born on 22/4/1937 in New York City, NY, United States
Nicholson at Dennis Hopper's Hollywood Walk of Fame Star ceremony, March 26, 2010
|Born||April 22 1937
New York City, New York, U.S.
|Residence||Hollywood Hills, California|
|Alma mater||Actors Studio|
|Occupation||Actor, director, producer, screenwriter|
|Home town||Neptune City, New Jersey|
|Spouse(s)||Sandra Knight (196268)|
|Children||4 (including Lorraine Nicholson)|
John Joseph "Jack" Nicholson (born April 22, 1937) is an American actor, film director, producer and writer. He is renowned for his often dark portrayals of neurotic characters. Nicholson has been nominated for an Academy Award twelve times, and has won the Academy Award for Best Actor twice: for One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest and for As Good as It Gets. He also won the Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor for the 1983 film Terms of Endearment. He is tied with Walter Brennan for most acting wins by a male actor (three). Nicholson is well known for playing villainous roles such as Jack Torrance in The Shining, "Frank Costello" in The Departed, and the Joker in 1989's Batman, among many other roles.
Nicholson is one of only two actors who has been nominated for an Academy Award for acting in every decade from the 1960s to 2000s (the other being Michael Caine). He has won seven Golden Globe Awards, and received a Kennedy Center Honor in 2001. In 1994, he became one of the youngest actors to be awarded the American Film Institute's Life Achievement Award. Notable films in which he has starred include, in chronological order, Easy Rider, Five Easy Pieces, Chinatown, One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest, The Passenger, The Shining, Reds, Terms of Endearment, Batman, A Few Good Men, As Good as It Gets, About Schmidt and The Departed.
Nicholson was born in St. Vincent's Hospital in New York City, the son of a showgirl, June Frances Nicholson (stage name June Nilson). June had married Italian American showman Donald Furcillo (stage name Donald Rose) six months earlier in Elkton, Maryland, on October 16, 1936. Furcillo was already married. Although he reportedly offered to take care of the child, June's mother Ethel insisted that she bring up the baby, partly so that June could pursue her dancing career. Although Furcillo claimed to be Nicholson's father and to have committed bigamy by marrying June, biographer Patrick McGilligan asserted in Jack's Life that Latvian-born Eddie King (originally Edgar A. Kirschfeld), June's manager, may have been Nicholson's biological father. Other sources suggest June Nicholson was unsure of who the father was. Nicholson's mother was of Irish, English, and Dutch descent, though he and his family reportedly self-identified as Irish.
Nicholson was brought up believing that his grandparents, John Joseph Nicholson (a department store window dresser in Manasquan, New Jersey) and Ethel May (née Rhoads, a hairdresser, beautician and amateur artist in Manasquan), were his parents. Nicholson only discovered that his "parents" were actually his grandparents and his sister was in fact his mother in 1974, after a journalist for TIME magazine who was doing a feature on Nicholson informed him of the fact. By this time, both his mother and grandmother had died (in 1963 and 1970, respectively). Nicholson has stated he does not know who his biological father is, saying "Only Ethel and June knew and they never told anybody", and has chosen not to have a DNA test or to pursue the matter.
Nicholson grew up in Neptune City, New Jersey. He was raised in his mother's Roman Catholic religion. Before starting high school, his family moved to an apartment in Spring Lake, New Jersey. "Nick", as he was known to his high school friends, attended nearby Manasquan High School, where he was voted "class clown" by the Class of 1954. He was in detention every day for a whole school year. A theatre and a drama award at the school are named in his honor. In 2004, Nicholson attended his 50-year high school reunion accompanied by his aunt Lorraine.
When Nicholson first came to Hollywood, he worked as a gofer for animation legends William Hanna and Joseph Barbera at the MGM cartoon studio. Seeing his talent as an artist, they offered Nicholson a starting level position as an animation artist. However, citing his desire to become an actor, he declined.
He made his film debut in a low-budget teen drama The Cry Baby Killer, in 1958, playing the title role. For the following decade, Nicholson was a frequent collaborator with the film's producer, Roger Corman. Corman directed Nicholson on several occasions, most notably in The Little Shop of Horrors, as masochistic dental patient Wilbur Force, and also in The Raven, The Terror, and The St. Valentine's Day Massacre. He worked frequently with director Monte Hellman as well on low-budget westerns, though two in particular, Ride in the Whirlwind and The Shooting, initially failed to find interest from any US film distributors but gained cult success on the art house circuit in France and were later sold to television.
