Wes Bentley is an American actor who first became well-known via his role in the Oscar-winning film American Beauty (1999), in which he played the soulful, artistic next-door neighbor Ricky Fitts. He also portrayed gamemaker Seneca Crane in The Hunger Games (2012), and co-stars in Lovelace (2013) as Linda Lovelace's coercive husband Larry Marchiano.
Born September 4, 1978, in Jonesboro, Arkansas, Bentley participated in drama club and cultivated a specific interest in improvisational comedy while attending Sylvan Hills High School in Sherwood, Arkansas, and founded an improv troupe with his brother Patrick Bentley and friends Damien Bunting and Josh Cowdery. At his mother's urging, Bentley attended Juilliard School in New York after high school graduation, but only for a short period of time. Soon afterward, Bentley made his onscreen debut in Jonathan Demme's Beloved (1998).
Following his success in American Beauty, Bentley struggled with substance abuse, which cost him his first marriage to actress Jennifer Quanz. Although he continued to land parts in films, including that of the primary antagonist in Ghost Rider (2007) and another major role in The Game of Their Lives (2005), Bentley has publicly admitted that during most of the 2000s he only took on acting roles to earn enough money to buy drugs. Bentley did not enter a 12-step program until 2009. He considers his sobriety to be an ongoing process.
Bentley is one of the main subjects featured in the documentary My Big Break (2009), which followed him and former roommates Chad Lindberg, Brad Rowe and Greg Fawcett as they struggle to find success within the film industry. In 2010, Bentley made his professional stage debut with Nina Arianda in David Ives's award-winning play "Venus In Fur."
Bentley has one child with his second wife, producer Jacqui Swedberg.
Wesley Cook Bentley born September 4, 1978, in Jonesboro, Arkansas, to David and Cherie Bentley, two Methodist ministers. Wes joined older brothers Jamey and Philip, and was later joined by younger brother, Patrick. Wes later attended Sylvan Hills High School in Sherwood, Arkansas, where he was in the drama club. Interest in acting came from Improv Comedy. He, his brother Patrick, his best friend Damien Bunting and other close friend Josh Cowdery developed an Improv group called B(3) + C. They regularly dominated competitions in Arkansas. He then placed First in the state of Arkansas in solo acting in 1996, his senior year of high school, Second in Duet, and also regularly won for Poetry and Prose Readings. Wes appeared on-stage quite a bit in Little Rock. At The Weekend Theater, Wes played the straight son of the gay couple in a production of La Cage aux Folles. At Murry's Dinner Playhouse, Wes' plays included Oliver. At his mother's urging, Wes attended Juilliard School in New York after high school graduation. He was there only a short time but appeared in stage work like Henry IV, Part 1 and The Weavers. Wes then worked at Blockbuster and was a waiter at TGI Friday's on Long Island. Wes also states that his most prideful venture in life was starting a soccer team from scratch at his high school and subsequently putting together a full Conference, one of Arkansas's first. Wes had no real experience in soccer before doing this.IMDb Mini Biography By: Anonymous
|Jacqui Swedberg||(2010 - present) 1 child|
|Jennifer Quanz||(25 September 2001 - March 2010) (divorced)|
Attended Sylvan Hills high school in Sherwood, Arkansas.
Both of his parents are United Methodist ministers.
Attended The Julliard School in New York City.
Brother was a Youth Minister in Topeka, Kansas.
While filming Three Below Zero (1998), the director Simon Aeby forbid Bentley from skateboarding to the set in New York City because he was the principle talent and needed to be on set every day of filming. But Bentley ignored the director's advice and continued to arrive each day via skateboard.
Attended the same high school as actor Russell Taylor, in Mountain Home, Arkansas, before Bentley transfered to high school in Sherwood, Arkansas before his junior year.
Grew up in Mountain Home, Arkanas where he played the drums at his local junior high school. During sophomore year at school he moved to Sherwood, Arkanas. He then attended Sylvan Hills high school, from his sophomore to senior year.
Was discovered at an open cattle call for the film "Rent". A casting director spotted him, and asked him to read for his film. Seven call backs later he was given the role, but the movie was never made.
Loves playing soccer in his spare time.
The third of four sons, which included older brothers Jamey and Philip and younger brother Patrick Bentley.
In 2010, told The New York Times that he spent most of the 2000s seriously addicted to drugs including cocaine and heroin, and that he only took the few acting roles that he did so that he would have money to buy drugs.
Stated in an interview on the DVD of "There Be Dragons" that his sobriety was inspired during filming by someone else on the set who had been sober for two years. He stopped drinking and doing drugs during filming, with this person's help, and experienced a whole spiritual renewal in his life. He has been sober ever since.
[on wishing he had heard a story like his own in his early 20s] - This would have helped me, at least, if someone would have made me realize that you don't need to do drugs to be artistic and express yourself. If you want to be artistic, if you want to be creative, if you want to express yourself, you can't let things get in your way, and drugs are included in that.
[on hitting rock bottom with being a drug and alcohol addict in 2009] - I had come back to L.A. for something, and I drank a whole bottle of Scotch, and I thought to myself, 'I'm going to die in this hotel room with this bottle of Scotch. It was after that I told a friend for the first time: 'I'm a drug addict, and an alcoholic, and I need help. I need help or I'm going to die.'
[on what happened after American Beauty (1999)] - I wanted fame, but I thought it would be incremental, and I became afraid of the overnight-sensation thing. I started walking into rooms, and everyone would look at me, and I would freeze up. People kept saying, "You have to find your next movie" and that didn't make life any better.
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