The Spanish-Irish actor got worldwide famous for his role as Captain Benjamin L. Willard in “Apocalypse Now”
Martin Sheen turns 80
Ramón Gerard Antonio Estévez known as Martin Sheen, was born on August 3, 1940 in Dayton, Ohio to Spanish and Irish immigrant parents. One of the most prolific Hollywood actors, Sheen was deeply influenced by James Dean from an early age. His first acting roles were on TV where in 1963 he made an appearance in “Nightmare”, an episode of the television science fiction series “The Outer Limits”. Throughout the 1960’s and 1970’s he guest starred on several popular TV series including “Mission: Impossible” (1969), “Hawaii Five-O” (1970), “Columbo” (1973), and “The Streets of San Francisco” (1973). Sheen had his first movie roles during the late 1960’s, including the controversial Emmy Award-winning 1972 television film “That Certain Summer”, said to be the first television movie in America to portray homosexuality in a sympathetic light, but it wasn’t up until 1979 that he established himself as one of the best actors in Hollywood when director Francis Ford Coppola’s cast him in a lead role as U.S. Army Captain Benjamin L. Willard in the popular and cult movie “Apocalypse Now”. Since then, he has worked with a wide variety of film directors, including Richard Attenborough, Francis Ford Coppola, David Cronenberg, Martin Scorsese, Steven Spielberg, and Oliver Stone. Martin Sheen married in 1961 with Janet Templeton, together they have four children, three sons and a daughter, Emilio, Ramón, Carlos, and Renée; all of them grew to become actors, and two of them, very popular ones Emilio, which we know as Emilio Estevez, and Carlos, that we all know as Charlie Sheen. Aside of his acting career, Martin Sheen is also known for his political activism. His outspoken support of liberal political causes, such as opposition to United States military action and other causes, already got him arrested. In a speech at Oxford University in 2009, Sheen stated that he had been arrested 66 times for protesting and acts of civil disobedience and on April 1, 2007, Sheen was arrested, with 38 other activists, for trespassing at the Nevada Test Site at a Nevada Desert Experience event protesting against the site. He has stated that “While acting is what I do for a living, activism is what I do to stay alive.” Martin Sheen turns 80 today.
Look back at the iconic opening scene of the 1979 movie “Apocalypse Now” featuring Martin Sheen
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