Rise to fame
With his acting career heading nowhere, Nicholson seemed resigned to a career behind the camera as a writer/director. His first real taste of writing success was the LSD-fueled screenplay for the 1967 film, The Trip (directed by Corman), which starred Peter Fonda and Dennis Hopper. Nicholson also co-wrote, with Bob Rafelson, the movie Head, which starred The Monkees. In addition, he also arranged the movie's soundtrack. However, after a spot opened up in Fonda and Hopper's Easy Rider, it led to his first big acting break. Nicholson played hard-drinking lawyer George Hanson, for which he received his first Oscar nomination. The part of Hanson was a lucky break for Nicholsonthe role had in fact been written for actor Rip Torn, who was a close friend of screen writer Terry Southern, but Torn withdrew from the project after a bitter argument with the film's director Dennis Hopper, during which the two men almost came to blows.
A Best Actor nomination came the following year for his persona-defining role in Five Easy Pieces (1970). Also that year, he appeared in the movie adaptation of On A Clear Day You Can See Forever, although most of his performance was left on the cutting room floor. Jack was the first choice to play the role of Father Damien Karras in The Exorcist, but the role was turned over to Jason Miller.
Other Nicholson roles included Hal Ashby's The Last Detail (1973), for which he was awarded Best Actor at the Cannes Film Festival, and the classic Roman Polanski noir thriller, Chinatown (1974). Nicholson was nominated for the Academy Award for Best Actor for both films. Nicholson was friends with the director long before the death of Polanski's wife, Sharon Tate, at the hands of the Manson Family, and supported him in the days following the deaths. After Tate's death, Nicholson began sleeping with a hammer under his pillow, and took breaks from work to attend the Manson trial. It was at Nicholson's home where the rape case for which Polanski was arrested occurred. Nicholson would go on to star in The Who's Tommy (1975), directed by Ken Russell, and Michelangelo Antonioni's The Passenger (1975).
Nicholson earned his first Best Actor Oscar for portraying Randle P. McMurphy in the movie adaptation of Ken Kesey's novel One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest, directed by Milo Forman in 1975. His Oscar was matched when Louise Fletcher received the Best Actress Award for her portrayal of Nurse Ratched. After this, he began to take more unusual roles. He took a small role in The Last Tycoon, opposite Robert De Niro. He took a less sympathetic role in Arthur Penn's western The Missouri Breaks, specifically to work with Marlon Brando. He followed this by making his second directorial effort with the western comedy Goin' South. His first movie as a director was a 1971 quirky release called Drive, He Said.
Although he garnered no Academy Award for Stanley Kubrick's adaptation of Stephen King's The Shining (1980), it remains one of his more significant roles. His second Oscar, the Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor, came for his role of retired astronaut Garrett Breedlove in Terms of Endearment (1983), directed by James L. Brooks. Nicholson continued to work prolifically in the 80s, starring in such films as The Postman Always Rings Twice (1981), Reds (1981), Prizzi's Honor (1985), The Witches of Eastwick (1987), Broadcast News (1987), and Ironweed (1987). Three Oscar nominations also followed (Reds, Prizzi's Honor, and Ironweed).
Nicholson introduced several acts at Live Aid at the JFK Stadium in July 1985. He turned down the role of John Book in Witness. The 1989 Batman movie, wherein Nicholson played the psychotic murderer and villain, The Joker, was an international smash hit, and a lucrative percentage deal earned Nicholson about $60 million. For his role as hot-headed Col. Nathan R. Jessep in A Few Good Men (1992), a movie about a murder in a U.S. Marine Corps unit, Nicholson received yet another Academy nomination. This film contained the court scene in which Nicholson famously explodes, "You can't handle the truth!", in one of the Aaron Sorkin-penned monologues to become part of popular culture.
In 1996, Nicholson collaborated once more with Batman director Tim Burton on Mars Attacks!, pulling double duty as two contrasting characters, President James Dale and Las Vegas property developer Art Land. At first studio executives at Warner Bros. disliked the idea of killing off Nicholson's character, so Burton created two characters and killed them both off. Not all of Nicholson's performances have been well received. He was nominated for Razzie Awards as worst actor for Man Trouble (1992) and Hoffa (1992). However, Nicholson's performance in Hoffa also earned him a Golden Globe nomination.
Nicholson went on to win his next Academy Award for Best Actor for his role as Melvin Udall, a mean-spirited, compulsive obsessive neurotic author in As Good as It Gets (1997), again directed by Brooks. His Oscar was matched with the Academy Award for Best Actress for Helen Hunt as a Manhattan waitress drawn into a love/hate friendship with Udall, a frequent diner in the restaurant in which she worked. In 2001, Nicholson was the first actor to receive the Stanislavsky Award at the Moscow International Film Festival for "conquering the heights of acting and faithfulness".
