Mark Ruffalo

Mark Ruffalo
Mark Ruffalo

Ruffalo at the 2007 Toronto International Film Festival
Born Mark Alan Ruffalo
November 22, 1967(1967-11-22)
Kenosha, WI, U.S.
Occupation Actor, director, producer, screenwriter
Years active 1989–present
Spouse Sunrise Coigney (2000–present)

Mark Alan Ruffalo (November 22, 1967) is an American actor, director, producer and screenwriter. He starred in films such as Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind, Zodiac, Shutter Island, Just Like Heaven, You Can Count on Me and The Kids Are All Right for which he received an Academy Award nomination for Best Supporting Actor.[1]


Early life

Ruffalo was born in Kenosha, Wisconsin. He is the son of Marie Rose (née Hebert), a hairdresser and stylist, and Frank Lawrence Ruffalo, Jr., who worked as a construction painter.[1][2][3] His father and maternal grandmother were of Italian descent, and his maternal grandfather was of French Canadian ancestry.[4][5] He has two sisters, Tania and Nicole, and a brother, Scott,[1] who died in December 2008. Ruffalo has described himself as having been a "happy kid"[6] and his upbringing as taking place in a "very big Italian family with lots of love".[7] Of his father, Ruffalo has said, "He was an amazing, charismatic guy who was city high school wrestling champion three times. He was away a lot when I was growing up. I was very lonely for him.”[8] Ruffalo was raised Roman Catholic; he attended both a Catholic and a progressive school, and was raised around the local Bahá'í community, of which his father was a member.[1][9][10] Ruffalo spent his teen years in Virginia Beach, Virginia, where his father worked. He graduated from First Colonial High School,[1] and then moved with his family to San Diego, California, and later to Los Angeles, California. There, he took classes at the Stella Adler Conservatory and co-founded the Orpheus Theatre Company.[1] With the OTC, he wrote, directed, and starred in a number of plays, and spent the next nine years earning his money as a bartender.



Ruffalo had minor roles in films like The Dentist (1996), the low-key crime comedy Safe Men (1998) and Ang Lee's Civil War Western Ride with the Devil (1999). Through a chance meeting with writer Kenneth Lonergan, Ruffalo began collaborating with Lonergan and appeared in several of his plays, including the original cast of This is Our Youth (1998), which led to Ruffalo's role as Laura Linney's troubled, aimless drifter brother Terry in Lonergan's acclaimed, Academy Award-nominated 2000 film You Can Count on Me.[1] He received favorable reviews for his performance in this film, often earning comparisons to the young Marlon Brando, and won awards from the Los Angeles Film Critics Association and Montreal World Film Festival.[1]

This led to other significant roles, including the films XX/XY (2002), Isabel Coixet's My Life Without Me with Sarah Polley (2003), Jane Campion's In the Cut with Meg Ryan (2003), Michel Gondry's Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind (2004), and We Don't Live Here Anymore (2004), which is based upon two short stories written by Andre Dubus.[1] He appeared opposite Tom Cruise as a narcotics detective in Michael Mann's acclaimed crime-thriller Collateral (2004).[1] More recently, Ruffalo has appeared as a romantic lead in "chick flicks" such as View From the Top (2002), 13 Going on 30 (2004), Just Like Heaven (2005) and Rumor Has It (2005).[1] In 2006, Ruffalo starred in Clifford Odets's Awake and Sing! at the Belasco Theatre in New York, for which he was nominated for a Tony Award for Best Featured Actor in a Play.[1] In March 2007, he appeared in Zodiac as SFPD homicide inspector Dave Toschi, who ran the investigation to find and apprehend the Zodiac killer from 1969 through most of the 1970s.[1] In 2007, Ruffalo played divorced lawyer Dwight Arno, who accidentally kills a child and speeds away, in Terry George's film Reservation Road, based on the novel by John Burnham Schwartz.

