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Sam Neill: From “Jurassic Park” to “The Apple Does Not Fall Far Away.” He made history in cinema

Sam Neill was born in Northern Ireland but spent most of his life in New Zealand. It was there that he began his adventure with acting. He acted on stage and for several years also worked as a director and screenwriter at the New Zealand National Film Unit. As the story goes, it was in New Zealand that the paths of Sam Neill and James Mason crossed (British producer and actor). Mason reportedly offered Sam a plane ticket to Europe and helped him find an agent. They even managed to appear together in the film “Ivanhoe” (1982).

Neill has appeared in many cult productions as well as lesser-known artistic productions. He collaborated with Krzysztof Zanussi on the film “From a Distant Country”; he appeared with Meryl Streep in “A Cry in the Dark” and in the great “The Hunt for Red October”. In 1993, Steven Spielberg invited him to the first part of “Jurassic Park”, where he starred with Jeff Goldblum and Laura Dern.

In 1995, he played John Trent in the film “In the Mouth of Madness” John Carpenter. Fans television productions, in turn, will clearly remember Sam Neill from… the Arthurian legend. The actor played Merlin in the TV movie of the same name. His on-screen partners were Helena Bonham-Carter and Isabella Rossellini.

We have seen it in recent years in “Jurassic Park: Dominion” or “The Twelve”. Despite many great roles, Neill often lost the race for a role in many of today's cult productions. He was twice one of the candidates for the role of James Bond in “The Dead” (the hero was played by Timothy Dalton) and “GoldenEye” (here won by Pierce Brosnan). He was also supposed to be the Doctor from “Doctor Who” (his eighth “version”) and appear in “Die Hard” and “Robin Hood: Prince of Thieves”. In this case, both roles were stolen from him by Alan Rickman.

Interestingly, Sam Neill also made a mark in the history of the DC comic universe. It served as an inspiration for the illustration of Maxwell Lord in 1987.

A few years ago, the actor was diagnosed with a rare form of cancer. Neill underwent treatment with the new drug and recently revealed that the disease is in remission. During the fight for his health, he never broke down. The whole situation prompted him to write self-ironic biography “Did I Ever Tell You This?”, in which he described various interesting facts about his career and life.

In one of the interviews for “Australian Story” he stated that currently he is afraid of only one thing – retirement.

“Dying would be annoying, considering how much I still have to do” – the Polish Press Agency quoted his statement.

The plot of the series “The Apple Does Not Fall Far Away” is based around the fate of the Delaneys, who seemingly seem like the perfect family. When Joy (Annette Bening) disappears one day, her children discover the dark secrets of their parents' marriage and learn interesting information about themselves. The series stars Sam Neill, Annette Bening, Alison Brie, Jake Lacy, Conor Merrigan-Turner and Essie Randles.

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