The Irish actor became world famous as James Bond, but his talents aren't limited to chasing agents and women. Now Pierce Brosnan's career will be honored at the European Film Awards.
Embodying James Bond has its pros and cons. An actor who's starred in the most successful secret agent series of film history is likely to have no financial worries for the rest of his life. On the other hand, the role can also be a burden for ambitious actors who refuse to be reduced to that image.
Sean Connery once came to a point where he grew tired of being agent 007 forever and ever, where he wanted to be seen as more than that. The same holds true for the latest Bond performer, Daniel Craig, who recently quit the role because he found it too one-sided, and too time-consuming.
Enlarging the spectrum of roles
Pierce Brosnan stopped being James Bond 14 years ago. After his fourth performance in the series - in "Die Another Day" (2002) - he decided he had had enough of it. His financial situation was secured; he could therefore afford to enlarge his acting spectrum. After all, he had already worked as an actor before playing Bond - in successful television series, in movies, and even as a stage actor.
Born in 1953 in an Irish town, Brosnan moved to England and Scotland, spent some time with his grandparents, an uncle and an aunt, and other relatives. He started out with different odd jobs, for example as a fire-eater in a circus, before studying drama in London.
It was the famous American author Tennessee Williams who discovered him as an actor and gave him a role in one of his stage plays.
Breakthrough with 'Remington Steel'
In 1982, Brosnan achieved his breakthrough with the television series "Remington Steele," and it didn't take long for producers to see him as a potential James Bond.
Things didn't develop quickly, however, Timothy Dalton was chosen as Bond performer in the 1980s. Brosnan continued to play in some movies, until he became the fifth Bond performer in 1995. That engagement was to last for seven years, although Brosnan also worked in other movies during that same period.
That's probably why it wasn't difficult for him to find work as a "normal actor" after his Bond engagement ended. In the meantime, Pierce Brosnan had also become a producer, playing in some of his own films.
'Deep passion for filmmaking'
"Again and again he has upset us, touched us and inspired us," said the European Film Academy in a statement announcing that Pierce Brosnan would receive the lifetime achievement award this year. It also praised his passion for the art of filmmaking, not only in front of the camera, but also as a producer.
Brosnan will personally accept the honorary award on Saturday, December 10, in Wroclaw, Poland at the European Film Awards.