Date of Birth 13 December 1957 , Brooklyn, New York City, New York, USA
Birth Name Steven Vincent Buscemi
Height 5′ 9″ (1.x.75 m)
Mini Bio (1)
Steve Buscemi was born in Brooklyn, New York, USA. He became interested in acting during his last year of high school. After graduating, he moved to Manhattan to study acting with John Strasberg. He began writing and performing original theatre pieces with fellow actor/writer Mark Boone Junior. This led to his being cast in his first lead role in Parting Glances (1986). Since then, he has worked with many of the top filmmakers in Hollywood, including Quentin Tarantino, Jerry Bruckheimer, and The Coen Brothers. He is a highly respected actor.
- IMDb Mini Biography By: Matt Dicker
Jo Andres (1987 – present) (1 child)
Trade Mark (8)
Frequently casts Mark Boone Junior, Seymour Cassel and his brother, Michael Buscemi, in his films.
Frequently plays characters who are fast talkers
Frequently plays cowardly characters
High raspy voice
Often plays characters mixed up in crime
Often works with the Coen Brothers
Googly blue eyes
His surname is pronounced “Buss-ehm-ee”. He is of Sicilian/Italian ancestry on his father’s side, and has Irish, English, and Dutch ancestry on his mother’s side.
Ranked #52 in Empire (UK) magazine’s “The Top 100 Movie Stars of All Time” list. [October 1997]
Graduated in 1975 from Valley Stream Central High School, Valley Stream, NY. After graduation, he attended Nassau Community College and then moved to Manhattan to study acting at the famed Lee Strasberg Institute.
Brother of Michael Buscemi.
Was a New York City Fireman from 1980 to 1984, with Engine Company #55 in the Little Italy section of NY.k
One son, Lucian Buscemi, born in 1990.
Has been cast in six movies by Joel Coen and Ethan Coen( (Miller’s Crossing (1990), The Hudsucker Proxy (1994), Barton Fink (1991), Fargo (1996), The Big Lebowski (1998), and Paris, je t’aime (2006))), more appearances in Coen Brothers films than any other actor, exceeding by two films Frances McDormand, John Turturro and John Goodman. His character died in three of them: Miller’s Crossing (1990), Fargo (1996), and The Big Lebowski (1998).
Stabbed in the throat, head and arm during a barroom brawl at the Firebelly Lounge in Wilmington, North Carolina. The brawl also involved Vince Vaughn, who was arrested for brutalizing one of Buscemi’s attackers. He suffered a deep cut to the face and now has a noticeable scar on his cheek. Heavy make-up is used to hide it in movies. [April 2001]
Showed up at his old firehouse the day after the World Trade Center tragedy in New York to volunteer. Worked twelve hour shifts for a week after the terrorist act, digging through rubble with his old comrades looking for missing firefighters… anonymously. [September 2001]
Bears such a strong resemblance to writer-director John Waters that as a joke, Waters sent out cards with a photo of Buscemi made up to look like Waters.
Modelled for H&M (2000).
He went through a variety of interesting jobs before hitting it big as a character actor. He worked as a bartender, drove an ice-cream truck, attempted stand-up comedy, and (that which he is most proud of) was a firefighter (he continues to be a volunteer fire-fighter). He bombed so bad as a comic one night another comic took his place, Paul Reiser. Years later Buscemi and Reiser did an episode of Mad About You (1992) poking fun at the incident.
Frequently is typecast as sleazy or crazed characters, with his roles as Tommy in Trees Lounge (1996) and Seymour in Ghost World (2001) being the closest he has come to being the romantic lead.
Is one of the most prolific of today’s actors, often starring in about 5 films a year.
His character in Reservoir Dogs (1992) refuses to tip waitresses. He later made a cameo as a waiter in Pulp Fiction (1994).
Was good enough to be a varsity wrestler (105 lb weight class) on the wrestling team in high school. He was also a soccer player, and was considered a “jock” rather than a scholar. Years later, while on Late Night with Conan O’Brien
(1993), Buscemi challenged Andy Richter
to a wrestling match when he found out Richter was on a high school wrestling team also. Much to Buscemi’s?? embarrassment, Richter won, although Richter noted that fact the he is six inches taller and at least 100 pounds heavier might have given him an edge.
