After Remington Steele, Brosnan took the lead in many films such as Dante's Peak and The Thomas Crown Affair. In 1995, he became the fifth actor to portray secret agent James Bond in the official film series, starring in four films between 1995 and 2002. He also provided his voice and likeness to Bond in the 2004 video game James Bond 007: Everything or Nothing. Since playing Bond, he has starred in such successes as The Matador (nominated for a Golden Globe, 2005), Mamma Mia! (National Movie Award, 2008), and The Ghost Writer (2010).
In 1996, along with Beau St. Clair, Brosnan formed Irish DreamTime, a Los Angeles-based production company. In later years, he has become known for his charitable work and environmental activism.
He was married to Australian actress Cassandra Harris from 1980 until her death in 1991. He married American journalist and author Keely Shaye Smith in 2001, becoming an American citizen in 2004.Brosnan was born at Saint Mary's Hospital in Drogheda, County Louth,Ireland, to Thomas Brosnan, a carpenter, and May (née Smith, born circa 1934), and was their only child. He lived in Navan, County Meath for 12 years and considers it his hometown.Brosnan's mother moved to London to work as a nurse after his father abandoned the family. According to Brosnan,
“ Childhood was fairly solitary. I grew up in a very small town called Navan in County Meath. I never knew my father. He left when I was an infant and I was left in the care of my mother and my grandparents. To be Catholic in the '50s, and to be Irish Catholic in the '50s, and have a marriage which was not there, a father who was not there, consequently, the mother, the wife suffered greatly. My mother was very courageous. She took the bold steps to go away and be a nurse in England. Basically wanting a better life for her and myself. My mother came home once a year, twice a year. ”
From a young age Brosnan was largely brought up by his grandparents, Philip and Kathleen Smith.After their deaths, he lived with an aunt and then an uncle, but was subsequently sent to live with a woman named Eileen.Brosnan was brought up in a Roman Catholic family and educated in a local school run by the Christian Brothers while serving as an altar boy.Brosnan has expressed contempt for his education by the Christian Brothers.In spite of this, Brosnan still attends Mass, but adheres to his own spiritual beliefs. When asked in a 2008 Reader's Digest interview if he still practiced Catholicism, Brosnan replied, "I was an altar boy. That never leaves you. So when there are churches around, I go to church. I just went yesterday. I also love the teachings of Buddhist philosophy. It's my own private faith. I don't preach it, but it's a faith that is a comfort to me when the night is long."
Brosnan left Ireland on 12 August 1964 and was reunited with his mother and her new husband, a British World War II veteran, William Carmichael, now living in the Scottish village of Longniddry, East Lothian.Brosnan quickly embraced his mother's new husband as a father figure.Carmichael took Brosnan to see a James Bond film for the first time (Goldfinger), at the age of 11.Later moving back to London, Brosnan was educated at Elliott School, a state comprehensive school in Putney, West London.Brosnan has spoken about the transition from Ireland to England and his education in London; "When you go to a very large city, a metropolis like London, as an Irish boy of 10, life suddenly moves pretty fast. From a little school of, say, seven classrooms in Ireland, to this very large comprehensive school, with over 2,000 children. And you're Irish. And they make you feel it; the British have a wonderful way of doing that, and I had a certain deep sense of being an outsider."When he attended school, his nickname was "Irish".
After leaving school at 16, he decided to be a painter and began training in commercial illustration at Central Saint Martins College of Art and Design.At the Oval House in 1969, he came to a workshop to rehearse. A fire eater was teaching women how to put the flames across the chest while topless, and he decided to join in and learned how to fire-eat.A circus agent saw him busking and hired him for three years.He later trained for three years as an actor at the Drama Centre London.Brosnan has described the feeling of becoming an actor and the impact it had on his life: "When I found acting, or when acting found me, it was a liberation. It was a stepping stone into another life, away from a life that I had, and acting was something I was good at, something which was appreciated. That was a great satisfaction in my life."After graduating from the Drama Centre in 1975, Brosnan began working as an acting assistant stage manager at the York Theatre Royal, making his acting debut in Wait Until Dark. Within six months, he was selected by playwright Tennessee Williams to play the role of McCabe in the British première of The Red Devil Battery Sign.His performance caused a stir in London and Brosnan still has the telegram sent by Williams, stating only "Thank God for you, my dear boy".In 1977 he was picked by Franco Zeffirelli to appear in the play Filumena by Eduardo De Filippo opposite Joan Plowright and Frank Finlay.
