MEL GIBSON [Director] was born in upstate New York, but at age
twelve, moved to Australia with his family. After high school, Mel attended the
Australian National Institute of Dramatic Arts, where he was trained in
classical British theatre tradition and appeared in a number of plays, including
Death of a Salesman and Waiting for Godot.
In 1979, Gibson caught the attention of director George Miller and was cast in
Mad Max, the first film to bring him worldwide recognition. He then appeared in
the title role of Tim, where Gibson's portrayal of a handicapped young man
earned him an Australian Film Institute (AFI) Best Actor Award.
Gibson's international fame grew with the two hit sequels to Mad Max''The Road
Warrior (1981) and Mad Max Beyond Thunderdome as well as with Peter Weir's
Gallipoli, which brought Gibson a second AFI Best Actor Award. In 1982, Weir and
Gibson collaborated again on The Year of Living Dangerously.
In 1984, Gibson made his American film debut in The River, opposite Sissy Spacek.
He followed this with The Bounty where he starred with Anthony Hopkins and
Laurence Olivier. He appeared in other films such as Mrs. Soffel, Tequila
Sunrise, Bird on a Wire, Air America, but it was the record breaking and genre
defining, Lethal Weapon (1, 2, 3, and 4) franchise that would cement his status
in Hollywood. Following this success, Gibson founded Icon Productions, whose
first film was Hamlet, directed by Franco Zeffirelli. The titular role brought
Gibson the William Shakespeare Award from the Folger Theatre in Washington, DC.
Gibson made his directorial debut in 1993 in The Man without a Face, another
Icon production in which he also starred. The company has produced Immortal
Beloved and Airborne, among others.
In 1995, Gibson produced, directed and starred in the critical and box office
success Braveheart, which was the recipient of five Academy Awards including
Best Picture and Best Director, after receiving a leading 10 nominations. The
movie also garnered Gibson a Golden Globe Award for Best Director, a Special
Achievement in Filmmaking from the National Board of Review, the 1996 NATO/ShoWest
Director of the Year and the Broadcast Film Critics Association award for Best
In 1996, Gibson starred in Ransom, directed by Ron Howard for Disney's
Touchstone Pictures. He received a Golden Globe nomination for Best Actor in a
Motion Picture (Drama), as well as winning the People's Choice Award for
Favorite Motion Picture Actor. In August of 1997, Gibson starred in the
romantic'thriller Conspiracy Theory, co'starring Julia Roberts and directed by
Richard Donner for Warner Bros. Gibson starred in Lethal Weapon 4 which
premiered in 1998, grossing close to $300 million worldwide and then in 1999,
produced and starred in the hard'edge thriller Payback.
In 2000, Gibson became the first actor in history to star in three $100 million
films (domestic gross) during the same year. In the summer, Gibson starred in
the emotionally charged adventure The Patriot as Benjamin Martin, a film written
by Robert Rodat (Saving Private Ryan) and directed by Roland Emmerich. In the
fall, Mel lent his voice to the critically acclaimed DreamWorks SKG animated
adventure comedy, Chicken Run.
Finally in December, he starred as Nick Marshall, the chauvinistic advertising
executive who gets in touch with his feminine side in the Paramount
Pictures/Icon Productions, smash hit What Women Want. The romantic comedy,
directed by Nancy Meyers and co'starring Helen Hunt. For his portrayal, he was
nominated for a Golden Globe as "Best Actor, Motion Picture Comedy."
In 2002, Gibson starred in We Were Soldiers, a film based on the book We Were
Soldiers Once...And Young, telling the story of the first battle between U.S.
and Viet Cong troops, in which 400 soldiers were helicoptered in and surrounded
by 2000 enemy troops. It was directed and written by Randall Wallace, who was
nominated for an Academy Award for writing Braveheart.
Later that year, he starred in M. Night Shyamalan's thriller, Signs, for Disney,
setting Gibson's opening weekend box office record of $60 million and grossed an
all'time individual record of over $400 million.
In 2004, Gibson produced, co'wrote and directed The Passion of The Christ
starring Jim Caviezel, Maia Morgenstern and Monica Bellucci. The Ash Wednesday
release on February 25 had the best
five'day opening ever, at that time, for a film with a Wednesday opening. The
Passion of The Christ had a worldwide box'office gross of $610 million, making
it the highest'grossing R'rated film and highest grossing independent film in
film history. The film was nominated for three Academy Awards.
In 2006, Gibson brought to life his latest epic, visceral action thriller,
Apocalypto. Gibson produced, co'wrote and directed the thriller that follows one
man's heart'pounding race through primeval jungles to rescue his family.
Apocalypto opened at number one in its opening weekend grossing $15.2 million
and garnered three Academy Award nominations.
Gibson returned to acting in 2009 with GK Films' Edge of Darkness, where he
starred as Thomas Craven, a Boston detective who uncovers sinister government
conspiracies when he investigates the brutal shooting death of his only
daughter. Gibson also starred in The Beaver, directed by Jodie Foster, about a
man who finds unusual solace in his beaver hand'puppet.
Gibson produced, co'wrote and starred in the Icon production Get the Gringo in
2012, which centers on a career criminal who gets caught by Mexican authorities
and is sent to a drug and crime filled prison where he learns how to survive
with the help of a 9'year'old boy.
In 2013, Gibson starred in Open Roads' film Machete Kills, directed by Robert
Rodriguez, and The Expendables 3, directed by Patrick Hughes.
He can be seen in Blood Father, directed by Jean'FranÃ§ois Richet and co'starring
William H. Macy.
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