Tuesday, June 5, 2012

Mark Wahlberg...

"Happy 41st Birthday"
Mark Wahlberg

Mark Robert Michael Wahlberg (born June 5, 1971) is an American actor, film and television producer, and former rapper. He was known as Marky Mark in his earlier years, and became famous for his 1989 debut as frontman with the band Marky Mark and the Funky Bunch. He was named No. 1 on VH1's 40 Hottest Hotties of the 90's. Wahlberg is well known for his roles in films such as Boogie Nights (1997), Three Kings (1999), The Perfect Storm (2000), Planet of the Apes (2001), Rock Star (2001), The Italian Job (2003), I Heart Huckabees (2004), Four Brothers (2005), The Departed (2006), Invincible (2006), Shooter (2007), and The Fighter (2010), Date Night (2010). He has also served as the executive producer of the TV series Entourage, Boardwalk Empire and How to Make It in America.

Early life
Wahlberg was born in the Dorchester neighborhood of Boston, Massachusetts, the youngest of nine children, with siblings Arthur, Jim, Paul, Robert, Tracey, Michelle, Debbie (died in 2003 at age 44), and Donnie. Wahlberg's mother, Alma Elaine (née Donnelly), was a bank clerk and nurse's aide, and Wahlberg's father, Donald Edward Wahlberg, was a Teamster who worked as a delivery driver. His parents divorced in 1982. His father was of half Swedish and half Irish ancestry, and his mother is of Irish, English, and French Canadian descent. Maternally, Wahlberg is distantly related to author Nathaniel Hawthorne. Wahlberg had a Roman Catholic upbringing and attended Copley Square High School (but never graduated) on Newbury Street in Boston.

(Sister..Tracey Wahlberg)

(Sister..Debbie Wahlberg, Died of a heart attack)

(Mark Wahlberg joined his mother Alma Elaine Wahlberg, and his two brothers Donnie and Paul Wahlberg at the grand opening of their new hamburger restaurant, Wahlburgers, in Hingham, MA.)

(The Old Copley Square High School
Newbury and Dartmouth Streets in Boston, MA.)


Wahlberg first came to fame as the younger brother of Donnie Wahlberg of the successful 1980s and 1990s boy band New Kids on the Block. Mark, at age thirteen, had been one of the group's original members, along with Donnie, Danny Wood, Jordan Knight, and Jonathan Knight. However, he soon quit. It was his departure that eventually allowed Joe McIntyre to take his place as the fifth member of the group.

(New Kids On The Block)

(Mark Wahlberg and Donnie Wahlberg) 

Wahlberg began recording as Marky Mark and the Funky Bunch, earning a hit with "Good Vibrations" from the album Music for the People. The record was produced by brother Donnie and later hit No.1 on The Billboard Hot 100, later becoming certified as a Platinum single. The second single, "Wildside," peaked at No.5 on Billboards Hot Singles Sales chart and at No.10 on The Billboard Hot 100. It was certified as a Gold Single. Marky Mark opened for the New Kids on the Block during their last tour.

(Mark Wahlberg and Donnie Wahlberg of New Kids On The Block pose backstage during a circa 1991 concert.)

The second Marky Mark and The Funky Bunch LP, You Gotta Believe, was not as successful as the prior, yielding only a minor hit single in the title track. Wahlberg later collaborated with the late reggae / ragga singer Prince Ital Joe on the album Life in the Streets. The project combined rap and ragga vocals with strong eurodance music (as in the singles Happy People, German No.1 hit United, Life in the Streets, and Babylon) courtesy of Frank Peterson and Alex Christensen as producers.
He was also featured in the Black Label Society music video for "Counterfeit God", as a stand-in for the band's bassist. 

Wahlberg first displayed his physique in the Good Vibrations music video and most prominently in a series of underwear ads for Calvin Klein shot by Herb Ritts, following it with Calvin Klein television advertisements. Magazine and television promotions would sometimes feature Mark exclusively or accompanied by model Kate Moss. Annie Leibovitz also shot a famous session of Mark Wahlberg in underwear for Vanity Fair's annual Hall of Fame issue. He also made a workout video titled The Marky Mark Workout: Form... Focus... Fitness.

Wahlberg dropped the "Marky Mark" moniker and began an acting career, making his debut in the 1993 TV movie The Substitute. His big screen debut came the next year, with the Danny DeVito feature Renaissance Man. A basketball fanatic, he caught the attention of critics after appearing in The Basketball Diaries in 1995, playing the role of Mickey alongside Leonardo DiCaprio, in a film adaptation of the Jim Carroll book of the same name. He also starred in the 1996 James Foley thriller Fear.

