Dustin Hoffman
Actor
Dustin Hoffman
Dustin Lee Hoffman is an American actor with a career in film, television, and theatre since 1960. He has been known for his versatile portrayals of antiheroes and vulnerable characters. He first drew critical praise for the play Eh?, for which he won a Theatre World Award and a Drama Desk Award. This was soon followed by his breakthrough 1967 film role as Benjamin Braddock, the title character in The Graduate.
Biography
Dustin Hoffman's personal information overview.
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News
News abour Dustin Hoffman from around the web
Still fabulous at 50: 12 stylish sports cars that have aged beautifully
CNN - about 1 month
Fifty years ago, the Beatles were singing "All You Need is Love." Hot pants and go-go boots met the dress code for London's fashionable Carnaby Street, Lyndon Johnson was in the White House, and the top grossing film for 1967 was "The Graduate", starring Dustin Hoffman, Katherine Ross, and a little red sports car from Italian maker Alfa Romeo.
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CNN article
An Unforgettable Evening with Shlomo Carlebach
Huffington Post - about 2 months
I am Jewish. My parents were Jewish. My grandparents were Jewish and all their parents and grandparents were Jewish. My father's father's name was "Abraham". His brother's name was "Moses". I was circumcised, went to Hebrew School, was bar mitzvahed, and ate more than my share of bagels, lox, gefilte fish, and matzoh balls. Like any good Jew, I celebrated the High Holidays. Wait... hold on a minute... I don't think "celebrate" is actually the right word. Make that "endure" -- me, as a young boy, being far more devoted to baseball and playing with my dog than fiddling around with that silky, red prayer book marker separating one section of indecipherable Old Testament text from another. My Rabbi, the very forthright, wise, benevolent, Rabbi Alvin D. Rubin, always seemed, at least from my adolescent point of view, to be wondering if he had, somehow, lifetimes ago, taken a wrong turn out of the Sinai desert, finding himself, as he was, these days, shepherding a flock of polyester-wear ...
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Huffington Post article
Carnegie Deli - Last of the Latkes
Huffington Post - about 2 months
There's Carnegie Hall. Carnegie Mellon. Dale Carnegie. Carnegie Hill. And then there's Carnegie Deli. From brisket bliss to cloud nine kasha, it's been a heavenly food haven for 79 years. Latkes the size of flying saucers. Plates toppling over with 4" piles of shaved beef and sauerkraut. And now the decades of deli decadence and delight are over. 3D: Disney, Dustin & Deli 1937. The year Warren Beatty, Dustin Hoffman and Jane Fonda were born; Amelia Earhart disappeared; Disney's Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs premiered; Howard Hughes broke his own transcontinental flight record, and the Hobbit was published by J.R.R. Tolkien. Oh yes, and the same year Carnegie Deli opened on Seventh Avenue, just across the street from Carnegie Hall. Remember the old joke: "How do you get to Carnegie Hall?" "Practice." I would have answered: "First find the Carnegie Deli; then just go two blocks north to 57th Street!" Not Just Another Deli When Milton Parker and Leo Steiner too ...
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Huffington Post article
TBT to when BlackBerry phones were cool
Yahoo News - 5 months
Now that BlackBerry officially isn't making phones anymore, let's look back at a simpler time: the early 2000s, when BlackBerry ruled and Apple drooled. (The iPhone didn't exist yet, so BlackBerry was killing the mobile game.) When the BlackBerry 850 was released in 1999, the cool factor of cell phones began to rise. Throughout the early 2000s, before the rise of advanced touchscreen technology, everyone who was anyone was busy scrolling on their trackballs and BBM-ing their besties. In case you haven't heard the tragic news, on Wednesday BlackBerry announced it will stop making its signature smartphones and instead focus on creating software and its services business.  SEE ALSO: BlackBerry gives up on building phones During this emotional time, we feel it's necessary to take a look back on the BlackBerry glory days and remember these seven times when BlackBerry phones were undeniably cool. 1. When Paris Hilton worshiped her BlackBerry Image: Steve Mack/getty images Perhaps PEAK BlackB ...
