Eugene Alan Hackman is a retired American actor and writer. In a career spanning more than six years, Hackman has won two Oscars, four Golden Globes, a Screen Actors Guild Award, two BAFTAs and a Silver Bear.
Hackman was nominated for five Academy Awards, winning Best Actor for his role as Jimmy “Popeye” Doyle in the critically acclaimed thriller The French Connection (1971), and for his role in Clint Eastwood’s Western film Unforgiven (1992). ) as “Little” Bill Daggett for Best Supporting Actor. His other Best Supporting Actor nominations came from the films Bonnie and Clyde (1967) and I Never Sing for My Father (1970), and Mississippi Burning (1988) ) for his second Best Actor nomination.
Hackman’s other major film roles include The Adventures of Poseidon (1972), The Conversation (1974), French Connection II (1975), A Bridge Too Far (1977) , Superman (1978) and its sequels Superman II (1980) and Superman IV: In Search of Peace (1987), Hoosiers (1986), No Way Out (1987), Bat*21 (1988) , The Firm (1993), The Quick and the Dead (1995), Get Shorty (1995), Crimson Tide (1995), Public Enemy (1998), Antz (1998), The Replacements (2000), Beyond Enemy Lines (2001 ), The Royal Tenenbaums (2001), Runaway Jury (2003) and Welcome to Mooseport (2004) – his last pre-retirement film roles.
Hackman was born in San Bernardino, California, to Eugene Ezra Hackman and Anna Lida Elizabeth (née Gray). He has a brother, Richard. He is of Dutch, English and Scottish ancestry from Pennsylvania; his mother is Canadian and was born in Lambton, Ontario. His family moved frequently, eventually settling in Danville, Illinois, where they lived with his British-born grandmother Beatrice. Hackman’s father ran a printing press for the local newspaper The Business News. His parents divorced when he was 13, and his father left the family. Hackman decided he wanted to be an actor when he was 10 years old.
Hackman lived briefly in Storm Lake, Iowa, and was a sophomore at Storm Lake High School. He left home at 16 and lied about his age to join the U.S. Marine Corps. He served as a field radio operator for four and a half years. He was stationed in China (Qingdao and later Shanghai). Hackman was sent to Hawaii and Japan when the communist revolution swept the continent in 1949. After his release in 1951, he moved to New York City and held several jobs. His mother died in 1962 from an accidental fire caused by smoking. He began studying journalism and television production at G.I. at the University of Illinois. However, Bill left and moved back to California.