Owen Cunningham Wilson is an American actor, voice-over artist, writer, producer, and screenwriter.
His older brother Andrew and his younger brother Luke are also actors. He has had a long association with filmmaker Wes Anderson, who he shared writing and acting credits with for Bottle Rocket (1996) and The Royal Tenenbaums (2001), the latter being nominated for an Academy Award for Best Original Screenplay. He has also had one with Ben Stiller. The two had appeared in 10 films together.
Wilson is best known for his roles in Meet the Parents (2000), Shanghai Noon (2000), Zoolander (2001), Shanghai Knights (2003), Wedding Crashers (2005), Cars (2006), Marley & Me (2008), Midnight in Paris (2011), Cars 2 (2011), The Internship (2013), and the Night at the Museum trilogy (2006, 2009, and 2014).
After his film debut in Bottle Rocket, Wilson co-wrote with Wes Anderson the script for Anderson's next two directorial efforts, Rushmore and The Royal Tenenbaums, for which they garnered an Oscar nomination for Best Original Screenplay. Wilson then landed a role in The Cable Guy, directed by Ben Stiller, an early admirer of Bottle Rocket. After appearing in minor roles in action films like Anaconda, Armageddon and The Haunting, Wilson appeared in two dramatic roles: a supporting role in Permanent Midnight, which starred Stiller as a drug-addicted TV writer; and the lead role (as a serial killer) in The Minus Man, in which his future girlfriend, singer Sheryl Crow, was a co-star. He made a cameo appearance in the Girl Skateboards video Yeah Right! in 2003.
Wilson got his big break with the 2000 comedy action film Shanghai Noon, starring opposite Hong Kong action star Jackie Chan. The film grossed nearly US$100 million worldwide. His fame continued to rise after starring alongside Ben Stiller and Will Ferrell in the 2001 film Zoolander. Gene Hackman reportedly took notice of Wilson's performance in Shanghai Noon and recommended the actor to co-star in the 2001 action film Behind Enemy Lines. Also in 2001, Wilson and Anderson collaborated on their third film, The Royal Tenenbaums, a financial and critical success. The film earned the writing team an Academy Award nomination for Best Original Screenplay.
Wilson returned to the buddy-comedy genre in 2002 with the action comedy I Spy, co-starring Eddie Murphy. This big-screen remake of the television series flopped at the box office. He then reunited with Chan to make Shanghai Knights (2003), and co-starred in the film remake of the television series Starsky & Hutch (2004). Due to his busy schedule as an actor and an ongoing sinus condition, Wilson was unavailable to collaborate on the script for Wes Anderson's fourth feature, The Life Aquatic with Steve Zissou. The 2004 film was ultimately co-written by filmmaker Noah Baumbach. However, Wilson did star in the film as Bill Murray's would-be son, Ned Plimpton; a role written specifically for Wilson. In 2004, he and his brother Luke played the Wright brothers in the 2004 film Around the World in 80 Days.
Wilson partnered with Vince Vaughn in the 2005 film Wedding Crashers, which grossed over $200 million in the U.S. alone. Also in 2005, Owen collaborated with his brothers by appearing in The Wendell Baker Story, written by brother Luke, directed by Luke and brother Andrew. In the 2006 Disney/Pixar film Cars, Wilson voiced Lightning McQueen, starred in You, Me and Dupree with Kate Hudson, and appeared with Stiller in Night at the Museum as cowboy Jedediah.
Wilson has appeared in eleven films with Ben Stiller: The Cable Guy (1996), Permanent Midnight (1998), Meet the Parents (2000), Zoolander (2001), The Royal Tenenbaums (2001), Starsky & Hutch (2004), Meet the Fockers (2004), Night at the Museum (2006), and the sequels Night at the Museum: Battle of the Smithsonian (2009), Little Fockers (2010), and Night at the Museum: Secret of the Tomb (2014).
Wilson appeared in another Wes Anderson film, The Darjeeling Limited, which screened at the 45th annual New York Film Festival, the Venice Film Festival and opened September 30, 2007, co-starring Jason Schwartzman and Adrien Brody. Wilson next starred in the Judd Apatow comedy, Drillbit Taylor, released in March 2008. He appeared in a film adaptation of John Grogan's best-selling memoir, Marley & Me (2008), co-starring Jennifer Aniston.
The Darjeeling Limited, starring Wilson, Adrien Brody, and Jason Schwartzman was selected for a DVD and Blu-ray release by The Criterion Collection in October 2010. He provided the voice for the Whackbat Coach Skip in Wes Anderson's Fantastic Mr. Fox. He starred in the film The Big Year, an adaptation of Mark Obmascik's book The Big Year: A Tale of Man, Nature and Fowl Obsession. The film was released in October 2011 from 20th Century Fox and co-starred Jack Black, JoBeth Williams, Steve Martin, and Rashida Jones.
Wilson is a member of the comedic acting brotherhood colloquially known as the Frat Pack. His films have grossed more than $2.25 billion domestically (United States and Canada), with an average of $75 million per film. Wilson made a guest appearance on the NBC comedy Community with fellow Frat Pack member Jack Black. He starred as a nostalgia-seized writer in the romantic comedy Midnight in Paris, written and directed by Woody Allen. The film was Allen's highest grossing thus far, and was also well received by critics.
