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Brendan Fraser Biography:

This handsome, heavy-lidded leading man first made an impression with back-to-back leads in two 1992 features; as the transformed prehistoric titular "Encino Man" and as a brooding preppie who meets with anti-Semitism at boarding school in “School Ties”. Both roles set the tenor for much of his future work wherein he was often cast as the outsider.

Born in Indiana but raised in Europe and Canada, Brendan Fraser interned at Seattle's Intiman Theatre after college. He landed a one-line part in "Dogfight" (1991) and headed to L.A. to pursue a career. After winning raves for his co-starring turn as Martin Sheen's son in the telefilm "Guilty Until Proven Innocent" (NBC, 1991), Fraser was hand-picked by Sherry Lansing for the lead in "School Ties". For various reasons, though, film audiences first saw him as Link, the thawed Cro-Magnon-turned-Valley guy, in "Encino Man". He went on to a varied but steady career that included indies (i.e., "Twenty Bucks" 1993), comedies ("Airheads" 1994 and "The Scout" 1995) and several uncredited cameo appearances (notably the Pauley Shore vehicles "Son in Law" 1993 and "In the Army Now" 1994 and "Now and Then" 1995). Fraser proved his dramatic mettle with a strong turn as a backwoodsman who goes mad from unrequited love in "The Passion of Darkly Noon" (1995). 1997, however, proved to be the actor's year. He made a sweet and very human incarnation of the cartoon character in the Disney blockbuster "George of the Jungle". Fraser also shone in an award-winning portrayal of a street performer who falls for a grifter in "Still Breathing" and played a gay man whose sister discovers her unborn child may grow up to be homosexual in the uneven "Twilight of the Golds" (shown on Showtime before receiving a theatrical release).

The busy actor continued his winning streak, first landing the role of a gardener befriended by film director James Whale (Ian McKellen) in "Gods and Monsters" (1998). Much of the film's success depended on the chemistry between the two actors and critics tended to focus more on McKellen's achievement overlooking Fraser's sterling work. Often cast as fish-out-of-water characters, he excelled as a 35-year old who was raised in a bomb shelter only to emerge in the late 90s to discover the world in "Blast From the Past" (1999). Again exhibiting a sweetness and gentleness that have become his hallmark, Fraser proved a perfect foil as a modern-day Adam to Alicia Silverstone's more knowing Eve. Following in quick succession was a dashing, heroic turn as an Indiana Jones-like figure who discovers an Egyptian tomb unleashing "The Mummy" and an homage to his forebears as the live-action embodiment of the square-jawed Royal Canadian Mountie "Dudley Do-Right" (both 1999). In 2002, Fraser co-starred with Michael Caine in the 1950's drama based on the novel by Graham Greene, "The Quiet American."

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