Oscar Biographies

Updated September 9, 2022 | Infoplease Staff

Ben Affleck
Born 8/12/72 in Berkeley, California.
Golden Globe-winning co-screenwriter and co-star of Good Will Hunting (1997) (with longtime friend Matt Damon). His acting career also includes roles in School Ties (1992), Dazed and Confused (1993) and Chasing Amy (1997).

Woody Allen
Born 12/1/35 in Brooklyn, New York
Comedian, writer, director, and actor known for his sophisticated movies and their neurotic characters. His films include Annie Hall (1977), Hannah and Her Sisters (1986), Mighty Aphrodite (1995) and Deconstructing Harry (1997).

Hossein Amini
British screenwriter whose film The Wings of the Dove (1997) was nominated for an Academy Award. Has also written television films for the BBC and the movie Jude (1996).

Mark Andrus
Screenwriter who co-wrote the critically acclaimed film As Good As It Gets (1997) with James L. Brooks. He also wrote Late for Dinner (1991).

Paul Thomas Anderson
Born 1970
Writer, director, and producer of Oscar-nominated Boogie Nights (1997). Other films he wrote and directed include Cigarettes and Coffee (1993) and Hard Eight (1996).

Paul Attanasio
Screenwriter whose Oscar-nominated films include Quiz Show (1994) and Donnie Brasco (1997). He also wrote Disclosure (1994) and Sphere (1998).

Kim Basinger
Born 12/8/53 in Athens, Georgia
Former Breck shampoo girl turned actress, Basinger has often found her way into the spotlight. In 1989, she bought the town of Braselton Georgia, only to sell off most of the town after declaring bankruptcy in 1993. Her films include 912 Weeks (1986) , The Marrying Man (1991) and the critically acclaimed L.A. Confidential (1997), for which she received an Oscar nomination. Basinger is married to actor Alec Baldwin.

Simon Beaufoy
Born 1967 in England
British screenwriter who brought us The Full Monty (1997) and Among Giants (1998).

James L. Brooks
Born 5/9/40 in North Bergen, New Jersey
Director, producer, and writer of the Oscar-winning film Terms of Endearment (1983) as well as box-office hits Broadcast News (1987) and As Good As It Gets (1997). He has produced many popular movies and television shows, includingJerry Maguire (1996), The Mary Tyler Moore Show (1970), and Taxi (1978), and won an Emmy in 1989 for his work on The Simpsons.

James Cameron
Born 8/16/54 in Kapuskasing, Ontario, Canada
If he does nothing else, Cameron will always be remembered as the director of Titanic (1997), the top-grossing film of all time. His films include The Terminator (1984) and Aliens (1986). He is married to actress Linda Hamilton.

Helena Bonham Carter
Born 5/26/66 in London, England
British actress best known for her work in romantic Edwardian period dramas. Her films include A Room With a View (1986), Howard's End (1992) and The Wings of the Dove (1997).

Peter Cattaneo
Director known for his work in short films, TV, and music videos. The Full Monty (1997) was his first full-length feature film. His 1990 short, Dear Rosie, was nominated for an Academy Award.

Julie Christie
Born 4/14/41 in Chukua, Assam, India
Academy Award-winning actress (Darling, 1965) who was a leading star of the 1960s and 1970s. Her films include Dr. Zhivago (1965), Shampoo (1975), Hamlet (1996) andAfterglow (1997).

Joan Cusack
Born 10/11/62 in New York, New York
Comedic actress known for her quirky but memorable roles. Her films include Working Girl (1988), Grosse Pointe Blank (1997), and In & Out (1997). Cusack is the sister of actor John Cusack.

Matt Damon
Born 10/8/70 in Cambridge, Massachusetts
Dropped out of Harvard University to become one of Hollywood's hottest young actors. In addition to starring in Good Will Hunting (1997), he co-wrote the screenplay with his longtime friend Ben Affleck. His films include School Ties (1992) and John Grisham's The Rainmaker (1997).

Judi Dench
Born 12/9/34 in York, England
Stage and screen actress who was awarded the Order of the British Empire and was created a Dame of the British Empire. Her films include A Room With a View (1986), GoldenEye (1995) and Her Majesty, Mrs. Brown (1997).

