Matthew McConaughey

Matthew McConaughey

Actor
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Life Story

American actor and producer Matthew David McConaughey was born in Uvalde, Texas. His mother, Mary Kathleen (McCabe), is a substitute school teacher originally from New Jersey. His father, James Donald McConaughey, was a Mississippi-born gas station owner who ran an oil pipe supply business. He is of Irish, Scottish, English, German, and Swedish descent. Matthew grew up in Longview, Texas, where he graduated from the local High School (1988). Showing little interest in his father's oil business, which his two brothers later joined, Matthew was longing for a change of scenery, and spent a year in Australia, washing dishes and shoveling chicken manure. Back to the States, he attended the University of Texas in Austin, originally wishing to be a lawyer. But, when he discovered an inspirational Og Mandino book "The Greatest Salesman in the World" before one of his final exams, he suddenly knew he had to change his major from law to film.

He began his acting career in 1991, appearing in student films and commercials in Texas and directed short films as Chicano Chariots (1992). Once, in his hotel bar in Austin, he met the casting director and producer Don Phillips, who introduced him to director Richard Linklater for his next project. At first, Linklater thought Matthew was too handsome to play the role of a guy chasing high school girls in his coming-of-age drama Dazed and Confused (1993), but cast him after Matthew grew out his hair and mustache. His character was initially in three scenes but the role grew to more than 300 lines as Linklater encouraged him to do some improvisations. In 1995, he starred in Texas Chainsaw Massacre: The Next Generation (1994), playing a mad bloodthirsty sadistic killer, opposite Renée Zellweger.

 
Family
 
Camila Alves McConaughey (9 June 2012 - present) ( 3 children)

Trivia

His mother, Mary Kathleen "Kay" McCabe, is a schoolteacher.
He lived for a year in Warnervale, New South Wales, Australia, as a 1988 Rotary exchange student in 1988, returning with an adopted Australian accent which remained with him for awhile after returning to the United States.
Attended the University of Texas at Austin, College of Communication, where he majored in film, receiving his Bachelor's degree in Radio-Television-Film (1993).
Attended and graduated from Longview High School in Longview, Texas in 1988.
Arrested in Austin, Texas for "resisting transportation" after first being under suspicion for marijuana possession. [October 1999]
Police responded to a disturbance call at Matthew's home in Austin, Texas in October 1999. When they arrived, the music was blaring and Matthew was playing bongo drums in the nude. He was with an unknown man and police attempted to arrest both of them after spotting illegal drugs. Matthew resisted arrest.
Was for some time strongly considered to play Jack Dawson in Titanic (1997), until Leonardo DiCaprio decided to accept the role.
Travelled around Peru after filming A Time to Kill (1996).
Voted "Most Handsome" in his senior year of high school.
Member of Delta Tau Delta, international college fraternity.
He owns a 1,600-acre ranch in west Texas, which he purchased for $500,000.
His father, James Donald McConaughey, died of a heart attack in August 1992. He once played football for the Green Bay Packers.
His first professional acting job was in a beer commercial.
Is a huge fan of John Mellencamp's music. Was seen wearing a T-shirt from Mellencamp's "Whenever We Wanted" tour in A Time to Kill (1996).
McConaughey was on the sidelines with the Texas Longhorns football team during the 2006 Rose Bowl, when the Longhorns beat the USC Trojans 41-38.
Was accompanied by Penélope Cruz to the Grammy Awards in 2005. The couple met on the set of Sahara (2005).

 

Personal Quotes 

[on career philosophy] Be the lean horse for the long ride. I figure I am in the third round of a 15 round fight.
(on himself) My best quality is that I'm a big hearted person. I'm resilient, too. My worst quality is selfishness, although everyone is guilty of that to an extent. Everyone should be, I think -- you need to respect yourself.
Traveling is a great love of mine. I love South America and Africa. I'm your ultimate backpacker when I'm away. It's just me and my backpack. It's good for getting away from the industry.
(on how he got started in acting) I was about 21 when I started. I dropped out of law school to go to film school -- the idea of practicing law for my whole life seemed a little boring. I was doing more directing stuff to start with, until a student mate asked me to be in his film Dazed and Confused (1993). A professional guy named Don Phillips spotted me and the rest is history.
(on Hollywood) I love it. It's silly to say that it is a world of false and stupid people. Sure there are witches and swindlers, but you can meet there many creative, talented and generous persons too. Hollywood is a pleasant place, when you are hip to the game and you enjoy it for what it is really.
[on shapely women] I see it more with black women, who get dressed up and they're wearin' everything to fit snug, and they're walking the walk. And you're like, "Man, look at you go! Where did you get that?". She might be a larger package, but boy, she sure understands how she's wrapped.
(on working with Christian Bale in Reign of Fire (2002)) Christian is one of the finest actors I've ever had the privilege of working with. He's a giving actor, and he'll lay it on the line to get good results.
I want to be reincarnated as a jaguar. They're the coolest animals in the world. I came across one very briefly in the Manú National Park in Peru. I followed its tracks and got close enough to realize how beautifully self-contained it was. Jaguars are keen and they're perfectly poised. I'd sure love to be that well designed.
To understand me, you need to understand Texan logic. If you come from Texas, you're 100 per cent American but you'll do things the Texan way. We're independent. We've got our own way of doing things. Try to build fences round us and we'll run you out of town. I can go anywhere in the world but my spirit is still Texan and I recognize my own kind. There are no secret handshakes but when Texans meet there's a special fraternity.
I love taking advantage of my fame. If I go to the airport and get taken to the front of the line, I'm not going to protest. When I show up to see a band and I get whisked backstage, I like it. If I'm offered the use of a private jet, bring it on. But I draw the line at playing the, "Do you know who I am?" card and I refuse to have every little thing done for me. If you buy into all that, it will show up in your acting. The trick is to understand that being a good actor isn't playing a red-carpet celebrity. Fame is the by-product. If you don't see that, you'll be chasing your tail for a full decade ? and that makes a man dizzy. It's important to realize that fame is a dance, and I'd like to think I've got my dance down better now.

 

 
Filmography

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