Words by Benjamin Pinsent
While his face may not be as recognisable as others, you should know his name. If you don’t that is not your fault it is Hollywood’s. But over the course of the next year or so Michael Shannon will become a household name.
Born in 1974, Michael Shannon got his start as a stage actor in Chicago before a small debut film role in Groundhog Day (1993). From then on he was a staple bit part player in films like 8 Mile (2002)and Pearl Harbor (2001) playing larger roles in the quieter releases. Shannon’s big break came in 2008 playing opposite Leonardo DeCaprio and Kate Winslet as the mentally disturbed John in Revolutionary Road.
Shannon has also been a major Television success with Broadwalk Empire playing alongside Steve Buscemi as the Federal Bureau agent Nelson Van Alden.
Shannon’s name will be well known either for better or worse as in 2011 he was cast as General Zod in Zack Snyder’s Man of Steel. There are also hints of him playing the infamous Richard Kulklinski in The Iceman (2013) the tale of the real mafia hitman.
This is an actor that brings an intensity to any role that he plays, no matter how small; if you see him you will remember his performance as the better part of any film. He is perfect for the antagonist in any film, with a controlled rage he can intimidate but also charm an audience before striking with terrifying ferocity. He is then no doubt a scene stealer and one that you should look out for.