Biography of Woody Harrelson
Woody Harrelson is a famous American film actor and producer. During his professional career, he appeared in more than eighty tapes. His favorite genres are drama, comedy and crime. Honorary Emmy Award Winner. He was nominated twice for an Oscar and four times for a Golden Globe.
Charismatic Woody Harrelson
Childhood and family
Woody’s parents – Texans Charles and Diana Harrelson – gave birth to three sons and divorced when Woody was 3 years old. Woody always thanked his mother for the fact that she did not speak badly about her father and never took it out on the children. Diana Harrelson was a pious person, worked as a secretary and tried to give the children everything she could.
One day, 11-year-old Woody heard on the radio that a certain Charles Harrelson was on trial for the murder of District Judge John Wood. The boy was in shock, but until the last he hoped that it was not his father, but some other Charles Harrelson. The fact that his father is a hired killer, Woody learned not from his mother, who hid the cruel truth from the children, but from newspapers and radio. The process was high-profile – it was the first murder of an American judge in the 20th century. Charles Harrelson already had one murder on his account, dating back to 1968, so although the man served 5 years last time, he was awarded two life sentences.
Woody Harrelson’s father was convicted of murder
At the trial, the man swore that financial difficulties forced him to commit the crime. The boy remembered these words for the rest of his life, deciding for himself that he would make every effort so that he and his family would not fall into poverty. Soon after the trial, Woody’s mother took her sons from Texas to Ohio, away from the hype and neighborly gossip.
Apparently, Woody inherited a complex character from his father. He changed more than one school and for some time even studied at a school for difficult teenagers. In high school, he took up woodcarving, and in his free hours he worked at the Kings Island amusement park, trying to help his mother with at least some money. At the age of 22, he was arrested for the first time: for dancing in the middle of the track, having gone over with alcohol.
Woody Harrelson in his youth
Woody graduated from Hanover College in Indiana in 1983. He received a bachelor’s degree in theater arts and English. His student years were turbulent and, as he himself recalled, quite wild. During his freshman year in college in 1980, Woody campaigned for people to vote for Reagan, sympathized with the Republicans and believed in all the promises of the “right”. Subsequently, Woody recalled this with a fair amount of irony, as he later began to consider Reagan one of the worst presidents in American history.
Woody Harrelson in his youth
Along with the theater arts, he studied theology, and then his beliefs began to change. When he turned 20, he abandoned both Reagan and God, but became fascinated with environmental politics backed by actor Ted Danson. Later in an interview, he said that the Bible is just a tool that controls people.
Woody led a free and eventful lifestyle: a lot of alcohol, women, protests and demonstrations. But Woody himself didn’t think it was a waste of time. He said that a rich life leads to the palace of wisdom.
Woody Harrelson’s acting career began in 1980, when the 19-year-old boy began to participate in theatrical productions. On the television screen, Woody made his debut in 1982, in the fourth season of the TV series Cheers; his character, Woodrow Hackleberry Tiberius Boyd, was involved in the project until the sixth season inclusive. The role made him famous, he was nominated for the Emmy Award five times, but he managed to receive the award only in 1989.
The series Cheers – the first role of Woody Harrelson
A few years later, Woody decided it was time to leave television projects. He dreamed of a serious career in a big movie. In 1991, he appeared in Doctor Hollywood and over the next three years appeared in Whites Can’t Jump, Natural Born Killers and Indecent Proposal with the consummate Robert Redford and the charming Demi Moore.
Woody Harrelson in the movie Ringleader
The audience remembered the comedy “The Ringleader”, where Woody Harrelson and Randy Quaid tried to get half a million dollars in the bowling championship. Then the actor appeared in the title role in the controversial biopic The People vs. Larry Flynt, playing the publisher of the adult magazine Hustler. For this role, he was nominated for an Oscar in the Best Actor category, but lost the prize to Geoffrey Rush and David Helfgott in his performance.
Woody Harrelson was nominated for an Oscar for his role as Larry Flynt.
The next Oscar nomination came to Woody Harrelson only in 2010 – he was nominated in the Best Supporting Actor category for the film The Messenger. Although, according to many viewers, in terms of the credibility of the game, his character was in no way inferior to the hero of Ben Foster. The actor played the captain of the US Army unit, called upon to tell the terrible news to the families and friends of the dead soldiers. However, alas, this time Woody Harrelson did not receive the coveted statuette, which went to the star of Quentin Tarantino’s Inglourious Basterds – Christoph Waltz.
