Michael Fassbender is an Irish German actor, born on the 2nd of April 1977. He was born in Heidelberg, Germany to a German father, Josef, and an Irish mother, Adele who is originally from Larne, County Antrim, in Northern Ireland. His mother is also the great-grand-niece of Irish revolutionary, soldier, and politician Michael Collins. Fassbender was raised in the town of Killarney, Ireland. His family moved there since he was two years old, and his father was a chef so he ran a restaurant called West End House. He studied at the Fossa National School and after that at the St. Brendan’s College.
He became well known in the United States after his role in Quentin Tarantino’s Inglorious Bastards in 2009. He also appeared as Magneto in X-Men in 2011 which was an important role he made in this movie. Michael acted in several movies and also won many awards and recognitions from all over the world.
Michael Fassbender’s Personal Life:
Michael lived in London from 1996 to 2017, although he lived in Ireland and the United Kingdom he was fluent in German, and he even appeared in a German-language film. He is a big fan of Liverpool football club.
It is known that he likes to keep his personal life private, although he said in an interview in GQ in 2012, that he was seeing actress Nicole Beharie as much as possible after he worked with her in the movie Shame. In 2014, he started dating Swedish actress Alicia Vikander after filming The Light Between Oceans, and they got married in a private ceremony on the 14th of October 2017 in Ibiza and now they are living in Lisbon, Portugal.
Michael’s passion for acting led him to tour with the Oxford Stage Company to perform in the play ‘Three Sisters’ and also do several odd jobs including labor work and bartending before landing his first on-screen role in the 2001 war-drama television miniseries Band of Brothers. He also acted in many series and movies before landing a role as a Spartan warrior in the movie 300. He gained more popularity and garnered critical acclaim due to his roles in many movies like Shame, Inglorious Bastards, Prometheus, A Dangerous Method, Fish Tank, X-Men: First Class and Macbeth. Let’s get to know more about his movies and series:
Michael Fassbender’s Movies:
A film based on the 1998 comic series of the same name, both the movie and comic are fictionalized retellings of the Battle of Thermopylae within the Persian Wars. Fassbender played the role of a Spartan soldier called Stelios. The story talks about King Leonidas played by Gerard Butler leading 300 soldiers into battle against 300,000 Persians. The movie was released on the 9th of March 2007, and received positive reviews from critics but also received criticism for its depiction of the Persians, which some characterized as bigoted or Iranophobic. 300 was a huge success at the box office gaining over 450 million dollars, it’s opening was rated the 24th largest in box office history at the time.
It’s a historical drama film, talking about the 1981 Irish hunger strike. The film premiered for the first time at the 2008 Cannes Film Festival, winning the Camera d’Or award for first time filmmakers. Fassbender appeared in the movie as Bobby Sands, the Provisional Irish Republican Army volunteer who led the second Irish Republican Army hunger strike and participated in the no-wash protest in which Irish republican prisoners tried to regain political status after it had been revoked by the British government in 1976.
Fish Tank (2009):
A British drama film that talks about Mia Williams a socially isolated 15-year-old who lives with her single mother, while her mother’s boyfriend, Conor, falls in love with Mia which results in an affair between them but at the end, it seems that Conor was not entirely what he seems. The movie stars Michael Fassbender, Katie Jarvis, and Kierston Wareing. The film won many awards like the Jury Prize at the 2009 Cannes Film Festival, also won the BAFTA for Best British Film. Released in theaters on 11 September 2009, Fish Tank featured on BBC’s list of the 100 greatest films in the 21st-century ranking 65th on the list.
Inglorious Bastards (2009):
The film is a war film directed by Quentin Tarantino, starring Brad Pitt, Christoph Waltz, Michael Fassbender, Eli Roth, Diane Kruger. The film tells a story about two plots to assassinate Nazi Germany’s leadership, one planned by Shosanna Dreyfus Laurent, a young French Jewish cinema proprietor and the other by a team of Jewish American soldiers led by First Lieutenant Aldo Raine Brad Pitt. Christoph Waltz co-stars as Hans Landa, an SS colonel tracking down Raine’s group and who is connected to Shosanna’s past. The film’s title was inspired by Italian director Enzo G. Castellari’s macaroni combat film The Inglorious Bastards (1978).
