Matthias Schoenaerts is a Belgian actor who has mostly appeared as a mentally or emotionally unstable character in his movies and TV series. He received critical acclaim for his performance in the French-Belgian drama thriller film Disorder in 2015 where he portrayed the character of an ex-soldier.
The 40-year-old actor first appeared on the big screen when he 13 alongside his father in the 1992 Belgian film Daens. The movie was nominated for an Academy Award in the Best Foreign Language category.
In 2011, he starred in the Oscar-nominated film Bull Head. The movie was a major breakthrough in his career as he won a Best Actor award at the Palm Springs International Film Festival for his performance in the movie. And he recently he appeared in the American spy thriller film Red Sparrow, starring Jennifer Lawrence, which released on March 1st this year.
The Flemish-origin actor is also labeled as the Belgian Marlon Brando for his husky personality and acting chops that largely remember the legendary Academy Award-winning American actor.
Matthias appeared in several short films after the completion of his studies at The Academy of Dramatic Arts in Antwerp, which was also called 'Europe's shooting stars' by the European Film Production in 2003.
Laurent Benhamou, Ayler Young, Gesaffelstein and Matthias Schoenaerts
In 2004 he produced the sci-fi short film A Message from Outer Space. Later, in 2006, he landed his first lead role in the Flemish film Love Belongs to Everyone and received critical praise for his role as a mentally challenged man in the film. This led him to star in Erik Van Looy's Loft.
The 2008 dramatic thriller became a top-grossing Flemish film and collected over $7 million at the Belgian box-office.
Matthias Schoenaerts in The Emperor of Taste
Besides, he appeared in the mini-series The Emperor of Taste in 2008 and also starred in the techno-thriller Pulsar as the lead role in 2010. Furthermore, he has also appeared in The Gangs of Oss and The President in 2011. The same year he demonstrated his passion for acting in Bullhead which was the major role of his career.
Schoenaerts' 2011 film Bullhead was a major turning point as the Belgian actor transformed into a steroid-abusing brute for the role of Jacky Vanmarsenille and won a Magritte award for best actor. It also led to an Academy Award nomination in 2012.
Matthias Schoenaerts in Rust and Bone
Source: The Star
Schoenarts' another best-known role was in the 2012 French-Belgian romantic drama film Rust and Bone for which he grabbed a César award for the most promising actor while the film was huge critical and box office hit in France. He was the first Belgian actor to win a Cesar award.
The same year, he was also named as "the most versatile beefcake actor of our time" by The New York Times.
Matthias Schoenaerts on The New York Times
Moreover, he also starred in the American remake of the Belgian hit Loft in 2015 where he portrayed the same character as he did in the original. It was his debut performance in an English language film. He also worked with Tom Hardy in the 2014 crime drama film The Drop.
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Matthias' overall career features his appearance in Belgian, Dutch, British, French, Italian and American movies. He is multi-lingual and is fluent in French, Italian, Dutch and German languages and English as well which he learned from watching English films.