Philip Seymour Hoffman

Born: 1968
Birthplace: Fairport, N.Y.

Versatile character actor known for portraying complex, often dysfunctional characters. He earned his acting chops in theater before making his film debut in 1992's Scent of a Woman. He has starred in all three of Paul Thomas Anderson's films: Hard Eight (1996), Boogie Nights (1997), and Magnolia (1999). Boogie Nights proved his breakthrough performance. He played Scotty J a soundman with the hots for Mark Wahlberg's Dirk Diggler. In Happiness (1998), Hoffman played an overweight stalker. He gave what is widely considered his best performance to date in 1999's The Talented Mr. Ripley, in which he played Freddie, a rich, lascivious, and utterly contemptible ex-pat. In 2000, he returned to the stage in Broadway's True West, in which he and co-star and frequent film collaborator John C. Reilly, alternate roles every few days. In 2000, he appeared in State and Main and Almost Famous.

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