In March 2012, Wilson landed the leading role in the John Erick Dowdle Thriller The Coup. In the film he is slated to play the role of the father in an American family that moves to Southeast Asia, only to find itself swept up in a wave of rebel violence that is overwhelming the city. With this role, Wilson returned to the action genre for the first time since 2001's Behind Enemy Lines.
2014 saw Wilson reteam with Wes Anderson in the acclaimed ensemble comedy The Grand Budapest Hotel. The same year, Wilson was also part of the acting ensemble of Paul Thomas Anderson's book adaptation Inherent Vice.
|1996||Bottle Rocket||Dignan||Executive producer and co-writer with Wes Anderson|
|The Cable Guy||Robin's Date|
|1999||The Haunting||Luke Sanderson|
|Breakfast of Champions||Monte Rapid|
|The Minus Man||Vann Siegert|
|2000||Meet the Parents||Kevin Rawley||Nominated – Blockbuster Entertainment Award for Best Supporting Actor – Comedy|
|Shanghai Noon||Roy O'Bannon||Satellite Award for Best Supporting Actor: Musical or Comedy|
|2001||Behind Enemy Lines||Lt. Chris Burnett|
|The Royal Tenenbaums||Eli Cash||Academy Award for Best Original Screenplay |
Nominated – BAFTA Award for Best Original Screenplay
Nominated – Chicago Film Critics Association Award for Best Screenplay
Nominated – New York Film Critics Circle Award for Best Screenplay
Nominated – Online Film Critics Society Award for Best Original Screenplay
Nominated – Phoenix Film Critics Society Award for Best Cast
Nominated – Phoenix Film Critics Society Award for Best Original Screenplay
Nominated – Satellite Award for Best Supporting Actor – Motion Picture|Satellite Award for Best Supporting Actor: Musical or Comedy
Nominated – Toronto Film Critics Association Award for Best Screenplay
Nominated – Writers Guild of America Award for Best Original Screenplay
|Zoolander||Hansel McDonald||Nominated – MTV Movie Award for Best On-Screen Duo|
|2002||I Spy||Alex Scott||Nominated – Golden Raspberry Award for Worst Screen Couple/Ensemble|
|2003||Shanghai Knights||Roy O'Bannon||Nominated – MTV Movie Award for Best On-Screen Duo|
|Yeah Right!||Himself||Cameo appearance|
|2004||The Life Aquatic with Steve Zissou||Ned Plimpton||Nominated – Boston Society of Film Critics Award for Best Cast|
Nominated – Broadcast Film Critics Association Award for Best Cast
|Meet the Fockers||Kevin Rawley|
|Around the World in 80 Days||Wilbur Wright|
|Starsky & Hutch||Ken Hutchinson||Teen Choice Award for Choice Movie: Comedy Actor|
Nominated – Teen Choice Award for Choice Movie: Chemistry
|The Big Bounce||Jack Ryan|
|2005||The Wendell Baker Story||Neil King|
|Wedding Crashers||John Beckwith||MTV Movie Award for Best On-Screen Duo|
People's Choice Award for Favorite On-Screen Match-Up
Nominated – MTV Movie Award for Best Comedic Performance
Nominated – Teen Choice Award for Choice Movie: Liplock
|2006||Night at the Museum||Jedediah||Uncredited|
|You, Me and Dupree||Randolph Dupree||Also producer|
|Cars||Lightning McQueen||Voice only|
|Mater and the Ghostlight||Short film; voice only|
|2007||The Darjeeling Limited||Francis Whitman|
|2008||Drillbit Taylor||Drillbit Taylor|
|Over Her Dead Body||Guy on Phone||Uncredited|
|Marley & Me||John Grogan||Nominated – Teen Choice Award for Choice Movie: Liplock|
|2009||Night at the Museum: Battle of the Smithsonian||Jedediah|
|Fantastic Mr. Fox||Coach Skip||Voice only|
|2010||How Do You Know||Matty Reynolds|
|Little Fockers||Kevin Rawley|
|Midnight in Paris||Gil||Nominated – Comedy Award for Comedy Actor|
Nominated – Golden Globe Award for Best Actor – Motion Picture Musical or Comedy
Nominated – Screen Actors Guild Award for Outstanding Performance by a Cast in a Motion Picture
Nominated – Phoenix Film Critics Society Award for Best Cast
|Cars 2||Lightning McQueen||Voice only|
Nominated – People's Choice Award for Favorite Animated Movie Voice
|The Big Year||Kenny Bostick|
|2013||The Internship||Nick Campbell|
|Free Birds||Reggie||Voice only|
|2014||Are You Here||Steve Dallas|
|The Grand Budapest Hotel||M. Chuck|
|The Hero of Color City||Ricky The Dragon||Voice only|
|Inherent Vice||Coy Harlingen|
|Night at the Museum: Secret of the Tomb||Jedediah|
|2015||She's Funny That Way||Arnold Albertson|
|No Escape||Jack Dwyer||Post-production|
|2017||Cars 3||Lightning Mcqueen||Voice only|