Denzel Washington turned down the title role in Michael Clayton, as did George Clooney at first.
Both George Clooney and Michael Clayton co-star Michael O’Keefe played love interests of Jackie (Laurie Metcalf) on Roseanne.
Jay-Z grew up in the Marcy projects in Bedford-Stuyvesant, Brooklyn. The J, M, & Z subway lines run through this area. Jay-Z took his name from the J & Z lines.
Mark Ruffalo is a 2nd generation Italian-American. All of his family are hairstylists: mother, brother, & 2 sisters.
Mark was a wrestler at his Virginia Beach high school; he loved it though he was only average as a student.
A tarot card reader said that he’d go to LA to study at The Stella Adler Academy b/c he wanted to be an actor. Mark ended up studying there for 7 yrs.
Stella Adler used to say that the great playwrights are giving you the big ideas, and it is your job to lift up those ideas. When you see actors that are on fire, it’s because they’re lifted up into a bigger idea.
Mickey Rourke began training as an amateur boxer at age 12; he did it to escape his troubled home life (violent stepfather). He also sold candy on the street, dug ditches for the Miami-Dade county power company, and was even involved in drug dealing for a time.
Mickey, who was inspired by Marlon Brando, is a member of The Actors Studio. He auditioned just once and was accepted, unlike many other actors.
Drugs and alcohol were never his problem, “it was my short fuse… and the fact that I didn’t want to be accountable.”
Director Darren Aronofsky allowed Rourke to write most of his own lines for The Wrestler. He trained w/ The Rock’s uncle in order to do the stunts.