Christopher Walken biography

Christopher Walken

Date of Birth: March 31, 1943

This native of Queens, New York, has eyes that sink into his head to the point where they seem to be touching his brain. It gives him a rather sinister look that has seen him usually playing unsavory characters in most of his film roles. A stage actor by training, he earned a Best Supporting Actor Oscar for his role in The Deer Hunter (1978).

Long before the Academy recognized his talent, Walken was an in-demand actor, first taking to the stage when he was 10, appearing in his first musical on the New York stage at 15, and making his Broadway debut at 16. He toured in a production of West Side Story, dancing opposite Georgianne Thon. The two were married in 1969, and remain married to this day.

Walken's first big film break came as the electronics expert in Sidney Lumet's The Anderson Tapes (1971). Long-time fans might also remember his delicious, albeit brief moment in Woody Allen's Annie Hall (1977), playing Diane Keaton's demented brother Duane.

Throughout the '80s and early '90s, he was seen in mostly supporting roles, often portraying psychologically unstable characters. Yet he's not just a serious and scary actor. He proved he had a sense of humor by spoofing his dark side during an appearance on Saturday Night Live, winning an American Comedy award for "Funniest Male Guest Appearance in a TV Series" in 2001. And the crowd got a hilarious surprise when he showed off his song-and-dance skills, which were recently showcased in the Fat Boy Slim video, Weapon of Choice. He received a second Academy Award Nomination for his performance in Catch Me If You Can (2002).

Walken rarely turns down roles and strives to keep himself constantly working. Because of this, he manages to average three to five movies per year. Also perhaps as a result of this, he has appeared in some real stinkers and received two Razzie Award nominations for Worst Supporting Actor in The Country Bears (2002) and Gigli (2003). However, he has since won a Golden Satellite Award and a Montreal World Film Festival Best Actor award for his role in Around the Bend (2004). In 2005, he was given the Marquee Award at the CineVegas International Film Festival.

At almost 70 years old, Walken continues to land roles in prominent films. Some of his more recent 2012 titles include Seven Psychopaths alongside Colin Farrell and Woody Harrelson and A Late Quartet with Catherine Keener and Philip Seymour Hoffman. He also stars with Al Pacino in Stand Up Guys (2013). More recently, he starred in Jersey Boys (2014), Eddie the Eagle (2016), Nine Lives (2016), and provided the voice of King Louie in The Jungle Book (2016).

* 1979 Best Actor in a Supporting Role Oscar winner for The Deer Hunter.

Christopher Walken Filmography

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