He continued his career making brief appearances in films such as The Long Good Friday (1980) and The Mirror Crack'd (1980), as well as early television performances in The Professionals, Murphy's Stroke, and Play for Today. He became a television star in the United States with his leading role in the popular miniseries Manions of America.He followed this with his 1982 Masterpiece Theatre documentary that chronicled the life of Lady Nancy Astor, the first woman to sit in British Parliament. His portrayal of Robert Gould Shaw II garnered him a 1985 Golden Globe Award nomination for Best Supporting Actor.
In 1982, Brosnan moved to Southern California and rose to popularity in the United States playing the title role in the NBC romantic detective series Remington Steele. The Washington Post noted that same year that Brosnan "could make it as a young James Bond."After Remington Steele ended in 1987, Brosnan went on to appear in several films, including The Fourth Protocol a Cold War thriller in which he starred alongside Michael Caine, The Deceivers and James Clavell's Noble House both in (1988), and The Lawnmower Man (1992). In 1992, he shot a pilot for NBC called Running Wilde, playing a reporter for Auto World magazine. Jennifer Love Hewitt played his daughter. The pilot never aired, however. In 1993 he played a supporting role in the comedy film Mrs. Doubtfire. He also appeared in several television films, including Victim of Love (1991), Death Train (1993) and Night Watch (1995), a spy thriller set in Hong Kong.Brosnan first met James Bond films producer Albert R. Broccoli on the sets of For Your Eyes Only because his first wife, Cassandra Harris, was in the film. Broccoli said, "if he can act… he's my guy" to inherit the role of Bond from Roger Moore.It was reported by both Entertainment Tonight and the National Enquirer, that Brosnan was going to inherit another role of Moore's, that of Simon Templar in The Saint.Brosnan denied the rumours in July 1993 but added, "it's still languishing there on someone's desk in Hollywood."
In 1986, Timothy Dalton was approached for the Bond role; his involvement with the 1986 film adaptation of Brenda Starr kept Dalton from being able to accept it. A number of actors were then screen-tested for the role — notably Sam Neill — but were ultimately passed over by Broccoli.Remington Steele was about to end, so Brosnan was offered the role, but the publicity revived Remington Steele and Brosnan had to decline the role, owing to his contract.By then, Dalton had become available again, and he accepted the role for The Living Daylights (1987), and Licence to Kill (1989). Legal squabbles about ownership of the film franchise resulted in the cancellation of a proposed third Dalton film in 1991 (rumoured title: The Property of a Lady)and put the series on a hiatus, which lasted six years. On 7 June 1994, Brosnan was announced as the fifth actor to play Bond.
Brosnan was signed for a three-film Bond deal with the option of a fourth. The first, 1995's GoldenEye, grossed US $350 million worldwide,the fourth highest worldwide gross of any film in 1995,making it the most successful Bond film since Moonraker, taking inflation into account. It holds an 80% Rotten tomato rating,while Metacritic holds it at 65%.In the Chicago Sun-Times, Roger Ebert gave the film 3 stars out of 4, and said Brosnan's Bond was "somehow more sensitive, more vulnerable, more psychologically complete" than the previous ones, also commenting on Bond's "loss of innocence" since previous films.James Berardinelli described Brosnan as "a decided improvement over his immediate predecessor" with a "flair for wit to go along with his natural charm", but added that "fully one-quarter of Goldeneye is momentum-killing padding."
In 1996, Brosnan formed a film production company entitled "Irish DreamTime" along with producing partner and long time friend Beau St. Clair.Three years later the company's first studio project, The Thomas Crown Affair, was released and met both critical and box office success.
