Michael Biehn filmography and biography
Date of birth: 31 July 1956, Anniston, Alabama, USA
Michael Biehn biography
Michael Biehn was born on July 31, 1956 in Anniston, Alabama, grew up in Lincoln, Nebraska, and at age 14 moved with his family to Lake Havasu, Arizona, where he won a drama scholarship to the University of Arizona. He left prematurely two years later to pursue an acting career in Hollywood. His first big role was as a psychotic fan stalking Lauren Bacall in The Fan and later appeared in The Lords of Discipline. He hit the big-time when he was cast as Kyle Reese, the man sent back through time to stop Arnold Schwarzenegger in James Cameron (I)'s The Terminator. This established a good working relationship with Cameron, a relationship that should have catapulted Biehn to international stardom. He starred in Cameron's subsequent films, Aliens and The Abyss, the latter a standout performance as unstable Navy SEAL officer Lt. Hiram Coffey. In the 1990s he starred in films like Navy Seals, K2 and was particularly memorable as Johnny Ringo in Tombstone. Biehn is married and the father of four sons.
Michael Biehn trivia
- Frequently works with James Cameron (I).
- Has played a Navy SEAL 3 times: The Abyss, Navy Seals, and The Rock.
- In James Cameron (I)'s The Terminator, he gets bitten on the hand by another character. He has suffered the same on-screen injury in every James Cameron (I) film he's been in: in The Terminator he is bitten by Sarah Connor (Linda Hamilton (I)) in Aliens it's Rebecca "Newt" Jorden (Carrie Henn), and in The Abyss Virgil "Bud" Brigman (Ed Harris (I)) does the honors.
- Replaced actor James Remar as Corporal Dwayne Hicks in Aliens.
- He almost didn't get the role of Kyle Reese in The Terminator because at his first audition he spoke in a Southern accent. He had just come another audition for a stage production of "Cat On A Hot Tin Roof" and had not been able to shake the accent, and the producers didn't want the character of Reese to seem regionalized. After calling and talking with Biehn's agent, they gave him another audition and he got the part.
- Attended the University of Arizona on a drama scholarship. He left school two years early to pursue his career in Hollywood.
- Has played a soldier 10 times in films.
- Children with Carlene Olson: twin boys, Devon and Taylor Biehn, born 1984.
- Has 2 sons with ex-wife Gina Marsh, Caelan Michael Biehn (b. April 11, 1992) and Alexander Biehn (b. March 19, 2003).
- Was nominated for best actor at the 1986 "Saturn Awards" for Aliens and won a special award at the 1989 "Saturn Awards" for The Abyss.
- Said that he didn't get to interact with Arnold Schwarzenegger very much while filming the original The Terminator. Ironically, fans often ask him what it was like to work with Arnold.
- James Cameron (I) considered using him as the T-1000 in Terminator 2: Judgment Day, which would have been a reversal of the roles Biehn previously had with Arnold Schwarzenegger in the original. Eventually, however, Cameron decided against the idea on the basis that it would have been too confusing for the audience.
- Filmed a cameo in Terminator 2: Judgment Day in which Sarah Connor (Linda Hamilton (I)) fantasizes a meeting with him, but the scene was cut from the theatrical release; it later became available in the director's cut. Biehn said in an interview that he wasn't surprised that the scene was cut, seeing as how it had little to do with the film's overall story.
- Has appeared in 5 films with Bill Paxton: The Lords of Discipline, The Terminator, Aliens, Navy Seals, and Tombstone. They're also good friends.
- Surname pronounced "Bean".
- Is a member of the Sigma Nu Fraternity
- Has been in two movies with Ed Harris (I), in both of which he played a Navy SEAL: The Abyss and The Rock.
- A shot of him as Kyle Reese in the movie The Terminator was reproduced as the cover-art of the video game Metal Gear (1987) (VG). Biehn was chosen as a model as he was then at the peak of his fame, and would be the ideal actor to play Metal Gear's protagonist Solid Snake had Metal Gear been an action movie.
- The studio pushed hard for an Academy Award nomination for Biehn as best supporting actor in The Abyss - an award he ultimately didn't win or even got nominated for.
- Cites not being asked to reprise his role as Corporal Dwayne Hicks for AlienAcirc;sup3; as one of the biggest disappointments of his career.
- Partner is actress Jennifer Blanc.