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Yahoo News article
Jerome "Ro" Brooks' New Role as Author: TV Star Shares "How To Go From Extra To Actor" in New Book
Huffington Post - 5 months
Jerome "Ro" Brooks is best known for playing the recurring character Michael in Tyler Perry's The Haves and the Have Nots. The wildly popular prime time soap opera, which will be enjoying its fourth season in 2017, brought the 46-year old actor a new level of fame and opportunity. However, Brooks has actually been involved in the movie business since 1993. His first film appearance was as an uncredited extra in Robert Townsend's superhero comedy The Meteor Man. It was the neophyte actor's first time on a professional set... and also a "calling" of sorts. Brooks recalls, "I knew it. I remember thinking, 'This feels so good!' I was treated so well. The actors were treating me like a fellow actor. From that point on, there was no turning back. I was home." He went on to appear in music videos and in many film and TV roles, including Sons of Anarchy and The Wire , which was shot in his hometown of Baltimore. To this day, Brooks looks upon his work as an extra as crucial to his su ...
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Huffington Post article
8 Happiness Secrets Only Cat Owners Know
Huffington Post - 7 months
Happiness Secret 1: You’ll never miss a single, glorious springtime dawn.  No matter how early the sun is coming up now that daylight saving time has kicked in. Sure, you hadn’t planned on waking up quite so early—you got home from the after-party at, what, 2 a.m.? But now, the light is filtering in through the blinds, and a certain someone is stalking around your pillow, licking your face and—when you try to bury it in your arm—poking her paw under your elbow...oh, you’re awake? Why, what a coincidence—my food dish is empty! Happiness Secret 2: No matter how poor you think your sense of humor is—No one ever laughs at my jokes. Why can’t I land a punch line? And why on earth couldn’t I come up with something devastatingly clever to say when I ran into my ex last night with his new girlfriend?—you live with at least one creature who has an even worse one. Who, in fact, possesses absolutely no sense of humor whatsoever. This doesn’t mean that cats don’t do hilarious things by mist ...
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Huffington Post article
And Now a Word to the Graduates
Huffington Post - 9 months
Dear Class of 2016: When I began college 36 years ago, the new president was a former b-list entertainer who many thought was a simple-minded warmonger. Let us pray that history does not repeat itself three and a half decades later. I had spent my senior year of high school working on the campaign of another presidential candidate who came to power by riding the coattails of a revered relative. His message of hope and change was bold and inspiring to young Americans like me, but like Bernie Sanders, he was beaten by an establishment politician. I spent the rest of the year insisting to my friends that America would not elect a man who was a bad entertainer, who spoke in simple clichés, who talked about building up our military so we could go to war against our enemies abroad. Surely our country is smarter than that, I thought naively, displaying all the hubris and faith of an 18-year-old. I believed that my country was a rational, forward-thinking place. I was wrong. ...
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Huffington Post article
Clinton and Trump: Sadly, It's Politics as Usual
The Huffington Post - 9 months
In the film Tootsie, Dustin Hoffman plays a struggling actor. After an audition, the casting director tells him they need someone shorter. "I can be shorter," he says, taking the lifts out of his shoes. "Well, we need someone younger," comes the reply. "I can be younger," Hoffman pleads, mimicking a child's voice." "What I mean is, we need someone else," the director finally hammers home. In a case of life imitating art, voters in the 2016 presidential campaign have also made it clear that they need someone else. Of 48.7 million primary votes cast, 58 percent have gone to the combination of Donald Trump, Bernie Sanders, and Ted Cruz, the three candidates who openly snubbed their noses at the political establishment. Each has aspired to be the "someone else" in the race. Only Trump remains. Yet neither he nor Hillary Clinton, an establishment candidate if there ever was one, are that someone else. While 2016 may seem to be a starkly different election year, underneath the surf ...
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The Huffington Post article
Dustin Hoffman on Oscars: 'It's always been racism'
Yahoo News - 12 months
NEW YORK (AP) — Dustin Hoffman feels there's a systemic racial problem in America that goes beyond the Oscars.
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Yahoo News article
What to Watch Wednesday
NYTimes - about 1 year
“Broad City” begins a third season. Jon Voight and Dustin Hoffman roam the city streets in “Midnight Cowboy.” And Ice-T explores the art of rap.
