News culture At 14, he was forced to lie about his age to join a film casting. Since then, he has become the star of numerous blockbusters
The journey of great actresses or great actors is rarely linear. Some come from a drama school or started as a child and have remained in the circuit, but many owe the little spark to a specific event, to an outstretched hand or to a little lie. This is particularly the case of an actor that almost all of us know.
He was able to star in Apocalypse Now thanks to a lie and an employee
Laurence Fishburne is an extremely well-known actor, having notably played in Experts, Matrix or John Wick. However, his career could have been completely different. Born in Augusta, Georgia, he grew up in Brooklyn where he studied at the High School of Performing Arts in New York, and later managed to gain access at the very prestigious course of the Actors Studio.
The young man was therefore destined for cinema or television, but it is thanks to a lie he managed to find a place for himself. Suffice to say that he didn’t do things by halves, since he lied to join the casting d’Apocalypse Nowa cult film directed by Francis Ford Coppola. In 1976, Laurence Fishburne was only 14 years old, and he claims to be 16 to get the role. This is how he really launched his long and prolific career, quite simply. Interviewed on CBS a few years ago, he told this story, suggesting that production pretended to believe his story:
I told them I was 16 when I had my casting. I was 14. I think they knew, I don’t think I fooled anyone because what happened was I was sitting with them while they were talking to Fred Roose, the producer. (…) And a young woman, who worked in the offices, came by, and Francis said “excuse me, do you think this kid looks like he’s 18?”. And she said “yes, he looks like it”. And I think that’s how I was able to get through the drops.
A rich career marked by a cult trilogy
In addition to having started with a cult film, Laurence Fishburne owes his beginnings to an unknown person, who had the impression that he was a young man and not a teenager. Things then went very quickly for the actor, who was nominated for Best Leading Actor at the Academy Awards for his role as Ike Turner in the movie Tina. He even becomes the first black actor to play in Othello, released in 1995. But he experienced the peak of his career with Matrix. In 1999, he played the role of Morpheus, the hacker captain of the ship Nebuchadnezzar. It is he who comes to look for Neo, whom he believes to be the key that will free the human species from machines.
His 2000s were marked in the cinema by Matrix Reloaded et Matrix Revolutionthen by Mission Impossible 3 et Vegas 21. While becoming Dr. Raymond Langston in Les Expertshe attacks the 2010 decade, which will see him appear on the poster of Man of Steel, The Signal, Batman v Superman, Passenger, John Wick 2, Ant-Man and the Wasp or Running with the Devil. The 2020s are, however, calmer for Laurence Fishburne, now aged 62, The School of Good and Evil, The Knife by the Bladeet John Wick 4. Next year we should find it in Transformers One by Josh Colley, where he lends his voice to Alpha Trion. He has however was replaced by Yahya Abdul Mateen II in Matrix Ressurectionsreleased in 2021, for storyline reasons.