- For his role on Tombstone, he was trained by renowned Hollywood Gun Coach Thell Reed, who has also trained such actors as: Kurt Russell (I), Val Kilmer, Bill Paxton, Sam Elliot, Russell Crowe, Brad Pitt, Girard Swan and Leonardo DiCaprio.
- Is friends with Brian Austin Green and Megan Fox (I).
- Was considered for the role of Caledon Hockley in Titanic and even met with James Cameron (I) for the part, but ultimately the role went to Billy Zane. Biehn and Zane appeared together in Tombstone and Susans Plan.
- Was considered for a role in James Cameron (I)'s Avatar but the role went to Stephen Lang (I).
- His top 5 actors are: 1.Sean Penn (I) 2. Denzel Washington 3. Johnny Depp 4. Jeff Bridges (I) 5. Ed Harris (I).
- Loves basketball.
- Played basketball in high school and is shown playing basketball in three of his films: Coach, Grease, and The Art of War.
- Of all the films he's done, his favorite is Tombstone.
- Has stated in interviews that his favorite roles were Johnny Ringo and Kyle Reese.
- Lived in North Hollywood, California.
- Turned down roles in Near Dark and Eight Men Out.
- In his two most famous roles (as Kyle Reese in The Terminator and Corporal Dwayne Hicks in Aliens), he is injured towards the end of the film and has the film's heroine help him to walk.
Michael Biehn quotes
- I'd rather have a small part in a good film with good people than play the lead in something I don't really care for.
- [About not spending much time with Arnold Schwarzenegger on The Terminator] I saw him around, you know. He was doing his thing, I was doing my thing, but I didn't really get to talk to him because Linda and I spend the entire film running away from Arnold.
- [Talking about the chase scenes in The Terminator] Looking back on it, I realize we were really going at some high speeds those nights. One night, my adrenaline was running so high I actually tore the steering wheel off, and I just looked over at Linda [Hamilton] and said 'Here, you drive!'
- I do a lot of research on most of my roles and before I start a role when I read a script I know all of the beats in the script and I know exactly how to do it because I've read about such a character or experienced similar things myself or had the same sort of relationship with people. So, when I go in to act it it's mostly technique. I'm not an actor who just lets things happen in front of the camera.
- I know why they think of me as intense. It's because on the set, I'm very concentrated. I don't just walk on and do my thing and walk off. I'm very intense when I'm working. I know exactly what I'm doing before I get in there. [1990 interview]
- A sense of insecurity, I think. It really comes down to not really having a full understanding of myself and my sense of self and having a real confidence in myself as a person. I seem to be able to have more confidence in some characters I play, knowing right down the line exactly the way that I feel about things about the character whereas in real life I'm more insecure. I don't really know the answers.
- I do firmly believe that I've been overlooked, especially in The Terminator. Jim Cameron was saying to me at the time, "I don't know Michael why you are not being offered more movies now. All of us expected it, you know?" But now, five or six years later, when everyone has seen the movie five or six times on video people are beginning to realize how good it was and what a good performance it was. But I have to say I don't feel shortchanged and I don't resent anything. I think it's best in the long run. Look at the Brat Pack: those guys got so much so fast that they were never allowed to really struggle and know what good chances they had in much of the work they were doing. So, even though I felt that some of my work was overlooked at times I know that it has made me stronger and better and it has made me work harder to get other jobs and be good in them. [From a 1989 interview.]
- [on Christian Bale's rant on the set of Terminator Salvation] I thought it was kinda sad. He wouldn't talk to me like that.
- I want to be in the best movies I can be in, but if I can't be in the best movies, then I want to be the best I can be in whatever I am in.
- I try not to think of my art as a career, because the only time in my life I feel very good about standing on this earth is when I'm acting. Thats' why I do it: for those few moments when everything just feels so goooood. [August 1986 interview]
- I almost never get to play heroes like Corporal Hicks [from Aliens]. It must be the glint in my eyes. People think something wicked is going on. [August 1986 interview]
- [On AlienAcirc;sup3;] I demanded there were no shots of Hick's (his character from Aliens) dead body laying there with his chest burst open. After all the time and effort I put into it, I just thought that was not the way for Hicks to go out. I've never even seen it. But I don't think there's any doubt that the first two Alien movies are the great ones. They haven't dated. Hell, Aliens looks better than the Alien films that came after it.