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NYTimes article
'Kung Fu Panda 3': Film Review - Hollywood Reporter
Google News - about 1 year
Hollywood Reporter 'Kung Fu Panda 3': Film Review Hollywood Reporter Jack Black, Angelina Jolie and Dustin Hoffman make an audience-pleasing return to the hit animated franchise. Back on the big screen scene after an almost five-year hiatus (not counting the spin-off TV series), Po and the Furious Five still have all ... Film Review: 'Kung Fu Panda 3'Variety Kate Hudson Brings Her Adorable Sons as Her Dates to the Kung Fu Panda 3 PremierePeople Magazine Kate Hudson's Sons Just Walked Their First Red Carpet and They're Already Pros ...E! Online Us Weekly -Just Jared -Extra (blog) all 28 news articles »
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Google News article
Talking With Tarantino: The Sight and Sound Excerpt
Huffington Post - about 1 year
The new Sight & Sound features my ten-page interview with its February cover star, Quentin Tarantino, and they have graciously allowed me to excerpt a portion of the extensive Q&A here. This is a nice chunk of it, but there's so much more in the magazine, from getting to know his characters, to the Roadshow appeal of The Hateful Eight and themes in the movie, to movie violence, to Leonardo DiCaprio's character in Django, to shooting on Ultra Panavision, to his own theater in Los Angeles, The New Beverly (shout out to Clu Gulager in the issue), to his love of old film prints, to interesting thoughts and facts about his past movies, and much, much more. Dig in and read it all via the magazine. For now, check out these choice moments from the interview. "There was a whole lot of speculation from some people about this whole 70mm thing, as in, that's really great, but it's just this set-bound parlor piece, so isn't it just a big old fucking waste of time and money? And, I thi ...
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Huffington Post article
<i>Finding Your Roots</i> Looks to Find Its Footing, Again, After Misstep on Affleck's Slave-Owning Ancestor
Huffington Post - about 1 year
One of the last TV shows you'd expect to find dusting itself off from a small, but embarrassing content-suppression scandal would be Finding Your Roots, Professor Henry L. Gates's genealogy program on PBS. But the show's third season, which premieres Jan. 5 at 8 p.m., will have to explore the roots of several dozen new subjects in the mildly uncomfortable shadow of previous guest Ben Affleck. Gates's lineup this season will include the likes of Bill O'Reilly, Shonda Rhimes, Jimmy Kimmel, Dustin Hoffman, Mia Farrow, Julianne Moore, Norman Lear, Senator John McCain, LL Cool J, Puffy Combs, Maya Rudolph, Bill Hader, Keenen Ivory Wayans and Gloria Steinem. The keen observer will note that they are all famous, and that's something for which Gates has never apologized. Starpower, he has always explained, provides a means of drawing viewers' attention to the fascinating field of genealogy. "When they see what our researchers uncovered about someone like Stephen King," Gates said ...
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Huffington Post article
Time to kill? Here are 130 riveting movies you can watch on Netflix right now
Yahoo News - about 1 year
This list is updated monthly to reflect recent availability and to showcase films currently streaming on Netflix, whether talking classics or modern gems. Netflix offers roughly a gazillion different movies available through its streaming platform — well, approximately a gazillion. However, while the landmark service might become surprisingly accurate with its suggestions once you’ve been using it for a while, it’s still often tough to find something worth watching amid the trove of terrible choices.That being the case, we’ve taken the time to wade through the ridiculous amount of content in order to bring you a list of some of the best films currently available on Netflix Instant. Planning your weekend has never been easier. Related: Here’s what’s new on Netflix in December, and what’s going away Choose a genre: Recent Additions Documentaries Comedies Dramas Thrillers &amp; Action Adventure Foreign Sci-Fi &amp; Fantasy Kids Horror Romance New for December 2015 A League of Their Own Pl ...
