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Brad Pitt: Hollywood‘s Leading Man

Full Name William Bradley Pitt
Age 59
Birthday December 18, 1963
Birth Sign Sagittarius
Born United States
Relationship In a relationship
Height 5′ 11′′
Net Worth $300M

Brad Pitt is one of the biggest movie stars in the world, captivating audiences for over 30 years with his rugged good looks, charismatic presence, and stellar acting talent. From his breakout role in 1991‘s Thelma & Louise to his Oscar-winning performance in Once Upon a Time in Hollywood, Pitt has cemented his status as a Hollywood icon.

Background and Early Life

William Bradley Pitt was born on December 18, 1963 in Shawnee, Oklahoma to Jane Etta, a school counselor, and William Alvin Pitt, who ran a trucking company. As a teenager, Pitt was an active member of the debate team, student government, drama club, and golf team. However, his true passion was acting.

After high school, Pitt attended the University of Missouri where he majored in journalism and advertising. But he soon realized his heart wasn‘t in it, so he dropped out just two weeks before graduation to pursue acting full time. He drove to Los Angeles in 1982 with only $300 in his pocket and started taking acting lessons.

To support himself in LA, Pitt did odd jobs like driving strippers to bachelor parties. He struggled for years going to auditions but only booking small TV roles like appearances on Growing Pains and Dallas.

Breakout Role in Thelma & Louise

Pitt spent the late 80s taking small TV roles and minor movie parts. His big break came in 1991 when he landed the role of J.D. in Ridley Scott‘s road drama Thelma & Louise. With only five minutes of screen time, Pitt made J.D. charismatic and instantly memorable. His sexy, cowboy-hat wearing character befriends Geena Davis and Susan Sarandon on their road trip before robbing them.

Pitt‘s breakout performance as a charming drifter catapulted him to stardom. Thelma & Louise became a cultural phenomenon and Pitt became an overnight sensation. His abs even got their own publicity campaign!

"It was really Ridley Scott and Geena Davis who gave me my break and taught me a lot about the craft," Pitt said.

90s Heartthrob & Serious Actor

Fresh off his success in Thelma & Louise, Pitt cemented his status as a Hollywood heartthrob in the 90s. He starred in several commercially successful and critically acclaimed movies like A River Runs Through It (1992), Interview with the Vampire (1994), Seven (1995), and Fight Club (1999).

Pitt gained praise for his ability to switch between romantic leading man roles like Legends of the Fall to edgier, darker characters like the demented Jeffrey Goines in Twelve Monkeys, for which he earned his first Oscar nomination.

Off-screen, Pitt‘s high-profile relationships with actresses like Gwyneth Paltrow and Jennifer Aniston only fueled his heartthrob image. He was named People‘s Sexiest Man Alive in 1995 and 2000.

“I’m one of the few people you’ll meet who has been to an actual witch doctor in Africa. I go there because they have true magic powers – they can make you invisible.” – Brad Pitt

Versatile Dramatic Actor

In the 2000s, Pitt started taking on more challenging dramatic roles that showcased his versatility as an actor. He earned his first Oscar nomination for his performance as a man born old who ages backwards in The Curious Case of Benjamin Button (2008).

Pitt went on to give some of the most critically lauded performances of his career in Moneyball (2011), 12 Years a Slave (2013), and The Big Short (2015) – proving himself to be much more than just a pretty face. His production company, Plan B Entertainment, also found success producing Oscar-winning films like 12 Years a Slave, Moonlight, and The Departed.

“I‘m drawn to stories that deal with big issues because, if they‘re executed well, they hit you harder.” – Brad Pitt

Winning First Oscar for Once Upon a Time in Hollywood

In 2019, Pitt reached new career heights by winning his first Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor for his role as Cliff Booth in Quentin Tarantino‘s Once Upon a Time in Hollywood. His cool, charismatic performance as Leonardo DiCaprio’s laidback stunt double was lauded by critics.

At age 56, Pitt’s Oscar win cemented his legacy as one of the most talented, versatile actors of his generation. He even joked in his acceptance speech: “They told me I only have 45 seconds up here, which is 45 seconds more than the Senate gave John Bolton this week.”

Pitt continues to balance major commercial films like Bullet Train with compelling indie projects like Babylon that allow him to flex his acting chops.

