Hoskins during the filming of Ruby Blue (2007)
26 October 1942 |
Bury St Edmunds, West Suffolk, England, UK
|Occupation||Actor, film director|
|Spouse(s)||Jane Livesey (1967–1978; divorced; 2 children)
Linda Banwell (1982–present; 2 children)
Robert William "Bob" Hoskins, Jr. (born 26 October 1942) is a retired English actor known for playing Cockneys and gangsters. He has appeared in films such as The Long Good Friday (1980), Mona Lisa (1986), Who Framed Roger Rabbit (1988), Hook (1991), and Neverland (2011). Hoskins was the recipient of the prestigious Prix d'interprétation masculine as well as winning the BAFTA Award for Best Actor in a Leading Role and Golden Globe Award for Best Actor – Motion Picture Drama for his role in Mona Lisa and an International Emmy Award for best actor for his appearance on BBC One drama The Street in 2009.
Hoskins was born in Bury St Edmunds, West Suffolk, the son of Elsie Lillian (née Hopkins), a cook and nursery school teacher, and Robert William Hoskins, Sr., a bookkeeper and lorry driver. One of Hoskins' grandmothers was a Romani of the British Romanis. From the age of two weeks old, he was brought up in Finsbury Park, London. Hoskins left school at the age of 15 with a single O-Level and worked as a porter, lorry driver and window cleaner. He worked on a three-year accountancy course but dropped out.
Hoskins' acting career began in 1969 at the Unity Theatre. One evening, he was waiting in the Unity Theatre bar for his friend, the actor Roger Frost, to finish an audition. Whilst drinking at the bar, he was given a script and told "You're next." He got the part, with Frost ending up his understudy. Frost recalled that "Bob was a natural. He just got up on stage and was brilliant." His first major television role was in On the Move (1976), an educational series intended to tackle adult illiteracy, in which he played Alf, a removal man who had problems reading and writing. In the same year, he came to wider attention in the original BBC version of Dennis Potter's drama Pennies from Heaven as sheet music salesman Arthur Parker. Later, he played Iago in Jonathan Miller's BBC Television Shakespeare production of Othello.
Hoskins' performances in British films such as The Long Good Friday (1980) and Mona Lisa (1986) won him the wider approval of the critics and, in the case of the latter, a Cannes Award, Best Actor Golden Globe and BAFTA Awards and an Academy Award nomination for Best Actor. He also delivered comic turns in Terry Gilliam's Brazil (1985) and Super Mario Bros. (1993). Hoskins was not initially aware that Super Mario Bros. was based on the popular video game of the same name. His son had asked him what film he was working on, and recognising it, showed Hoskins the video game on the Nintendo video game console. In a 2007 interview with The Guardian, Hoskins spoke of his regret at appearing in Super Mario Bros.. He revealed that despite being praised for his performance on the film, he was extremely unhappy with the film and was greatly angered by his experiences making it, referring to it as the "worst thing I ever did". During the late 1980s and early 1990s he appeared in advertising for the recently privatised companies of British Gas and British Telecom (now BT Group).
Hoskins had a small role as a rock band's manager in the Pink Floyd film The Wall. He was slated to be a last-minute replacement in the film The Untouchables if star Robert De Niro had not decided to play Al Capone. When De Niro took the part, director Brian De Palma mailed Hoskins a cheque for £20,000 with a "Thank You" note, which prompted Hoskins to call up De Palma and ask him if there were any more movies he didn't want him to be in.
Hoskins appeared in Who Framed Roger Rabbit (1988), for which he received a second Golden Globe nomination. Some of Hoskins' other notable appearances include playing opposite Cher in Mermaids (1990), boatswain Smee to Captain Hook in Hook (1991), and as the same character in Neverland (2011), and Uncle Bart, the psychopathic and violent "owner" of Jet Li in Unleashed aka Danny The Dog. He has also performed in several television productions for the BBC, including Dennis Potter's Pennies From Heaven, Flickers, David Copperfield as Wilkins Micawber (1999), and The Wind in the Willows (2006). He played Nikita Khrushchev as a political commissar in the film Enemy at the Gates (2001). He received a Golden Globe nomination for Best Supporting Actor for his performance in Mrs Henderson Presents, a film he also produced with Norma Heyman.
Hoskins has also directed two films, both of which he starred in; The Raggedy Rawney (1988) and Rainbow (1996). In 2009, Hoskins made a return to British television in Jimmy McGovern's drama serial The Street, where he played a publican who stands up to a local gangster. For this role he received his first Emmy when he won Best Actor at the 2010 International Emmys. On 8 August 2012, Hoskins announced his retirement from acting after being diagnosed with Parkinson's disease in 2011.
