The Heart-Warming Story Of Oscar Winner Brendan Fraser, An Actor Who Had A Difficult Life But Never Gave Up

Brendan Fraser became a Hollywood star at a very young age. He had his breakthrough in 1992 with the comedy Encino Man and the drama School Ties. The Canadian-American actor gained further prominence for his starring role in George of the Jungle (1997) and emerged as a star portraying Rick O'Connell in the Mummy trilogy (1999-2008). But he later disappeared from the big screen. Now, it raises a question about what really happened to this once-so-popular star.
Today, we decided to share the whole story of Brendan Fraser's life and his career path with you.
Brendan James Fraser was born and raised in the US. His father was a Canadian foreign service officer, while his mother was a sales counselor. In 1990, the actor graduated from Seattle's Cornish College of the Arts and started looking for an opportunity in Hollywood. Still, before Fraser got the first role, he had to work in different jobs, including juggling in a department store.
Then, the first role that came to Fraser was in California Man. It revolved around the adventures of a caveman in L.A. in the 1990s. The movie was rated really low and called silly. Later, he appeared in a few more leading roles in no-so-famous flicks, such as School Ties, and The Passion of Darkly Noon.

Brendan FraserSource: © Encino Man / Walt Disney Studios, © Airheads / 20th Century Studios

The 28-year-old actor rose to his stardom in 1997 with the success of George of the Jungle. It revolved around a man who was raised nu apes conquered the hearts of viewers and gained $174 million worldwide.
"I was like a steak," Fraser remembered when he had to work out a lot and follow a strict diet.
Amazingly, the actor did all the stunts by himself, “I remember once I was hoisted on a crane 60 feet in the air, I had to swing down at 30 miles per hour for a 300-foot swoop,” Fraser said. And Eventually, he was injured.

Brendan FraserSource: © George of the Jungle / Walt Disney Pictures

People may not forget Fraser for his role in Blast from the Past where he portrayed a man who was born and raised in a nuclear fallout shelter and walked outside for the first time at the age of 35. Though the film got mixed reviews from critics, many fans still supported it. Nonetheless, critics praised Fraser's acting talent so many times. His performance in Gods and Monsters, for instance, was once said by critics,  as “Unrecognized but simply outstanding.”

Source: © Blast from the Past / Warner Bros. Entertainment© Gods and Monsters / BBC Films

Fraser's most memorable role came in 1999 when Stephen Sommers filmed him in the adventure flick, The Mummy. Originally, the role of Rick O'Connell was offered to Tom Cruise, Brad Pitt, and  Ben Affleck. Still, the director and producer watched the comedy, George of the Jungle, and believed Franser was the best choice. As the result. the movie become a global success and nowadays it's regarded as one of the main blockbusters of the 1990s.  Many critics also mentioned that Brendan Fraser's role was ahead of its time.

Brendan FraserSource: © The Mummy / Universal Pictures

Source: © Dudley Do-Right / Universal Pictures© Bedazzled / 20th Century Studios© Monkeybone / 20th Century Studios

After the success of The Mummy, he appeared in a few more movies. The comedy, Dudley Do-Right, a story about a kind mountie, gained unfavorable reviews from critics and was known as a box office bomb.
The comedy, Bedazzled (2000), a story about who made an evil contract with the devil to win the heart of the woman he loved, received different kinds of reviews from critics despite being a commercial success.
In 2001, he took part in a box office flop, the fantasy comedy Monkeybone. The movie earned only $7M worldwide with a $75 million budget.

Brendan FraserSource: © Looney Tunes: Back in Action / Warner Bros. Pictures

In the same year 2001, The Mummy Returns was released and received both good and bad reviews but was also a commercial success. After that, a few more Movies premiered that didn't meet expectations, including Looney Tunes: Back in Action and The Air I Breathe.
“I felt like the horse from Animal Farm, whose job it was to work and work and work,” the actor later stated.
During this time, an unwelcome incident came. Fraser had a conflict with an influential man and his Hollywood career path started to fade. According to the actor, he felt depressed and decided to leave the film industry for a while.


Unfortunately, his family's life wasn't easy either. He met his then-future wife, actress Afton Smith, at a barbecue at Winona Ryder's house in 1993. They walked down the aisle in 1998 and over their 9 years of marriage, they have 3 sons, Griffin, Leland, and Holden. In an interview, the duo mentioned that their eldest son had autism. In 2007, he and his wife decided to device.
And at the end of the 2000s, Fraser's acting career had a chance to be revived when the filming of The Mummy: Tomb of the Dragon Emperor was planned, which was about Fraser's character, his spouse, and their grown-up son. He did all the stunts and got some injuries during the filming and spent 7 years coming to the hospital for operations, including a partial knee replacement, vocal cord repair work, and a lumbar laminectomy. It all led to his weight gain.

Source: © The Mummy/ Universal Pictures© Journey to the Center of the Earth / Warner Bros. Entertainment

Despite being s a moderate commercial success, critics and viewers never praised it as much as they did the first 2 parts. Rachel Weisz was replaced with another actress, the location was moved from Egypt to China, and the atmosphere was completely unfamiliar, so viewers acquired something they didn’t expect. As a result, the fourth movie was canceled, and the studio began working on a reboot, starring Tom Cruise.
The same goes for another blockbuster starring Fraser. The movie Journey to the Center of the Earth made over $200 million worldwide, and the producers wanted a sequel. But the film director was busy with another project, and Fraser said he just wanted to work with him.
Since that time, Fraser has only appeared in little-known TV series and low-budget movies, never in any leading roles.

Source: © Trust / Cloud Eight Films© No Sudden Move / HBO Max

The actor’s current performance, which demonstrates that he has gained a lot of weight, has caused a lot of discussions on social media. “Brendan Fraser really let himself go after George of the Jungle,” a Twitter user noted. But the reason for this is that Darren Aronofsky’s movie, The Whale, is presently in production where Fraser has a lead role. According to the script, his role is about a 600-pound man who tries to reconnect with his 17-year-old daughter.

Thankfully, Brendan Fraser has officially solidified his Hollywood comeback as a newly minted Oscar winner. The "Whale" star won Best Actor at the 2023 Academy Awards after a long and epic journey in his career path. His fans who have loved him since a young age might be pleased with the final result and wish him all the best in the future. Up next, the Oscar winner Fraser is set to star in Martin Scorsese's "Killers  of the Flower Moon," Josh Brolin's "Brothers," and Dalibor Stach's "Behind the Curtain of Night."

Brendan FraserSource: © Gettyimages

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