In 2012, the actor appeared in the first part of the acclaimed Hunger Games series as Haymitch Abernathy, the mentor of Jennifer Lawrence and Josh Hutcherson. Subsequently, he took part in other parts of the franchise.
The Hunger Games: Woody Harrelson as Haymitch Abernathy
And in 2013, he made an excellent acting quartet with Jesse Eisenberg, Isla Fisher and Mark Ruffalo in the thriller Illusion of Deception. According to the plot, four magnificent magicians perform perhaps the most daring robbery of the century on live television. Harrelson’s character is Merritt McKinney, a hypnotist.
In 2014, Woody Harrelson’s name appeared on the list of executive producers of True Detective. He also acted as one of the main characters of the serial drama along with Matthew McConaughey. According to the plot of the series, Louisiana detectives Martin Hart and Rust Cole were investigating an incredibly complicated murder. Twisted script, multifaceted characters and excellent quality of acting brought “True Detective” worldwide recognition and a huge number of flattering reviews.
Matthew McConaughey and Woody Harrelson co-starred on True Detective
In 2016, Woody Harrelson was busy filming Suburbicon, directed by George Clooney. The script for the film was written by brothers Ethan and Joel Coen, who met with the actor on the set of the thriller No Country for Old Men. The premiere of the film was scheduled for 2017, as was the premiere of the blockbuster War of the Planet of the Apes, where Harrelson played a villain named The Colonel.
Woody Harrelson in Planet of the Apes
At the end of 2017, Woody played one of the key roles in Martin McDonagh’s new film Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri. The Screen Actors Guild named the film the best of the past year, and Woody himself was nominated for Best Supporting Actor.
Woody Harrelson to play young Han Solo’s mentor
Harrelson appeared in a Star Wars spin-off about a young Han Solo. The actor played Tobias Beckett, a criminal and mentor to the future pilot of the Millennium Falcon. In 2019, he starred in the comedy Welcome to Zombieland.
Woody Harrelson’s personal life
In 1985, the actor hastily married the daughter of playwright Neil Simon, Nancy Simon. The couple decided to separate almost immediately after the marriage, but due to paperwork, their marriage lasted ten months. Since then, Woody Harrelson has had many casual women, including a couple of dates with Juliette Lewis and a small affair with Glen Close.
Laura Louis worked as an assistant to Woody, sent off annoying reporters, brought home after partying in a bar, prepared herbal teas for him and tried to make his life as comfortable as possible. One day, while filming in Africa, he noticed that he was constantly thinking about Laura, and suddenly he realized that he was in love with her.
Woody Harrelson and Laura Louis in their youth
Woody recalled how he took a guitar and composed a song, and when he sang it for a girl, the embarrassed Laura admitted to him that she had been in love with him for two years. However, this did not prevent the girl from Woody’s proposal to “think” for almost twenty years. They legalized their relationship only in 2008. The couple have three daughters: Denis Montana, Zoe Giordano and Makani Ravello, and the proud father always called them “my three goddesses.” The family bought a villa in Hawaii and began to grow their own vegetables, because Woody is a staunch raw vegetarian, moreover, in 2012 he received the title of the sexiest vegetarian from the organization PETA. He prefers multi-fresh drinks, but once admitted that he likes to drink well at parties.
Woody Harrelson is a vegetarian
Harrelson has always been a supporter of the legalization of marijuana and promoted the law for the free use of it in medicine. The actor repeatedly had problems with the police: he was arrested for disorderly conduct when he arranged a dance right on the highway in Ohio in 1982. In 1996, in Kentucky, he was arrested for trying to plant hemp, and in 2008 for a fight with a photographer.
Woody Harrelson advocates marijuana legalization
Woody supports the Burberry brand, and in his spare time wears jeans and prefers khaki. He considers Salma Hayek divinely beautiful and is sure that he has a great job, because he is surrounded by the most charming women in the world.
The actor hates to get up early and respects people who have their own opinion, so he likes Apple’s slogan – “Think differently.”
Woody Harrelson now
In 2023, Woody appeared in the new film of the Marvel Universe – “Venom-2” with Tom Hardy. In the spin-off story about Spider-Man, Woody played Cletus Cassidy, a serial killer turned Venom’s antipode – the evil Carnage.
Woody Harrelson as Cletus Cassidy
According to Woody, he does not consider this character to be an unambiguous anti-hero. He had a difficult childhood that left an imprint on the psyche:
He is a child who could not deal with his emotional outbursts. In fact, I can’t say that I figured it out myself.