|Brendan Gleeson Quick Info|
|Height||6 ft 2 in|
|Date of Birth||March 29, 1955|
Brendan Gleeson is an Irish actor and director, best known for box office hits such as Cold Mountain (2003) where he starred alongside Jude Law, Nicole Kidman, and Renée Zellweger, and the comedy-drama In Bruges (2008) alongside Colin Farrell and Ralph Fiennes. Brendan also appeared in Calvary (2014), where he had a lead role of Father James, for which he won the IFTA Award in the category of “Best Lead Actor – Film” and starred alongside his son, well-known actor Domhnall Gleeson.
He also appeared in a comedy-crime film The Guard in 2011 with Liam Cunningham, for which he was also rewarded with an IFTA Award for “Best Lead Actor – Film” in 2012. One of his most notable roles was that of Winston Churchill in a biography-drama film Into the Storm (2009), for which he won the Primetime Emmy Award in 2009, in the category of “Outstanding Lead Actor in a Miniseries or a Movie”. In 2017 and 2018, he was seen playing the character of Bill Hodges in Mr. Mercedes TV series.
He attended St. Joseph’s Secondary School, a well known Northside school in Fairview, Dublin, where he was part of a drama group.
- Father – Frank Gleeson
- Mother – Pat Gleeson
Brendan is represented by –
- The Agency in Dublin, Ireland
- Principal Entertainment LA in Los Angeles, California, United States
- Kovert Creative in Santa Monica, California, United States (Publicist)
6 ft 2 in or 188 cm
96 kg or 211.5 lbs
Girlfriend / Spouse
Brendan has dated –
- Mary (née Weldon) Gleeson (1982-Present) – Brendan was in a long-time relationship with Mary, and the pair got married in 1982. He has 4 sons from the marriage, 2 of which are well-known actors – Domhnall Gleeson (b. 1983) and Brian Gleeson (b. 1987). The other two are Fergus Gleeson and Rúairí Gleeson, and Brendan appeared alongside all of his 4 sons in a TV special Immaturity for Charity in 2012.
Race / Ethnicity
He is of Irish descent.
Due to advancing age, his hair has turned ‘Salt and Pepper’.
- Tall, large build
- Often wears a full beard
- Prominent nose
- Thick eyebrows
- Deep, gruff voice
Best Known For
- Starring in lead roles in The Guard (2011) as Gerry Boyle, and Calvary (2014) as Father James
- Playing a character named Ken in In Bruges (2008)
- Playing Winston Churchill in Into the Storm (2009) for which he won an Emmy Award the same year
- Starring in Mr. Mercedes TV series since 2017 as Bill Hodges
- Appearing as Alastor ‘Mad-Eye’ Moody in the Harry Potter series of films in 2005, 2007, and 2010
As a Singer
His first appearance as a singer was in a movie Wild About Harry (2000), where he performed a song titled Welcome Home. In 2003, he sang multiple songs: Sittin’ on Top of the World, Ruby with the Eyes That Sparkle, and Bonaparte’s Retreat in Cold Mountain (2003). Brendan also sang The Unfortunate Rake, a traditional Irish folk ballad in the anthology film The Ballad of Buster Scruggs in 2018.
Brendan made his first theatrical film appearance as a quarryman in the movie The Field in 1990.
First TV Show
He made his first TV show appearance as a farmer in an episode titled In the Border Country of the drama series 4 Play in 1991.
Brendan Gleeson Favorite Things
- Sport – Soccer
- Activity – Reading, Teaching
- Soccer Club – Aston Villa
- School Subject – Drama, Mathematics, English, Irish, P.E.
- Directors – The Coen Brothers, Steven Spielberg
Brendan Gleeson Facts
- He was an avid reader as a child and was later a big promoter of the Irish language which he speaks fluently. This later led to him being a secondary school teacher of English and Irish language at the Catholic Belcamp College in North County, Dublin, that closed down in 2004.
- Brendan worked as a teacher and an actor in various plays at the same time. In 1991, when he was 34 years old, he committed to acting seriously and left the teaching profession.
- He was a teacher of Mathematics at the Dublin’s St. Joseph’s Secondary School, and also taught Physical Education at the Belcamp College Secondary School in Dublin during the 10 years he was a teacher before becoming an actor.
- Although Brendan doesn’t have a career as a musician or singer, he played fiddle in multiple movies, in addition to the 2009 live album by the Irish folk group Altan.
- He wrote, directed, and starred in Psychic (2018), a short film with 3 of his sons – Brian Gleeson played Michelangelo, and Domhnall Gleeson was a character named Shergar, while his 3rd son, Fergus Gleeson, did the music for it.
- His performance of Alastor ‘Mad-Eye’ Moody in Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire (2005), Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix (2007), and Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 1 was praised by both critics and the audience. His co-stars were well-known Hollywood actors Daniel Radcliffe, Emma Watson, Tom Felton, Rupert Grint, Bonnie Wright, as well as Brendan’s son, Domhnall Gleeson in the role of Bill Weasley.
- He had a supporting role in Braveheart (1995) alongside Mel Gibson, Mission: Impossible 2 (2000) with Tom Cruise and Thandie Newton, as well as 28 Days Later (2002) alongside Cillian Murphy and Naomie Harris.
- He played the character of Menelaus in Troy (2004) starring Brad Pitt, Eric Bana, Orlando Bloom, and Diane Kruger, and later co-starred with Tom Cruise and Emily Blunt in Edge of Tomorrow (2014).
- Brendan had a notable role in Paddington 2, a live-action animated comedy from 2017, for which Hugh Grant received a nomination for multiple awards in the category of “Best Actor in a Supporting Role”.
- He was a renowned Irish theatre actor and member of Passion Machine, a Dublin-based theatre company. He starred in plays such as Brownbread (1987), Home (1988), and Wasters (1985), and wrote and directed The Birdtable (1987) and Breaking Up (1988).
- Brendan played the fiddle in Michael Collins (1996), starring Julia Roberts and Liam Neeson, another well-known Irish actor.
- He starred in the feature-film The Tiger’s Tail (2006) alongside his youngest son Brian Gleeson.
- He joined the Royal Shakespeare Company (RSC), a well-known English theatre company, in the late 1980s, and participated in the Dublin Shakespeare Theatre Festival during the middle of the 1980s as well.
- Brendan starred in Live by Night (2016), a film directed, produced, and starring Ben Affleck, as well as Zoe Saldana and Sienna Miller.
- Brendan beat his son in the category of “Best Supporting Actor” at the British Independent Film Awards in 2015. He won the award for his role of Inspector Arthur Steed in Suffragette film that was released that year, while his son, Domhnall, was nominated for the role of Jim Farrell in Brooklyn (2015), starring Saoirse Ronan. His son accepted the award for him at the event.
- In January 2023, it was revealed that Brendan had tested positive for COVID-19.
- He is not active on social media.
Featured Image by Mario Antonio Pena Zapatería / Flickr / CC BY-SA 2.0