LIEV SCHREIBER Biography - Actors and Actresses


Biography » actors and actresses » liev schreiber


Name: Isaac Liev Schreiber                                                             
Born: 4 October 1967 San Francisco, California, U.S.                                   
Isaac Liev Schreiber (born October 4, 1967) is a Tony Award-winning American           
actor. He became known during the late 1990s and early 2000s, having initially         
appeared in several independent films, and later mainstream Hollywood films,           
including the Scream trilogy of horror films.                                           
Schreiber was born in San Francisco, California, the son of Heather (née Milgram)     
and Tell Schreiber, a stage actor and director. His father is of Austrian, Irish,       
Swiss, and Scottish descent while his mother is Jewish, the descendant of               
immigrants from Poland, Ukraine and Germany. His mother claims that she                 
named him after her favorite author, Leo Tolstoy, while his father claims that         
Schreiber was named after the doctor who saved his mother's life. His family           
nickname, adopted when Schreiber was a baby, is "Huggy." When Schreiber was             
one year old, his family moved to Canada, but at age four, due to his parents'         
divorce, he and his siblings moved to New York City with his mother, where he           
grew up.                                                                               
His mother was "a highly cultured eccentric" who supported them by splitting her       
time between driving a cab and creating papier-mâché puppets." On Schreiber's         
sixteenth birthday, his mother bought him a motorcycle, "to promote fearlessness,       
chea!" The critic John Lahr wrote in a 1999 New Yorker profile that, "To a             
large extent, Schreiber’s professional shape-shifting and his uncanny instinct       
for isolating the frightened, frail, goofy parts of his characters are a result         
of being forced to adapt to his mother’s eccentricities. It’s both his grief and   
his gift.” Schreiber's mother also forbade Schreiber from seeing color movies.       
As a result, his favorite actor was Charlie Chaplin. In the late seventies and         
early eighties Schreiber, known then as Shiva Das, lived at the Satchidananda           
Ashram, Yogaville East, in Pomfret, CT. Subsequently, Schreiber attended Friends       
Seminary, the same school attended by actress Amanda Peet when he was a senior         
and she was in sixth grade. Though athletic, he was unpopular and isolated in           
school, partially due to his bizarre home life and admitted incidents of               
Schreiber went on to Hampshire College in Amherst, Massachusetts where he began         
his acting training there and, via the Five Colleges consortium, which includes         
the University of Massachusetts at Amherst. He graduated from the Yale School of       
Drama in 1992, where he starred in Charles Evered's The Size of the World,             
directed by Walton Jones. He also attended the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art in         
London. He originally wanted to be a screenwriter, but was steered toward acting       
Schreiber had several supporting roles in various independent films until his           
big break, as the accused murderer Cotton Weary in the Scream trilogy of horror         
films. Though the success of the Scream trilogy would lead Schreiber to roles in       
several big-budget studio pictures, Entertainment Weekly wrote in 2007 that "Schreiber 
is [still] best known for such indie gems as Walking and Talking, The                   
Daytrippers, and Big Night."                                                           
After Scream, Schreiber portrayed the young Orson Welles in the HBO original           
movie RKO 281, for which he was nominated for an Emmy Award. He then played             
supporting roles in several studio films, including the 2000 movie of Hamlet           
with Ethan Hawke, The Hurricane with Denzel Washington, and The Sum of All Fears       
with Ben Affleck. The 2004 remake of The Manchurian Candidate, with Washington         
and Meryl Streep, was another major film for the actor, stirring some                   
controversy as it opened during a heated presidential election cycle.                   
Along with his screen work, Schreiber is a well-respected classical actor; in a         
1998 review of the little-performed Shakespeare play Cymbeline, The New York           
Times called his performance "revelatory" and ended the article with the plea, "More   
Shakespeare, Mr. Schreiber.". A year later, Schreiber played the title role             
in Hamlet in a December 1999 revival at The Public Theater, to similar raves. In       
2000, he played Laertes in Hamlet, a modern adaption of the play. His Henry V in       
a 2003 Central Park production of that play caused Lahr to expound upon his             
aptitude at playing Shakespeare. "He has a swiftness of mind," Lahr wrote, "which       
convinces the audience that language is being coined in the moment. His speech,         
unlike that of the merely adequate supporting cast, feels lived rather than             
In the spring of 2005, Schreiber essayed a non-Shakespearean stage role, that of       
Richard Roma in the Broadway revival of David Mamet's Pulitzer Prize-winning           
play Glengarry Glen Ross. As Roma, Schreiber won a Tony Award for Best                 
Performance by a Featured Actor in a Play. In June to July 2006, he played the         
title role in Macbeth opposite Jennifer Ehle at the Delacorte Theater.