He had a lead role in his debut movie, repeatedly turned down the chance to play Superman, listens to jazz and loves Jack Kerouac's On the Road. These are just a few things that both endear Josh Hartnett to fans and make him stand out in a town stuffed with starlets.
Today he turns 37, and with M-Net Movies we’ll get to celebrate his birthday beyond today with his leading turn in Pearl Harbor, which forms part of our Explosions Festival, on Saturday. On Monday night, we can continue the celebrations with Season 2 of Penny Dreadful on M-Net Edge 102. For today, his actual date of birth, we take a look at his top five films.
The Virgin Suicides (1999)
It was Harnett’s third lead role and his third feature film; but while his first two were the kind of teen horrors that were the order of the day in the late ‘90s, this movie elevated the teen genre to a grittiness it did not often experience in that era. Based on the book by Jeffrey Eugenides, and directed by Sofia Coppola, the film received acclaim for its talented director and her young cast.
Black Hawk Down (2001)
Hartnett was clearly destined for the lead role, not often being relegated to supporting turns. That being said this war drama, directed by Ridley Scott, is still very much an ensemble piece and Hartnett confirmed yet again that he was capable of collaborative work, and being entrusted to carry a film.
Sin City (2005)
The ultimate ensemble came in the form of Sin City. Based on separate strands of a graphic novel by Frank Miller, who shared directing duties with cult favourite Robert Rodriguez, the movie’s multiple stories required a large cast. A host of Hollywood's top-notch talent was called upon, including Hartnett in an arresting performance as a character simply named The Salesman.
Lucky Number Slevin (2006)
In this comedic crime caper Hartnett joined his Sin City co-star Bruce Willis in a film that sent audiences’ minds around the bend with its twists and turns. Some loved it, some hated it; but Willis and Hartnett had fun with this action-packed gambol of mistaken identity and lightning quick banter.
Penny Dreadful (2014 - )
We decided to cheat a little for the last title, which is a TV series and not a movie. However, Hartnett’s performance’s as a suave sharp shooter who falls in love with an Irish immigrant is so tantalisingly tortured we just couldn’t leave it off the list.