The script was written in 1998, but the director but he didn’t come up with an ending to it and instead he worked on the two parts of Kill Bill. After that, he returned to work on the movie, which was filmed in Germany and France with a budget of 70 million dollars. The film was released in 20th may 2009 gaining 321 million dollars worldwide. Also, the film was nominated for many awards like Academy Awards for Best Performance by an Actor in a Supporting Role (Christoph Waltz), Best Motion Picture of the Year, Best Achievement in Directing, Best Writing, Original Screenplay, Best Achievement in Cinematography, Best Achievement in Film Editing, Best Achievement in Sound Mixing, and Best Achievement in Sound Editing.
X-Men: First Class (2011):
It’s a superhero film based on the X-Men characters appearing in Marvel Comics. The film talks about the period of the Cuban Missiles Crisis and focuses on the relationship between Professor Charles Xavier (James McAvoy), and Erik Lehnsherr/Magneto (Michael Fassbender). The film was released in the United States on the 3rd of June 2011, and was a great success, becoming the seventh highest-grossing in the series and received positive reviews from critics and audiences, who praised its acting, screenplay, direction, action sequences.
Jane Eyre (2011):
A romantic drama film, based on Charlotte Brontë’s 1847 novel of the same name. The film was released in United States, United Kingdom, and Ireland. The film’s costume design, led by Michael O’Connor, was nominated for an Academy Award. The film stars Michael Fassbender, Mia Wasikowska, and Judy Dench.
The film is a British drama, filmed in New York City starring Michael Fassbender and Carey Mulligan. The film’s explicit scenes reflect the protagonist’s sexual addiction. It was released on the 13th of January 2012.
A Dangerous Method (2011):
A German Canadian film in 2011, the screenplay was adapted by writer Christopher Hampton from his 2002 stage play The Talking Cure, which was based on the 1993 non-fiction book by John Kerr, A Most Dangerous Method. The takes set on the World War I, A Dangerous Method describes the turbulent relationships between Carl Jung, founder of analytical psychology; Sigmund Freud, founder of the discipline of psychoanalysis; and Sabina Spielrein, initially a patient of Jung and later a physician and one of the first female psychoanalysts. The film was first premiered in the 68th Venice Film Festival and Toronto International Film Festival in 2011. The cast includes Keira Knightley, Viggo Mortensen, Michael Fassbender, and Vincent Cassel.
A science fiction film, it is set in the late 21st century and centers on the crew of the spaceship Prometheus as it follows a star map discovered among the artifacts of several ancient Earth cultures. Seeking the origins of humanity, the crew arrives on a distant world and discovers a threat that could cause the extinction of the human species. The film was released in the United Kingdom on the 1st of June in 2012, gaining 403 million dollars worldwide with a budget of 130 million dollars. The film received a great compliment on the design and acting especially Michael Fassbender performance as the android David while plot elements that remained unresolved or predictable were the main source of criticism. The movie’s stars are Noomi Rapace, Michael Fassbender, Guy Pearce, Idris Elba, and Charlize Theron.
12 Years a Slave (2013):
It’s a drama film based on an adaptation of the 1853 slave memoir. The movie talks about an African American who was kidnapped in Washington by two conmen in 1841 and sold into slavery. He was put to work on plantations in the state of Louisiana for 12 years before being released. The film stars are Michael Fassbender, Benedict Cumberbatch, Paul Dano, Paul Giamatti, Lupita Nyong’o, Sarah Paulson, Brad Pitt, and Alfre Woodard.
The movie was named the best film in 2013 by several critics, with a budget of only 22 million dollars and gained over 187 million dollars. Also, the film was nominated for many awards and won three Academy Awards for Best Picture, Best Adapted Screenplay and Best Supporting Actress for Nyong’o, in addition to the Golden Globe Award for Best Motion Picture Drama, and the British Academy of Film and Television Arts recognized it with the Best Film Award and the Best Actor Award for Ejiofor. 12 Years a Slave was named the 44th greatest film since 2000.
This film was a stepping stone in Fassbender’s career since he took on a different role than what he had been used to previously. This time, he played the villain and quite masterfully that he was nominated for an Academy Award for Best Performance by an Actor in a Supporting Role.
