Christopher Walken (born 31.3.1943)
Christopher Walken is an American screen and stage actor with a lengthy and impressive filmography to his name, including The Deer Hunter and Annie Hall.
Childhood: Christopher Walken was born to Rosalie and Paul Walken, in New York. His mother was Scottish and his father German and he was raised as a Methodist.
Christopher was a child actor, as were his brothers Kenneth and Glenn. He began his studies at Long Island's Hofstra University but did not complete them. He wet on to train as a dancer, studying musical theatre at the Washington Dance Studio.
Career: After appearing in a number of comedy shows such as The Colgate Comedy Hour and working as a narrator on The Wonderful John Acton. Walken's TV appearances in this era were numerous and he had many stage roles, as well. Up until 1964, he performed under his given name, Ronnie Walken before changing it to Christopher. In 1969, he also made a guest appearance in Hawaii Five-O.
Walken's film debut came in 1971, with a minor role alongside Sean Connery in The Anderson Tapes. The following year, Walken appeared in The Happiness Cage, which marked his first starring role. A turning point for him came with his performance in Woody Allen's classic, Annie Hall. In the film, he featured alongside Diane Keaton, Paul Simon and Shelley Duvall. George Lucas considered him for the role of Han Solo in Star Wars, but the role eventually went to Harrison Ford.
In 1978, Christopher Walken starred in The Deer Hunter and was awarded with an Oscar, for his performance in support to Robert De Niro's lead role. The movie also won Best Picture. Following his award, Walken's first film of the 1980s was Heaven's Gate, in which he starred alongside Kris Kristofferson, Jeff Bridges, Sam Wollaston and John Hurt. The film was controversial for the allegations of animal rights abuse made against its makers and it is considered one of the biggest box office flops of its time. Walken went on to star in 1981's The Dogs of War, directed by John Irvin.
In Herbert Ross' Pennies From Heaven, he confounded critics by showing off his dance skills, in a tap-dancing striptease. This was followed by a role in David Cronenberg's adaptation of the Stephen King novel, The Dead Zone.
1985 saw Christopher Walken transform into a Bond villain, Max Zorin, in A View to a Kill. His character was killed off in a memorable scene, in which he fell from the Golden Gate Bridge, in a fight with Roger Moore's Bond.
In the 1990s, Christopher Walken made a number of low-key appearances in art-house films, such as Paul Schrader's The Comfort of Strangers. The film is said to have disturbed Walken himself, as much as its viewers, for its extreme sexual content. In Abel Ferrara's King of New York, Walken played a ruthless drug dealer, Frank White. The movie also starred Laurence Fishburne and Wesley Snipes.
Christopher Walken also made a number of appearances in some of the most significant films of the decade, such as Batman Returns (with Michael Keaton and Michelle Pfeiffer), True Romance (with Dennis Hopper and Christian Slater) and Pulp Fiction (with John Travolta and Uma Thurman). And, in a diversion from his acting career, he also appeared in Madonna's controversial book, entitled SEX.
In 1996, Christopher Walken played the role of a sadistic gangster in Last Man Standing, alongside Bruce Willis. Three years later, he was the headless horseman in Tim Burton's Sleepy Hollow, which starred Christina Ricci and Johnny Depp.
One of Walken's more notorious moments of this era was his tap-dancing appearance in the music video for Fatboy Slim's 'Weapon of Choice.' He also appeared in the video for 'Bad Girl' by Madonna and 'Breakin' Down' for Skid Row.
Another Academy Award nomination came for Walken for his performance as Frank Abagnale Sr. in Catch Me If You Can, with the junior role played by Leonardo DiCaprio. This was countered, though not significantly, by a Worst Supporting Actor nomination at the Razzies, for his role in The Rundown, with Dwayne Johnson aka The Rock. In the 2007 film adaptation of Hairspray, he featured alongside John Travolta and was seen in a romantic duet with his former Pulp Fiction co-star.
In addition to his film work, Walken has also hosted Saturday Night Live on a number of occasions.
Personal Life: Christopher Walken married his wife Georgianne in 1969. She works as a casting director and cast The Sopranos, amongst other films and TV shows.
