Giamatti at the post-2008 Emmy Awards
|Born||Paul Edward Valentine Giamatti
June 6, 1967
New Haven, Connecticut, U.S.
|Spouse(s)||Elizabeth Cohen (1997-present)|
Paul Edward Valentine Giamatti (born June 6, 1967) is an American actor and comedian. Giamatti began his career as a supporting actor in several films produced during the 1990s including Private Parts, The Truman Show, Saving Private Ryan, The Negotiator, and Man on the Moon, before earning lead roles in several critically acclaimed projects in the 2000s including American Splendor, Sideways, Cinderella Man, John Adams, and Cold Souls.
Giamatti was born and raised in New Haven, Connecticut. His father, A. Bartlett Giamatti, was a Yale University professor who later became president of the university and commissioner of Major League Baseball. His mother, Toni Marilyn (née Smith), was a homemaker and English teacher who taught at Hopkins School and had also previously acted. Giamatti's mother was Irish American; his paternal grandfather, Valentine Giamatti, was an Italian American, of parentage from Telese, and his paternal grandmother, Mary Claybaugh Walton, was from a New England family.
Giamatti has a brother, Marcus, who is also an actor. Giamatti was educated at The Foote School and graduated from Choate Rosemary Hall in 1985. He attended Yale University, where he was "reputed"ly a member of the Skull and Bones secret society, and was active in the undergraduate theater scene, working alongside actors Ron Livingston and Edward Norton, who were also Yale students. He graduated from Yale in 1989 with a bachelor's degree in English. He went on to earn a Master of Fine Arts degree from the Yale School of Drama where he studied with Earle R. Gister. He performed in numerous theatrical productions (including Broadway) before appearing in some small television and film roles in the early 1990s.
Giamatti's first high profile role was in the film adaptation of Howard Stern's Private Parts as Kenny "Pig Vomit" Rushton, Stern's antagonistic program director at WNBC. Stern praised Giamatti's performance often on his radio program, calling for him to be nominated for the Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor. He appeared in a number of supporting roles in big-budget movies such as The Truman Show, Saving Private Ryan, and The Negotiator (all 1998). In 1999, he played Bob Zmuda (and Tony Clifton) in the Andy Kaufman biopic, Man on the Moon. Giamatti continued to be featured in major studio releases such as Big Momma's House (2000) with Martin Lawrence, the Planet of the Apes remake (2001), and in Big Fat Liar (2002) opposite Frankie Muniz and Amanda Bynes.
Giamatti began to earn critical acclaim after his lead role in the 2003 film American Splendor. He gained mainstream notoriety with the 2004 independent romantic comedy Sideways. His portrayal of a depressed writer vacationing in the Santa Barbara wine country garnered him a Golden Globe nomination and an Independent Spirit Award. Following the commercial success of Sideways, Giamatti appeared in Cinderella Man, for which he earned an Academy Award nomination for Best Supporting Actor. He was also nominated for a Golden Globe and won the Screen Actors Guild Award for Best Supporting Actor - Motion Picture.
In 2006, he was the lead in M. Night Shyamalan's Lady in the Water, a supernatural thriller, followed by the animated film The Ant Bully, and Neil Burger's drama The Illusionist co-starring Edward Norton. He also played Mr. Hertz in the action movie Shoot 'Em Up and Santa Claus in the comedy Fred Claus.
In 2008 he received his first Emmy Award for "Outstanding Lead Actor in a Miniseries or a Movie" for his title performance in the HBO miniseries John Adams, a role that also led to a Screen Actors Guild award. That same year, he starred in the independent film Pretty Bird which is a fictionalized retelling about the drama behind the invention of a rocketbelt.
He was nominated for 45 separate awards between 2001 and 2008, and won 26 of them, including both an Emmy and a Golden Globe for John Adams. All of his nominations except one were for American Splendor, Sideways, Cinderella Man, or John Adams; the exception was a Blockbuster Entertainment Award nomination for Big Momma's House.
The Brooklyn Academy of Music asked Giamatti, its "2007 BAM Cinema Club Chair", to pick films for an eight-movie series called "Paul Giamatti Selects" and shown at the Academy in August and September 2007. His selections indicated a taste for paranoia and "the darkest of dark comedy," according to a writer for The New York Times, and included Frenzy, Dr. Strangelove, Brewster McCloud, The Big Clock, The Seventh Victim, Dawn of the Dead (1978 version), Seconds, and Invasion of the Body Snatchers (1978 version).