In About Schmidt (2002), Nicholson portrayed a retired Omaha, Nebraska actuary who questions his own life following his wife's death. His quietly restrained performance earned him an Academy Award Nomination for Best Actor. In Anger Management (2003), he plays an aggressive therapist assigned to help overly pacifist Adam Sandler. In 2003, Nicholson also starred in Something's Gotta Give, as an aging playboy who falls for the mother (Diane Keaton) of his young girlfriend.
In late 2006, Nicholson marked his return to the "dark side" as Frank Costello, a sadistic Boston Irish Mob boss presiding over Matt Damon and Leonardo DiCaprio in Martin Scorsese's Oscar-winning The Departed, a remake of Andrew Lau's Infernal Affairs.
In November 2006, Nicholson began filming his next project, Rob Reiner's The Bucket List, a role for which he shaved his head. The film starred Nicholson and Morgan Freeman as dying men who fulfill their list of goals. The film was released on December 25, 2007 (limited), and January 11, 2008 (wide). In researching the role, Nicholson visited a Los Angeles hospital to see how cancer patients coped with their illnesses. His last film role to date saw him reunite with Terms of Endearment and As Good as It Gets director James L. Brooks for a small supporting role as Paul Rudd's father in How Do You Know.
Family and relationships
Nicholson has been romantically linked to numerous actresses and models, including Michelle Phillips, Bebe Buell, and Lara Flynn Boyle. Nicholson's longest relationship was for 16 years with actress Anjelica Huston, daughter of film director John Huston, from 1973 to 1989. However, the relationship ended when the media reported that Rebecca Broussard had become pregnant with Nicholson's child. Nicholson and Broussard had two children together, Lorraine (born 1990) and Raymond Nicholson (born 1992). Nicholson's other children are Jennifer (born 1963 with Sandra Knight) and Honey Hollman (b. 1981 with Winnie Hollman). Actress Susan Anspach contends that her son, Caleb Goddard (born 1970), was fathered by Nicholson, though he is not convinced he is the father.
Nicholson lived next door to Marlon Brando for a number of years on Mulholland Drive in Beverly Hills. Warren Beatty also lived nearby, earning the road the nickname "Bad Boy Drive". After Brando's death in 2004, Nicholson purchased his neighbor's bungalow for $6.1 million, with the purpose of having it demolished. Nicholson stated that it was done out of respect to Brando's legacy, as it had become too expensive to renovate the "derelict" building which was plagued by mold.
Nicholson shared a friendship with author-journalist Hunter S. Thompson, described in his autobiography "Kingdom of Fear" where, according to Thompson, they would exchange "bizarre" presents which resulted in a perceived assassination attempt against the actor. Thompson appeared outside his home on the night of Nicholson's birthday, having set off a high-powered spotlight and gunfire, playing a tape of animal cries through an amplifier to awaken him. He then left a freshly-cut elk's heart on his door as a joke before leaving when it appeared that nobody would exit the house. Following the death of Thompson in 2005, he and fellow actors Johnny Depp, John Cusack, and Sean Penn attended his private memorial service in Colorado.
Nicholson is a fan of the New York Yankees and Los Angeles Lakers. His attendance at Lakers games is legendary, as he is a season ticket holder since 1970 and has held courtside season tickets for the past 25 years at both The Forum and the Staples Center, missing very few games. In a few instances, Nicholson has engaged in arguments with game officials and opposing players, and has even walked onto the court. His ardent refusal to miss a Lakers home game means that studios are rumored to have to schedule filming around the Lakers home schedule although he disputed this claim in an interview with BBC radio in 2008.
Nicholson is a collector of twentieth century and contemporary art, including the work of Scottish artist Jack Vettriano.
Former California Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger and First Lady Maria Shriver announced on May 28, 2008, that Nicholson would be inducted into the California Hall of Fame, located at The California Museum for History, Women and the Arts. The induction ceremony took place on December 15, 2008, where he was inducted alongside 11 other legendary Californians.
In 2010, Nicholson was inducted into the New Jersey Hall of Fame.
In 2011, Nicholson received an honorary Doctor of Fine Arts degree from Brown University at its two hundred and forty-third commencement. At the ceremony Ruth Simmons, Brown University's president, called him, "the most skilled actor of our lifetime." 