In 2008, Ruffalo starred as a con man in The Brothers Bloom with Adrien Brody and Rachel Weisz. Also in 2008, he starred along with Julianne Moore in Blindness. 2008 also saw Ruffalo in Brian Goodman's What Doesn't Kill You with Ethan Hawke and Amanda Peet, which was shown at the Toronto Film Festival. In 2009, he played a brief role in the film Where The Wild Things Are as Max's mother's boyfriend. In 2010, he costarred in the Martin Scorsese thriller Shutter Island as U.S. Marshal Chuck Aule, the partner of Leonardo DiCaprio's character Teddy Daniels.[11]

In 2010, he starred in Lisa Cholodenko's The Kids Are All Right, with Annette Bening and Julianne Moore. Ruffalo stated in an interview that he approached Cholodenko after watching High Art and said he would love to work with her. Years later, she called Ruffalo and said she wrote a script, and had him in mind for the part. The performance earned him an Academy Award nomination for best supporting actor.[12]

He is set to star in Second Coming, a low-budget indie film. According to Production Weekly, it is being produced by Richard N. Gladstein, Laura Bickford, and Ludovic Dardenay. The movie will also star Marion Cotillard, Ethan Hawke, Anjelica Huston, and Thandie Newton, and it will be the directorial debut of Nenad Cicin-Sain.[13]

On July 23, 2010, it was announced that Ruffalo will join actors Chris Evans, Robert Downey, Jr., and Chris Hemsworth, among others, in the 2012 movie The Avengers, in which he will play Bruce Banner.[14]


He made his directorial debut with Sympathy for Delicious, which premiered at the Sundance Film Festival and won the Special Jury Prize. On releasing the film, Ruffalo said, "I'm still looking for distribution. I have a couple offers on the table, but I'm holding out for something a little bigger. I've been screening it for a lot of groups, and people are really responding to it. I think they're scared of that movie."[15] Of directing, he says, "I liken it to an actor gets to eat one slice, and a director gets to eat the whole pie. [laughs] You get to collaborate with gifted people who are good at their craft, so you're orchestrating all these different mediums. You're helping people through the script to realize their own talents. I find that really satisfying, and I felt like being in front of the camera is so intense and self-involved and personal, and directing isn't like that for me. It's a much more communal experience. Last year at this time, I was like, 'I'm not going back to acting, man. No way, it's done.' I haven't worked in a year. It's really taken me that long to get back to my love for what I do for acting. I would like to do 50-50, if I could. Really, I'd just be directing right now, but I can't support my family doing that at this moment, and I love acting. It's not a bad position to be in."[15]

Personal life


Since June 2000, Mark has been married to French-American actress Sunrise Coigney (born Christina Sunrise Coigney on September 17, 1972 in San Francisco), and they have three children: a son Keen, born in 2001, and daughters Bella Noche, born in 2005, and Odette, born in 2007, in Los Angeles, California.[16]

Brother's death

On December 1, 2008, Ruffalo's brother, Scott, was shot at his Beverly Hills condominium,[17] with one report describing the shooting as "execution-style" in the back of the head.[18] Scott died on December 8, 2008. Police took two people into custody: a woman who is considered a suspect and a man considered a "person of interest".[19] One of the suspects reportedly told police that Scott Ruffalo shot himself while playing Russian roulette;[20] the witnesses were later released as the police investigation continued.[21]

Health problems

In 2002, Ruffalo was diagnosed with an acoustic neuroma, a type of brain tumor, and had surgery; the tumor was benign, but resulted in a period of partial facial paralysis.[2] He fully recovered from the paralysis and returned to good health as well as an active life and movie career. Ruffalo is also a vegetarian.[22]

Political views

On October 4, 2006, he appeared on Democracy Now!, a daily news program. He spoke against the War in Iraq, the Military Commissions Act of 2006, torture, and the Bush Administration. He also announced he would speak at The World Can't Wait Protest in New York City on October 5, 2006. Ruffalo contributed to the campaign of former Alaska Senator Mike Gravel for the 2008 Democratic Party nomination for President.[23]

In October 2007, Ruffalo criticized the 9/11 Commission Report as "completely illegitimate" and called for re-opening the investigation. He said: "I saw the way they all came down and I am baffled. My first reaction is that buildings don't fall down like that." He also criticized the 9/11 truth movement, saying "There's so much information that's been put out there by truth for 9/11 and ... so much of it has been stretched that a lot of people are grabbing hold of the more sensational parts of what doesn't jibe..."[24]

