Matthew McConaughey biography
Actor Matthew McConaughey was born on November 4, 1969, in Uvalde, Texas. He graduated from the University of Texas at Austin and got his first big break with the 1993 film Dazed and Confused. He later starred in films like A Time to Kill (1996) and Amistad (1997). McConaughey was named People magazine's "Sexiest Man Alive" in 2005. Later credits include Mud (2012) and Dallas Buyers Club (2013), which earned McConaughey the 2014 Academy Award for best actor.
Early Life and Career
Actor Matthew David McConaughey was born on November 4, 1969, in Uvalde, Texas, and is known for his laid-back lifestyle, rugged physique and charming appeal. He was an athlete at a young age, playing golf and tennis at Longview High School. His classmates named him the school's "Most Handsome Student."
McConaughey stayed in Texas for college, graduating from the University of Texas at Austin in 1993. While he had previously appeared in commercials and in small film roles, McConaughey got his first big break in 1993's Dazed and Confused.
Known for his good looks and easy-going personality, McConaughey soon achieved leading-man status with A Time to Kill (1996), which also starred Sandra Bullock, Samuel L. Jackson and Kevin Spacey. The press often speculated about the nature of McConaughey's relationship with Bullock, but sources close to the pair insisted that they were only friends.
Making the cover of Vanity Fair magazine in 1996, Matthew McConaughey was seen as a rising star in Hollywood. He had several dramatic projects that helped further establish his talents as an actor. In 1997, he appeared in Contact with Jodie Foster, a science-fiction film directed by Robert Zemeckis. That same year, he starred in Amistad, playing a lawyer involved in the trial of African slaves who staged a revolt onboard the slave ship Amistad. The Academy Award-winning film was directed by Steven Spielberg.
Returning to his comedic roots, McConaughey starred in 1999's EdTv as a lowly clerk who becomes the star of his own reality show. The film was both a critical and commercial disappointment. Later that year, McConaughey began developing some notoriety for his offbeat off-screen behavior. The police visited his Austin, Texas, home after receiving a noise complaint in 1998. There, they discovered a naked McConaughey playing the bongos and found a small amount of marijuana. McConaughey was booked on drug charges and for resisting arrest. The drug charges were later dropped, but the actor paid a fine for violating a local noise ordinance.
Bouncing back, McConaughey emerged as a king of romantic comedies. He starred in The Wedding Planner (2001) with Jennifer Lopez, and then in How to Lose a Guy in 10 Days (2003) with Kate Hudson. He then tried his hand at action with 2005's Sahara, and became romantically involved with co-star Penelope Cruz.
Then, working with Al Pacino, McConaughey played a con man in the dramatic thriller Two for the Money (2005). While neither Sahara or Two for the Money scored at the box office, McConaughey remained popular.
He cemented his status as a heartthrob later that year when he was named People magazine's "Sexiest Man Alive" for 2005.
In 2006, McConaughey returned to familiar territory with the romantic comedy Failure to Launch, co-starring with Sarah Jessica Parker. He also reteamed with Kate Hudson for 2008's Fool's Gold. Shortly before the film was released, McConaughey announced on his website that he was going to become a father. He and girlfriend Camila Alves welcomed a baby boy, Levi Alves McConaughey, on July 7, 2008.
More recently, McConaughey appeared in the 2008 comedy Tropic Thunder—taking over the part for Owen Wilson—alongside Ben Stiller, Jack Black and Robert Downey Jr. He went on to star in 2009's The Ghosts of Girlfriends Past with Jennifer Garner and Michael Douglas. After taking a break in 2010, McConaughey starred in The Lincoln Lawyer (as Mick Haller) and Killer Joe (as Killer Joe Cooper)—both released in 2011—followed by the Jeff Nichols-directed drama Mud (2012), in which he co-starred with Reese Witherspoon and Michael Shannon; the film garnered both critical and commercial acclaim. Also in 2012, McConaughey gained some commercial acclaim for his performance in the comedic film Magic Mike; he played Dallas, a male stripper who mentors a younger performer known as Magic Mike (Channing Tatum), in the film, directed by Steven Soderbergh.
Oscar-Winning Role in 'Dallas Buyers Club'
McConaughey went on to earn a buzzworthy role as Ron Woodruff, the real-life activist who, after being diagnosed with AIDS and given only six months to live in the mid-1980s, began advocating for and taking a regime of drugs that mitigated the disease's effects, in the biopic Dallas Buyers Club (2013). The film came to fruition after years in limbo, with McConaughey losing 30 pounds for the role. For his performance as Woodruff, the actor took home best actor honors at both the 2014 Academy Awards and Golden Globes.