Academy Awards history
With twelve nominations (eight for Best Actor and four for Best Supporting Actor), Jack Nicholson is the most nominated male actor in Academy Awards history. Only Nicholson and Michael Caine have been nominated for an acting (lead or supporting) Academy Award in five different decades: 1960s, 1970s, 1980s, 1990s, and 2000s. With three Oscar wins, he also ties with Walter Brennan for the second highest-number of Oscar wins in acting categories (all of Brennan's wins, however, were for Best Supporting Actor).
At the 79th Academy Awards, Nicholson had fully shaved his hair for his role in The Bucket List. Those ceremonies represented the seventh time he has presented the Academy Award for Best Picture (1972, 1977, 1978, 1990, 1993, 2006, and 2007). Nicholson is an active and voting member of the Academy. During the last decade he has attended almost every ceremony, whether nominated or not, sitting in the front row.
|1958||The Cry Baby Killer||Jimmy Wallace|
|1960||Too Soon to Love||Buddy|
|1960||The Wild Ride||Johnny Varron|
|1960||The Little Shop of Horrors||Wilbur Force|
|1960||Studs Lonigan||Weary Reilly|
|1962||The Broken Land||Will Brocious|
|1963||The Terror||Andre Duvalier||Also (Uncredited) Director|
|1963||The Raven||Rexford Bedlo|
|1964||Flight to Fury||Jay Wickham||Also Writer|
|1965||Ride in the Whirlwind||Wes||Also Producer|
|1966||The Shooting||Billy Spear||Also Producer|
|1967||The St. Valentine's Day Massacre||Gino, Hit Man||Uncredited|
|1969||Easy Rider||George Hanson||
|1970||On A Clear Day You Can See Forever||Tad Pringle|
|1970||The Rebel Rousers||Bunny|
|1970||Five Easy Pieces||Robert Eroica Dupea||
|1971||Carnal Knowledge||Jonathan Fuerst|| Sant Jordi Award for Best Foreign Actor
NominatedGolden Globe Award for Best Actor Motion Picture Drama
|1971||A Safe Place||Mitch|
|1971||Drive, He Said||Also Producer/Writer/DirectorNominated for Palme d'Or|
|1972||The King of Marvin Gardens||David Staebler|
|1973||The Last Detail||Billy "Bad Ass" Buddusky||
|1974||Chinatown||J.J. 'Jake' Gittes||
|1975||The Fortune||Oscar Sullivan aka Oscar Dix|
|1975||One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest||Randle McMurphy||
|1975||The Passenger||David Locke|
|1976||The Missouri Breaks||Tom Logan|
|1976||The Last Tycoon||Brimmer|
|1978||Goin' South||Henry Lloyd Moon||Also Director|
|1980||The Shining||Jack Torrance|
|1981||The Postman Always Rings Twice||Frank Chambers|
|1981||Ragtime||Pirate at beach||Uncredited|
|1982||The Border||Charlie Smith|
|1983||Terms of Endearment||Garrett Breedlove||
|1984||Terror in the Aisles||Archival Footage Only|
|1985||Prizzi's Honor||Charley Partanna||
|1987||The Witches of Eastwick||Daryl Van Horne||
|1987||Broadcast News||Bill Rorich||New York Film Critics Circle Award for Best Actor also for Ironweed and The Witches of Eastwick|
|1989||Batman||Jack Napier / The Joker||
|1990||The Two Jakes||J.J. 'Jake' Gittes||Also (Uncredited) Producer/Director|
|1992||Man Trouble||Eugene Earl Axline, aka Harry Bliss||NominatedRazzie Award for Worst Actor|
|1992||A Few Good Men||Col. Nathan R. Jessep||
|1992||Hoffa||James R. 'Jimmy' Hoffa|| NominatedGolden Globe Award for Best Actor Motion Picture Drama
NominatedRazzie Award for Worst Actor
|1994||Wolf||Will Randall||NominatedSaturn Award for Best Actor|
|1995||The Crossing Guard||Freddy Gale|
|1996||Blood and Wine||Alex Gates|
|1996||The Evening Star||Garrett Breedlove|
|1996||Mars Attacks!||President James Dale / Art Land||NominatedSatellite Award for Best Actor - Motion Picture Musical or Comedy|
|1997||As Good as It Gets||Melvin Udall||
|2001||The Pledge||Jerry Black|
|2002||About Schmidt||Warren R. Schmidt||
|2003||Anger Management||Dr. Buddy Rydell||NominatedTeen Choice Award for Choice Movie Hissy Fit|
|2003||Something's Gotta Give||Harry Sanborn||NominatedGolden Globe Award for Best Actor Motion Picture Musical or Comedy|
|2006||The Departed||Francis 'Frank' Costello||
|2007||The Bucket List||Edward Cole|
|2010||How Do You Know||Charles Madison|
- Additionally, in 1999, Nicholson was presented with the Golden Globe's Cecil B. DeMille Award lifetime achievement award.
