Fraser at the premiere of The Mummy: Tomb of the Dragon Emperor in 2008
Brendan James Fraser
December 3, 1968
Indianapolis, Indiana, U.S.
(m. 1998; div. 2007)
|Relatives||George Genereux (uncle)|
Brendan James Fraser ( FRAY-z?r;[a] born December 3, 1968) is an American-Canadian actor. He is best known for playing Rick O'Connell in The Mummy trilogy (1999, 2001, 2008), as well as for leading roles in comedy and fantasy films including Encino Man (1992), George of the Jungle (1997), Bedazzled (2000), Looney Tunes: Back in Action (2003) and Journey to the Center of the Earth (2008). Fraser branched into dramatic cinema with roles in School Ties (1992), Gods and Monsters (1998), The Quiet American (2002) and Crash (2004).
During a hiatus from film acting, Fraser found a new audience in television, with supporting roles in the History miniseries Texas Rising (2015), the Showtime drama series The Affair (2016-2017), the FX anthology series Trust (2018) and the DC Universe action series Doom Patrol (2019-).
Fraser, the youngest of four boys, was born in Indianapolis, Indiana, the son of Canadians Carol Mary (née Genereux) and Peter Fraser. His mother was a sales counselor, and his father was a former journalist who worked as a Canadian foreign service officer for the Government Office of Tourism. His maternal uncle, George Genereux, was the only Canadian to win a gold medal in the 1952 Summer Olympics, at the Olympic Trap. He has three older brothers: Kevin, Regan, and Sean. He has Irish, Scottish, German, Czech, and French-Canadian ancestry. He holds dual American and Canadian citizenship.
Fraser's family moved often during his childhood, living in Eureka, California; Seattle, Washington; Ottawa, Ontario; the Netherlands; and Switzerland. He attended Upper Canada College, a private boarding school in Toronto. While on vacation in London, he attended his first professional theatre show in the West End.
He graduated from Seattle's Cornish College of the Arts in 1990. He began acting at a small acting college in New York City. He planned on studying toward a Master of Fine Arts in Acting from Southern Methodist University, but stopped in Hollywood on the way and decided to stay there to work in film.
Fraser made a brief 1988 appearance in a reenactment on the TV series America's Most Wanted, as a friend of murder victim Rodney Mark Peterson. In 1991, Fraser made his film debut with a bit part in Dogfight. He got his first leading film role in the 1992 comedy film Encino Man where he played a frozen pre-historic caveman who is thawed out in the present day. The film was a moderate box office success and is considered a cult film. That same year he starred with Matt Damon and Chris O'Donnell in School Ties. In 1994, he played Steve Nebraska in The Scout and Montgomery "Monty" Kessler in With Honors as well as co-star with Adam Sandler and Steve Buscemi in Airheads. He went on to star in films such as Philip Ridley's The Passion of Darkly Noon (1995) and The Twilight of the Golds (1997). He also had a small part in the movie Now and Then (1995).
He had his first major box office success with the 1997 comedy film George of the Jungle which was based on the animated series of the same title created by Jay Ward. His biggest commercial success came with the adventure fantasy film The Mummy (1999) and its sequel The Mummy Returns (2001).
He went on to star in several films which underperformed or only did moderately at the box office, such as Dudley Do-Right (1999), which was based on another Jay Ward animated series; Blast from the Past (1999); Bedazzled (2000); and Monkeybone (2001).
He also played a dramatic role in 1998's Gods and Monsters, which was based on the life of James Whale (Ian McKellen), who directed Frankenstein. The film was written and directed by Bill Condon, and follows the loss of creativity, ambiguous sexuality and unlikely bonds between a heterosexual gardener and a homosexual, tortured and ailing filmmaker. He lent his voice for the unreleased animated film Big Bug Man. In 2002, he starred alongside Michael Caine in the political drama The Quiet American which was well received by critics. In 2004, he appeared as part of an ensemble cast in the Academy Award-winning film Crash.