Leonardo DiCaprio
Born 11/11/74 in Los Angeles, California
Known worldwide by his young fans as Leo, this modern-day Romeo catapulted to megastardom after his role in Titanic (1997), the ship that launched a thousand careers. His films include William Shakespeare's Romeo and Juliet (1996) and The Man in the Iron Mask (1998).

Minnie Driver
Born 1/31/71 in England
Versatile English actress who has shown incredible range throughout her career. Her films include Circle of Friends (1995), Grosse Pointe Blank (1997), and Good Will Hunting (1997).

Robert Duvall
Born 1/5/31 in San Diego, California
Academy Award-winning actor whose passionate performances have made him one of Hollywood's most admired and respected actors, and garnered him numerous awards over the years. His films include The Godfather (1972), Tender Mercies (1983) and The Apostle (1997) which he also wrote and directed.

Atom Egoyan
Born 7/19/60 in Cairo, Egypt
Canadian writer-director whose provocative films include Speaking Parts (1989), The Adjuster (1991), Exotica (1994), and The Sweet Hereafter (1997).

Peter Fonda
Born 2/23/40 in New York, New York
Son of legendary actor Henry Fonda, brother of actress Jane, and father of Bridget, Peter Fonda has often been overshadowed by his more famous relatives. His films include Easy Rider (1969) and Ulee's Gold (1997).

Robert Forster
Born 7/13/41 in Rochester, New York
Television and film actor since the late 1960s. His films include Reflections in a Golden Eye (1967), Medium Cool (1969), The Delta Force (1986) and Jackie Brown (1997).

Curtis Hanson
Born 3/24/45 in Reno, Nevada
Writer, director and producer of the critically acclaimed film L.A. Confidential (1997). Other films he has directed include The River Wild (1994) and The Hand That Rocks the Cradle (1992).

Brian Helgeland
Born 1961 in Providence, Rhode Island
Screenwriter whose films include Oscar-nominated L.A. Confidential (1997) as well as Conspiracy Theory (1997) and The Postman (1997).

Hilary Henkin
Screenwriter whose films include Fatal Beauty (1987), Road House (1989) and Romeo is Bleeding (1993). Nominated for an Academy Award for Wag the Dog (1997), a collaboration with David Mamet.

Greg Kinnear
Born 6/17/63 in Logansport, Indiana
Former TV host of Talk Soup and Later with Greg Kinnear. His films include Sabrina (1995), Dear God (1996) and As Good As It Gets (1997).

Julianne Moore
Born 12/3/61 in Fort Bragg, Fayetteville, North Carolina
Started in off-Broadway plays and went on to three years in the daytime drama, As the World Turns before turning to the big screen. Her films include The Hand That Rocks the Cradle (1992), The Fugitive (1993), Boogie Nights (1997) and The Big Lebowski (1998).

Burt Reynolds
Born 2/11/36 in Waycross, Georgia
First known for his television work in the '60s and early '70s, by the late 1970s he was one of the most popular film stars. His films include Deliverance (1972), Smokey and the Bandit (1977), Citizen Ruth (1996) and Boogie Nights (1997).

Gloria Stuart
Born 7/14/10 in Santa Monica, California
1930s screen actress who left Hollywood in the 1940s to pursue a career as a stage actress and painter, and returned to TV and film work in the 1970s. Her films include The Old Dark House (1932), Rebecca of Sunnybrook Farm (1938), My Favorite Year (1982) and Titanic (1997).

Gus Van Sant
Born 7/24/52 in Louisville, Kentucky
Director known for his early controversial films about gays and drug addicts. His films include My Own Private Idaho (1991), To Die For (1995) and Good Will Hunting (1997).

Robin Williams
Born 7/21/52 in Chicago, Illinois
A brilliant comedian with amazing improvisational talents, Williams has also proven himself to be a fine dramatic actor. His films include Dead Poets Society (1989), Mrs. Doubtfire (1993), and Good Will Hunting (1997).

Kate Winslet
Born 10/5/75 in Reading, England
Lovely English actress who played the leading role in the epic blockbuster Titanic (1997). Her films include Heavenly Creatures (1994) and Sense and Sensibility (1995).

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