Happy Birthday, Billy Zane!

Billy Zane

Billy Zane turns 42 today!

William George “Billy” Zane, Jr. (born February 24, 1966) is an American actor and director. He is perhaps best recognized for his role as Caledon Hockley in the 1997 blockbuster film Titanic, as the deranged psychopath Hughie Warriner in Dead Calm, and as The Phantom in the 1996 eponymous film based upon the comic book superhero. As of 2008, Zane has appeared in over 50 films and numerous TV-series.

Zane was born in Chicago, Illinois, the son of Thalia and William George Zane, Sr., both of whom were amateur actors and founders of a school for medical technicians. His family’s original surname, “Zanikopolous”, was anglicized to “Zane” by his grandparents. Both of his parents are Greek American and Zane was raised in the Greek Orthodox religion. He has an older sister, Lisa Zane, who is also an actress. After completing a year abroad at The American School in Switzerland, Zane graduated from the Francis W. Parker School and attended Harand Camp of the Theater Arts, located in Elkhart Lake, Wisconsin.

Zane married actress Lisa Collins in 1989. The couple divorced in 1995. He was also engaged for a time to Chilean actress Leonor Varela, his costar in the 1999 television movie Cleopatra, where he played Marcus Antonius. As of 2006, Zane is engaged to marry British model turned actress Kelly Brook whom he met when starring with her in the movie “Survival Island/Three (UK title)”. His leisure interests include riding, painting, swimming, photography, frisbees, taking nature walks, riding a bicycle, and collecting cars. He has described his movie heroes to be Sean Connery, Gene Kelly, Buster Keaton and Charlie Chaplin. In 1999, Zane participated in the first Gumball 3000 rally, driving a 1964 Aston Martin DB5. He was featured in the music video, Epiphany, by Staind, and appeared in his friend Marilyn Manson’s Dope Show video. Zane executive-produced a CD made by bluesman Tim O’Connor. The album includes three songs from Dead Calm, where Zane had one of the lead roles.

Other Celebrity Birthdays:

Lleyton Hewitt (27)
Michelle Shocked (46)
Alain Prost (53)
Steve Jobs (53)
Joseph Lieberman (66)

Photos and Source: Wikipedia.org

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