#21 on Tropopkin’s Top 25 Most Intriguing People [Issue #100]
Played a character in Desperado
(1995) whose character’s name was his own last name.
Was member of the dramatic jury at the Sundance Film Festival in 2003.
His father, John, had hoped to be a television cameraman, but he ended up clearing garbage for the sanitation department. His mother, Dorothy, worked as a hostess in the Howard Johnson hotels.
Has three brothers.
Was born on a Friday the 13th.
Went to a Catholic school.
Grandmother had 5 children.
Fractured his skull when he was hit by the bus when he was young. Some time later, he was hit by a car while chasing a ball which had rolled onto the street. He had cuts and bruises from this accident.
He and Norm MacDonald
voiced as gingerbread men for the famous AT&T Christmas commercial.
On Friday, the 4th, was presented the Distinguished Alumni Award as part of Valley Stream Central High School’s 75th anniversary celebration. [March 2005]
Personal Quotes (12)
My favorite review described me as the cinematic equivalent of junk mail. I don’t know what that means, but it sounds like a dig.
In the beginning, it wasn’t even a question of deciding I’m going to do independent film and not commercial films — I wasn’t being offered any commercial films, and there wasn’t an independent scene. I did a lot of “so-called” independent films that were really low-budget films trying to be commercial. But you certainly make choices when you have a script written by Jim Jarmusch
or the Coen brothers or Alexandre Rockwell
; I think any actor would feel lucky to be able to work on projects like that.
It’s weird; I was not a really tough guy in high school, but I end up playing all of these psychopaths and criminals. I don’t really care who they are, as long as they are complicated and going through something that I can understand and put across.
As much as you tell yourself, ‘We made the film and here it is and that is enough,’ you would like to come away with something.
I don’t tend to think of these characters as losers [I play]. I like the struggles that people have, people who are feeling like they don’t fit into society, because I still sort of feel that way.
When I get cast, I always flip to the end of the script to see if my character gets beaten up or killed. I really thought that after getting killed on The Sopranos
(1999) I should not accept scripts where I die. I mean, there’s nowhere to go after getting killed by Tony Soprano. But then I got offered this great part in The Island
(2005). I didn’t even make it a third of the way through the movie. I have been surviving a lot more lately, though.
The only thing I can compare the feeling of going onstage to is the fear you feel before going into a burning building. Once you go in there, the fear goes away and you’re operating on adrenaline. And when it’s over, if you’ve done well, it’s something you’ve shared with these people you automatically feel close to.
I admire any director who makes his living solely from directing. I’m fortunate enough to earn a decent wage by occasionally playing psychopaths in other people’s movies, allowing me the luxury of not having to depend on the movies I direct to put food on the table. I especially admire independent directors like Tom DiCillo
and Alexandre Rockwell
, who never stop trying to create their own way.
(On working on The Sopranos
(1999)) I feel really privileged to have been a part of it and to have worked that closely with it, as a director and as an actor. And as an audience member, I’m still in awe of the show. For me, it never lost that sense of, ‘Holy shit… this is fucking great’.
(2011, on Trees Lounge
(1996)) It was sort of my life. At 19, I was truly directionless, living with my parents. I was driving an ice-cream truck and working at a gas station. There’s nothing wrong with those jobs – it’s hard work. But my boss at the gas station was grooming me to be a mechanic, and that’s not what I wanted. The drinking age was 18 then, so I spent every night hanging out with my friends in bars, drinking.
(2011) I remember my son once asked me, “Did you ever, like, kiss in high school?” And I told him this long drawn-out story of how shy I was, how I finally got a girlfriend but she broke up with me because I was too shy to try to kiss her, and then I had another girlfriend but still couldn’t figure out kissing. The technique was always a big obstacle in my head, like, How do you kiss? Where does your chin go? Forget about anything beyond kissing-first base was a total mystery to me. So I’m telling my son this long story, and he listens patiently until he finally realizes where I’m going with it, and he says, “Dad, no-did you like Kiss in high school? Kiss, the band!” And I was, “Oh yeah, Kiss…they were good.”
(2011, on his grossest on-screen death) On Tales from the Crypt
(1989), I played a guy involved with an Agent Orange-y chemical. My body literally rots. They’ve got me in this prosthetic full-body rotting-guy suit, and then I get shot. They had me squibbed up with 12 to 15 little explosives. Those things sting! So now I’m rotting and shot to pieces.