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Yahoo News article
Mourning the Death of Late Night Talk Shows
Huffington Post - over 1 year
It didn't seem that long ago that I used to look forward to tuning into late night talks shows, even when the grand master of the late night circuit, Johnny Carson, retired and gracefully rode off into the sunset, never to be heard from again. David Letterman, Johnny Carson's protégé, for many years held my interest-starting with his elevator races, stupid pet tricks, Top 10 list and taking his cameras into the streets of New York when you'd never know who he would find. One time, I recall, his roving cameras caught a middle-aged woman looking disheveled and completely lost in the hustle, bustle and mayhem of Manhattan. It turned out (if memory serves); the woman was in the Big Apple for a funeral. Dave being Dave, then invited the woman into the studio, invited her to sit down and proceeded to interview her as if she was a booked guest. His sidekick Paul Shaffer, even improvised and made up a snappy little ditty which he sang in dedication to this woman. An ...
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Huffington Post article
Storytelling Master Robert McKee Discusses Story, Writing Philosphy and Screenwriting
Huffington Post - over 1 year
This Post originally appeared on the blog ScreenCraft. ScreenCraft is dedicated to helping screenwriters and filmmakers succeed through educational events, screenwriting competitions and the annual ScreenCraft Screenwriting Fellowship program, connecting screenwriters with agents, managers and Hollywood producers. Follow ScreenCraft on Twitter, Facebook, and YouTube. I had the pleasure of speaking one-on-one with acclaimed screenwriting lecturer Robert McKee, leading to an amazing discussion about his storytelling roots, seminars, philosophy, Hollywood, formulaic screenwriting, and even his appearance -- at least through the performance of Brian Cox -- and behind-the-scenes role in the Oscar-winning film Adaptation. Robert McKee occupies a unique position in modern storytelling. His teachings have spread beyond the screen to influence all media. Marketing professionals and business leaders from all over the world read McKee's works and attend his packed international seminar ...
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Huffington Post article
Review: In ‘Boychoir,’ Dustin Hoffman Mentors a Troubled Student
NYTimes - almost 2 years
This well-acted drama directed by François Girard chooses a conclusion that is as neat and pretty as the music sung by the group of the title.
Article Link:
NYTimes article
Snowbound in the Big Apple? Try a Bite of Your Favorite Warren Beatty Flicks
Huffington Post - about 2 years
Snowbound in the Big Apple? Try a bite of your favorite Warren Beatty flicks. Get out your DVD collection or surf Netflix. Here are mine. Agree or disagree. What are yours? Reds (1981). An epic three-hour drama with intermissions. Music by Stephen Sondheim. Shows why communism/socialism never caught on in the USA. As someone who majored in Political Science and minored in Drama at Dartmouth and Vassar, it's not only the politics of the film but the drama that intrigues. It has the most romantic close-up of a kiss/embrace ever between Warren Beatty and Diane Keaton. That embrace graces the movie poster, but it is even better on screen. Beatty won the Academy Award for Best Director. A surprise Henry Miller cameo appearance, the author most known for his once banned book, Tropic of Cancer , discusses artistic freedom as himself, a witness. Splendor in the Grass (1961). Directed by Elia Kazan. A film for parents, grandparents, teens. Beatty makes his film debut opposite ...
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Huffington Post article
The Many Faces of Meyer Lansky
Huffington Post - about 3 years
In 1977 Grandpa Meyer and I were at Wolfie's in North Miami Beach, and I noticed two young boys in yarmulkes looking over at us. I was standing behind Grandpa when the boys walked up. One said, "Hey, Mr. Lansky, we'd like to get your autograph!" Grandpa paused for a moment. He looked seriously at the boys and said, "What did I do? Win an Academy Award?" One of the boys looked earnestly at Grandpa and said, "Well, we thought it would be worth some money someday." Grandpa then smiled and replied, "Sorry, son, I don't sign autographs." As the years have passed, I have often remembered that afternoon in the deli. I wonder what Grandpa would have thought of the award-winning actors who have portrayed him, either as Meyer Lansky or characters based on Meyer Lansky. While Grandpa passed away in 1983 when I was 26, today, at 56, I watch. At times it's a bit shocking to hear his name (which is also my name) while enjoying a good story with great actors. I'm often entertained, and always app ...
Article Link:
Huffington Post article
Timeline
Learn about memorable moments in the evolution of Dustin Hoffman
    LATE_ADULTHOOD
  • 2013
    Age 75
    Hoffman was successfully treated for cancer in 2013.