He has also made guest appearances on the television shows Scrubs, King of the Hill and The Simpsons. In March 2006, he was inducted into Canada's Walk of Fame, the first American-born actor to receive the honor. However, as of 2019 , he does not have a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame. After a six-year hiatus in the franchise, Fraser returned for the second sequel to The Mummy released in August 2008 and titled The Mummy: Tomb of the Dragon Emperor. Filming started in Montreal on July 27, 2007 and also starred Jet Li as Emperor Han. That same year, he starred in the 3D film adaptation of Jules Verne's Journey to the Center of the Earth and the fantasy film Inkheart (chosen personally for the lead role by the novel's author Cornelia Funke).
Fraser starred as "Brick" in the West End production of Tennessee Williams's Cat on a Hot Tin Roof in September 2001, directed by Anthony Page. Castmates included Ned Beatty, Frances O'Connor and Gemma Jones. The show closed on January 12, 2002, with Fraser garnering many excellent reviews. In 2010, Fraser starred in a Broadway production of Elling, but the play closed after 9 performances due to lackluster reviews. After appearing in the critically panned Furry Vengeance in 2010, Fraser moved from being represented by William Morris Endeavor to the Creative Artists Agency. In 2010, he starred in Whole Lotta Sole directed by Terry George and in 2011, he was set to play William Tell in The Legend of William Tell: 3D, directed by Eric Brevig, with whom Fraser had also worked on in Journey to the Center of the Earth. Filming was delayed and late in 2011, Fraser sued the producer Todd Moyer for promised wages. Moyer later countersued for assault, which Fraser dismissed as a desperate attempt to avoid paying his debt. In 2013, he played an Elvis Presley impersonator in the ensemble black comedy Pawn Shop Chronicles.
Fraser portrayed Clifford "Cliff" Steele / Robotman in the Titans TV series, with Jake Michaels physically portraying Robotman. He reprised the role in the spin-off series Doom Patrol, where he voices the character and appears as Steele in flashbacks; Riley Shanahan-replacing Jake Michaels in Titans-physically portrays Robotman.
After arriving in Los Angeles, California, Fraser met actress Afton Smith while attending a barbecue at Winona Ryder's house on July 4, 1993. They married on September 27, 1998, and had three sons: Griffin Arthur Fraser (born 2002), Holden Fletcher Fraser (born 2004), and Leland Francis Fraser (born 2006). After their home in Beverly Hills, California sold in April 2007 for $3 million, Fraser's publicist announced in December 2007 that the couple had decided to divorce. In early 2013, Fraser petitioned the courts for a reduction of his alimony and child support payments, asserting that he was unable to meet the annual obligation of $900,000; Smith, in turn, accused Fraser of hiding financial assets. As of February 2018 , Fraser lives near Bedford, New York.
Fraser speaks fluent French, and serves on the board of directors for FilmAid International. He is an accomplished amateur photographer, and has used several instant cameras in movies and on TV shows, most notably on his guest roles on Scrubs. In his first appearance, he used a Polaroid pack film; and on his second appearance, he used a Holga with a Polaroid back, a Japanese-only model. The book Collector's Guide to Instant Cameras has a dedication to Fraser.
The stunts Fraser performed in his action roles eventually required him to undergo several surgeries over a period of seven years, including a partial knee replacement, a laminectomy, and vocal cord surgery.
Fraser alleged in 2018 that he was sexually assaulted by Philip Berk, the president of the Hollywood Foreign Press Association at a luncheon in the summer of 2003. The incident, and his subsequent divorce, launched Fraser into a depression which, combined with his health issues and a backlash within the industry over speaking out against Berk, he believes caused his career to decline.
