Actor, director, composer, producer
Clinton Eastwood Jr. was born on May 31, 1930, in San Francisco, California, the son of Clinton Eastwood Sr. In May 1954, Eastwood made his first real audition for Six Bridges to Cross but was rejected by Joseph Pevney. After many unsuccessful auditions, he was eventually given a minor role by director Jack Arnold in Revenge of the Creature (1955), a sequel to the recently released The Creature from the Black Lagoon. In September 1954, Eastwood worked for three weeks on Arthur Lubin's Lady Godiva of Coventry, won a role in February 1955, playing "Jonesy", a sailor in Francis in the Navy and appeared uncredited in another Jack Arnold film, Tarantula, where he played a squadron pilot.
After achieving success in the Western TV series Rawhide, he rose to international fame with his role as the Man with No Name in Sergio Leone's Dollars Trilogy of Spaghetti Westerns during the 1960s, and as antihero cop Harry Callahan in the five Dirty Harry films throughout the 1970s and 1980s. These roles, among others, have made Eastwood an enduring cultural icon of masculinity. For his work in the Western film Unforgiven (1992) and the sports drama Million Dollar Baby (2004), Eastwood won Academy Awards for Best Director and Best Picture, as well as receiving nominations for Best Actor. Eastwood's greatest commercial successes have been the adventure comedy Every Which Way But Loose (1978) and its sequel, the action comedy Any Which Way You Can (1980), after adjustment for inflation. Other popular films include the Western Hang 'Em High (1968), the psychological thriller Play Misty for Me (1971), the crime film Thunderbolt and Lightfoot (1974), the Western The Outlaw Josey Wales (1976), the prison film Escape from Alcatraz (1979), the action film Firefox (1982), the suspense thriller Tightrope (1984), the Western Pale Rider (1985), the war films Where Eagles Dare (1968), Kelly's Heroes (1970), Heartbreak Ridge (1986), the action thriller In the Line of Fire (1993), the romantic drama The Bridges of Madison County (1995), and the drama Gran Torino (2008). In addition to directing many of his own star vehicles, Eastwood has also directed films in which he did not appear, such as the mystery drama Mystic River (2003) and the war film Letters from Iwo Jima (2006), for which he received Academy Award nominations, the drama Changeling (2008), and the South African biographical political sports drama Invictus (2009). The war drama biopic American Sniper (2014) set box office records for the largest January release ever and was also the largest opening ever for an Eastwood film.
Eastwood received considerable critical praise in France for several films, including some that were not well received in the United States. Eastwood has been awarded two of France's highest honors: in 1994 he became a recipient of the Commander of the Ordre des Arts et des Lettres, and in 2007 he was awarded the Legion of Honour medal. In 2000, Eastwood was awarded the Italian Venice Film Festival Golden Lion for lifetime achievement. Since 1967, Eastwood has run his own production company, Malpaso Productions, which has produced all but four of his American films. Starting in 1986, Eastwood served for two years as Mayor of Carmel-by-the-Sea, California, a non-partisan office.
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