Steve Jobs (2015):
The film was based on a book with the same name in 2011, the film covers the life of personal computing innovator and Apple Inc. co-founder Steve Jobs. Job’s character was portrayed by Michael Fassbender alongside Kate Winslet, Seth Rogen, Katherine Waterston, Michael Stuhlbarg, and Jeff Daniels in supporting roles.
The film was first released in 9th of October 2015. People close to Jobs, such as Steve Wozniak and John Sculley praised the film’s performances, but the film also received criticisms for its inaccuracy in some of its scenes. Michael was nominated for the Best Actor at the 88th Academy Awards.
A British-French drama film based on William Shakespeare’s play Macbeth, it stars Michael Fassbender in the title role and Marion Cotillard as Lady Macbeth. The film was released in the United Kingdom on the 2nd of October then The United States on the 4th of December. The film received generally positive reviews from film critics who praised both Fassbender and Cotillard’s performances, as well as those of the rest of the cast. Although the movie had a positive critical reaction, it wasn’t a success in the box office and only gained 16 million dollars with a budget of 20 million dollars only.
Assassin’s Creed (2016):
An action movie based on a video game, starring Michael Fassbender, who was also a producer, Marion Cotillard, Jeremy Irons, Brendan Gleeson, Charlotte Rampling and Michael K. Williams. The story is an original story that expands the series’ mythology, taking place during the Spanish Inquisition. The film was released on the 21st of December in the United States, and it had negative reviews from critics but some said it was of higher quality than most videogame film adaptations. It gained 240 million dollars worldwide with a budget 125 million dollars becoming a box-office bomb and losing as much as $100 million for the studio.
X-Men: Apocalypse (2016):
A superhero movie, it’s based on the fictional X-Men characters that appear in Marvel Comics and is the ninth installment in the X-Men film series. It is the sequel to X-Men: Days of Future Past 2014. The stars are James McAvoy, Michael Fassbender, Jennifer Lawrence, Oscar Isaac, Nicholas Hoult, Rose Byrne, Tye Sheridan, Sophie Turner, Olivia Munn, and Lucas Till. The film was released in London on the 9th of May in 2016, and in the United States on the 27TH of May.
The Light Between Oceans (2016):
A romantic drama film based on the 2012 novel The Light Between Oceans by M. L. Stedman. The film tells the story of a lighthouse keeper and his wife who rescue and adopt an infant girl adrift at sea. Years later, the couple discovers the child’s true parentage and is faced with the moral dilemma of their actions. The movie was first premiered in the 73rd Venice International Film Festival on 1st of September 2016. The stars are Michael Fassbender, Alicia Vikander, Rachel Weisz, Bryan Brown, and Jack Thompson. The film had mixed reviews and gained 26 million worldwide.
Alien: Covenant (2017):
The film is a sequel to Prometheus (2012), it’s a science fiction horror movie. The film is the second installment in the Alien prequel series and the sixth installment overall in the Alien film series. The film was released on 12 May 2017 in the United Kingdom and received great reviews from critics. The film gained 240 million dollars worldwide with a budget of 111 million dollars. The movie stars are Michael Fassbender and Katherine Waterston, with Billy Crudup, Danny McBride, and Demián Bichir in supporting roles.
The Snowman (2017):
The film is a psychological crime horror based on the novel of the same name, the story talks about a detective who tries to find a serial killer who uses snowmen as his calling card. The stars are Michael Fassbender, Rebecca Ferguson, Charlotte Gainsbourg, Val Kilmer, and J. K. Simmons. The film was released on the 13th of October 2017, gaining 43 million dollars with a budget of 35 million dollars.
X-Men: Dark Phoenix (2019):
Fassbender’s most recent movie Dark Phoenix gained 252 million dollars worldwide with a budget of 200 million dollars, so that makes it the lowest gaining installment in the series. The film was not favorably received by critics, with many viewing it as a disappointing and anticlimactic conclusion to the X-Men series. The movie is a superhero film based on the Marvel Comics X-Men characters. It is the twelfth installment of the X-Men film series, and the sequel to 2016’s X-Men: Apocalypse. The movie stars are James McAvoy, Michael Fassbender, Jennifer Lawrence, Nicholas Hoult, Sophie Turner, Tye Sheridan, Alexandra Shipp, and Jessica Chastain.