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    His performance was nominated for a 2013 Audie Award for Best Solo Narration – Male.
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  • 2012
    Age 74
    Dustin Hoffman received Kennedy Center Honors in 2012, with the following commendation: "Dustin Hoffman's unyielding commitment to the wide variety of roles he plays has made him one of the most versatile and iconoclastic actors of this or any other generation".
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    In 2012, Hoffman's audiobook recording of Jerzy Kosinski's Being There was released at Audible.com.
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    He made his directorial debut in 2012, with Quartet.
    More Details Hide Details Along with 2 Academy Award wins, Hoffman has been nominated for 5 additional Academy Awards, and he was nominated for 13 Golden Globes, winning 6 (including an honorary award). He has won 4 BAFTAs, 3 Drama Desk Awards, a Genie Award, and an Emmy Award. Hoffman received the AFI Life Achievement Award in 1999, and the Kennedy Center Honors Award in 2012.
  • 2011
    Age 73
    In 2011, Hoffman reprised his role as Shifu in the commercially and critically successful animated film Kung Fu Panda 2.
    More Details Hide Details Hoffman starred in the HBO horse-racing drama Luck, as a man involved in bookmaking and casino operations. Luck was cancelled in March 2012 after three horses died on set. Hoffman also directed Quartet, a BBC Films comedy starring Maggie Smith and Tom Courtenay.
  • 2010
    Age 72
    He appears in Little Fockers, the critically panned yet financially successful 2010 sequel to Meet the Fockers.
    More Details Hide Details However, his character plays a significantly smaller role than in the previous installment.
  • 2008
    Age 70
    In 2008, although he was reluctant to perform in an animated feature film (Although he had previously performed voices in a version of The Point! and in an episode of The Simpsons), Hoffman had a prominent role as Shifu in the acclaimed film Kung Fu Panda, which was praised in part for his comedic chemistry with Jack Black (whom he tutored in acting for an important scene) and his character's poignantly complex relationship with the story's villain.
    More Details Hide Details He later won the Annie Award for Voice Acting in an Animated Feature for Kung Fu Panda and has continued into the role in the franchise's subsequent filmed productions outside of the franchise's television series. He next voiced Roscuro in The Tale of Despereaux. As the title character in Last Chance Harvey, Hoffman acted with co-star Emma Thompson in the story of two lonely people who tentatively forge a relationship over the course of three days. Director Joel Hopkins notes that Hoffman was a perfectionist and self-critical: "He often wanted to try things stripped down, because less is sometimes more. He worries about every little detail."
  • 2007
    Age 69
    In 2007, he was featured in an advertising campaign for Australian telecommunications company Telstra's Next G network, appeared in the 50 Cent video "Follow My Lead" as a psychiatrist, and played the title character in the family film Mr. Magorium's Wonder Emporium.
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  • 2005
    Age 67
    In 2005, he voiced a horse in Racing Stripes, and appeared in cameo roles in Andy García's The Lost City and on the final episode of HBO sitcom Curb Your Enthusiasms fifth season.
    More Details Hide Details Hoffman appeared in Stranger than Fiction (2006), played the perfumer Giuseppe Baldini in Tom Tykwer's film Perfume: The Story of a Murderer (also 2006), and had a cameo in the same year's The Holiday.
    Hoffman won the 2005 MTV Movie Award for Best Comedic Performance.
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  • 2004
    Age 66
    Seven years after his nomination for Wag the Dog, Hoffman got another opportunity to perform again with Robert De Niro, co-starring with Barbra Streisand and Ben Stiller in the 2004 comedy Meet the Fockers, a sequel to Meet the Parents (2000).
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  • 1999
    Age 61
    In 1999, Hoffman received the AFI Life Achievement Award and recalls the emotional impact that receiving the award had on him:
    More Details Hide Details Hoffman next appeared in Moonlight Mile (2002), followed by Confidence (2003) opposite Edward Burns, Andy García and Rachel Weisz. Hoffman finally had a chance to work with Gene Hackman in Gary Fleder's Runaway Jury (also 2003), an adaptation of John Grisham's bestselling novel. Hoffman played theater owner Charles Frohman in the J. M. Barrie historical fantasia Finding Neverland (2004), costarring Johnny Depp and Kate Winslet. In director David O. Russell's I Heart Huckabees (also 2004), Hoffman appeared opposite Lily Tomlin as an existential detective team member.