Formally a resident of the Brooklyn Heights neighborhood of Brooklyn, New York, Giamatti has been married to Elizabeth Giamatti (née Cohen) since 1997. They have a son, Samuel (born 2001), who is raised in his mother's Jewish religion. Giamatti is an atheist.
|1992||Past Midnight||Larry Canipe|
|1994||NYPD Blue||Man In Sleeping Bag||(Episode "You Bet Your Life")|
|1995||Mighty Aphrodite||Extras Guild Researcher|
|New York News||Dr. Wargner||(TV series) (Episode "Past Imperfect")|
|1996||The Show||Jeffrey Roffman||(TV series) (Pilot Episode)|
|Ripper||Doctor Bud Cable||(computer game)|
|1997||Arresting Gena||Detective Wilson|
|Donnie Brasco||FBI Technician|
|Private Parts||Kenny "Pig Vomit" Rushton|
|My Best Friend's Wedding||Richard the Bellman|
|Deconstructing Harry||Professor Abbot|
|A Further Gesture||Hotel Clerk|
|1998||Homicide: Life on the Street||Harry Tjarks||(TV series) (Episode "Pit Bull Sessions")|
|The Truman Show||Control Room Director|
|Saving Private Ryan||Sergeant Hill|
|The Negotiator||Rudy Timmons|
|Safe Men||Veal Chop|
|1999||Cradle Will Rock||Carlo|
|Man on the Moon||Bob Zmuda/Tony Clifton|
|2000||If These Walls Could Talk 2||Ted Hedley||(TV series) (Segment "1961")|
|Big Momma's House||John Maxwell|
|2001||King of the Hill||Mr. McKay||(TV series) (Episode "It's Not Easy Being Green")|
|Planet of the Apes||Limbo|
|2002||Big Fat Liar||Marty Wolf|
|Thunderpants||Johnson J. Johnson|
|2003||American Splendor||Harvey Pekar||Nominated - Chicago Film Critics Association Award for Best Actor
Nominated - Satellite Award for Best Actor – Motion Picture Musical or Comedy
|The Pentagon Papers||Anthony Russo||(TV series)|
|2004||Sideways||Miles Raymond||Independent Spirit Award for Best Lead Male
New York Film Critics Circle Award for Best Actor
Screen Actors Guild Award for Outstanding Performance by a Cast in a Motion Picture
Nominated - Broadcast Film Critics Association Award for Best Actor
Nominated - Golden Globe Award for Best Actor – Motion Picture Musical or Comedy
Nominated - Satellite Award for Best Actor - Motion Picture Musical or Comedy
|2005||Saturday Night Live||Host||(TV series) (Episode 30.10)|
|Robots||Tim the Gate Guard (Voice)|
|The Fan and the Flower||Narrator|
|Cinderella Man||Joe Gould||Broadcast Film Critics Association Award for Best Supporting Actor
Screen Actors Guild Award for Outstanding Performance by a Male Actor in a Supporting Role
Washington D.C. Area Film Critics Association for Best Supporting Actor
Nominated - Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor
Nominated - BAFTA Award for Best Actor in a Supporting Role
Nominated - Golden Globe Award for Best Supporting Actor – Motion Picture
|2006||The Hawk Is Dying||George Gattling|
|The Illusionist||Chief Inspector Uhl|
|Lady in the Water||Cleveland Heep|
|The Ant Bully||Stan Beals (Voice)|
|Screw-On Head||Screw-On Head (voice)||(TV series)|
|2007||The Nanny Diaries||Mr. X|
|Shoot 'Em Up||Karl Hertz|
|Fred Claus||Nicholas "Nick" Claus|
|2008||John Adams||John Adams||Emmy Award for Outstanding Lead Actor – Miniseries or a Movie
Golden Globe Award for Best Actor – Miniseries or Television Film
Screen Actors Guild Award for Outstanding Performance by a Male Actor in a Miniseries or Television Movie
Satellite Award for Best Actor – Miniseries or Television Film
|2009||Duplicity||Richard "Dick" Garsik|
|The Haunted World of El Superbeasto||Dr. Satan|
|The Last Station||Vladimir Chertkov|
|2010||Barney's Version||Barney Panofsky|
|The Goon||Franky (voice)|