first big role on film, and certainly not his last. Farrell followed up with American Outlaws (2001), where he played the notorious outlaw Jesse James with Scott Caan, son of legendary actor James Caan, in the role of Cole Younger. The film was a box office flop and failure with the critics. Immediately, Farrell returned to the war drama film that had made him famous. Co-starring in the war film Hart's War (2002) opposite Bruce Willis, Farrell played the young officer captured by the enemy. The film was another failure. Farrell struck gold when he was cast in the Steven Spielberg film Minority Report (2002) that same year. Set in a futuristic time period, Farrell played the character Danny Witwer, a young member of the Justice Department who is sent after Tom Cruise's character. The film was a smash hit, and praised by critics.

Family

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Trivia

Son of Irish football player, Eamon Farrell.
Dropped out of the Gaiety Drama School in Dublin and a few months later auditioned for a part in Ballykissangel (1996) and was successful.
The youngest of the four children, he has one brother Eamonn Farrell and two sisters: Catherine Farrell and Claudine Farrell.
His sister Claudine Farrell is also his personal assistant.
Ranked #98 in Premiere magazine's 2003 annual Power 100 List. It is his first appearance on the list.
Named one of People magazine's 50 Most Beautiful People in the World (2003).
His mother, Rita, forced him to take dancing lessons once his brother, Eamon Farrell Jr., started them. Eamon also got him into acting by attending an acting school and later recommending it to Colin.
Voted 6th in 'The World's Sexiest Man of 2003' in Company magazine.
His girlfriend, model Kim Bordenave, gave birth to a 7lb. 9oz. baby boy called James Padraig. He was born on Friday September 12th, 2003 in a Los Angeles hospital.
He has suffered from chronic insomnia since he was 12 years old.
One of his favourites books is "When Nietzsche wept" by Irvin D. Yalom.
Former son-in-law of actress Annette Ekblom and Alun Lewis.
He says that growing up, one of his childhood idols was Al Pacino. He got the chance to work opposite his hero in The Recruit (2003) (an experience he described as "scary as hell to work opposite a legend," even though he says Pacino was one of the kindest men he'd ever met and says they still hang out together).

Personal Quotes 

Being Irish is very much a part of who I am. I take it everywhere with me.
[on people who drink tequila] I tell them, "When you're at home puking your guts out, I'll be here drinking my Amstel Light.".
[on appearing nude in Tigerland (2000)] I couldn't care less about who sees my bits... My friends asked how I could do scenes like that and not get excited, but it wasn't like that. My bits looked the size of a cashew nut!
[on physical training for film roles] I find it the most tedious waste of life. It's so boring. I'd prefer to be sitting in a pub with a few strangers talkin' shit than looking at meself in the mirror runnin' on the treadmill.
It all goes back to [Joel Schumacher]. I wouldn't have done Phone Booth (2002) without him. I wouldn't be doing Hart's War (2002). I probably wouldn't have done American Outlaws (2001) if he hadn't picked me out of obscurity. I've worked, but not at the level or people I'm working with now if he hadn't taken a chance on an Irish kid playing a Texan.
I'm in no hurry to get anywhere. I don't have any plans. I don't have a map. If you did in this business, you would destroy yourself. Hardship tends to unify.
[on Hollywood] I'm not seduced by it all. I swear to God. I'm easily pleased, yeah. Don't get me wrong, I'll indulge in it. I'll be in Los Angeles for two weeks and I'll have a laugh, get battered and have a buzz, but at the end of the day, I'll go home. It's just me earning a few more stories to tell everyone at home and all.
[on his football aspirations as a youth] It kind of went downhill, I was smoking a bit of reef. You know, you roll your first joint, drink your first beer and discover the girls and, well, that was it. I loved football, but I couldn't make the training any more.
I do have the ability to explore life and to be over the moon at the smallest thing - a few pints and a craic in the pub and I'm in heaven. But I have a melancholy side to me as well. Acting allows me to feel things, it kind of buys me human experience. And I don't mean this as acting as higher cause, because it's not, but it does kind of have a higher awareness emotionally.

Filmography

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