Brosnan returned in 1997's Tomorrow Never Dies and 1999's The World Is Not Enough, which were also successful. In 2002, Brosnan appeared for his fourth time as Bond in Die Another Day, receiving mixed reviews but was a success at the box office. Brosnan himself subsequently criticised many aspects of his fourth Bond movie. During the promotion, he mentioned that he would like to continue his role as James Bond: "I'd like to do another, sure. Connery did six. Six would be a number, then never come back."Brosnan asked EON Productions when accepting the role, to be allowed to work on other projects between Bond films. The request was granted, and for every Bond film, Brosnan appeared in at least two other mainstream films, including several he produced,playing a wide range of roles, ranging from a scientist in Tim Burton's Mars Attacks!, to the title role in Grey Owl which documents the life of Englishman Archibald Stansfeld Belaney, one of Canada's first conservationists. During a press conference for Grey Owl 1999 Tom Green serenaded star Pierce Brosnan and kissed him surreptitiously filming a segment for `The Tom Green Show` Thinking Green was a journalist Brosnan advised him not to give up his `day job`
Shortly after the release of Die Another Day, the media began questioning whether or not Brosnan would reprise the role for a fifth time. Brosnan kept in mind that both fans and critics were unhappy with Roger Moore playing the role until he was 58, but he was receiving popular support from both critics and the franchise fanbase for a fifth installment. For this reason, he remained enthusiastic about reprising his role.Throughout 2004, it was rumoured that negotiations had broken down between Brosnan and the producers to make way for a new and younger actor.This was denied by MGM and EON Productions. In July 2004, Brosnan announced that he was quitting the role, stating "Bond is another lifetime, behind me".In October 2004, Brosnan said he considered himself dismissed from the role.Although Brosnan had been rumoured frequently as still in the running to play 007, he had denied it several times, and in February 2005 he posted on his website that he was finished with the role.Daniel Craig took over the role on 14 October 2005.In an interview with The Globe and Mail, Brosnan was asked what he thought of Daniel Craig as the new James Bond. He replied, "I'm looking forward to it like we're all looking forward to it. Daniel Craig is a great actor and he's going to do a fantastic job".He reaffirmed this support in an interview to the International Herald Tribune, stating that "[Craig's] on his way to becoming a memorable Bond."
During his tenure on the James Bond films, Brosnan also took part in James Bond video games. In 2002, Brosnan's likeness was used as the face of Bond in the James Bond video game Nightfire (voiced by Maxwell Caulfield). In 2004, Brosnan starred in the Bond game Everything or Nothing, contracting for his likeness to be used as well as doing the voice-work for the character. He also starred along with Jamie Lee Curtis and Geoffrey Rush in The Tailor of Panama in 2001, and lent his voice to The Simpsons episode "Treehouse of Horror XII", as a machine with Pierce Brosnan's voice.Since 2004, Brosnan has talked of backing a film about Caitlin Macnamara, wife of poet Dylan Thomas, the title role to be played by Miranda Richardson. Brosnan's first post-Bond role was that of Daniel Rafferty in 2004's Laws of Attraction. Garreth Murphy, of entertainment.ie, described Brosnan's performance as "surprisingly effective, gently riffing off his James Bond persona and supplementing it with a raffish energy".In the same year, Brosnan starred in After the Sunset alongside Salma Hayek and Woody Harrelson. The film elicited generally negative reviews and a 17% rating on Rotten Tomatoes.Brosnan's next film was 2005's The Matador. He starred as Julian Noble, a jaded, neurotic assassin who meets a travelling salesman (Greg Kinnear) in a Mexican bar. The film garnered generally positive reviews. Roger Ebert for the Chicago Sun-Times called Brosnan's performance the best of his career.Brosnan was nominated for a Golden Globe award for Best Actor in a Musical or Comedy but lost to Joaquin Phoenix for Walk the Line.In December 2005, Brosnan was reported to be starring in The November Man, an adaptation of Bill Granger's novel, There Are No Spies,but the project was cancelled in 2007.