(Photos with Mark Wahlberg, Danny DeVito, Lillo Brancato, Stacey Dash, Kadeem Hardison, Richard T. Jones, Khalil Kain, Gregory Sporleder.)

(Mark Wahlberg In the 1995 film of The Basketball Diaries, Leonardo DiCaprio played Jim Carroll as a teen.)

He has earned many positive reviews after successful movies like Boogie Nights as Dirk Diggler, Three Kings, The Perfect Storm, The Italian Job, and Four Brothers. 

(Dirk Diggler (Mark Wahlberg) and Rollergirl (Heather Graham) in "Boogie Nights." Porn. It was a great industry to be in back then.)

His performance in I ♥ Huckabees was voted best supporting performance of the year in the 2004 Village Voice Critics Poll. Wahlberg was originally cast as Linus Caldwell in Ocean's Eleven; Matt Damon played the role instead. The two later worked together in The Departed. Wahlberg was also considered for a role in the film Brokeback Mountain. It was originally intended to star him and Joaquin Phoenix, but Wahlberg was uncomfortable with the film's sex scenes and his role ultimately went to Jake Gyllenhaal.

Wahlberg starred in the American football drama, Invincible, based on the true story of bartender Vince Papale. He is also the executive producer of the HBO series Entourage which is loosely based on his experiences in Hollywood. He also appeared as a foul-mouthed Massachusetts State Police detective in Martin Scorsese's critically acclaimed thriller, The Departed in 2006, which netted him an Academy Award nomination for Best Supporting Actor, a Golden Globe nomination for Best Performance by an Actor in a Supporting Role in a Motion Picture, and an NSFC Best Supporting Actor award. Wahlberg has confirmed that he was approached to star in a sequel to The Departed, but it is still early in development. The sequel would reportedly revolve around the Staff Sergeant played by Wahlberg.

To prepare for his role in Shooter, Wahlberg attended long-range shooting training at Front Sight Firearms Training Institute near Pahrump, Nevada, and was able to hit a target at 1100 yards on his second day, a feat which usually takes weeks to achieve. He has said in a number of interviews that he will retire at the age of 40 to concentrate on parenthood and professional golf. However, in early 2007 he indicated that the latter was no longer the plan as "his golf game is horrible". He played Jack Salmon, a leading role in Peter Jackson's film of The Lovely Bones. In 2007, he starred opposite Joaquin Phoenix in We Own the Night, a movie about a family of police officers in New York City.

He starred in M. Night Shyamalan's The Happening as Eliot Moore, which premiered in movie theatres on June 13, 2008. The same year, he played the title role in Max Payne, based on a video game of the same name. While promoting Max Payne, Mark became involved in a playful feud with Saturday Night Live's Andy Samberg and threatened to "crack that big fucking nose of his." Samberg had done an impression of Wahlberg in a Saturday Night Live skit titled "Mark Wahlberg Talks To Animals." However, Wahlberg later appeared in a follow-up skit parodying both the original skit, Samberg's impression of Wahlberg, and his own threats to Samberg.

(Mark Wahlberg appeared on SNL to confront Andy Samberg)

Personal life...
Family and relationships
In the early '90s, Wahlberg dated former child actress Soleil Moon Frye. Wahlberg and model Rhea Durham have been together since 2001 and were married on August 1, 2009 at the Good Shepherd Catholic Church in Beverly Hills. The couple have four children, Ella Rae (born September 2, 2003), Michael Robert (born March 21, 2006), Brendan Joseph (born September 16, 2008) and Grace Margaret (born January 11, 2010). 

(Mark Wahlberg and Soleil Moon Frye)

(Mark Wahlberg and wife Rhea Durham )

(Mark Wahlberg (with his wife, Rhea Durham, and their children, from left, Ella, Grace, Michael, and Brendan), was honored with a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame.)

In a 2011 interview with USA Weekend, Wahlberg stated that he had taken his children to visit his old Dorchester neighborhood, saying "I want them to know that not everyone is as fortunate and how important it is to work hard and give back."
His father, a US Army veteran of the Korean War, died on February 14, 2008.


"Rock Star" (2001)
Had to add my favorite from the Birthday Boy...

(Included in the beginning of the bio movie credits)

"Rock Star" is set in the world of 80s rock and roll. The film tells the story of an office supplies salesman (Mark Wahlberg) who moonlights as a musician in a tribute band and whose life is changed forever when he is chosen out of the blue to replace the lead singer of his all-time favorite band, "Steel Dragon."
The movie was inspired by the real-life story of Tim "Ripper" Owens, singer in a Judas Priest tribute band who was chosen to replace singer Rob Halford when he left the band.


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