Born In: New York, New York, United States
Christopher Reeve was a legendary American actor, director, writer, producer and activist. He is best remembered for his perfect portrayal of the DC Comic book superhero ‘Superman.’ With blue eyes, towering height, and athletic built, Reeve played the role of ‘Superman’ with utmost ease and élan. Born into an upper-class household, Reeve was bit by the acting bug early in his life. It was while studying at ‘Cornell University’ that Reeve took up acting professionally. He made his Broadway debut and was soon asked to play the character of ‘Clark Kent/Superman.’ Apart from the ‘Superman’ series, Reeve showed his brilliance as an actor in various films, including ‘The Remains of the Day’ and ‘Rear Window.’ Acting apart, Reeve was a licensed pilot and had flown solo across the Atlantic twice. He was also an active campaigner of various issues related to health and society. It was a tragic accident during an equestrian competition in Culpeper, Virginia that left him quadriplegic in 1995. However, he did not let his physical impairment come in between his acting and activism. He founded the ‘Christopher Reeve Foundation’ and lobbied for issues related to spinal cord injuries and human embryonic stem cell research.
Also Known As: Christopher D'Olier Reeve
Died At Age: 52
Spouse/Ex-: Dana Reeve (m. 1992–2004)
father: Barbara Pitney Lamb (1929–2000)
mother: Franklin D'Olier Reeve (1928–2013)
siblings: Alya Reeve, Benjamin Reeve, Brock Reeve, Jeff Johnson, Katharine O’Connell, Kevin Johnson, Margaret Staloff, Mark Reeve
children: Alexandra Reeve, Matthew Reeve, William Reeve
Partner: Gae Exton (1978–1987
Born Country: United States
place of death: Mount Kisco, New York, United States
Ancestry: British American, French American
Notable Alumni: Juilliard School
Diseases & Disabilities: Sepsis, Ulcers, Paralysis, Asthma
Cause of Death: Cardiac Arrest
U.S. State: New Yorkers
education: Cornell University, Juilliard School
Christopher Reeve was born on September 25, 1952, in New York City, USA, to Barbara Pitney and Franklin D’Olier Reeve. While his mother was a journalist, his father worked as a teacher, novelist, poet, and scholar. He had a younger brother named Benjamin. His parents divorced when he was young. Reeve and his brother moved with their mother who married Tristam B. Johnson in 1959.
At the age of nine, Reeve found his passion for acting when he was cast in an amateur version of the play ‘The Yeomen of the Guard.’ By 1967, he was working as an apprentice at the ‘Williamstown Theatre Festival’ in Williamstown, Massachusetts. The following year, he received an offer to work professionally at ‘Harvard Summer Repertory Theatre Company.’ He graduated from ‘Princeton Day School’ in 1970.
Having found his true calling, Reeve convinced theatre director Jim Clause and the dean of the ‘College of Arts and Sciences’ that he couldn’t comply by the educational requirements at ‘Cornell University’ and that he would achieve more as a student in ‘Juilliard’ than at ‘Cornell.’ Following this, an arrangement was made according to which his first year at ‘Juilliard’ was counted as his senior year at ‘Cornell.’
At ‘Juilliard,’ Reeve befriended Robin Williams and remained his friend for life. The two were the only students selected for Juilliard's Advanced Program. As per the arrangement, Reeve’s completion of first year at ‘Juilliard’ meant that he completed his graduation at ‘Cornell University.’
In 1975, Reeve successfully auditioned for the Broadway play ‘A Matter of Gravity.’ His performance caught the attention of Katherine Hepburn who helped him land a role in CBS Network’s ‘Love of Life.’ For the next one year, Reeve juggled between theatre and television. His Broadway performance earned him critical appreciation.
It was while performing in the show ‘My Life’ that Reeve auditioned for the lead role in the big-budget fantasy action film ‘Superman.’ Previously rejected, he finally landed the role. Though Reeve’s athletic background, soaring height, deep blue eyes, and handsome features were in his favor, his lean figure came in as a hindrance. Refusing to wear fake muscles, he underwent an intense two-month training regimen to build muscles for the role.
‘Superman’ served as the magnum opus of Reeve’s career. A major worldwide blockbuster, the film grossed more than $300 million worldwide. He instantly gained an international star status as critics and audience praised his act as ‘Clark Kent/Superman.’ Reeve’s ability to easily switch between the bumbling, fumbling ‘Clark Kent’ and omnipotent ‘Superman’ were noted as two styles of gallantry and innocence in one role.
Following the magnanimous success of ‘Superman,’ it was only natural for the sequels to follow. Meanwhile, he made appearances in several television shows, including ‘Smallville’ and ‘The Muppet Show.’ Before ‘Superman II’ hit the screens, Reeve had played the character of ‘Richard Collier’ in the 1980 romantic fantasy ‘Somewhere in Time.’ Though the movie failed commercially, it became a cult film 10 years later. It was also Reeve’s first failure as an actor.
Reeve’s next screen outing was for the dark comedy ‘Deathtrap.’ The film was well received and earned him rave reviews. He soon followed it up with the first sequel of the ‘Superman’ series, ‘Superman II.’ The film received positive reviews from the critics who praised the visual effects and story. It grossed about $190 million at the box office.
Reeve’s most iconic work came in the ‘Superman’ film series, wherein he played the lead role of ‘Superman/Clark Kent.’ Reeve did full justice to his role as ‘Superman’ and ‘Clark Kent,’ perfectly switching between the two vastly different personalities. The first film of the series garnered immense success and was a major worldwide blockbuster, grossing more than $300 million worldwide. He instantly gained an international star status.
During his lifetime, Reeve dated quite a few women, including Katherine Hepburn before finally tying the knot with Gae Exton. The couple was blessed with two children, Matthew Exton Reeve and Alexandra Exton Reeve. Reeve and Exton headed for splits in 1987.
In April 1992, Reeve married Dana Morosini after dating her for months. The couple welcomed their first child William Elliot ‘Will’ Reeve on June 7, 1992.
Reeve died of cardiac arrest on October 10, 2004. His wife Dana passed away in 2006, due to cancer.
Christopher Reeve Movies
(Drama, Romance, Fantasy)
(Drama, Sci-Fi, Action, Adventure)
(Crime, Comedy, Thriller, Mystery)
(Adventure, Action, Sci-Fi)
(Drama, Thriller, History, Adventure)
|1997||Outstanding Informational Special||Without Pity: A Film About Abilities (1996)|
|1979||Most Promising Newcomer to Leading Film Roles||Superman (1978)|
|1999||Best Spoken Word Album||Winner|
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