In 2007, Brosnan appeared in the film Seraphim Falls alongside fellow Irishman Liam Neeson. The film was released for limited screenings on 26 January 2007 to average reviews. Kevin Crust of the Los Angeles Times noted that Brosnan and Neeson made "fine adversaries;"Michael Rechtshaffen of The Hollywood Reporter thought that they were "hard-pressed to inject some much-needed vitality into their sparse lines."During the same year, Brosnan spoke of making a western with fellow Irishmen Gabriel Byrne and Colm Meaney and making an adaptation of the 1990 novel The True Confessions of Charlotte Doyle. It was suggested that Brosnan would play the ship's captain, Jaggery, joining Saoirse Ronan and Morgan Freeman.In that same year Brosnan starred as Tom Ryan in Butterfly on a Wheel.
In 2008, Brosnan joined Meryl Streep in the film adaption of the ABBA musical Mamma Mia!.He played Sam Carmichael, one of three men rumoured to be the father of lead Amanda Seyfried, while Streep played her mother.Judy Craymer, producer to the film, said "Pierce brings a certain smooch factor, and we think he'll have great chemistry with Meryl in a romantic comedy."Brosnan's preparation in singing for the role included walking up and down the coast and singing karaoke to his own voice for about six weeks, followed by rehearsals in New York in which he noted he "sounded dreadful."Brosnan's singing in the film was generally disparaged by critics, with his singing compared in separate reviews to the sound of a water buffalo,a donkey,and a wounded raccoon.In September 2008, Brosnan provided the narration for Thomas the Tank Engine in Thomas and Friends and The Great Discovery.
In 2009, Brosnan starred in The Big Biazarro, (alternative title The Ace), an adaptation of the Leonard Wise novel, directed by Vondie Curtis-Hall. Brosnan portrayed a card player who mentors a headstrong protégé.Also In 2009, Brosnan finished the well-received The Ghost Writer, playing a disgraced British Prime Minister, directed and produced by Roman Polanski. The film won a Silver Bear at the Berlin International Film Festival. He starred as Charles Hawkins in the film Remember Me and as Chiron in Percy Jackson & the Olympians: The Lightning Thief, both released in 2010.
His latest announced project is a role in the Danny DeVito helmed feature Charlotte Doyle in which he will appear alongside Morgan Freeman Brosnan met Australian actress Cassandra Harris through David Harris, one of Richard Harris' nephews, in 1977, shortly after he left drama school.On meeting her, he has described his feelings, saying, "What a beautiful looking woman. I never for an instant thought she was someone I'd spend 17 years of my life with. I didn't think of wooing her, or attempting to woo her; I just wanted to enjoy her beauty and who she was."They began dating, and eventually bought a house in Wimbledon. They married on 27 December 1980 and had one son together, Sean, who was born on 13 September 1983. They lived with her children, Charlotte and Christopher, and after their father Dermot Harris died in 1986, he adopted them and they took the surname Brosnan.
Financially, Brosnan was concerned about earning enough money to get by at this time, and supplemented their income by working in West End productions, and a television film about Irish horse racing.Soon after Harris appeared in the James Bond film For Your Eyes Only in 1981, with a bank loan, they moved to southern California where Brosnan had his first interview in Hollywood for Remington Steele, and subsequently no longer had financial worries.
When Remington Steele was sent to Ireland to film an episode there, generating significant publicity in doing so, Brosnan was briefly reunited with his father who visited his hotel. Brosnan had expected to see a very tall man, but describes his father as "a man of medium stature, pushed-back silver hair, flinty eyes and a twizzled jaw. He had a very strong Kerry accent."However, Brosnan expresses regret that they met under such circumstances in a public environment rather than on his own terms which would have given him the opportunity to speak privately with him.