Hoskins' father was a communist and brought up Hoskins as an atheist, but Hoskins now describes himself as an agnostic. In 1967, aged 25, Hoskins spent a short period of time volunteering in kibbutz Zikim in Israel. In an interview, when asked what he owed his parents, he said, "Confidence. My mum used to say to me, 'If somebody doesn't like you, fuck 'em, they've got bad taste.'" When asked which living person he most despised, Hoskins named Tony Blair and claimed that "he's done even more damage than Thatcher". He made light of his similarities with film actor Danny DeVito, who he joked would play him in a film about his life. Hoskins announced his retirement from acting on 8 August 2012, due to his ongoing battle with Parkinson's disease.
|Play for Today||Taxi driver||Episode: "The Bankrupt"|
|New Scotland Yard||Eddie Wharton|
|Softly, Softly: Taskforce||Parker|
|Play for Today||Woodbine||Episode: "Her Majesty's Pleasure"|
|1974||Shoulder to Shoulder||Jack Dunn|
|Thick as Thieves||Dobbs|
|Play for Today||Blake||Episode: "Schmoedipus"|
|The Crezz||Detective Sergeant Marble|
|1977||Van der Valk||Johnny Palmer|
|Rock Follies of '77||Johnny Britten|
|1978||On the Move||Alf|
|Pennies from Heaven||Arthur Parker||Nominated — BAFTA TV Award for Best Actor|
|1979||Of Mycenae and Men||Mr. Taramasalatopoulos|
|1983||The Beggar's Opera||Beggar|
|1985||Mussolini and I||Benito Mussolini|
|1994||The Changeling||De Flores|
|World War II: When Lions Roared||Winston Churchill|
|1995–1999||The Forgotten Toys||Teddy||Voice only|
|1996||Tales from the Crypt|
|1998||Saturday Night Live||Himself|
|2000||Noriega: God's Favorite||Manuel Noriega||Nominated — Satellite Award for Best Actor – Miniseries or Television Film|
|Don Quixote||Sancho Panza|
|2001||The Lost World||Professor George Challenger|
|The Good Pope: Pope John XXIII||Angelo Roncalli / Pope John XXIII|
|2008||The Englishman's Boy||Damon Ira Chance|
|2009||The Street||Paddy Gargan||International Emmy Award for Best Performance by an Actor|
- "Bob Hoskins Biography (1942–)". Filmreference.com. Retrieved 24 August 2011.
- Hattenstone, Simon (3 August 2007). "The Method? Living it out? Cobblers!". The Guardian (London). Retrieved 26 April 2010.
- Moline, Karen (1988). Bob Hoskins: An Unlikely Hero. Michigan: Sidgwick & Jackson. p. 201. ISBN 0-283-99508-4.
- Confirmed on Desert Island Discs in November 1988
- Farndale, Nigel (2009-11-27). "Bob Hoskins interview: 'My own mum wouldn't call me pretty'". The Telegraph.
- "The Guardian, Saturday 9 October 1999". Guardian. 1999-10-09. Retrieved 2013-02-26.
- Karen Moline, Bob Hoskins: an unlikely hero, p17, (Sidgwick & Jackson), 1988, ISBN 0283995084, 9780283995088
- "'Bob Hoskins paid not to play Capone'". Metro.co.uk. 19 March 2009. Retrieved 24 August 2011.
- "Bob Hoskins retires from acting". Itv.com. 2012-08-08. Retrieved 2013-02-26.
- "Bob Hoskins – Celebrity Atheist List". Celebatheists.com. Retrieved 24 August 2011.
- Sharrock, David (24 February 2007). "After nearly a century, Israel’s first kibbutz calls time on communism". The Times (UK). Retrieved 20 May 2010.
- Stuart, Jan (7 November 1999). "MOVIES Still Breathing Fire BOB HOSKINS dropped out of high school. Joined a circus. Fled to Israel. Then, he discovered acting.". Newsday. Retrieved 20 May 2010.
- Rosanna Greenstreet (18 June 2011). "Q&A: Bob Hoskins | Life and style". The Guardian (UK). Retrieved 24 August 2011.
- "BBC News - Bob Hoskins to retire after Parkinson's diagnosis". Bbc.co.uk. 2012-08-09. Retrieved 2013-02-26.
- razzies.com, "26th Annual Razzie Award Nominees for Worst Supporting Actor". Accessed 7 March 2013.
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