Gary Oldman made news most recently for winning Best Actor for his role as Winston Churchill in “Darkest Hour.”
The actor, however, has had a long and illustrious career on the big screen. But, his story doesn’t actually start there.
Oldman was born in London on March 25, 1958 as Leonard Gary Oldman. He grew up in a middle-class neighborhood. Although his life was OK, his father left the family when Oldman was only 7 years old.
When he was 16, Oldman dropped out of school and took a job as a store clerk. After he found that he had a way with words and could possibly go somewhere in the theater or movie business as an actor, he went back to school and started to act at the Young People’s Theatre in Greenwich.
While acting at the theater, Oldman earned a scholarship to Rose Bruford College of Theatre and Performance. After graduating in 1979, he went on to perform a number of plays.
NOTABLE OLDMAN FILMS
Oldman’s breakout performance came after he aced the role of Sid Vicious, bassist for the Sex Pistols, in “Sid and Nancy” in 1986.
This was just the start of Oldman’s wild success in film. He played Dracula in a film of the same name directed by Francis Ford Coppola in 1992 and went on to play roles in “The Scarlet Letter,” “The Fifth Element,” and more.
He touched the heart of millions when he brought to life Harry Potter’s troubled “godfather” figure, Sirius Black, in the Harry Potter franchise. That wasn’t the only franchise Oldman worked with. He also played Detective James Gordon in a number of Batman movies.
LIFE AND TRIVIA
Quite the ladies’ man, Oldman has been married five times. Most of his previous four marriages ended after two or three years, save his marriage to Alexandra Edenborough, which lasted 7 years before ending in 2015.
He is currently married to Gisele Schmidt and has three children from two of his previous marriages.
His previous marriages have been brought back into the limelight after one of his ex-wives accused him of assault as the #MeToo movement began to gain ground in late 2017. Oldman, although once a raging alcoholic, said that the accusations are all lies.
Although his personal life leaves fans with some questions, his superb acting style is unmistakable. Critics often praise Oldman for his ability to really take on the persona of his characters.
Some interesting things about him are that he was once the spokesman for Nokia. He proved his loyalty by shooting an entire Jewish music video on a phone by the brand. He was famously told that he should give up on his dreams of acting by the Royal Academy of Dramatic Arts.
Even though he pursued his dream of acting, he did contemplate going into music. He interestingly sang a song with David Bowie called “You’ve Been Around” on the album “The Sacred Squall of Now” and is also featured on the song “Stamford Hill” on the same album.