|1991||Dogfight||Sailor No. 1|
|1992||School Ties||David Greene|
|1993||Twenty Bucks||Sam Mastrewski|
|1993||Younger and Younger||Winston Younger|
|1993||Son in Law||Link||Cameo|
|1994||With Honors||Montgomery "Monty" Kessler|
|1994||Airheads||Chester "Chazz" Darby|
|1994||In the Army Now||Link||Cameo|
|1994||The Scout||Steve Nebraska|
|1995||The Passion of Darkly Noon||Darkly Noon|
|1995||Now and Then||Vietnam Veteran||Uncredited cameo|
|1996||Brain Candy||Placebo Patient||Uncredited cameo|
|1996||Mrs. Winterbourne||Bill/Hugh Winterbourne|
|1996||The Twilight of the Golds||David Gold|
|1997||George of the Jungle||George|
|1998||Still Breathing||Fletcher McBracken|
|1998||Gods and Monsters||Clayton Boone|
|1999||Blast from the Past||Adam Webber|
|1999||The Mummy||Rick O'Connell|
|1999||Dudley Do-Right||Dudley Do-Right|
|2000||Sinbad: Beyond the Veil of Mists||Sinbad||Voice|
|2001||The Mummy Returns||Rick O'Connell|
|2002||The Quiet American||Alden Pyle|
|2003||Dickie Roberts: Former Child Star||Himself||Uncredited cameo|
|2003||Looney Tunes: Back in Action||DJ Drake, Himself||Also the voice of Tasmanian Devil and She-Devil|
|2006||Journey to the End of the Night||Paul|
|2006||The Last Time||Jamie Bashant||Also executive producer|
|2007||The Air I Breathe||Pleasure|
|2008||Journey to the Center of the Earth||Professor Trevor Anderson||Also executive producer|
|2008||The Mummy: Tomb of the Dragon Emperor||Rick O'Connell|
|2009||G.I. Joe: The Rise of Cobra||Sgt. Stone||Uncredited cameo|
|2010||Extraordinary Measures||John Crowley|
|2010||Furry Vengeance||Dan Sanders||Also executive producer|
|2012||Stand Off||Joe Maguire||Also executive producer|
|2013||Escape from Planet Earth||Scorch Supernova||Voice|
|2013||A Case of You||Tony|
|2013||Hair Brained||Leo Searly|
|2013||Pawn Shop Chronicles||Ricky Baldoski|
|2013||Breakout||Jack Damson||Direct-to-DVD; also producer|
|2013||Gimme Shelter||Tom Fitzpatrick|
|2014||The Nut Job||Grayson||Voice|
|2019||The Poison Rose||Dr. Miles Mitchell|
|2019||Line of Descent||Charlie 'Charu' Jolpin||Post-production|
|2020||Behind the Curtain of Night||Ronay||Post-production|
|1991||My Old School||Chevy||Short film|
|1991||Child of Darkness, Child of Light||John's friend||Television film|
|1991||Guilty Until Proven Innocent||Bobby McLaughlin||Television film|
|1995||Fallen Angels||Johnny Lamb||Episode: "The Professional Man"|
|1997||Duckman||Sammons Cagle (voice)||Episode: "Dammit, Hollywood"|
|1998||The Simpsons||Brad (voice)||Episode: "King of the Hill"|
|2000, 2005||King of the Hill||David Kalaiki-Ali/Irv Bennet/Jimmy Beardon (voices)||2 episodes|
|2002, 2004||Scrubs||Ben Sullivan||3 episodes|
|2009||Wishology||Turbo Thunder (voice)||Television film|
|2015||Texas Rising||Billy Anderson||5 episodes|
|2016-2017||The Affair||John Gunther||6 episodes|
|2017||Nightcap||Himself||Episode: "Poop Show"|
|2018||Trust||James Fletcher Chase||8 episodes|
|2018||Condor||Nathan Fowler||6 episodes|
|2018||Titans||Robotman (voice)||Episode: "Doom Patrol"|
|2019-present||Doom Patrol||Cliff Steele|||
|2004||Revenge of the Mummy||Rick O'Connell||Universal Studios Florida version only|
|1993||Chicago Film Critics Association Award||Most Promising Actor||Encino Man and School Ties||Nominated|
|1997||Seattle International Film Festival Award||Best Actor||Still Breathing||Won|
|2000||Saturn Award||Best Actor||The Mummy||Nominated|
|Blockbuster Entertainment Award||Favorite Actor - Action||Nominated|
|2001||Teen Choice Award||Film - Choice Actor||The Mummy Returns||Nominated|
|2005||Gotham Awards||Best Ensemble Cast||Crash||Nominated|
|Hollywood Film Festival Award||Ensemble of the Year||Won|
|2006||Broadcast Film Critics Association||Best Cast||Won|
|Screen Actors Guild Award||Outstanding Performance by a Cast in a Motion Picture||Won|
Fraser will play Nathan Fowler, an unstable yet efficient central cog in an unholy alliance between the private military company that employs him and the CIA.