Cory Monteith: Snapshot

Name
Cory Monteith
Date of Birth
May 11, 1982
Date of Death
July 13, 2013
Birth Place
Calgary, Alberta
Playing Glee's Finn Hudson, Cory Monteith won over fans, costars and even celebs like Taylor Swift with his smooth voice and boyish looks.

Surprisingly, the Canadian heartthrob grew up rocking out on the drum set, not manning the mic. He only found his way into acting when a casting director spotted the high school dropout and saw a star in the making. After moving to Vancouver from Calgary, he landed guest-starring roles on Supernatural, Smallville and Kyle XY before he scored his breakout role on Glee.

After four successful seasons on the show, Monteith checked into rehab, drawing the support of his Glee costars and off-screen girlfriend Lea Michele. However, only a few months after his release, Monteith was found dead in a Vancouver hotel room from a drug overdose. He was 31.

Cory Monteith: Video

Star Talk

The stars of the hit show try their luck at the roulette table – and embrace their sexy geekiness (00:56)

More Videos

Cory Monteith: Five Fun Facts

  1. Cory Monteith drove "20 hours without stopping" from Vancouver to L.A. to audition for a role on Glee. "I slept on the side of the road in Oregon and learned all the songs to Rent and Billy Joel's greatest hits so I'd have something to audition with," he told the Canadian newspaper Times Colonist.
  2. While living in Vancouver, Cory Monteith shared an apartment with fellow Canadian and 90210 star Dustin Milligan.
  3. Before becoming an actor, Cory Monteith worked as a Wal-Mart greeter and drove a cab. "Being picked up by a 19-year-old taxi driver always got some pretty classic reactions out of people," he told Canada's 24 Hours.
  4. Trying to describe the show before it aired, Cory Monteith once said of Glee, "It's as if High School Musical had been punched in the stomach and had its lunch money stolen".
  5. Cory Monteith's favorite place to practice singing is in the shower. "Sometimes I shower when I don't even need to," he told PEOPLE. "I get out when my voice starts to hurt."

Cory Monteith: Biography

late 1990s

Cory Monteith

Finding His Footing

After his parents divorce at age 7, Monteith and older brother Shaun are raised by his single mother, Ann McGregor, in Calgary, Canada. Dropping out of school in the ninth grade, he works part-time jobs and plays drums in a local band until meeting casting director Maureen Webb. "It didn't even occur to me what actors did," Monteith later tells the Times Colonist. "Three weeks later I moved to Vancouver with just a bag of T-shirts and two pairs of pants."

2004

Cory Monteith

Acting Up

Monteith makes his onscreen debut in a 2004 episode of Stargate: Atlantis, and goes on to guest-star on Kyle XY, Kaya and Fear Itself (right). "I call myself a working-class actor," he later tells The Toronto Star. "You know, you go from one one-line gig to the next one-line gig, to a couple of episodes on this show, a couple of episodes on that show, to a small part in a movie...I was making a good living. But it really wasn't a life."

2009

Cory Monteith

May 19

Glee-king Out

After sending producers a tape of himself playing "Tupperware drums," Monteith lands the role of jock-turned-crooner Finn Hudson on Glee. "It was such a long shot, such a Hail Mary," he tells the Times Colonist. "I still feel like they've made a mistake and some day they're going to realize I'm the wrong guy for the job." After debuting in the spring, Glee premieres September 9.





Read More on Cory Monteith's Life

Photo Credits

Top Left: Matt Carr/Getty

BIOGRAPHY (top to bottom): Jordan Strauss/WireImage; Everett; FOX

Edited by Julia Wang

Cory Monteith

Celebrity Central / Top 25 Celebs

From Our Partners