Happy Birthday Cillian Murphy! 35 reasons I’m a fan of the Irish actor

A few weeks ago, my friend Novia from the awesome blog Polychrome Interest asked me and a few other bloggers to write a tribute to her all-time favorite actor. Of course I agree to do it. I like Cillian, he’s one of my top ten favorite Irish actors whom I first noticed in Batman Begins as the creepy Jonathan Crane, a.k.a Scarecrow. I have seen about a half dozen of his movies since and he continues to impress me. So for his 35th birthday, here are a list of 35 reasons why I’m a big fan:

(Facts obtained from IMDb and Wikipedia)

  1. I love that his name is unique… there’s no other actor w/ his name in Hollywood. Btw, his first name pronounced “Kill-ian” not “Sil-ian”
  2. He’s got a nice, deep voice… always a plus in any man
  3. Cillian’s got the world’s most gorgeous piercing blue eyes ever…
  4. … not to mention the enviable chiseled cheek bones
  5. On top of being so easy on the eyes, he’s an intelligent and talented actor…
  6. … if I were to use three words to describe his acting ability, it’d be versatile, charismatic & daring
  7. He’s a family man… he’s been married since 2004 and lives in London with his wife and two sons
  8. I love that he puts his family first… it’s said that he does not want to move to Los Angeles because of the cultural differences and distance from his family
  9. Always watchable even in a small cameo in Tron: Legacy, if only he had more screen time in that movie
  10. Seems like a sweet and romantic guy… I read that he proposed to his then longtime-girlfriend while hill-walking in Ireland
  11. He starred in three really good sci-fi movies I like: 28 Days Later, Sunshine, and Inception
  12. His great iconic shots in 28 Days Later… such as this one:
  13. He strikes me as a down-to-earth guy who goes into acting for the craft, not for the fame and money…
  14. He’s not a primadona. He doesn’t have a stylist or a personal publicist, travels without an entourage, and has said that he has no interest in the celebrity scene
  15. “I’d probably have been wealthier if I had stayed with law, but pretty miserable doing it,” he’s been quoted as saying. I respect people who take a leap of faith to pursue their dreams
  16. There’s an air of mystery about him that I find intriguing
  17. Just like my favorite actor Gerry Butler, he was planning a career in law until he discovered the world of acting
  18. He’s quite the chameleon, even able to pull off a role as a cross-dresser in Breakfast on Pluto
  19. Love his intense but soulful performance in The Edge of Love with Keira Knightley
  20. He’s quite the linguist, fluent in French and Irish, as well as English of course
  21. He has a knack for accent. His American and British accent comes out natural and convincing…
  22. … yet his native Irish lilt is darling!
  23. He’s obviously got a strong work ethic on top of his massive talent, as big directors like Christopher Nolan and Danny Boyle cast him repeatedly in their movies
  24. He’s got stage-cred on top of his Hollywood career, he’s done more than a dozen theater work and has worked with Tony-winning directors, such as Garry Hynes and Neil LaBute
  25. He looks good with glasses… especially as Jonathan Crane in Batman Begins… I like cute guys in glasses 🙂
  26. Men who are musicals appeal to me… and Cillian played in a rock band The Sons of Mr. Greengenes, named after a Frank Zappa’s song
  27. Equally convincing as a sociopath (in Red Eye) and as a hapless guy on the run from zombies (28 Days Later)
  28. Though he’s starred in highly successful Hollywood blockbusters, he still balances his resumes with indie fares, such as Perrier’s Bounty with Brendan Gleeson (his co-star in 28 Days Later)
  29. Awesome in Inception, his scenes with Pete Postlethwaite as his father was heart-wrenching
  30. He may be known mostly for his villainous roles, but still he’s not typecast in those roles…
  31. He’s intelligent enough to pull off a character of a brilliant physicist in Sunshine
  32. His role Jonathan Crane/The Scarecrow is one of the most memorable in Chris Nolan’s Batman films
  33. Despite all the kudos and awards he’s received, he remains humble and always have a positive thing to say about his co-stars
  34. He doesn’t forget his Irish heritage and where he came from … he recently gave an interview in his hometown of Cork, Ireland.
    And last but not least,
  35. I made new friends because of him… Novia found my blog through my top 10 Irish actor post and we’ve become friends ever since. Oh, did you know she’s from my hometown Jakarta? 😀

    So thanks Cillian and I wish you a wonderful and blessed birthday!

So what are your thoughts on Mr. Murphy? Please join me in wishing him a happy birthday or share your favorite Cillian Murphy role(s).

