Eric Bana: Biography
Eric Banadinovich was introduced into the world on August 9, 1968 in Melbourne (say Mel-ben), Australia. Eric's brother, Anthony, is three years older. Anthony was was an 'A' student, and an athlete who went to the United States to play basketball. Eric, on the other hand, was the popular class clown and won school talent contests. His German mother (Eleanor) was a hairdresser, and his Croation father (Ivan) was involved in logistics while working at Caterpillar, an American tractor company. As a child, Eric grew up in Melbourne's Tullamarine: "I grew up in Tullamarine and was just an infatuated revhead, and so were all my friends, and that was my upbringing, just very suburban."
After leaving school, Eric traveled and had odd jobs including working for a transport company down on the wharf in Melbourne. At this time in his early twenties, he was "really professionally at a loose end." He wanted to act, but he had no idea on how to pursue it. "I had absolutely no idea how to go about it and I was so bloody arrogant that I had no interest in going to drama school." Other jobs jobs included washing cars at a service station, pushing trolleys at Coles New World, and picking up glasses at a Melbourne pub.
Eric Bana: Career
Bana's career as a comedian began while working as a bartender at his native city's Castle Hotel in 1991. Television offers began flowing in a few short years later, and in 1993, Bana took his sharp wit to the small screen as he assumed the roles of both writer and performer on one of Australia's top comedy programs, Full Frontal. His star on the rise, the increasingly popular comedian made audiences laugh even harder when he co-produced and starred in his own 1996 comedy special Eric (later to become a series) and kicked off The Eric Bana Show Live the following year. 1997 proved to be a busy year for Bana as he also made his feature debut in The Castle, though all of his hard work would pay off when he took a feature role in Australian television's Something in the Air in 2000 and was voted Australia's Most Popular Comedy Performer at the Logies.
Though up to this point Bana had taken his native land by storm, his international star had yet to shine. All of this would change with the turn of the new millennium, the year that Bana took on his most demanding role to date, that of notorious Aussie author/murderer Mark "Chopper" Read in Chopper (2000). Gaining approximately 30 pounds and having his body covered in tattoos to resemble Read were only part of the exhaustingly extensive lengths that Bana and director Andrew Dominik went to provide an accurate and colorful portrayal of the charismatic criminal. Aside from years of research into Read's life, Bana would live with the man himself for two days in order to understand his uniquely skewed perspective on life. Winning almost unanimous international acclaim for his sometimes shocking, sometimes humorous and always fascinating portrayal of Read, Hollywood was soon calling for Bana, and he answered by accepting a role in the tense true story of the Battle of Mogadishu, Black Hawk Down.
Winning the coveted title role in director Ang Lee's eagerly anticipated live-action version of The Hulk and lending his pipes to the star-studded voice-cast of Finding Nemo, Bana's talent seemed to finally be getting the international attention that Australia had recognized all along. And while The Hulk failed to be quite the blockbuster many had hoped for, Bana's star continued to rise with a role opposite Brad Pitt in the 2004 epic Troy.
Eric Bana: Films
Romulus, My Father (2006), Lucky You (2006), Munich (2005), Troy (2004), The Hulk (2003), Finding Nemo (2003), The Nugget (2002), Black Hawk Down (2001), Chopper (2001), The Castle (1999) , Something in the Air (TV Series)(2000), Eric (TV Series)(1997), The Eric Bana Show Live (TV Series) (1997), Eric (TV) (1996), Full Frontal (TV Series) (1993)