Mowgli is a human boy known as a man-cub to his peers, among which are an array of jungle beasts. Left in the jungle as a baby, he was taken in by a family of wolves who raised him as their own. However, the older he grows, the more of a threat he becomes to a formidable villain named Shere Khan; a Bengal tiger with a deep fear of fire and loathing of man. Led by an impatient black panther named Bagheera, he is sent away from his jungle home to the safety of a nearby man village, though the journey becomes less straight-forward the further they stray. Mowgli befriends a fun-loving bear named Baloo, but finds Khan is not the only jungle menace as he is set upon by a gang of monkeys led by the orangutan King Louie, and hypnotised by a vicious snake named Kaa.
Continue: The Jungle Book - First Look Trailer
Prepare to have your mind blown by the list of actors who might have taken the places of some of the 1994 movie's iconic performances.
Pulp Fiction has long since passed into the annals of movie history, confirming its director Quentin Tarantino as one of the modern greats of cinema and becoming arguably the biggest cult film of the 1990s. But, according to leaked documents, it could have looked very different indeed, as it turns out that many of its stars may not have been Tarantino’s first choices for their respective roles.
His wishlist – which has not yet been officially confirmed as genuine by Tarantino’s reps – was leaked via Reddit on Tuesday (September 15th) and makes for extremely interesting reading. Consisting of two sheets of hand-typed paper, the biggest revelation is that John Travolta, who received an Oscar nomination for his role as gangster Vincent Vega, was not Tarantino’s first choice. Rather, he originally wanted Michael Madsen – who of course did star in his first movie Reservoir Dogs just two years before – to play the part.
Quentin Tarantino's 'Pulp Fiction' might have looked very different, according to leaked documents
Still stuck with a fairly ridiculous mullet, Joe Dirt returns after an unsuccessful attempt at reconnecting with his parents, who abandoned him as a child by the Grand Canyon. He seems to be in a better place now, living in a trailer with his new wife Brandy and their three triplet daughters, but things are about to be turned upside down yet again when a terrifying twister hits Silvertown. In Wizard Of Oz style, he finds himself suddenly transported into unfamiliar territory, which he soon discovers is the mid-sixties. Desperate to be re-united with his family, he sets out on a long journey hitting many obstacles along the way; from an angry group of bikers to his present day gangster friend, who was apparently less than interested in being buddies in his younger years. But that's not the biggest threat to him; if he's not careful, he could prevent his future's domestic bliss from ever occurring.
Continue: Joe Dirt 2: Beautiful Loser Trailer
The cast of music drama 'When I Live My Life Over Again' were snapped on the red carpet at the film's screening at the 2015 Tribeca Film Festival in New York.
The British actress joins a cast list that already includes 'Girls' star Allison Williams and legend Christopher Walken.
Minnie Driver has announced that she’s signed up for ‘Peter Pan Live’. The 44 year old actress will be the narrator of the piece and also star as the adult Wendy Darling on the live TV event, which is due to air on NBC on December 4th at 8pm ET.
Minnie Driver will play the narrative voice of adult Wendy Darling in 'Peter Pan Live' in December
Giving more detail in reaction to the casting, Chairman of NBC Entertainment Robert Greenblatt stated: "We're thrilled to have Minnie as part of this Peter Pan adventure. She appears in the final emotional scene when Peter returns to the Darling home years later only to realize Wendy is now grown up and has a daughter of her own, but you'll also hear her voice throughout the movie since Adult Wendy is also our narrator. She's a classy addition to our wonderful cast."
Continue reading: Minnie Driver Confirmed For 'Peter Pan Live'
If your parents have ever pulled out the embarrassing baby pictures, at least they didn't do it on live TV.
NBC’s production of Peter Pan has found its lead in Girls star Allison Williams, following the announcement that Christopher Walken will portray Captain Hook. The news was first announced on NBC Nightly News by Brian Williams, who took the opportunity to cite some of Williams’ acting credits like her role on Girls and the big one – that time she wore a Peter Pan costume at age 3.
Allison Williams has wanted this role all her life, apparently.
Turns out, the last name isn’t just coincidental and Brian Williams is Allison’s father. Everyone has an embarrassing parents story, but this is taking it a step too far.
This December ‘Peter Pan’ will be flying on to NBC but who’s onboard for the musical so far?
Following on from last December’s ‘The Sound of Music Live!’, NBC have announced that their next musical offering will be a performance of 'Peter Pan'. The classic tale by JM Barrie has had many re-imaginings over the years (and there’s still two more to come), but this one sounds like it could be one of the most interesting. Why? Because it will contain Christopher Walken as a tap-dancing Captain Hook.
