Bentley in 2000
|Born||Wesley Cook Bentley
September 4, 1978
Jonesboro, Arkansas, U.S.
|Spouse(s)||Jennifer Quanz (2001–2009)
Jacqui Swedberg (2010-present; 1 child)
Bentley was one of four subjects in the documentary My Big Break (2009), which covered his fame after American Beauty and struggles with substance abuse. Rebuilding his career, he starred in the premier of Venus in Fur by David Ives in the off-Broadway production in 2010, whose run was extended.
Early life and education
Bentley was born in Jonesboro, Arkansas, the son of Cherie Baker and David Bentley. His father is a minister and his mother is a chaplain and ordained elder in the Arkansas Conference, both in the United Methodist denomination. In 1996, he graduated from Sylvan Hills High School in Sherwood, Arkansas. Bentley attended the Juilliard School's Drama Division (Group 29: 1996–2000) but left the school after one year to pursue his acting career.
Bentley has starred in several films, including the Oscar-winning film American Beauty, The Four Feathers, P2, and Ghost Rider. He starred in the thriller Dolan's Cadillac, based on the short story by Stephen King, and There Be Dragons by director Roland Joffé. Bentley is one of the main subjects in the documentary My Big Break, directed by Tony Zierra, which follows Bentley and three of his former roommates, Chad Lindberg, Brad Rowe and Greg Fawcett, as they pursue their dream to become successful actors in Hollywood.
In March 2012, Bentley had a supporting role in the blockbuster movie The Hunger Games, playing gamemaker Seneca Crane.
In 2012, Bentley also starred with Amber Tamblyn and Vincent Piazza in the indie feature 3 Nights in the Desert directed by Gabriel Cowan written by award winning playwright Adam Chanzit and produced by John Suits.
In June 2013, Bentley was selected to star in Ryan Murphy's HBO production titled "Open" along with Scott Speedman.
Bentley was married to actress Jennifer Quanz from 2001 to 2009. They separated in 2006 due to his substance abuse. He married producer Jacqui Swedberg in 2010 and they have a son, Charles, born in late 2010.
In a New York Times article on February 8, 2010, he described his descent into drug addiction that began almost immediately after his success in American Beauty. He said he hid his addiction from his wife; they separated in 2006, and he moved to an apartment where he began doing drugs full-time. During this time he worked sporadically, just enough to pay bills and buy drugs, and in 2008 was arrested and ordered into counseling and 12-step programs. He relapsed, however, and "continued using heroin until he was broke".
In July 2009, he said, he confessed to a friend, "I’m a drug addict, and an alcoholic, and I need help. I need help or I’m going to die". He again entered a 12-step program and, while clean since then, considers himself on the path to recovery.
The documentary My Big Break (2009) captures Bentley's early life as an unknown actor, his explosive career launch after American Beauty, his subsequent emotional struggle with fame, and his admission years later that he was recovering from an addiction to drugs and alcohol. He began to rebuild his career by starring in the Off-Broadway premier of the play Venus in Fur by David Ives.
|1995||Serendipity Lane||Lonnie||Short film|
|1998||Three Below Zero||Julian Flincher|
|1999||American Beauty||Ricky Fitts||National Board of Review Award for Best Male Breakthrough Performance
Online Film Critics Society Award for Best Cast
Screen Actors Guild Award for Outstanding Performance by a Cast in a Motion Picture
Nominated—BAFTA Award for Best Actor in a Supporting Role
Nominated—Blockbuster Entertainment Award for Favorite Supporting Actor – Drama
Nominated—Chlotrudis Award for Best Supporting Actor
Nominated—MTV Movie Award for Best Breakthrough Male Performance
Nominated—Online Film Critics Society Award for Best Supporting Actor
|1999||White River Kid, TheThe White River Kid||White River Kid|
|2000||Claim, TheThe Claim||Donald Daglish|
|2002||Four Feathers, TheThe Four Feathers||Jack Durrance|
|2005||Game of Their Lives, TheThe Game of Their Lives||Walter Bahr|
|2007||Ungodly, TheThe Ungodly||Mickey Gravatski|
|2008||Last Word, TheThe Last Word||Evan|
|2008||Tomb, TheThe Tomb||Johnathan|
|2009||Greims, TheThe Greims||Donnie Greims||Short film|
|2010||Jonah Hex||Adleman Lusk|
|2011||Rites of Passage||Benny|
|2011||There Be Dragons||Manolo Torres|
|2012||Underworld: Awakening||Dr. Edward Vronski||Uncredited|
|2012||Hunger Games, TheThe Hunger Games||Seneca Crane|
|2012||Stars in Shorts||Man|
|2012||Time Being, TheThe Time Being||Daniel|
|2012||Hidden Moon||Victor Brighton|
|2013||The Green Blade Rises|
|2014||Welcome to Me||Post-Production|
|2014||The Better Angels|
|2014||Things People Do|
|2015||Knight of Cups||Post-Production|
- Venus in Fur (2010)
- "Wes Bentley Biography (1978–)". FilmReference.com.
- "Wes Bentley star bio". Tribute.ca.
- Bennett, Tara (March 21, 2012). "The 'Hunger Games' Cast Before They Were Famous: Wes Bentley, Senior Year at Sylvan Hills High School, Sherwood, Arkansas (1996)". Snakkle.com. Pontiac Digital Media.
- "Alumni News". The Juilliard School. March 2010. Archived from the original on 2011-11-11. Retrieved April 7, 2012.
- Daly, Steve (October 8, 1999). "Wes Bentley of 'American Beauty'". People.
- Christian Slater and Wes Bentley Join 'Dolan's Cadillac', Cinematical, April 25, 2008
- Stephen King's DOLAN'S CADILLAC Filming in Canada!, May 29, 2008
- Healy, Patrick (8 February 2010). "Back From the Depths, Rebuilding a Career". The New York Times. p. 1.
- Run Extended for ‘Venus in Fur’, Patrick Healey, Feb. 3, 2010, NY Times
- Charles Isherwood, "One Object of Desire, Delivered", New York Times, Jan. 28, 2010
- "Nina Arianda: A Star Is Born", Playbill
- Oliver Jones (June 13, 2011). "Wes Bentley: 'I Felt Myself Dying'". People magazine. Retrieved January 13, 2012.
- "The Hunger Games Star Wes Bentley Fights Back From Homelessness, Bankruptcy". Radar Online. 2012-03-29. Retrieved 2012-04-09.
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