Happy Birthday, Gary Oldman!

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Mar 21, 2018

Posted by: Amanda Kirk | Comments

Actor Birthdays, Oldman

Gary Oldman turns 60 today and we at Leaky feel fairly certain that this milestone birthday is going to be a happy one for him.  After a four decade acting career playing roles that show a breathtaking diversity, from Sid Vicious to Count Dracula, from Lee Harvey Oswald to Commissioner Gordon, Oldman finally won his first Academy Award for his portrayal of Sir Winston Churchill in Darkest Hour.  He also won a Golden Globe Award for the same role, and the accolades keep coming for his work in this film about the early days of World War II, when Churchill had newly become Prime Minister.

f5110ad6f7c1f0942722d4aa316ad6d4Of course, we Potter fans know Oldman as Harry’s beloved godfather, Sirius Black.  The young actors in the Harry Potter films became irrevocably associated with their roles, the first acting role of their careers for many of them.  But the adult roles were played by well-known British actors, some of whom had pre-Potter careers spanning over half a century, and who were known for a variety of leading roles across many genres of film and theatre.  Such was the perfection of the casting, and the skill of the actors, that you were never distracted by previous associations.  Each actor became his or her character completely.  Oldman was no exception, but there was some muttering amongst fans when his casting was first announced due to his age.  He was older than the Sirius of the books, and looked it.  But those critics were silenced when they saw Oldman as Sirius onscreen.  He cleverly made his age appear as wear and tear from his twelve years in Azkaban.  From his wild-eyed appearance in the Shrieking Shack as the vengeful escapee (“I did my waiting—twelve years, in Azkaban!”) to his bittersweet elegance in velvet as a virtual prisoner again at his family’s London townhouse, Oldman’s Sirius was a man of deep emotions, who wore his suffering, and his wisdom, in every line of his face.

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Let’s all wish Gary Oldman the happiest of birthdays, and acknowledge his much-deserved Oscar with a wand salute.

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