Born on May 25th, 1976 in Cork, Ireland, the handsome actor with piercing blue eyes and youthful looks, Cillian Murphy turns 41 today. Cillian made his acting debut from the play 'Disco Pigs', and after making his presence felt in the Irish film industry, Cillian also marked his presence in the British and American cinema and since then, he has come a long way.
The 2002 film '28 Days Later' earned Murphy international recognition and followed it with 'Batman Begins', 'The Dark Knight', 'Red Eye' and more. It's hard to stereotype Cillian Murphy as he has worked in films ranging from period to sci-fi to psychological thriller to romantic. The veteran actor is also a part of 'Peaky Blinders', a series based on the eponymous gang that terrorised (or maybe not) Birmingham, England after World War I.
Cillian got his first taste of performing while he was still at school where he participated in a drama module and felt "huge high" and "fully alive" and thus he set out to chase these feelings with performing and we are so glad about it.
Here's wishing Cillian Murphy a very happy birthday and for all you 'Cilly' fans, here are some fun facts about your favourite star.
Murphy used to play in a band 'The Sons of Mr. Greengenes' with his brother Paidi and was offered a record deal by Acid Jazz Records. Cillian turned down the offer as his brother was still in secondary school and also the money involved was not much. Music is one of his passions and Cillian started writing songs and playing music at a young age of ten.
Both the Murphy brothers were obsessed with The Beatles and named their most successful band after a 1969 famous song by another one of their idol, Frank Zappa. The band "specialized in wacky lyrics and endless guitar solos" and Cillian was the one who sang and played guitar in the band.
Cillian Murphy wanted to be a lawyer and began studying law at University College Cork (UCC) in the year 1996. Fortunately for us, he failed all his first-year exams as he says that he had, "no ambitions to do it" and after seeing Corcadorca's stage production of 'A Clockwork Orange' directed by Kiernan, his interest piqued in acting and thus Cillian started performing with the UCCs Drama Society.
Cillian Murphy auditioned six times for the role of Damian in Ken Loach's Irish War of Independence tale 'The Wind That Shakes The Barley'. Loach had decided to film the movie at Cork, Ireland and Murphy was from Cork and it also contributed as one of the reasons for Cillian to be in the film as Damian.
In the 2005 film 'Breakfast On Pluto', Murphy starred as Patrick/'Kitten' Braden, a transvestite. Some gay groups criticised the movie, but Murphy was applauded by most for his performance, where he turns a teenage boy into a blond bombshell.
Another fact attached to this one here is that Cillian received a Golden Globe Award nomination for his performance as a transgender for 'Best Actor in a Musical or Comedy'.
The year 2005 saw Cillian playing roles of psychopaths in two of his movies. He essayed the role of Dr. Jonathan Crane (Scarecrow) in 'Batman Begins' and Jackson Rippner in 'Red Eye'.
Murphy originally auditioned for the part of Batman in 'Batman Begins' but the role was eventually played by Christian Bale. But the director Christopher Nolan liked Murphy's audition so much that he gave him the role of Batman's arch nemesis Dr. Jonathan Crane (Scarecrow) who is a developing character in the series.
Here's another Cillian Murphy fun fact attached to it: Though Murphy did not land the role of Batman, he did get to wear the batsuit during the audition.
Murphy is a vegetarian but learned to chop up meat in a slaughter house for his role as a butcher in the 2003 movie 'Girl with a Pearl Earring'.
Murphy is both reserved and a private person and professes a lack of interest in the celebrity scene. He finds the red carpet experience "a challenge…and not one I want to overcome".
Murphy married his long-time girlfriend Yvonne McGuinness, an artist and the couple has two sons, Malachy and Aran Murphy. They met in 1996 at one of Murphy's rock band show. Cillian proposed to his wife while hill-walking in Ireland.
Murphy practices a lifestyle that will not interest the gossip magazines as in his own words, "I haven't created any controversy, I don't sleep around, I don't go and fall down drunk." A simple and sweet guy who's taken for good!
Cillian Murphy claims to have become an atheist while making the film 'Sunshine'. Earlier he used to believe that nothing can be known about the existence but during the filming of the movie his beliefs changed and now he doesn't believe in the existence.
Cillian's father works for the Irish Department of Education while his mother is a French teacher. Not only his parents but Murphy's aunts and uncles are also teachers and so was his grandfather.
The actor is a non-smoker but had to smoke a lot of cigarettes and is rarely seen without one in 'Peaky Blinders' and to everyone's surprise it's about 3000 in a series. "I don't smoke but people did smoke all day and night then. I use herbal rose things, they're like my five a day! I asked the prop guys to count how many we use during a series and it's 3000".
Cillian rarely speaks about his personal life and often attends premieres alone. You'd be fairly surprised at this Cillian Murphy fact that he travels without an entourage, doesn't have a personal publicist and also does not have a stylist. Cillian only appeared on his first TV chat show in 2010 while promoting his film 'Perrier's Bounty' yet there too he remained reserved.
This doesn't come as a surprise as now we know this fact that Cillian is a reserved and private person. Most of his friends are from before his breakthrough as a film star but there are two actors that he counts as his friends. Fellow Irishmen and actor Colin Farrell who Murphy believes has occasionally been a bit mad and his 'Batman Begins' co-star Liam Neeson who Murphy regards as a surrogate acting dad.
Cillian lives with his family in London and it is one of the few personal details that is public. He often works in or near the city and has expressed no desire to move to Hollywood.
For all of you who have seen Cillian's work, you know what we are talking about! Murphy doesn't disappear into the character he is playing; he becomes the character. This quality of his work can be seen in all Cillian Murphy movies, from the lighthearted to the heavier ones. It's the real humanness of Murphy as an actor that shines through all his characters.