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CILLIAN MURPHY (Tom Buckley) has been a familiar face for moviegoers since he starred in Danny Boyle's apocalyptic thriller 28 Days Later (2002). His most recent film credits include Perrier's Bounty, Peacock, Retreat and Andrew Niccol's In Time. Murphy's next project is Brendan Gleeson's At Swim-Two-Birds, which is currently in development with Michael Fassbender and Colin Farrell attached.

Murphy was born on May 25, 1976, in Douglas, Cork, Ireland. He decided to become an actor in typically Irish fashion, taking a roundabout path rather than a direct one. After cutting his teeth creatively as an amateur musician and later dropping out of law school, Murphy segued into acting by pestering a local theater director into giving him an audition.

With no clear plan and gaping holes in his acting repertoire, Murphy began with parts in local plays. But it was his turn in the stark two-character drama "Disco Pigs” that propelled him into a career as a bona fide actor. Originally set to run for three weeks in a 40-seat theater, "Disco Pigs” became a surprise hit that took Murphy and co-star Eileen Walsh from Cork to Dublin, Edinburgh and London's famed West End stage. For Murphy, it was the start of a life and career hitherto unfathomed.

The young actor made his feature debut in the 1998 crime drama Sweety Barrett. His next role was in the coming-of-age dramedy Sunburn, released the following year. Suddenly popular, Murphy was now inundated with movie projects such as the dramas On the Edge and How Harry Became a Tree. He reprised his role of Pig for Kirsten Sheridan's film version of Disco Pigs, also writing and singing the track "So New” for its soundtrack. Additionally, Murphy played small parts in Intermission, Girl with a Pearl Earring and Cold Mountain.

While his work drew praise from audiences and critics, it wasn't until Danny Boyle's 28 Days Later hit the U.S. in 2003 that Murphy received significant interest from Hollywood studios. In 2005, Murphy's hard work and tenacity bore fruit as he joined the cast of Christopher Nolan's Batman Begins. Originally auditioning for the leading role played by Christian Bale, he was cast as Dr. Jonathan Crane, the Scarecrow. Produced for $135 million, Batman Begins earned $205 million in the U.S. alone and collected another $167 million overseas. The film also received enthusiastic reviews from film critics, many naming it one of the year's best.

Joining the list of in-demand movie stars, Murphy was next seen with Rachel McAdams in the thriller Red Eye (2005), as villainous Jackson Rippner. He continued his momentum with a role in Neil Jordan's Breakfast on Pluto (2005) as Patrick "Kitten” Braden, a transvestite prostitute. This performance earned Murphy a 2006 Golden Globe nomination in the category of Best Actor in a Musical or Comedy.

After appearing in The Edge of Love (2008), Murphy reprised his Scarecrow role in The Dark Knight, which earned $533 million at the domestic box office. Murphy reteamed with Christopher Nolan for a third time in 2010's Inception, which earned more than $290 million in North America alone.

Other film credits include The Wind That Shakes the Barley, opposite Liam Cunningham; Watching the Detectives, alongside Lucy Liu; and Sunshine, with Michelle Yeoh, Chris Evans and Troy Garity.


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