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Lou Diamond Phillips is an actor best known for his his work in films such as La Bamba, Stand and Deliver, and Young Guns.
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Lou Diamond Phillips is dragged by a runaway horse through a Wild West movie set.
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Born on a military base in the Philippines, Lou Diamond Philips rose to fame with a series of hit films in the late 1980s, inlcuding La Bamba, Stand and Deliver, and Young Guns. After a few flops in the early 1990s, Philips earned a Tony nomination for his work in The King and I on Broadway. He continues to make television appearances,
Hollywood will put you in a box, so to speak. Some people will have seen you in La Bamba or another dramatic film and think, Okay, that's what Lou does. But they don't really have an idea of the range or diversity that I can bring to a project.
and plays poker competitively.
Actor. Lou Diamond Phillips was born February 17, 1962, on the Subic Bay Naval Station in the Philippines to Lucita Aranas and American naval officer Gerald Upchurch. The young actor was eventually adopted by his mother's second husband, taking his stepfather's surname Phillips. Though he was raised in small-town Texas, Lou Diamond Phillips had stars in his eyes from a young age. Passing up the opportunity to go to Yale, he instead chose to attend the local University of Texas at Arlington where he got his Bachelor's in Fine Arts degree in drama. He was active in drama club productions and a local comedy troupe. Eager to break out of the small town drama scene, Phillips capitalized on whatever opportunities came his way. The up-and-comer would often go to great lengths to meet idols (like Robert DeNiro) when they passed through nearby Dallas.
Phillips remained actively involved in the theater after college, joining Stage West in Fort Worth, where he would continue to work for four years appearing in various independent productions. In 1987, Phillips got his big break in Hollywood with a starring role in La Bamba. In perhaps his most beloved performance, the actor played ill-fated rocker Ritchie Valens in this biopic turned cult hit. Seemingly out of nowhere, Phillips became one of Hollywood's most promising young stars. Before La Bamba was even released, Phillips had finished Stand and Deliver (1988), in which he gave another dynamic performance as a gang member whose life is changed by a tenacious and caring math teacher (played by Edward James Olmos). Phillips' intense performance would go on to garner him a Golden Globe nomination for Best Supporting Actor. That same year, Phillips portrayed yet another outlaw in Young Guns, placing him among a crew of young Hollywood heartthrobs that also included Kiefer Sutherland, Charlie Sheen and Emilio Estevez. Phillips would make a second appearance in the film's less commercially successful sequel, Young Guns II, in 1990.
After a three-year winning streak, the Texas actor fell upon tougher times at the box office in the early 1990s. He starred in a series of mediocre films like Harley (1991), Shadow of the Wolf (1992) and Sioux City (1994). After this dry run, Phillips was pleased to return to box office success once again with his supporting role in Courage Under Fire (1996), which starred Denzel Washington and Meg Ryan.
In 1995, Phillips went back to his roots on the stage when he debuted as the King in the 1996 Broadway production of The King and I.
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