On October 4, 2010, Ruffalo, who makes his home with his family in Callicoon, New York, appeared on The Rachel Maddow Show to discuss hydraulic fracturing and the The FRAC Act of 2009.[25] Ruffalo stated in the December 2010 issue of GQ magazine that after he organized screenings in Pennsylvania of a documentary about natural-gas-drilling called Gasland, he was placed on a terror advisory list.[26] The Department denied that they had him on a list.[27]

On July 13, 2011, Ruffalo appeared on Countdown With Keith Olbermann to discuss fracking, most particularly in New York. "This is an industry that is the dirtiest, slimiest, most arrogant, and negligent that you can imagine," Ruffalo says. Mr. Ruffalo taped an "online segment extra" for Countdown, during which time Keith Olbermann offered him the opportunity to become an official Countdown Contributor. Mr. Ruffalo gratefully accepted. [1]


Film and television
Year Title Role Notes
1994 Due South Vinnie Webber TV Series: 1 Episode: A cop, a mountie and a baby
1996 Last Big Thing, TheThe Last Big Thing Brent Benedict
Dentist, TheThe Dentist Steve Landers
1997 On the 2nd Day of Christmas Bert
1998 Safe Men Frank
54 Ricko
1999 Ride with the Devil Alf Bowden
2000 You Can Count on Me Terry Prescott Los Angeles Film Critics Association – New Generation Award
Montreal World Film Festival Award for Best Actor
Nominated—Broadcast Film Critics Association Award for Breakthrough Performer
Nominated—Chicago Film Critics Association Award for Best Actor
Nominated—Chlotrudis Award for Best Actor
Nominated—Dallas-Fort Worth Film Critics Association Award for Best Supporting Actor
Nominated—Independent Spirit Award for Best Male Lead
Nominated—Vancouver Film Critics Circle Award for Best Actor
Committed T-Bo
The Beat Zane Marinelli TV Series: 8 Episodes
2001 Last Castle, TheThe Last Castle Yates
Life/Drawing (AKA Apartment 12) Alex
2002 XX/XY Coles
Windtalkers Private Pappas
2003 My Life Without Me Lee Nominated—Chlotrudis Award for Best Supporting Actor
View from the Top Ted Stewart
In the Cut Detective Giovanni A. Malloy
2004 We Don't Live Here Anymore Jack Linden Also Executive Producer
Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind Stan
13 Going on 30 Matt Flamhaff Nominated—Teen Choice Award for Choice Movie Actor – Comedy
Nominated—Teen Choice Award for Choice Movie Chemistry
Nominated—Teen Choice Award for Choice Movie Liplock
Collateral Fanning
2005 Just Like Heaven David Abbott
Rumor Has It Jeff Daly
2006 All the King's Men Adam Stanton
2007 Zodiac Inspector David Toschi
Reservation Road Dwight Arno
2008 Blindness Doctor Nominated—Vancouver Film Critics Circle Award for Best Supporting Actor in a Canadian Film
What Doesn't Kill You Brian Reilly Nominated—Satellite Award for Best Actor – Motion Picture Drama
2009 Brothers Bloom, TheThe Brothers Bloom Stephen Nominated—Satellite Award for Best Actor – Motion Picture Musical or Comedy
Where the Wild Things Are Connie's Boyfriend
Sympathy for Delicious Joe Also Producer/Director
Sundance Film Festival – Special Jury Prize – Dramatic
2010 Shutter Island Chuck Aule Nominated—Scream Award for Best Supporting Actor
Date Night Brad Sullivan
Kids Are All Right, TheThe Kids Are All Right Paul New York Film Critics Circle Award for Best Supporting Actor
Comedy Film Award for Best Supporting Actor
Nominated—Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor
Nominated—BAFTA Award for Best Actor in a Supporting Role
Nominated—Broadcast Film Critics Association Award for Best Supporting Actor
Nominated—Chicago Film Critics Association Award for Best Supporting Actor
Nominated—Detroit Film Critics Society Award for Best Supporting Actor
Nominated—Independent Spirit Award for Best Supporting Male
Nominated—Online Film Critics Society Award for Best Supporting Actor
Nominated—Phoenix Film Critics Society Award for Best Supporting Actor
Nominated—Screen Actors Guild Award for Outstanding Performance by a Male Actor in a Supporting Role
Nominated— Washington DC Area Film Critics Association Award for Best Ensemble
2011 Margaret Maretti Berstone
2012 Avengers, TheThe Avengers Bruce Banner / The Hulk