Michaels Fassbender’s Series:
Fassbender worked on a number of TV productions through the 2000s, let’s see some of his series through the coming part.
Band of Brothers (2001):
An American war drama miniseries, it was the first Fassbender series. The series was based on historian Stephen E. Ambrose’s 1992 non-fiction book Band of Brothers. The executive producers were were Steven Spielberg and Tom Hanks, who had collaborated on the 1998 World War II film Saving Private Ryan. The first episode was aired on 9th of September, the series won Emmy and Golden Globe awards in 2001 for best miniseries.
The series dramatizes the history of “Easy” Company, 2nd Battalion, 506th Parachute Infantry Regiment, of the 101st Airborne Division, from jump training in the United States through its participation in major actions in Europe, up until Japan’s capitulation and the war’s end.
Gunpowder, Treason and Plot (2004):
It was based upon the lives of Mary, Queen of Scots and her son James VI of Scotland, the series was filmed in Romania with a Scottish crew. The story is divided into two parts; the first film shows the relationship between Mary and her third husband, James Hepburn, 4th Earl of Bothwell. Scottish actor Robert Carlyle stars as James VI in the second part, which concentrates on the Gunpowder Plot, planned by Guy Fawkes, to blow up the Houses of Parliament in order to rid the nation of a Protestant monarch. The series stars are Clémence Poésy as Queen Mary, Kevin McKidd as James Hepburn, Robert Carlyle as James VI, Emilia Fox, and Michael Fassbender as Guy Fawkes
A British television program, the story is set in a remote English boarding school with a mysterious past. Series one explores the supernatural relationship between a Fallen Angel named Azazel and a student called Cassie who is also a witch. In the second series, the story centers on 500-year-old anointed one Ella Dee, and Azazeal’s son Malachi. The show was canceled in April 2006 after the end of the second series. The series starring Michael Fassbender, Christina Cole and Jemima Rooper
The Devil’s Whore (2008):
A television series of four parts, set during the English Civil War. It centers on the adventures of the fictional Angelica Fanshawe and the historical Leveller soldier Edward Sexby and spans the years 1638 to 1660. The script was started in 1997, and it’s budget was 7 million dollars. The series was filmed in South Africa, as the producers said that they didn’t find a suitable “old English” locations in England.
Michael Fassbender Nominations and Awards:
Let’s take a look at Fassbender nominations and awards that he won throughout his career.
He was nominated for an Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor for the movie 12 Years a Slave, and the Best Actor in a Leading Role for the movie Steve Jobs. He won the Best Supporting Actor Award in 2014 in the AACTA International Awards for the movie 12 Years a Slave and nominated for Best Actor for his roles in Shame and Steve Jobs. He won the Best Actor Award in the British Independent Film Awards for his film Hunger in 2008, and he also won the same award for his role in the movie Shame in 2011.
In 2010, he won the award of the Best Ensemble in the movie Inglourious Basterds in the Critics’ Choice Movie Awards. In the Irish Film and Television Awards, he won the Rising Star Award and Best Actor in a Lead Role in a Film in the movie Hunger in 2009. He also won Best Actor in a Lead Role in a Film in his film Shame and Steve Jobs in 2012 and 2016. In London Film Critics’ Circle, Fassbender won the British Actor of the Year for his movie Hunger in 2009, and the same award in 2010 due to his role in the movie Shame. In 2011, at the Venice Film Festival, one of the most famous film festivals in the world, Michael won the Volpi Cup for Best Actor for his role in the movie Shame.
Things you don’t know Michael Fassbender:
- Fassbender had to read the script of the film Macbeth 200 times before attending the first table read.
- Fassbender served as an altar boy at the church his family attended.
- He discovered he wanted to be an actor at age 17 when he was cast in a play by Donie Courtney.
- Before he found work as an actor, he had a period of doing auditions interspersed with bartending stints, and postal delivery.
- Michael Fassbender produced, directed, and starred in a stage version of Quentin Tarantino’s Reservoir Dogs, along with his production company.
- When he was 19 years old, he moved to London to study at the Drama Centre in London.
There’s no denying that Michael Fassbender has become a renowned name in the entertainment business over the last decade. From war dramas to sci-fi to romance, he proved himself capable of handling different roles and mastering several genres of film and television. His talent will surely continue to grow over the years to come.