Sunday, February 28, 2010

Who Is That: Christopher Plummer

Name: Christopher Plummer
Occupation: Actor
Genre: Film/Television/Theater
Birth: December 13, 1929

It's difficult to determine where to begin when discussing an actor whose career has spanned over five and a half decades. His numerous award wins and nominations date back to 1959 and still haven't stopped!

Fifty years ago Plummer was nominated for both an Emmy and a Tony in the same year. This year, at age 80, he is nominated for his first Academy Award for his supporting role as Leo Tolstoy in the Michael Hoffman film The Last Station. If he wins the Oscar, he will tie the record with George Burns for oldest male Academy Award winner!

Born in Canada, Plummer started training as a classical pianist at an early age, but developed a love for theater and began traveling with the Canadian Repertory Theater. About fifteen years later, Plummer was cast in the Broadway play J.B. for which he was nominated for his first Tony Award. Among other nominations, Plummer went on to win Tony's for the the musical Cyrano in 1974 and for the play Barrymore in 1997.

After multiple television appearances throughout the 1950s, his film career was launched by Sidney Lumet in 1958 when he cast Plummer in the film Stage Struck. From that time on, his film career spanned from one end of the spectrum to the other. He has appeared in films such as Rodgers and Hammerstein's classic The Sound of Music as Captain von Trapp as well as films like the cult classic Dragnet (starring Tom Hanks and Dan Aykroyd) as the villainous Reverend Jonathan Whirley.

His other outstanding film credits include The Man Who Would Be King, The Fall of the Roman Empire, Jesus of Nazareth, The Return of the Pink Panther, Battle of Britain, Waterloo, The Silent Partner, Shadow Dancing, Inside Daisy Clover, Star Trek VI: The Undiscovered Country, Malcolm X, Dolores Claiborne, Wolf, Twelve Monkeys, Murder by Decree, Somewhere in Time, Syriana, The Inside Man, A Beautiful Mind, Alexander, National Treasure, and The Imaginarium of Doctor Parnassus.

Plummer has also lent his distinctive voice to several animated features including Rock-a-Doodle, 9, and Up.

He was married to Tony Award winning actress Tammy Grimes for only four years. The couple's daughter, Amanda Plummer, is a multiple Emmy Award winner and has gone on to gain a great deal of fame and critical acclaim. Christopher Plummer lives with his current wife, Elaine Regina Taylor, in a 100-year-old converted farm house in Connecticut.

Plummer's memoir, In Spite of Myself, was released in 2008. He remains busy with two more films in the works. Beginners starring Ewan McGregor, and Priest starring Paul Bettany and Karl Urban.

Good luck to Christopher in the upcoming Academy Awards!

Below is the official trailer for the film in which Plummer is nominated, The Last Station.

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