Saturday, January 16, 2010

PROFILE – SAM WORTHINGTON

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EARLY LIFE
Born August 2, 1976, in Godalming, Surrey, England; Samuel Henry J. "Sam" Worthington was born of his parents – his father, Ronald a power plant employee and his mother, a homemaker cared for him and his sister – in Warnbro, a suburb of Rockingham near Perth, Australia.

He attended John Curtin College of the Arts, but school was never a priority for him as he dropped out at 17, though he did show his first inkling of interest in the arts while in high school. He worked construction and odd jobs, eventually settling in Sydney. He was 19 and working as a bricklayer when he auditioned for the National Institute of Dramatic Art (NIDA) and was accepted, with scholarship; where he gained valuable training from the Institute, graduating in 1998 at the age of 22.


RISE

Sam received critical acclaim for his portrayal of Arthur Wellesley in his first professional role in the Belvoir Street Theatre production "Judas Kiss" (directed by Neil Armfield). He then went on to work in Australian television on such shows as Water Rats (2000) and Backburner and then on the American TV show JAG's 100th episode (Boomerang part 1). Also in 2000, Sam made his first movie appearance in the highly acclaimed Australian movie "Bootmen", about a troop of 'tap dogs'; the film also starred Adam Garcia as Sam's brother. Minor roles proceeded in "Hart's War" and "Matter of Life" before Sam starred in another hailed Australian drama, 2002's "Dirty Deeds", which also starred Toni Collette and John Goodman.






The following year he starred in yet another Aussie film, opposite David Wenham in "Gettin' Square". But it wasn't until 2004 that Sam got his big break. Having made his directorial debut on the short film, "Enzo", Sam was offered the role of Joe in the unique and greatly acclaimed Australian drama, written and directed by Cate Shortland, "Somersault" opposite Abbie Cornish. "Somersault" took 7 years to make, and Shortland wanted to cast the perfect actor in the role of Joe. The film did amazingly well, making a clean sweep of the Australian Film Institute awards in 2004 to win in all 13 film categories - the first time this has ever occurred in the award's history. Sam won the AFI for best male actor.
MOVIE STAR

Sam was a finalist to play James Bond in Casino Royale, before losing out to Daniel Craig. In 2007, James Cameron chose Worthington for a leading role in his science fiction thriller, Avatar. This was a huge project for Worthington, an ambitious effects-laden film that marked Cameron's first film in more than a decade and required the actor to film on locations in the United States, Australia, and New Zealand. 


After completing his turn in Avatar, Cameron recommended Worthington for another buzz-worthy science fiction project – “Terminator Salvation” (2009), the fourth in the long-running and successful futuristic action franchise. “Salvation,” which was directed by McG, cast Worthington as another modified human – this time, a death row inmate who is altered by the ruthless corporation Skynet into the hulking T-800 cyborg in order to hunt down the now adult resistance leader, John Connor (Christian Bale). Despite mixed reviews, the film pulled down remarkable numbers at the box office, earning itself the 20th spot on the list of all-time single day box office records for its opening weekend. Worthington himself was singled out for much of the critical praise, which noted the difficulty of replacing Arnold Schwarzenegger as the T-800, and how well he rose to the challenge. He also starred opposite Keira Knightley in the infidelity drama “Last Night” (2009) and “The Debt” (2009), about Israeli agents hunting Nazis. 

This year Worthington has yet another blockbuster under his sleeve – which is a remake of the 1981 classic, Clash of the Titans.