More Mel Gibson Bios & Profiles
Biography #2 (for The Singing Detective)Mel Gibson was born in upstate New York and moved with his family to Australia when he was 12 years old. Gibson attended the National Institute of Dramatic Arts at the University of New South Wales in Sydney. His stage appearances include Death of a Salesman.
Gibson was eventually brought to the attention of director George Miller who cast him in Mad Max, the film that first brought him worldwide recognition. This was followed by the title role in Tim. Gibson's portrayal of a handicapped young man won him an Australian Film Institute Best Actor Award.
He was further established as an international star by the two hit sequels to Mad Max--The Road Warrior and Mad Max Beyond Thunderdome--along with Peter Weir's Gallipoli, which brought Gibson a second Australian Best Actor Award. A few years later, Weir and Gibson again collaborated on The Year of Living Dangerously.
Gibson made his American film debut in The River. Also, he starred in the worldwide record breaking Lethal Weapon (1,2,3 and 4) franchise. Gibson's other films include The Bounty, Mrs. Soffel, Tequila Sunrise, Bird on a Wire, Air America, and Hamlet. When Gibson starred in Hamlet directed by Franco Zeffirelli, the film was the first to be produced by Gibson's production company Icon Productions. The role brought him the William Shakespeare Award from the Folger Theatre in Washington, DC. Also, he starred in the Icon produced Forever Young and Maverick. Gibson made his directorial debut and starred in The Man Without A Face, another Icon production. The company has also produced Immortal Beloved and Airborne among many 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. Gibson received a Golden Globe Award for Best Director as well. Also, he received a Special Achievement in Filmmaking Award given by the National Board of Review and was honored as the 1996 NATO/ShoWest Director of the Year, as well as being the recipient of the Best Director Award given by the Broadcast Film Critics Association.
In 1996, Gibson starred in Ransom, directed by Ron Howard for Disney's Touchstone Pictures. A remake of the 1956 MGM picture tells the story of a New York millionaire who must employ daring tactics to retrieve his kidnapped son. 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 and the Blockbuster Entertainment Award for Favorite Male (suspense).
In August of 1997, Gibson starred in the romantic-thriller Conspiracy Theory, co-starring Julia Roberts and directed by Richard Donner, for Warner Bros. In July of 1998, Gibson starred in Lethal Weapon 4, grossing close to $300 million worldwide.
In February of 1999, he starred in the hard-edge thriller Payback, an Icon Production based on Donald F. Westlake's (writing as Richard Stark) novel The Hunter. Payback was distributed in the U.S. and Canada by Paramount Pictures and internationally by Warner Bros.
In 2000, Gibson became the first actor in history to star in three $100 million films (domestic gross). In the summer, Gibson starred in the emotionally charged adventure The Patriot as Benjamin Martin, a reluctant hero who is swept into the American Revolution when war reaches his home and threatens his family. The Columbia Pictures release was written by Robert Rodat (Saving Private Ryan) and directed by Roland Emmerich. Also, Mel lent his voice as the all-American rooster named Rocky; in the critically acclaimed DreamWorks SKG animated adventure comedy, Chicken Run.
Later that year, 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 opened at $33.6 million, the best three-day December opening ever, and has become Gibson's highest domestic grossing film ever. 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, as told from the vantage point of Harold Moore, commander of the 1st Battalion, 7th Cavalry, and Joseph Galloway, a reporter who was on the scene for the 34-day battle. It is directed and written by Randall Wallace, who was nominated for an Oscar for writing Braveheart.