  1. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m "Mark Ruffalo". Inside the Actors Studio. 2007-03-19. No. 6, season 13.
  2. ^ a b Radar, Dotson (2004-05-09). "I Wouldn't Give Any Of It Back". Parade. Retrieved 2007-09-20. 
  3. ^ Baldassarre, Angela (2007-03-04). "On the trail of a real-life serial killer". Tandem. Retrieved 2007-09-20. 
  4. ^ "Ruffalo ascends to the next level in 'Heaven'." USA Today. September 15, 2005.
  5. ^ About The Artist
  6. ^ Pearlman, Cindy (2007-02-25). "Working on a killer movie". Chicago Sun-Times.,SHO-Sunday-movies25.article. Retrieved 2007-09-20. 
  7. ^ Dudek, Duane (2000-12-20). "United by loss: Ruffalo nails his role in drama about 2 siblings who share painful past". Milwaukee Journal Sentinel. Retrieved 2007-09-20. 
  8. ^ "Mark Ruffalo: 'I Wouldn't Give Any Of It Back'". Parade Magazine. March 9, 2004. 
  9. ^ Goldstein, Gregg (2010-02-10). "Mark Ruffalo talks about directing debut on "Sympathy"". Reuters. Retrieved 2010-08-10. "In my household we were all Catholic Italians, I went to a Catholic school,..." 
  10. ^ "VIDEO: Mark Ruffalo Faked Childhood Salvation For His Grandma's Birthday". RadarOnline. 2010-02-24. Retrieved 2010-08-10. 
  11. ^ "Shutter Island Opens Doors For Home Video". April 19, 2010. Retrieved December 31, 2010. 
  12. ^ "The Kids Are All Right interview". Mark Ruffalo Central. July 11, 2010. Retrieved December 31, 2010. 
  13. ^ "Cotillard, Ruffalo and Hawke Prep For A Second Coming". Mark Ruffalo Central. May 22, 2010. Retrieved December 31, 2010. 
  14. ^ "TOLDJA! Marvel & Ruffalo Reach Hulk Deal". Deadline Hollywood. July 23, 2010. Retrieved July 23, 2010. 
  15. ^ a b Page 2 - Mark Ruffalo is Doing "All Right," continued - Movies - News -
  16. ^ "Mark Ruffalo, Wife Expecting Third Child". People. 2007-03-09.,,20014646,00.html. Retrieved 2007-09-20. 
  17. ^ Jones, Oliver. "Mark Ruffalo's Brother Shot in the Head." People. December 3, 2008.
  18. ^ "Scott Ruffalo still in critical condition." Boston Herald. December 5, 2008.
  19. ^ "Scott Ruffalo Dies from Gunshot Wound." December 9, 2008.
  20. ^ "Actor Mark Ruffalo's brother, Scott, died after playing Russian Roulette, says murder suspect." New YorkDaily News, December 9, 2008.
  21. ^ "Autopsy scheduled for Scott Ruffalo," Associated Press, December 11, 2008.
  22. ^ Mark Ruffalo's veggie nightmare 4th November 2008
  23. ^ "Election Center 2008: Mike Gravel". CNN. Retrieved 2007-09-20. 
  24. ^ YouTube – MARK RUFFALO questions 9/11
  25. ^ Mark Ruffalo Speaks Out Against Fracking Practices on The Rachel Maddow Show, at Common Dreams website, October 5, 2010.
  26. ^ Kyle Buchanan, Mark Ruffalo Is on a Homeland Security Watch, New York Magazine, November 24, 2010.
  27. ^ Josh Sanburn, Does Pennsylvania Consider Actor Mark Ruffalo a Terrorist?, Time, November 30, 2010.

External links

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