Cheat Sheet: Aaron Eckhart

Name: Aaron Eckhart
Date of Birth: March 12th 1968
Place of Birth: California
Special Move: Acting
Films include: In the Company of Men, Erin Brockovich, Thank You for Smoking, The Dark Knight, Rabbit Hole

What you probably already know:

Not much, I’m guessing. Don’t worry, neither did I. A few interesting tidbits about Eckhart: he moved to England from California when he was 13, then to Sydney at 17. He was a high school dropout, but he has a degree in film from Brigham Young University. He was in loads of Neil LaBute’s original plays, and then was an extra on Beverly Hills 90210. He had a golden Labrador called Dirty. Eckhart seems a study in contradictions, and has made that his calling card in Hollywood. When one thinks of Aaron Eckhart, a glorious blonde mop atop a big, smiling face comes to mind, yet he’s usually cast as the villain with a twist. In The Company of Men, he plays a white collar sociopath who plans to make a deaf girl fall in love with him, and then dump her. The Washington Post called him a ‘satanic prince in shirtsleeves’, and the career path of (mostly) bad guys with a difference seemed set.

He received critical acclaim as Nick Naylor, a tobacco lobbyist in Thank You for Smoking, who manages to charm the American public into believing cancer sticks are unequivocally good for y’all using white gnashers, and some serious finger pointing. It’s near perfect if you block out with your hand the bits Katie Holmes is in. His most famous role was in The Dark Knight, as good boy Harvey Dent who turns into the monstrous Two-Face. The transformation from Upper-East side gentry to scarred monster would’ve stolen the film, had it not been for Heath Ledger’s extraordinary Joker.

What you might not know:

Despite his preternaturally good looks seeming perfect for romcom fare, Eckhart has only made two: No Reservations, where he plays a charming chef who woos Catherine Zeta Jones, and the weak Love Happens, with Jennifer Aniston. His parents are Mormons and Eckhart has been straight-edge for several years: no smoking or drinking. He is unmarried with no kids because according to him (and we can take this with a trough-ful of salt), he is: ‘not easy to get along with, and a bit of a loner.’

In interviews Eckhart comes across as quietly introspective, and a continual malcontent; there is great cognitive dissonance between his chiselled, all-American countenance and actual brooding character. In nearly all magazine articles he expresses unhappiness at his career path, feeling like he should’ve pushed himself into Hollywood more. We say that despite the lack of schmoozing, Eckhart is one of the finest actors in Hollywood today.

Aaron Eckhart quote:

“I’d like a harem of dogs, wiener dogs all the way up to great danes.”

“Married couples don’t talk to each other at dinner. They answer questions with their backs to each other. They don’t open doors for each other”

What to say at a dinner party:

“I’d like to see his growth as an actor in another collaboration with Neil LaBute. ”

What not to say at a dinner party:

“I bet he could break a granite counter top with his jaw.”

Final thought:

He seems to like dogs a whole lot. Also, Rabbit Hole is out soon, so if you like emotional goings on with a freshly-botoxed Nicole Kidman, go and see it. That’s not much of a sell, but this should be: Kidman has just been nominated for a best actress Oscar for her role. Aaron Eckhart remains, sadly, overlooked.

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