as an "actor's actor" with a widely diverse repertoire
of movie portrayals and accents, the Welsh-born English movie
star, born Christian Charles Philip Bale on January 30 1974.
The youngest of four children who spent time traveling throughout
Europe with his circus performer mother, Jenny James, Christian
began acting work in TV commercials as a young boy. His
first screen role came when he was all of 13, appearing in Steven
of the Sun playing an English boy interred in a Japanese internment
camp during World War II.
shy, and having received a bit too much attention from the role,
the young actor contemplated giving up acting altogether. But
in a legendary meeting with Kenneth Branaugh, he was later persuaded
to appear in that actor's film production of Henry V in 1989.
on, Bale was kept busy in various teen roles in Hollywood films,
among them two Disney releases - Newsies
(1992) and Swing Kids (1993). A year later, he was cast opposite
Winona Ryder in the film adaptation of Little Women and in several
other movie appearances, including the 1999 film version of A
Midsummer Night's Dream.
American Psycho and beyond
As Patrick Bateman
in "American Psycho"
With the subtle
shading and expert skill has exhibited in adult roles since then,
Christian Bale's career skyrocketed in 2000 when he next appeared
in the controversial filming of American
Psycho, based on the bestselling novel by Bret Easton Ellis.
Bateman, the actor embodied the chilling lead character who posed
as a typical urban yuppie while carefully hiding the cold-blooded
level of violence in the film was not warmly received by critics,
the role secured Bale's cult status and Hollywood reputation as
a fearless and committed actor.
films followed, including a similar dark role in the 2000 sequel
to 1971's Shaft, a forgettable performance as a Greek fisherman
in Captain Corelli's Mandolin (2001), and his first action-adventure
role as a dragon slayer in the ill-fated Reign of Fire in 2002.
year, with the release of Equilibrium
(which critics panned as a rip-off of the more successful Matrix
franchise, complete with slo-mo marshal arts scenes) the actor's
portrayal of a lawman John Preston garnered Bale an even stronger
fan following, and the film itself enduring cult status.
Christian Bale as Bruce
Wayne in "Batman Begins"
film critics in 2004, he next appeared in the limited release
Machinist in which he played a haunted insomniac, a role requiring
Bale to lose a startling 60
pounds throughout filming.
Batman Begins and The Dark Knight
An even larger
fan base of "Baleheads" was to grow as the actor, having
just completed filming of The Machinist, was cast as Batman in
the new Christopher Nolan-directed film series (beating out a
number of other Hollywood stars including the heavily favored
The role required
a now emaciated Bale to quickly bulk up for the lead role in Batman
Begins, which earned him wide critical praise for his dual portrayal
as Bruce Wayne/Batman - and for which he received a "Best
Hero" award a year later from a young movie-going public
at the 2006 MTV
Movie Awards. Bale also provided the voice of Batman for the
equally successful video game based on the film.
the success of Batman Begins, Bale returned to smaller, independent
films such as the critically praised Harsh Times in 2006, and
in a secondary role in The New World starring Colin
Farrell, along with lead roles in Rescue Dawn and The Prestige
starring with Hugh
Jackman and Scarlett
appeared in the highly-anticipated sequal in the Batman franchise,
The Dark Knight, co-starring Heath
Ledger as The Joker, released on July 18, 2008.
to The Dark Knight, in 2008 Bale appeared in I'm Not There, a
biopic of muscian Bob Dylan, and co-starred with Aussie actor
Crowe in 3:10 to Yuma.The following year, he starred as John Connor in a new installment in the
Terminator franchise Terminator
Salvation: The Future Begins.
In 2011, the actor accepted an Oscar for Best Supporting Actor for a riveting role as the hyperactive drug addict Dicky Ecklund in The Fighter (2010). The following year, in the much-anticipated addition to the Batman franchise, Bale reprised his role as the caped crusader in Dark Knight Rises.
In 2013, Bale appeared in Scott Cooper's thriller Out of the Furnace, and starred in American Hustle, which reunited him with director David O. Russell, after their work on The Fighter.
Bale is next set to appear in two Terrence Malick directed films shot in 2012, Weightless and Knight of Cups. He is also reportedly playing the lead Rawbone in The Creed of Violence, an upcoming crime drama directed by Todd Field.
Away from the movie studio, Bale is married to former model Sibi
Blazic and has a daughter, Emmaline born in 2005, and a son born in 2014.
More about Christian Bale around the Web:
Bale.org - Major fan site with up-to-minute news, busy
forum, picture galleries, video clips, movie trailers, wallpapers,
Bale - An Unofficial Appreciation - Personal fan site
featuring the actor's bio, vital stats, fun facts & trivia,
an extensive photo gallery of Christian Bale magazine photo shoots,
complete filmography, audio and video files.