  • FIFTIES
  • 1997
    Age 59
    In 1997, Hoffman starred opposite John Travolta in the Costa Gavras film Mad City.
    More Details Hide Details Hoffman gained his seventh Academy Award nomination for his performance in Wag The Dog (1997), in a role that allowed Hoffman the chance to work with both Robert De Niro and Denis Leary. The movie is a black comedy film produced and directed by Barry Levinson, who also directed Hoffman in Rain Man in 1988. The story takes place a few days before a presidential election, where a Washington, D.C. spin doctor (De Niro) distracts the electorate from a sex scandal by hiring a Hollywood film producer (Hoffman) to construct a fake war with Albania. Hoffman, as a caricature of real life producer Robert Evans, according to some, "gives the kind of wonderfully funny performance that is liable to win prizes, especially since its mixture of affection and murderous parody is so precise. Stanley (Hoffman) conducts business meetings in tennis clothes or in robe and slippers," notes critic Janet Maslin.
  • 1996
    Age 58
    Following that, he appeared in the 1996 revenge-drama/legal-thriller Sleepers (1996) with Robert De Niro, Brad Pitt, Jason Patric, and Kevin Bacon.
    More Details Hide Details In the mid-1990s, Hoffman starred in—and was deeply involved in the production of—David Mamet's American Buffalo (also 1996), and an early effort of film editor Kate Sanford.
  • 1994
    Age 56
    In 1994, the film was deemed "culturally, historically or aesthetically significant" by the Library of Congress and selected for preservation in the United States National Film Registry.
    More Details Hide Details Biskind considers Hoffman's acting a major accomplishment:
  • 1991
    Age 53
    In 1991, Hoffman voiced substitute teacher Mr. Bergstrom in The Simpsons episode "Lisa's Substitute", under the pseudonym Sam Etic.
    More Details Hide Details As a reference to this episode, during the episode featuring the Itchy & Scratchy movie, Lisa claims that Dustin Hoffman had a cameo in that movie but didn't use his real name. Throughout the 1990s, Hoffman appeared in many large, studio films, such as Dick Tracy (1990) (where his Ishtar co-star Beatty plays the titular character), Hero (1992) and Billy Bathgate (1991) co-starring with Nicole Kidman who was nominated for a Golden Globe). Hoffman also played the title role of Captain Hook in Steven Spielberg's Hook (also 1991), earning a Golden Globe nomination, and the narrator in Dr. Seuss Video Classics: Horton Hears a Who! (also 1992); in Hook, Hoffman's costume was so heavy that he had to wear an air-conditioned suit under it. Hoffman played the lead role in Outbreak (1995), alongside Rene Russo, Kevin Spacey, Morgan Freeman, Cuba Gooding Jr. and Donald Sutherland. In the film, Hoffman is a medical doctor who uncovers a newly discovered Ebola-like virus which came to the U.S. from Africa in an infected monkey. Hoffman races to stop the virus's spread and find a vaccine before it becomes a worldwide pandemic with no cure.
  • FORTIES
  • 1984
    Age 46
    In 1984, Hoffman starred as Willy Loman in the Broadway revival of Arthur Miller's play, Death of a Salesman He reprised his role in a TV movie of the same name, for which he won the 1985 Emmy Award for Outstanding Lead Actor along with a Golden Globe.
    More Details Hide Details Hoffman first read the play at age 16, but today considers the story much like his own: "It was a blueprint of my family. I was the loser, the flunky, and my brother, a high-school varsity football player, was Biff." Author Marie Brenner notes that Hoffman "has been obsessed with the play" throughout his career: "For years he has wanted to be Willy Loman; when he discovered that Arthur Miller was his neighbor in Connecticut, they began to talk about it in earnest." For Hoffman, the story also left a deep emotional impact from the time he first read it: Hoffman rehearsed for three weeks with the play's original star, Lee J. Cobb, and remembers seeing his stage performance: "I'll never forget that period in my life. It was so vivid, so intense, watching Lee J. Cobb and his sixteen-inch guns as Willy. God, how I think about what I saw on that stage!" Brenner adds that Hoffman "has been training like a boxer for the role that so exhausted Cobb he had to be replaced after four months." The original play was directed by Elia Kazan, who Hoffman considers "the perfect director, the best there ever was.... God, I would have done anything to have worked with Kazan."
