15 fascinating George facts to celebrate Clooney festival

2015-10-21 07:00

Cape Town - Fans of George Clooney can enjoy a festival of Clooney movies on VIDI this month and next including the Oceans Trilogy, the WWII drama The Good German and the recent sci-fi adenture movie Tomorrowland.

In honour of Clooney mania here are 15 facts you may not know about him:

1. He was born George Timothy Clooney on May 6, 1961 and is 1.8 metres tall.

2. His maternal great-great-great-great-grandmother, Mary Ann Sparrow, was the half-sister of Nancy Lincoln, mother of President Abraham Lincoln.

3. His aunt was the famed cabaret singer and actress Rosemary Clooney.

4. In his first year of high school, Clooney developed Bell's palsy, a condition that partially paralyzes the face. The malady went away within a year.

5. He attended Northern Kentucky University from 1979 to 1981, majoring in broadcast journalism, and very briefly attended the University of Cincinnati, but did not graduate from either.

6. Prior to acting his jobs included selling women's shoes, door-to-door insurance, stocking shelves, working construction, and cutting tobacco.

7. Clooney's first role was as an extra in the television mini-series Centennial in 1978, which was based on the novel of the same name by James A. Michener, and was partly filmed in Clooney's hometown of Augusta, Kentucky.

8.  Oceans Eleven is one Clooney's most successful films, earning more than $450m worldwide. The film spawned two sequels starring Clooney, Ocean's Twelve and Ocean's Thirteen. (all three are on VIDI)

9. Clooney made his directorial debut in the 2002 film Confessions of a Dangerous Mind.

10.  In 2005 while filming Syriana, Clooney suffered an accident which caused a brain injury with complications from a punctured dura mater. (He went on to win the Best Actor Oscar for his role in that film)

11.  He was parodied in the South Park episode Smug Alert!, which mocks his acceptance speech at the Academy Awards.

12. In September 2007, Clooney and then-girlfriend Sarah Larson were injured in a motorcycle accident. The following month more than two dozen staff at the hospital where he was treated were suspended without pay for looking at his medical records in violation of federal law.

13. Clooney is involved with the Not On Our Watch Project, an organisation that focuses global attention and resources to stop and prevent mass atrocities, along with Brad Pitt, Matt Damon and Don Cheadle.

14. In 2012, Clooney was arrested outside the Sudanese Embassy in Washington for civil disobedience.

15. While Clooney's main home is in Los Angeles, he also has residences in Italy (on Lake Como), Los Cabos, Mexico and the Mill House which is on an island in the River Thames at Sonning Eye in England.

(Photos: AP, Disney, Warner Bros)

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