While filming The Deceivers in Rajasthan, India, in 1987, his wife Cassandra Harris became seriously ill. She was later diagnosed with ovarian cancer and she died as a result of the illness in December 1991, aged Brosnan struggled to cope with her cancer and death: "When your partner gets cancer, then life changes. Your timetable and reference for your normal routines and the way you view life, all this changes. Because you're dealing with death. You're dealing with the possibility of death and dying. And it was that way through the chemotherapy, through the first-look operation, the second look, the third look, the fourth look, the fifth look. Cassie was very positive about life. I mean, she had the most amazing energy and outlook on life. It was and is a terrible loss, and I see it reflected, from time to time, in my children."Harris had always wanted Brosnan to play the role of James Bond, and in 1995, some four years after her death, Brosnan achieved this when he appeared in GoldenEye.
In 1994, Brosnan met American journalist Keely Shaye Smith in Mexico. In 2001, at Ballintubber Abbey in County Mayo, Ireland, they married.They have two sons together, Dylan Thomas Brosnan (birth 13 January 1997) and Paris Beckett Brosnan (birth 27 February 2001).
In July 2003, Queen Elizabeth II awarded Brosnan an honorary OBE for his "outstanding contribution to the British film industry".As an Irish citizen, he is ineligible to receive the full OBE honour, which is awarded only to a citizen of the Commonwealth realms. In 2002, Brosnan was also awarded an Honorary degree from the Dublin Institute of Technology and, one year later, the University College Cork.
On 23 September 2004, Brosnan became a citizen of the United States, but has retained his Irish citizenship. Brosnan said that "my Irishness is in everything I do. It's the spirit of who I am, as a man, an actor, a father. It's where I come from."Brosnan was asked by a fan if it annoyed him when people get his nationality confused. He said: "It amuses me in some respects that they should confuse me with an Englishman when I'm dyed-in-the-wool, born and bred Irishman...I don't necessarily fly under any flag. But no, it doesn't bother me."Pierce Brosnan has been an Ambassador for UNICEF Ireland since 2001 and recorded a special announcement to mark the launch of UNICEF's "Unite for Children, Unite against AIDS" Campaign with Liam Neeson.Brosnan supported John Kerry in the 2004 Presidential election and is a vocal supporter of same-sex marriage.
Brosnan first became aware of nuclear disarmament at the age of nine when worldwide condemnation of the 1962 U.S. nuclear tests in Nevada headlined international news.During the 1990s, he participated in news conferences in Washington, D.C. to help Greenpeace draw attention to the issue.Brosnan boycotted the French GoldenEye premiere to support Greenpeace's protest against the French nuclear testing program.From 1997 to 2000, Brosnan and wife Smith worked with the Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC) and International Fund for Animal Welfare (IFAW) to stop a proposed salt factory from being built at Laguna San Ignacio.The couple with Halle Berry, Cindy Crawford and Daryl Hannah successfully fought the Cabrillo Port Liquefied Natural Gas facility that was proposed off the coast of Malibu and would cause damage to the marine life there; the State Lands Commission eventually denied the lease to build the terminal.In May 2007, Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger vetoed the facility.Brosnan is also listed as a member of the Sea Shepherd's Board of Advisors.Brosnan was named 'Best-dressed Environmentalist' by the Sustainable Style Foundation in 2004
Brosnan also raises money for charitable causes through sales of his paintings. He trained early on as an artist, but later shifted to theatre; during his first wife's terminal illness, he withdrew from acting to be with her and took up painting again for therapeutic reasons, producing colourful landscapes and family portraits. He has continued painting since then, using spare time on set and at home. Profits from sales of giclée prints of his works are given to a trust to benefit "environmental, children's and women's health charities."Since Harris's death, Brosnan has been an advocate for cancer awareness and, in 2006, he served as spokesperson for Lee National Denim Day, a breast cancer fundraiser which raises millions of dollars and raises more money in a single day than any other breast cancer fundraiser.
In May 2007, Brosnan and Smith donated $100,000 to help replace a playground on the Hawaiian island of Kauai, where they own a home.On 7 July 2007, Brosnan presented a film at Live Earth in London.He also recorded a television advertisement for the cause.Brosnan lives with his family in Malibu, California.
Father: Tom Brosnan
Grandfather: Philip Smith
Sing of the zodiac: Taurus
Chinese Astrology: Water Snake
Chest width: 107 cm
Hip: 82 cm
Step length: 86 cm
Shoe size: 46