George Clooney: Snapshot

George Clooney
Date of Birth
May 06, 1961
Birth Place
Lexington, Ky.
George Clooney earned a living through the '80s with bit parts on The Facts of Life and Roseanne, but at 33, he raised heart rates and his celebrity status as Dr. Doug Ross on the NBC juggernaut ER.

Clooney became a household name and bonafide sex symbol (twice dubbed by PEOPLE the Sexiest Man Alive). When he made the jump to the big screen, Clooney alternated between big-budget studio films (the Ocean's Eleven franchise) and smaller, more politically minded fare. He earned Oscar nods for directing and co-writing Good Night, and Good Luck, became an Oscar winner for his supporting role in Syriana and earned a Best Actor Oscar nomination for 2011's The Descendants. In 2013, he brought home his second Academy Award as a producer for Argo.

Off-screen, Clooney wed actress Talia Balsam in 1984 but declared himself a perennial bachelor following their divorce. He went on to date Kelly Preston, Elisabetta Canalis and Stacy Keibler before choosing to give marriage a second try with British attorney Amal Alamuddin, whom he wed Sept. 27, 2014, in Venice, Italy.

George Clooney: Five Fun Facts

  1. The salt-and-pepper haired George Clooney plans on aging gracefully. He told Playboy "You don't want to try to look younger because you'll look wrong. You dye your hair, you look wrong. You wear a bad toupee, you look wrong. You wear makeup to hide things, you get your eyes done, you look wrong."
  2. A legendary prankster, George Clooney pulled a fast one on his Ocean's 11 coworkers – covering producer Jerry Weintraub's doorknobs with Vaseline and fixing a bucket of water over a doorway, designed to soak Julia Roberts. A surprised bellman was drenched instead.
  3. George Clooney lived in a friend's walk-in closet for a few months during his first year in Hollywood.
  4. George Clooney famously bet Nicole Kidman and Michelle Pfeiffer $10,000 apiece that he would still be unmarried and childless when he turned 40 in 2001. "If anyone wants to make the same bet for when I'm 50," he said that same year, "get in touch." (He won the bet.)
  5. Pals crashing at George Clooney's Los Angeles bachelor pad used to use his pet pig Max as a walking Post-it, scratching messages like "Go get milk" on the dry skin of his back. Clooney's beloved pig died in December 2006.

George Clooney: Biography

mid 1970s

George Clooney

Handsome on Hold

In middle school, Clooney develops Bell's palsy, a debilitating condition that partially paralyzes the face. While suffering from the malady – it went away within a year – his left eye closes and he is unable to eat or drink properly, earning the nickname Frankenstein. "That was the worst time of my life," he tells the Mirror in 2003. "You know how cruel kids can be. I was mocked and taunted, but the experience made me stronger."


George Clooney

September 16

Early Roles

In a weird bit of foreshadowing, Clooney lands his first regular television role in the short-lived CBS ensemble comedy E/R, in which he plays Ace, a young doctor recently reassigned to emergency room duty in a Chicago hospital. The following year, Clooney and his timely mullet join the cast of the all-female sitcom The Facts of Life for a two-season run as carpenter George Burnett.


George Clooney

September 19

Paging Dr. Ross

Clooney premieres in his breakout role as Dr. Doug Ross on ER. The hospital drama becomes America's top-rated show, and Clooney's nominated for an Outstanding Lead Actor Emmy in 1995 and 1996. Typically self-deprecating, Clooney tells PEOPLE, "I can be a schmuck all day long, at the end of it save some old lady's life and still be a hero. If you stuck a mannequin in my part, he'd get all the fan mail."

Read More on George Clooney's Life

Photo Credits

Top Left: Sam Jones/Corbis Outline

BIOGRAPHY (top to bottom): SPLASH NEWS; NBC/Photofest; GLOBE

Edited by Julia Wang

George Clooney

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