Gabriel Byrne Biography

Gabriel Byrne photo

Born: May 12, 1950


Date of Birth: May 12, 1950

Born in Dublin, Ireland as the first of six children, Gabriel Byrne didn't make his film debut until the age of 29. Before that he was an archaeologist, a cook, a bullfighter and a Spanish teacher at a girls school. He began his acting career onstage with The Focus Theatre and the Abbey Theatre in Dublin, then later joined the Royal Court and the National Theatre in London. In 1981, he made his film debut as Lord Uther in John Boorman's classic King Arthur epic, Excalibur.

A busy actor, writer, producer and director, he says, "I see producing as a way of contributing positively to the universe."

As for acting itself, Gabriel says, "The truth is that actors don't really have any control over the end product. To think that you have control is a delusion and it's also incredibly frustrating to be investing that much hope into something that essentially boils down to marketing. So you try to do movies that you feel connected with and you work with directors and actors you admire."

In response to the superb care given to his mother while she was a patient in a Galway hospital, Gabriel became a patron of Croi (The West of Ireland Cardiology Foundation) in 1997 and has worked tirelessly for the Foundation since then.

Gabriel continues to work steadily, including in the films The 33 (2015) and Hereditary (2018). Most recently, he's been keeping busy on TV, with roles in the 2018 Netflix mini-series Maniac, the Amazon Prime series ZeroZeroZero (2019) and the Fox series War of the Worlds (2019).

Gabriel was married to actress Ellen Barkin from 1988 to 1993—the couple have two children together (Jack and Romey Marion) and one film (Siesta). In 2014 he married budding director/producer Hannah Beth King.

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