  • 1980
    Age 42
    He married businesswoman Lisa Gottsegen Hoffman in October 1980; they have four children – Jacob Edward (born March 20, 1981), Rebecca Lillian (b.
    More Details Hide Details March 17, 1983), Maxwell Geoffrey (born August 30, 1984), and Alexandra Lydia (born October 27, 1987). Hoffman has two grandchildren. In an interview, he said that all of his children from his second marriage had bar or bat mitzvahs and that he is a more observant Jew now than when he was younger; he has also lamented that he is not fluent in Hebrew. A political liberal, Hoffman has long supported the Democratic Party and Ralph Nader. In 1997, he was one of a number of Hollywood stars and executives to sign an open letter to then-German Chancellor Helmut Kohl protesting the treatment of Scientologists in Germany, which was published as a newspaper advertisement in the International Herald Tribune. In 2009, he received the freedom of the Italian city Ascoli Piceno for being there during 1972 to shoot the movie Alfredo, Alfredo by Pietro Germi, where he played the role of Alfredo Sbisà.
    The couple divorced in 1980.
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  • THIRTIES
  • 1969
    Age 31
    Hoffman married Anne Byrne in May 1969.
    More Details Hide Details Hoffman adopted Karina (b. 1966), Byrne's child from a previous marriage, and with Byrne had daughter Jenna (born October 15, 1970). In 1970, Hoffman and Byrne were living in Greenwich Village in a building next door to a townhouse occupied by members of the Weathermen, when a bomb was accidentally detonated in the townhouse's basement, killing three people. In the 2002 documentary The Weather Underground, Hoffman can be seen standing in the street during the aftermath of the explosion.
    Its director, John Schlesinger also directed Hoffman in Midnight Cowboy in 1969.
    More Details Hide Details Described as "Schlesinger's thriller," by author Gene D. Phillips, Hoffman plays the hero, Babe Levy, a part-time long-distance runner and graduate student, who suddenly finds himself being pursued by a fugitive Nazi. To put himself in the mindset of someone under severe emotional distress, rather than simply acting, Hoffman did not sleep for days at a time and let his body become disheveled and unhealthy. Goldman describes his inspiration for the novel: "What if someone close to you was something totally different from what you thought? In the story, Hoffman thinks his brother (Roy Scheider) is a businessman where the reality is that the man is a spy, who has been involved with the Nazi, Szell." However, Hoffman remembers a serious disagreement he had with Goldman, who also wrote the screenplay, about how the story ends: Hoffman's next roles were less successful. He opted out of directing Straight Time (1978), but starred as a thief. His next film, Michael Apted's Agatha (1979), was with Vanessa Redgrave as Agatha Christie.
    Also in 1969, Hoffman co-starred with Mia Farrow in John and Mary.
    More Details Hide Details He received a 1970 BAFTA Award as Best Actor, although the film received mixed reviews. He was also nominated for a Golden Globe Award as Best Actor. This was followed by his role in Little Big Man (1970), where Jack Crabb, his character, ages from teenager to a 121-year-old man. The film was widely praised by critics, but was overlooked for an award except for a supporting nomination for Chief Dan George. Hoffman continued to appear in major films over the next few years. Who Is Harry Kellerman and Why Is He Saying Those Terrible Things About Me? (1971), Straw Dogs (also 1971), and Papillon (1973). Hoffman next starred in Lenny (1974), for which he was again nominated for Best Actor. Lenny was based on the life of stand-up comedian, Lenny Bruce, who died at age 40, and was notable for his open, free-style and critical form of comedy which integrated politics, religion, sex, and vulgarity. Expectations were high that Hoffman would win an Oscar for his portrayal, especially after his similar role in Midnight Cowboy. Film critic Katharine Lowry speculates that director Bob Fosse "never gave him a chance" to go far enough into developing the character. "We never understand what, besides the drugs he injected, made him tick like a time bomb," she says.
