On this day in 1963, the ruggedly handsome actor Clive Owen, who will become known for his work in such movies as Closer and Sin City, is born in Coventry, England.
After graduating from London’s Royal Academy of Dramatic Art, Owen performed with the Young Vic Theater Company and by the 1990s had established himself as a television and film actor in Britain. In 1996, he appeared with Halle Berry in the thriller The Rich Man’s Wife. Two years later, Owen gained international notice for his performance in the sleeper hit Croupier, in which he stars as a struggling writer who takes a job at a casino and gets caught up in a heist scheme. In 2001, he appeared in the acclaimed director Robert Altman’s Gosford Park, a whodunit set at a 1930s English estate and featuring an ensemble cast that included Maggie Smith, Helen Mirren, Michael Gambon, Emily Watson, Ryan Philippe and Kristin Scott Thomas. Gosford Park was nominated for seven Academy Awards, including Best Picture and Best Director, and won an Oscar for Best Screenplay.
In 2002, Owen was featured in the hit thriller The Bourne Identity, starring Matt Damon.
In 2003’s Beyond Borders, he starred opposite Angelina Jolie as a globetrotting doctor dedicated to helping patients in Africa and other troubled parts of the world. In 2004, Owen played the title role in director Antoine Fuqua’s King Arthur, which featured Keira Knightley as Guinevere and Ioan Gruffud as Lancelot. That same year, Owen co-starred with Julia Roberts, Jude Law and Natalie Portman in director Mike Nichols’ dark relationship drama Closer. Owen, who appeared in the original London stage production of Closer, earned a Best Supporting Actor nomination for his performance.
Owen next appeared with Jennifer Aniston in the forgettable 2005 thriller Derailed. Also that year, he co-starred with Bruce Willis and Jessica Alba in the blockbuster Sin City, directed by Robert Rodriguez and Frank Miller and based on Miller’s gritty comic books. In 2006, Owen played the mastermind behind a complex bank robbery in director Spike Lee’s Inside Man, co-starring Denzel Washington and Jodie Foster. That same year, Owen was featured in director Alfonso Cuaron’s critically acclaimed Children of Men, a futuristic drama co-starring Michael Caine and Julianne Moore. Among Owen’s more recent movie credits is 2007’s Elizabeth I: The Golden Age, in which he played Sir Walter Raleigh opposite Cate Blanchett in the period piece’s title role.