Christopher Walken will play Captain Hook
Yes Christopher Walken is the first cast member confirmed for the 'Peter Pan' musical and he’ll be taking on the role of Captain Hook. Considering Walken’s aptitude for playing villains and his musical skills, a turn as a song and dance pirate sounds a perfect fit for the Oscar winner. As NBC Entertainment chairman Bob Greenblatt remarked, "He might really just be a song and dance man at heart. ... This might be the first tap dancing Captain Hook you've ever seen!”
Some casting director made a genius decision with Walken, but there are still a lot of roles to be filled.
The big news from Hollywood this weekend is that Christopher Walken has signed on to play Captain Hook in NBC’s live adaptation of Peter Pan. The production will follow up on the moderate success of NBC’s first attempt at a live musical adaptation with The Sound of Music. The adaptation, which aired in December and starred Carrie Underwood and Stephen Moyer, earned moderate reviews and great ratings for NBC.
Meet your new Captain Hook - Christopher Walken.
Walken is the first name announced on the Peter Pan cast and his involvement raises the bar for the rest of the cast and the production overall. After the announcement was made, he came out with the following: "I started my career in musicals and it's wonderful after all this time, at this point in my career, to be in this classic musical I watched as a child and to work with (producers) Neil Meron and Craig Zadan again after [2007 film adaptation of] Hairspray.
Continue reading: Christopher Walken Is NBC's Captain Hook, But What About Wendy?
Music-lover Clint Eastwood adapts the long-running stage musical for the big screen with mixed results: it recounts a terrific true story but has an uneven pace. It also fails to put the events into any kind of context in the period, which leaves the achievements of Frankie Valli and the Four Seasons feeling isolated from the rest of the music industry of the time. So it's difficult to engage in much of what happens.
In 1951 Newark, Frankie (John Lloyd Young) works as a barber's assistant, hangs out with a mafioso (Christopher Walken) and sings in a band with his pals Tommy and Nick (Vincent Piazza and Michael Lomenda), troublemakers up to all kinds of scams. But it's when they added songwriter Bob Gaudio (Erich Bergen) to the band that things begin to take off. Working with ace producer Bob Crewe (Mike Doyle), they release three No 1 singles in a row: Sherry, Big Girls Don't Cry and Walk Like a Man. And their fame grows from there. But Tommy's money problems eat away at the band's unity, and Nick begins to think that he's had enough.
Oddly, there the story of the Four Seasons feels dragged out to sustain a two-hour 15-minute film. The narrative is fractured and episodic, with long stretches in which nothing happens that hasn't been portrayed in every other musician biopic. Eastwood directs the film like a serious period epic, draining much of the colour from the screen while concentrating on shades of grey and brown. But the real problem is the script, which never manages to build up any momentum. Big events pale in interest next to the fantastic music, while a confusing flashback jumbles the timeline unnecessarily. And occasional scenes are narrated by the actors straight to camera, which is extremely distracting on a film screen, especially when Nick stops singing and starts chatting to us in the middle of the band's iconic performance on The Ed Sullivan Show.
Continue reading: Jersey Boys Review
The musical stage-to-screen adaptation has had its premiere screening.
Jersey Boys received its premiere screening in New York City on Monday where director Clint Eastwood and the musical adaptation's cast were present and correct in sharp suits. Based on the musical of the same name, the biopic tells the story of four young men who came together to form popular sixties rock group The Four Seasons.
Eastwood may be better known for his hard-man action films but the 84 year-old film legend and music fan revealed that Jersey Boys was a passion project: "What was fun for me is that it's about musicians [...] The Four Seasons had all these hit songs, but they were juvenile delinquents! They were just guys from the neighborhood, a place where, if you were a singer, you were looked down upon as strange, unless you were Sinatra," Eastwood revealed, via The Daily Mail.
Starring Christopher Walken, Boardwalk Empire's Vincent Piazza, Mike & Molly actor Billy Gardell and Jersey Boys stage star, actress Erica Piccininni, the movie is fairly unique in that the actors were required to sing live.
Continue reading: 'Jersey Boys' Musical Given Hollywood Makeover By Clint Eastwood
Date of birth
31st March, 1943
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