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Wes Bentley

Wes Bentley

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Also Known As: Wesley Cook Bentley Died:
Born: September 4, 1978 Cause of Death:
Birth Place: Jonesboro, Arkansas, USA Profession: actor, waiter

Biography CLOSE THE FULL BIOGRAPHY

Rising out of relative obscurity in the late 1990s to capture audiences' attention with his riveting portrayal of an alienated youth in "American Beauty" (1999), actor Wes Bentley quickly plunged from star of the moment to cautionary tale as his career and life unraveled due to drug addiction. An intense performer with an almost supernatural stillness to his screen persona, Bentley was the subject of considerable media coverage after "Beauty" scored multiple Oscar wins, but he found himself unable to cope with the intense scrutiny. Alcohol use blossomed into cocaine and heroin addiction, and Bentley fed his disease through appearances in dreadful pictures like "Ghost Rider" (2007). In 2009, he reclaimed his sobriety and began to slowly rebuild his career through carefully chosen projects like the New York stage play "Venus in Fur" (2010), followed by a prominent role in the highly-anticipated blockbuster "The Hunger Games" (2012). Bentley's tragic story had a hopeful ending, which in turn gave the once wayward actor that rarest of commodities in Hollywood - a second chance.

Rising out of relative obscurity in the late 1990s to capture audiences' attention with his riveting portrayal of an alienated youth in "American Beauty" (1999), actor Wes Bentley quickly plunged from star of the moment to cautionary tale as his career and life unraveled due to drug addiction. An intense performer with an almost supernatural stillness to his screen persona, Bentley was the subject of considerable media coverage after "Beauty" scored multiple Oscar wins, but he found himself unable to cope with the intense scrutiny. Alcohol use blossomed into cocaine and heroin addiction, and Bentley fed his disease through appearances in dreadful pictures like "Ghost Rider" (2007). In 2009, he reclaimed his sobriety and began to slowly rebuild his career through carefully chosen projects like the New York stage play "Venus in Fur" (2010), followed by a prominent role in the highly-anticipated blockbuster "The Hunger Games" (2012). Bentley's tragic story had a hopeful ending, which in turn gave the once wayward actor that rarest of commodities in Hollywood - a second chance.

Filmographyclose complete filmography

CAST: (feature film)

2.
 Broken Vows (2014)
4.
 Knight of Cups (2014)
5.
 Interstellar (2014)
6.
 Unconscious (2013)
7.
 Time Being, The (2013)
8.
 Final Girl (2013)
9.
 Lovelace (2013)
10.
 Gone (2012)
VIEW THE FULL FILMOGRAPHY

Milestones close milestones

:
Born and raised in Arkansas
1998:
Early film credit, "Three Below Zero"
1998:
Had supporting role in "Beloved"
1999:
Breakthrough feature role as Ricky Fitts, a former mental patient who deals drugs in "American Beauty"
2000:
Landed title role in "The White River Kid" as a serial killer (Starz)
2000:
Portrayed a railroad surveyor in 1860s California in "The Claim"
2001:
Co-starred in "Soul Survivors" alongside Eliza Dushku and Luke Wilson
2001:
Cast alongside Heath Ledger in the remake of "The Four Feathers"
2005:
Cast in "The Game of Their Lives," based on the true story of the 1950 U.S. soccer team that beat England
2006:
Dropped out of Lee Daniels' indie feature "Shadowboxer"
2007:
Co-starred with Nicolas Cage in "Ghost Rider"
2007:
Starred in the Allan Moyle directed "Weirdsville" alongside Taryn Manning and Scott Speedman
2008:
Co-starred with Winona Ryder in the offbeat romantic dramedy "The Last Word"
2009:
Starred in the thriller "Dolan's Cadillac," based on a short story by Stephen King
2010:
Made off-Broadway debut in David Ives' "Venus in Fur"
2010:
Cast in supporting role opposite Josh Brolin and John Malkovich in "Jonah Hex"
2012:
Co-starred with Amanda Seyfried in the drama thriller "Gone"
2012:
Cast as the Head Gamemaker Seneca Crane in the feature adaptation of "The Hunger Games," based on the novel by Suzanne Collins
VIEW ALL MILESTONES

Education

The Juilliard School: New York , New York -
Sylvan Hills High School: Sherwood , Alaska - 1996

Notes

"And another thing ... certain scenes in 'American Beauty' simply belong to the young, up-to-know-unknown actor Wes Bentley. Playing the camcorder-crazy son of nightmare father Chris Cooper, he exudes both intensity and bizarre good humor as he sets his sights on neighbor Thora Birch, and literally makes her love him. With his unfailing amused gaze and geeky but strangely apt clothes, he's the coolest nerd to hit pop culture since the Talking Heads' David Byrne took the stage in the mid-'70s." --From Glenn Kenny's review of "American Beauty" in Premiere, October 1999.

"The boy is what you pray for when you are directing a movie. He has an intensity and a stillness and a focus and a soul that is just out of the reach of most actors of his age--of most actors." --"American Beauty" director Sam Mendes quoted in New York Post, September 16, 1999.

"[Adolescence] was rough for me, because I had to deal with a lot of kids at school picking on me, messing with me, fucking with me all day long. It was an uncomfortable time. ...

"I was a pretty boy. I got into athletics to combat that pretty-boy image, maybe sort of scar myself up a bit playing soccer in college, but I ended up at theater conservatory instead. ..." --From Time Out New York, September 9-16, 1999.

"It's a bad thing just to play off your looks. People have given me a chance to transform myself. That's what I love about acting." --Bentley quoted in USA Today, November 19, 1999.

Family close complete family listing

father:
David Bentley. Minister.
mother:
Cherie Bentley. Minister.
brother:
Jamey Bentley. Older.
brother:
Philip Bentley. Older.
brother:
Patrick Bentley. U younger; has served as stand-in for Bentley in films.
VIEW COMPLETE FAMILY LISTING

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