Michael Fassbender was born in Heidelberg, Germany, to a German father, Josef, and an Irish mother, Adele (originally from Larne, County Antrim, in Northern Ireland). Michael was raised in the town of Killarney, Co. Kerry, in south-west Ireland, where his family moved to when he was two years old. His parents ran a restaurant (his father is a chef).
Fassbender is based in London, England, and became known in the U.S. after his role in the Quentin Tarantino’s Inglourious Basterds (2009). In 2011, Fassbender debuted as the Marvel antihero Magneto in the prequel X-Men: First Class (2011); he would go on to share the role with Ian McKellen in X-Men: Days of Future Past (2014). Also in 2011, Fassbender’s performance as a sex addict in Shame (2011) received critical acclaim. He won the Volpi Cup for Best Actor at the Venice Film Festival and was nominated for Golden Globe and BAFTA Awards. In 2013, his role as slave owner Edwin Epps in slavery epic 12 Years a Slave (2013) was similarly praised, earning him his first Oscar nomination, for Best Supporting Actor. 12 Years a Slave marked Fassbender’s third collaboration with Steve McQueen, who also directed Hunger and Shame. In 2013, Fassbender appeared in another Ridley Scott film, The Counsellor (2013). In 2015, he portrayed Steve Jobs (2015) in the Danny Boyle-directed biopic of the same name, and played Macbeth (2015) in Justin Kurzel’s adaptation of William Shakespeare’s play. For the former, he has received Academy Award, BAFTA, Golden Globe and SAG nominations for Best Actor. As well as acting, Fassbender produced the 2015 western Slow West (2015), which he also starred in.