  • TWENTIES
  • 1967
    Age 29
    In 1967, director Mike Nichols cast Hoffman in The Graduate (1967), his first major role, for which he received an Academy Award nomination.
    More Details Hide Details Hoffman played the character of Benjamin Braddock, who returns to his wealthy parents' home in California after graduating from college. Confused about what to do with his life, he is seduced into having an affair with Mrs. Robinson, an alcoholic and a neurotic, and the wife of his father's business partner. Although Life magazine joked that "if Dustin Hoffman's face were his fortune, he'd be committed to a life of poverty", The Graduate was a gigantic box-office hit for Embassy Pictures, making Hoffman a major new star at the same time. The film received near-unanimous good reviews. Time magazine called Hoffman "a symbol of youth" who represented "a new breed of actors." The film's screenwriter, Buck Henry, notes that Hoffman's character made conventional good looks no longer necessary on screen: Hoffman biographer Jeff Lenburg adds that "newspapers across the country were deluged with thousands of letters from fans," with one example published in the New York Times: "I identified with Ben I thought of him as a spiritual brother. He was confused about his future and about his place in the world, as I am. It's a film one digs, rather than understands intellectually."
    In 1967, immediately after wrapping up principal filming on The Tiger Makes Out, Hoffman flew from New York City to Fargo, North Dakota, where he directed productions of William Gibson's Two for the Seesaw and William Saroyan's The Time of Your Life for the Fargo-Moorhead Community Theatre.
    More Details Hide Details The $1,000 he received for the eight-week contract was all he had to hold him over until the funds from the movie materialized.
    Hoffman made his film debut in The Tiger Makes Out in 1967, alongside Eli Wallach.
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  • 1966
    Age 28
    His first critical success was in the play Eh?, by Henry Livings, which had its US premiere at the Circle in the Square Downtown on October 16, 1966.
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  • 1960
    Age 22
    In 1960, Hoffman was cast in a role in an Off-Broadway production and followed with a walk-on role in a Broadway production in 1961.
    More Details Hide Details Hoffman then studied at Actors Studio and became a dedicated method actor. Sidney W. Pink, a producer and 3D-movie pioneer, discovered him in one of his off-Broadway roles and cast him in Madigan's Millions. Through the early and mid-1960s, Hoffman made appearances in television shows and movies, including Naked City, The Defenders and Hallmark Hall of Fame.
  • TEENAGE
  • 1955
    Age 17
    Hoffman graduated from Los Angeles High School in 1955 and enrolled at Santa Monica College with the intention of studying medicine.
    More Details Hide Details He left after a year to join the Pasadena Playhouse, although when he told his family about his career goal, his Aunt Pearl warned him "You can't be an actor. You are not good-looking enough." He also took classes at the Neighborhood Playhouse in New York City. Hoffman initially hoped to become a classical pianist, having studied piano during much of his youth and in college. While at Santa Monica College, he also took an acting class, which he assumed would be easy, and "caught the acting bug." He recalls: "I just was not gifted in music. I did not have an ear." Now an aspiring actor, he spent the next ten years doing odd jobs, being unemployed, and struggling to get any available acting roles. He composed a song called "Shooting the Breeze" and Bette Midler wrote the words.
  • CHILDHOOD
  • 1937
    Born
    Hoffman was born on August 8, 1937 in Los Angeles, California, the second son of Lillian (née Gold; 1909-1982) and Harry Hoffman (1908-1987).
    More Details Hide Details His father worked as a prop supervisor (set decorator) at Columbia Pictures before becoming a furniture salesman. Hoffman was named after stage and silent screen actor, Dustin Farnum. His older brother, Ronald, is a lawyer and economist. Hoffman is Jewish, from an Ashkenazi family of immigrants from the Russian Empire, Poland, and Romania (the family's surname was spelled "Goikhman" in the Russian Empire). His upbringing was non-religious, and he has said, "I don’t have any memory of celebrating holidays growing up that were Jewish", and that he had "realized" he was Jewish at around age 10; Hoffman did not have a bar mitzvah.
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