|Date of Birth
||6 July 1951
|Place of Birth
||Toowoomba, Queensland, Australia
Raised in Brisbane, Australia after his parents' split, actor Geoffrey Rush's early interest in theatre led to his 1971 stage debut in "Wrong Side of the Moon" with the Queensland Theatre Company. Known for his classical work over the years, he scored an unexpected hit with his role as Snoopy in the musical "You're a Good Man, Charlie Brown" the following year. A few years later he moved to France for studying but returned to his homeland within a short time and continued work as both actor and director with the Queensland stage group. He made an inauspicious debut in films with the 1981 feature Hoodwink (1981) and didn't have his first major role until playing Sir Andrew Aguecheek in Twelfth Night (1987), but remained a durable presence for the most part on stage with acclaimed productions in "The Diary of a Madman" in 1989 and "The Government Inspector" in 1991. Geoffrey suffered a temporary nervous breakdown in 1992 due to overwork and rested for a time. Filmgoers finally took notice with his performance in Children of the Revolution (1996), which led to THE role of a lifetime as the alarmingly dysfunctional piano prodigy David Helfgott in Shine (1996). Rush's astonishing tour-de-force performance won him every conceivable award imaginable, including the Oscar, Golden Globe, British Film Award and Australian Film Institute Award. The role not only put him on the international map, but on the "A" list in Hollywood. His homely mug yet completely charming and captivating demeanor allowed him to dissolve into a number of fascinating historical portrayals over the years, notably as Javert in Misérables, Les (1998), Walsingham in Elizabeth (1998), and as the Marquis de Sade in Quills (2000). On the other hand, he's allowed himself to have a bit of hammy fun in such box office escapism as Mystery Men (1999), House on Haunted Hill (1999), The Banger Sisters (2002), Finding Nemo (2003) and Pirates of the Caribbean: The Curse of the Black Pearl (2003). More than validating his early film success, two more Oscar nominations came his way in the same year for Quills (2000) (best actor) and Shakespeare in Love (1998) (support actor) in 2000. Geoffrey's amazing versatility continues to impress, most recently as the manic, comedic genius Peter Sellers in a 2004 biopic The Life and Death of Peter Sellers (2004).