- 1.0 1.1 Marx, Arthur (1995). On His Own Terms. Cigar Aficionado.
- Douglas, Edward (2004). Jack: The Great Seducer The Life and Many Loves of Jack Nicholson, New York: Harper Collins.
- Berliner, Eve. Marriage certificate of June Nilson and Donald Furcillo. Young Jack Nicholson: Auspicious Beginnings. Evesmag.com. 2001.
- 4.0 4.1 McDougal, Dennis (October 2007). Five Easy Decades: How Jack Nicholson Became the Biggest Movie Star in Modern Times, p. 8, 278, Wiley.
- 5.0 5.1 The Religious Affiliation of Jack Nicholson. Adherents.com (August 23, 2009).
- 6.0 6.1 'I Wasn't Inhibited by Anything'. Parade Magazine (December 4, 2007). Retrieved on February 16, 2007.
- Ebert, Roger (November 27, 1983). Interview with Jack Nicholson. Chicago Sun-Times. Retrieved on February 16, 2007.
- 8.0 8.1 Collins, Nancy. The Great Seducer: Jack Nicholson. Rolling Stone magazine, March 29, 1984 (Scan copy at Jack Nicholson.org)
- McDougal, Dennis (October 2007). Five Easy Decades: How Jack Nicholson Became the Biggest Movie Star in Modern Times, Wiley.
- McDougal, Dennis (October 2007). Five Easy Decades: How Jack Nicholson Became the Biggest Movie Star in Modern Times, Wiley. "When Jack was ready for high school, the family moved once more-this time two miles (3 km) farther south to old-money Spring Lake, Jersey's so called Irish Riviera, where Ethel May set up her beauty parlor in a rambling duplex at 505 Mercer Avenue."
- Nicholson, Jack. "No Getting Away From NJ: Hollywood legend Jack Nicholson attempts to elucidate the definitive quality of New Jersey.", New Jersey Monthly, November 15, 2010. Accessed July 14, 2011. "I grew up on the Shore...in Neptune, Neptune City, Manasquan, and Spring Lake. Graduated from Manasquan [High School]. No offense to Atlantic City, but, where we grew up, we called it 'The Shore.'"
- McGilligan, P. Jack's Life. W.W. Norton & Company, 1994.
- Hill, Lee. A Grand Guy: The Life and Art of Terry Southern. Bloomsbury, 2001.
- Dunne, Dominick, Murder Most Unforgettable, Vanity Fair, April 2001. URL accessed on January 28, 2009.
- 15.0 15.1 McDougal, Dennis (2007). Five easy decades: how Jack Nicholson became the biggest movie star in modern times, p. 109110, John Wiley and Sons.
- McGilligan, Patrick (1996). Jack's Life: A Biography of Jack Nicholson, W. W. Norton & Company.
- Film Comment June 1985.
- Von Strunckel, Shelley, What the Stars say about them Jack Nicholson and Susan Anspach, The Sunday Times, June 23, 2006, p. 36. URL accessed on September 29, 2009.
- Harlow, John, Jack Nicholson to demolish his friend Brando's house, The Sunday Times, 6. URL accessed on 26 September 2011.
- . Mirror News. December 22, 2008.
- . People Magazine. March 9, 2005.
- 23.0 23.1 Nicholson gets court rage. BBC News. May 11, 2003.
- Scorsese Gets Jacked By Nicholson. Rotten Tomatoes.com. July 25, 2005.
- Jack Nicholson BBC Radio 2 interview
- Braid, Mary, Jack Nicholson loves him. The public adores him. His erotic art has made him millions and his posters outsell Van Gogh and Star Wars. So why is Jack Vettriano so bitter?, The Independent (UK), Independent News & media plc, July 23, 1999. URL accessed on February 22, 2009.
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- "Some Wisdom from Jack... and Binder!" BlogDailyHerald. June 3, 2011.
Wikimedia Commons has media related to: Jack Nicholson
- Jack Nicholson at the Internet Movie Database
- Jack Nicholson at Yahoo! Movies
- Rolling Stone Interview with Jack Nicholson
- Jack Nicholson slideshow at AMCtv.com
- Literature on Jack Nicholson
|Awards for Jack Nicholson|