George Clooney’s Kentucky Upbringing Was a Very American Childhood

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George Clooney is known as “The Last Movie Star,” according to Time. If you didn’t know that, though, you aren’t alone. His journey to becoming the acclaimed actor he is today wasn’t a quick or easy one. He was one of the people who made his path a little later in life. He is an inspiration to many, and the dream man of even more. In case you have lived under a rock, keep reading for your George Swooney 101. 😉

George Timothy Clooney was born into a family of well-known American entertainers and was introduced to the industry at a young age. Nick Clooney, George Clooney’s father, held a variety of entertainment roles, like television personality and news anchor. One of his aunts, Rosemary Clooney, was a singer and an actress. At 5 years old, George Clooney made his debut on sets and sketches that his father worked on. Clooney was born in Kentucky, and  raised in a town on the Ohio River between Ohio and Kentucky. Here, his family lived a mostly normal life despite the family’s acclaim.

Clooney hit a drawback with acting with middle school when he struggled briefly with Bell’s Palsy, causing him partial facial paralysis. This might be why, when he attended Augusta High School, he was more of a sportsman than thespian, however he still managed good grades. His preferred sport was baseball and at 16, he snagged a coveted tryout with the Cincinnati Reds. When that didn’t pan out, he went to college while doing odd jobs near his home until he got a call from his cousin, Miguel Ferrer. Miguel’s father, an Academy Award winner, Jose Ferrer, was making a movie and offered Clooney the opportunity to do some acting. During the three months Clooney was on set, he scored a few speaking lines here or there.

The movie, unfortunately, was never released. Clooney was bitten with acting bug and decided to move to Los Angeles with some encouragement from his cousin, Miguel. Can we all just take a moment to thank Miguel?. In Los Angeles, he continued to pursue acting while doing random jobs that allowed him the time to audition for roles. He landed some reoccurring and guest roles in the late 80’s and early 90’s on popular shows  The Facts of Life and Roseanne. While these were good gigs, they weren’t Clooney’s dream.

Just as he was starting to feel like his big break would never come, he booked the show that launched his career. In 1994, enter NBC’s new medical drama, ER. Almost immediately, he became one of the breakout stars and film moguls were clamoring to work with him. While working on ER, Clooney managed to film multiple files while working on ER. From rom-coms (One Fine Day with Michelle Pfeiffer) to classic storylines such as Batman & Robin. It was apparent his star was rising when he worked with powerhouse Jennifer Lopez in Out of Sight in 1998.

The following year, Clooney left ER to focus on movies full time. His next few roles included Three Kings with Mark Wahlberg and Ice Cube, O Brother, Where Art Thou working with the Coen brothers and Odyssey, where he won A Golden Globe. He later reunited with Mark Wahlberg for another hit, The Perfect Storm. His rise to stardom in Hollywood launched even further as he starred as Danny Ocean in the remake of Ocean’s Eleven (and later Ocean’s Twelve and Ocean’s Thirteen) in 2001 with an all-star cast including Brad Pitt

He tried his hand at directing in the following year with Confessions of A Dangerous Mind. 

With an introduction to directing under his belt he filmed Up in the Air and The Ides of March. The latter proved that George Clooney could be a star, director and a writer. He established himself as a multifaceted individual within the industry. It didn’t chart well, but he got his first experience at directing and continued worked behind the scenes on other films, such as Syriana. Syriana, which he produced, earned him Oscar and Academy Awards.

George Clooney spent most of his time working and making a name for himself. He has been named “Hollywood’s Most Eligible Bachelor” and People Magazine’s “Sexiest Man Alive” multiple times in congruence with many accolades and awards. In 2014, George Clooney proposed to Amal Alamuddin. She is a high profile barrister, human rights lawyer, of British-Lebanese descent. Three years after their wedding, they welcomed twins. Ella and Alexander Clooney, were first children born to both Amal Clooney and George Clooney. Nearing sixty (and looking AMAZING) George Clooney is experiencing the joys of family life and parenting. Taking a lead from his parents, he and Amal Clooney lead a mostly-private life, raising their kids in peace, away from Hollywood buzz.

Can’t wait to keep up with Clooney? Catch him today in Season 1 of Hulu’s brand new Crime/Comedy/Drama mini-series Catch 22.

This post was originally published on June 5, 2019.

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