Mar. 14th, 1933
Rotherhithe, London, England, UK
Michael Caine's Main TV Roles
Main Movie Roles
Guest TV Roles[none found]
Michael Caine (born Maurice Micklewhite; March 14, 1933) in London. Caine was the son of a fish-market porter and a charlady. He left school at 15 and took a series of working-class jobs before joining the British army and serving in Korea during the Korean War, where he saw combat. Upon his return to England he gravitated toward the theater and got a job as an assistant stage manager. He adopted the name of Caine on the advice of his agent, taking it from a marquee that advertised The Caine Mutiny (1954).
In the years that followed he worked in more than 100 television dramas, with repertory companies throughout England and eventually in the stage hit, The Long and the Short and the Tall. Zulu (1964), the 1964 epic retelling of a historic 19th-century battle in South Africa between British soldiers and Zulu warriors, brought Caine to international attention. Instead of being typecast as a low-ranking Cockney soldier, he played a snobbish, aristocratic officer. Although Zulu was a major success, it was the role of Harry Palmer in The Ipcress File (1965) and the title role in Alfie (1966) that made Caine a star of the first magnitude.
He epitomized the new breed of actor in mid-'60s England, the working-class bloke with glasses and a down-home accent. However, after initially starring in some excellent films, particularly in the 1960s, including Gambit (1966), Funeral in Berlin (1966), Play Dirty (1968), _Battle of Britain (1969), _Too Late the Hero (1970), _The Last Valley (1970) and especially Get Carter (1971), he seemed to take on roles in below-average films, simply for the money he could by then command. There were some gems amongst the dross, however. He gave a magnificent performance opposite 'Sean Connery' in _The Man Who Would Be King (1975) and turned in a solid one as a German colonel in _The Eagle Has Landed (1976). _Educating Rita (1983) and Hannah and Her Sisters (1986) (for which he won his first Oscar) were highlights of the 1980s, while more recently Little Voice (1998), The Cider House Rules (1999) (his second Oscar) and Last Orders (2001)have been widely acclaimed.
- Owns his own film production company.
- While he uses "Michael Caine" professionally, he uses his given name in his personal life.
- Near the end of _The Muppet Christmas Carol (1992)_ (qv), he passes by a store called "Micklewhite's." His real name is Maurice Micklewhite.
- 1993: Awarded CBE (Commander Of The Most Excellent Order Of The British Empire).
- Once said that he knew he'd made it as an actor when he started getting scripts to read that no longer had coffee stains already on them (meaning that he was the first choice for that role).
- The soundstage at Shepperton Studios, in which he filmed _Batman Begins (2005)_ (qv), is also the one where he filmed his very first film, _A Hill in Korea (1956)_ (qv).
- Visited 'John Wayne (I)' (qv) several times when the veteran star was dying of cancer in hospital.
- Upon meeting 'Laurence Olivier' (qv) for the first time on the set of _Sleuth (1972)_ (qv), he was unsure of how to address Olivier. Olivier told him that he should be called Lord Olivier the first time, and after that, he could simply call him "Larry."