Biography of Cillian Murphy
Cillian Murphy is an Irish film and stage actor best known for his roles in 28 Days Later, Peaky Blinders, Christopher Nolan’s Batman trilogy, and Inception.
Irish actor Cillian Murphy
Childhood and family of Cillian Murphy
Murphy was born on May 25, 1976 in the Irish town of Douglas, but spent his childhood in the village of Ballintemple, which is located in the same county of Cork. The actor’s father, Brendan Murphy, worked in the Irish Department of Education, and his mother taught French at school. Murphy’s aunts, uncles, and grandfather were also teachers.
Murphy attended a Catholic school, but due to his restless nature, he often got into trouble and received suspension from classes. As a result, after four years of study, Murphy moved to another, less disciplined school.
Cillian Murphy in his youth
Painful Killian did not like sports, he was occupied with the world of creativity. At the age of 10, the boy became interested in music and began to write songs. Like his three younger siblings, he dreamed of becoming a rock musician and practiced hard on the guitar. As a teenager, he formed the band The Sons of Mr. Green Genes, which also included his younger brother Paidi.
Everything changed when 16-year-old Killian got into a theater class organized by the teachers of his school. He admitted to himself that the theater was in no way inferior to music in terms of the level of intensity of emotions, and joined the theatrical circle “Corcadorca”.
In 1996, Murphy entered the law faculty of the Irish National University in Cork, but the young man failed his first exam, because, according to him, he had no ambitions in this field.
Cillian Murphy chose acting
In September 1996, he first appeared on the professional stage with his friends from the theater studio. The production was called “Disco Pigs” and told about the life of two teenagers in love. Murphy later described the experience as a “sublime” and “totally alive” feeling, which he greatly enjoyed. Soon Murphy and the theater troupe went on a two-year tour of Europe, Canada and Australia with the performance; for this, the young man left the university and forgot about the rock band.
Acting career of Cillian Murphy
Murphy began to pave the way to the cinema with short films and independent films by Irish directors. In 1999, he played the main role in the drama Sunburn, where Ingeborga Dapkunaite, well-known to Russian viewers, became his partner.
In 2001, he also appeared in the art-house film On the Edge, about 19-year-old Jonathan, a mental patient who decides to commit suicide after his father’s death.
In the same year, the film version of “Disco Pigs” was released under the slogan “A Shock Love Story”.
Cillian Murphy in 28 Days Later
In 2002, Murphy had a big success – the actor starred in the lead role in Danny Boyle’s horror film 28 Days Later, receiving the Best Newcomer award at the 8th Empire Awards in 2003 for this role and in 2004 “Best Male Breakthrough of the Year” at the MTV Movie Awards.
At the end of 2003, Murphy appeared in the film The Gap as an uncomplaining supermarket worker who robs a bank with professional thief Leif, the hero of Colin Farrell. The film became the highest-grossing Irish independent film in national box office history (until The Wind That Shakes the Heather broke its record in 2006 – Murphy also starred in that film).
This was followed by bright secondary roles in the Hollywood dramas Cold Mountain (desert soldier Bardolph) and The Girl with a Pearl Earring (which also played Scarlett Johansson and Colin Firth).
Murphy’s widespread success and widespread recognition came in 2005 when he portrayed Dr. Jonathan Crane in Christopher Nolan’s Batman Begins. Killian was originally going to be auditioned for the role of Bruce Wayne/Batman. Murphy never thought he had the “face of a superhero”, although he did not miss the opportunity to get to know Nolan. As a result, the role of Batman still went to Christian Bale, and Murphy was approved for a supporting role without talking.
Subsequent leading roles only strengthened Murphy in the position of a top actor – and the film “Night Flight” with Rachel McAdams attracted special attention of the viewer, in which Murphy presented the “ideal movie villain”, “whose cold blue eyes freeze water, and wolf look causes horror.”
The actor’s multifaceted talent was also revealed in the 2005 film Breakfast on Pluto, in which Murphy played the role of transgender Patrick Braden, nicknamed Kiten. The actor auditioned for this role back in 2001, but project director Neil Jordan did not dare to make a film on a sensitive topic for a long time. For several years, Murphy urged the director to start shooting before he got too old for such a role.
Murphy also starred in American films Seeing Detectives (2007), Peacock (2009), Inception (2010), Time (2011) and British famous films Inferno (2007), Forbidden love” (2008), “Retreat” (2011), “Anthropoid” (2016) and “Shootout” (2016).
Since 2013, Murphy has been starring in the British television series Peaky Blinders about a Birmingham gang in the 1920s. His hero is the leader of the Shelby mafia family, which was nicknamed the “peaky peaks” because of the blades sewn into the caps. In February 2017, Sally Potter’s new film “The Party” was presented at the Berlin Film Festival with Murphy, Patricia Clarkson, Bruno Ganz and other famous actors in the lead roles.
In July 2017, the film “Dunkirk” by Christopher Nolan was released in Russia about the course of the Dunkirk operation at the beginning of World War II. Along with Killian, the film featured actors Tom Hardy, Kenneth Branagh and Mark Rylance, as well as singer Harry Styles.
Other achievements of Cillian Murphy
Together with director Paloma Baeza, Murphy wrote the screenplay for the short film Watchmen (2001), in which he also starred.
Murphy made his directorial debut in 2013 when he filmed the music video for Money’s single “Hold Me Forever”. Filming took place at the London Old Vic Theatre, and the dancers of the English National Ballet became the participants of the video.
In 2015, Killian contributed to the tracks “8:58” and “The Clock” for Paul Hartnall’s album “8:58”. Murphy is no longer a member of a rock band, but regularly plays music with friends and writes songs.
Cillian Murphy’s personal life
In 2004 Murphy married his girlfriend Yvonne McGuinness, an Irish artist. He met his future wife in 1996 at one of the concerts of his group. The couple lives in the city of Monkstown in Ireland, raising sons Malachi (born 2005) and Aran Murphy (born 2007).
Cillian Murphy with his wife
Murphy often performs in theaters in Dublin, so he does not want to move to Hollywood. The actor prefers not to talk about his personal life and rarely appears on television; he does not have a personal stylist or personal publicist, and the actor often comes to movie premieres alone.
Murphy is friends with fellow Irish actors Colin Farrell, Jonathan Rhys Meyers and Liam Neeson, whom he calls his “surrogate movie dad”. But Murphy’s closest friends are those he met before his stellar career.
Cillian Murphy with his family: wife and sons
In 2015, the actor was included in the GQ magazine’s “50 Most Stylish British Men” lists.
Murphy is an atheist – he admitted this during the filming of the sci-fi film Inferno.
The actor has been a vegetarian for many years – he came to this decision after learning about the cruel methods of agribusiness. But after getting a role in Peaky Blinders, he had to eat meat again.
Cillian Murphy now
In 2019, fans saw Cillian Murphy in the action movie Anna along with Helen Mirren and Alexander Petrov. In the same year, he began acting in the thriller A Quiet Place 2, along with Emily Blunt.
In 2024 and over the next few years, several more films with the actor are expected to premiere. Among them are “Hippie Happy Shake” with Sienna Miller, “About Waterfowl” with Michael Fassbender and “Strangers”.