“I just really enjoy stories, and dissecting human behavior. When I break down a script, I look at the relationships.” – Brad Pitt

Why We Love Brad Pitt

There are so many reasons why Brad Pitt has remained one of Hollywood‘s most beloved and bankable stars. Here are just a few of the things we love about him:

  • He‘s a charismatic actor: Pitt has an undeniable movie star charisma and presence. He lights up the screen with his trademark grin and thousand-watt smile.
  • He chooses interesting projects: From Fight Club to The Curious Case of Benjamin Button, Pitt consistently picks unique films with complex characters. He‘s not afraid to take creative risks.
  • He‘s a philanthropist: Pitt and his ex Angelina Jolie were Hollywood‘s premier humanitarian couple. Through their Jolie-Pitt Foundation, he‘s donated millions to various global causes.
  • He has a great sense of humor: Unlike many A-listers, Pitt doesn‘t take himself too seriously. His self-deprecating wit and enthusiasm for parodying his own image shows his fun side.
  • He‘s a family man: After his high-profile relationships, Pitt has settled into family life with six kids. He maintains a relatively low profile focusing on parenting over partying.

5 Interesting Facts About Brad Pitt

  1. Brad Pitt’s breakout role in Thelma & Louise was supposed to just be two scenes. But his performance impressed the director so much that they expanded it into basically a co-starring role.
  2. He took Greek lessons, trained in swordsmanship, and hired his own dialect coach to prepare for his role as Achilles in the epic Troy.
  3. Pitt is banned from entering China due to his starring role in Seven Years in Tibet which was critical of China‘s control in Tibet.
  4. He has appeared in three Ocean‘s movies alongside George Clooney and Matt Damon. The close friends often pull pranks on each other on set.
  5. Brad is left-handed but learned to play the guitar right-handed for his role in Thelma and Louise.

Humanitarian Efforts & Charity Work

In addition to being a talented actor, Pitt is also known for his humanitarian work around the world. Some of his notable efforts include:

  • Jolie-Pitt Foundation: He co-founded this foundation with Angelina Jolie in 2006. It has contributed over $100 million to global humanitarian causes like Doctors Without Borders.
  • Make It Right Foundation: Pitt created this foundation in 2007 to help rebuild the Lower 9th Ward in New Orleans after Hurricane Katrina. It has helped construct 150 green, LEED-certified homes for low-income families.
  • ONE Campaign: As an ambassador, Pitt has travelled with ONE to Africa multiple times to meet residents and witness poverty firsthand. ONE fights extreme poverty and preventable diseases.
  • Svalbard Global Seed Vault: Pitt donated $100,000 to this "doomsday vault" that stores seeds from around the world to preserve crop diversity.
  • Racial Justice Organizations: Following George Floyd’s murder, Pitt donated $1 million split between the NAACP Legal Defense Fund and Equal Justice Initiative.

“I’m drawn to stories about real people – real issues, real problems trying to find their way through.” ― Brad Pitt

Pitt doesn’t just write checks – he actively participates in humanitarian missions worldwide. His efforts have provided housing, health services, disaster relief, and hope to millions globally.

Brad Pitt‘s Legacy

With his rugged good looks, undeniable talent, and decades of memorable roles, Brad Pitt has secured his place as an American film icon. Some key parts of his legacy include:

  • Evolving from just a heartthrob in the 90s to one of the most respected dramatic actors of his generation
  • Starring in numerous cult classic films like Fight Club, Seven, Ocean‘s Eleven, and Once Upon a Time in Hollywood
  • Co-founding Plan B Entertainment that has produced multiple Oscar-winning films like The Departed, 12 Years a Slave, Moonlight, and Minari
  • Using his star power for good as a highly visible philanthropist supporting global humanitarian causes
  • Remaining one of Hollywood‘s most popular leading men able to balance commercial hits with artistic passion projects

At nearly 60 years old, Pitt’s star has never dimmed. He has starred in over 60 movies that have grossed over $7 billion worldwide. And with his legendary charisma still intact, there’s no sign that Pitt plans to slow down anytime soon. His creativity, generosity, and decades of contributions have made him one of Hollywood’s most enduring and influential stars.