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41 thoughts on “Happy Birthday Cillian Murphy! 35 reasons I’m a fan of the Irish actor

  1. Happy birthday to Cillian!

    Browsing IMDb, I didn’t even notice that today is his birthday. Thanks for this post, I get to know much about this actor. I must say I haven’t seen many films with him, but there are some that I’m really interested in!

    1. Hey Lesya, thanks again for the RT on Twitter. Well, I had the heads up from Novia on his b’day 3 weeks ago, otherwise I probably won’t know either. I need to check out more of his smaller movies, too.

      1. He..he.. I don’t even try commenting using my BB, if my hubby is around and he’s got his iPad then I will but otherwise it’s too frustrating!

        Glad you like it, Nov, it was fun but took me longer than I thought.

  2. I’ve really liked everything he’s been in that I’ve seen. He’s been on my radar since 28 Days Later. Have you seen The Wind That Shakes the Barley? I haven’t but I’m very curious about it.

    1. the wind that shakes the Barley is in my top5 movies…great story and great performance. one out of 2movies that made aware of his talent.

    2. I haven’t seen ‘Barley’ either but have heard great things about it. I think most people know him from ’28 Days Later’ but the ending is quite polarizing.

  3. I have to type short comments or it won’t work.

    Thank you so much for agreeing to my request…much appreciated :hug:
    Can’t link it tonight, will do it tomorrow afternoon.

    we have Cillian to thank for making us friends, right Ruth 🙂

  4. Very interesting info. I love humility, it’s so refreshing. & I didn’t know he was fluent in Irish, i’ve always wanted to learn it.

    1. Well he’s Irish so it’s not that surprising to me, but the fact that he can speak French is cool! Do you speak another language, Paula? I really wanted to learn Spanish in college as the pronunciation is easy for me, but never got around to.

        1. Oooh awesome. I tried taking a couple of French classes but gave up right away. I just don’t think my tongue is built for French-speaking.

  5. PrairieGirl

    Sorry Ruth, can’t help it, but my comment has nothing to do with Cillian… I know someone else who’s a cute guy with glasses (not an actor), and his initials are IM and he has a web site called Pixelcrave… and if you click “About” at the site, you’ll see just what I mean ;-D
    http://pixelcrave.net/

    1. Ahahaha… yes I’m blessed to have married a cute guy w/ glasses, so true! I actually like Ivan w/ glasses (especially the Clark-Kent-style) better, it’s become so much a part of his face.

    1. Oh no you don’t want to do that Castor, especially on his b’day! You don’t know the kind of wrath she’ll spew onto you 😀

  6. great post! Forgot about his stint in Red Eye. You’re right, he may play villains often, but I don’t think of villains when he is brought up in conversation. Definitely not typecast!

    Great post Ruth!

    1. Thanks T, I like yours as well, I read it earlier on Novia’s blog. He’s sooo creepy in Red Eye, he said in interviews that people will be afraid to sit next to him on a plane now. No kidding!

  7. Ted S.

    I agree he’s very good actor but I’ve only seen the big Hollywood films he starred in, never seen any of his smaller films. I might have to check them out. I thought his chemistry with Rachel (my future wife) McAdams was great in Red Eye. If I didn’t know about that film’s plot, I probably thought it was a romantic comedy film.

    1. Ha..ha… Rachel is your future wife? Yeah, you’d have to fight Castor and Joel Burman for her! She is very pretty I agree, I like her in State of Play though I’m not crazy about The Notebook. Ha..ha.. no, Red Eye is definitely NOT a rom-com!

  8. I thought he was younger and didn’t know he was married with kids. He really hates when people call him Sillian 🙂
    I don’t like most of the films he did recently, he’s been corrupted by Hollywood, but I loved him in BREAKFAST ON PLUTO, WIND THAT SHAKES THE BARLEY ….

    1. Yeah, well I don’t blame him. ‘Sillian’ sounds like ‘Silly Ann’ 😀

      Oh I wouldn’t call him being ‘corrupted’ by Hollywood Dezzy. I mean, you can’t blame an actor for accepting high profile projects, especially if he likes the material. He still does a lot of indie fares along w/ the big budget stuff, so I don’t see him as ‘selling out’ at all.

      1. you are right Ruth and you are wrong Dezz.

        he isn’t corrupted yet, Didn’t you know he play an independence movie called peacock right before Inception?
        And now, he has signed up for another independence Irish movie even after Inception and the upcoming Now.

  9. Pingback: Happy 35th Birthday Cillian Murphy « Polychrome Interest

    1. Oh I don’t think I even come close, I’ve only seen half of his movies [ooops, don’t tell Novia] 😀

      No biggie, Custard, I totally understand.

    1. Well Michael Sheen’s role is a lot bigger, I won’t call that a cameo. Cillian only appeared in the beginning, in the board room scene.

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