Known for films like Trainspotting
(1996), Slumdog Millionaire
(2008) and Steve Jobs
(2015), Danny Boyle is an English film, TV and theater director, screenwriter, and producer. For his 2008 movie Slumdog Millionaire, Boyle garnered global recognition and went on to win the Oscar, Golden Globe, Director's Guild, and BAFTA for Best Director.
Born in Manchester, England, to Irish immigrants, Boyle wanted to be a part of Hollywood from a very young age. For his graduation, he went to the University of Wales, but quit mid-way, to pursue his lifelong dream of making it big, in the world of entertainment. He started his career with reputed theater companies like the Joint Stock Theatre Company, the Royal Shakespeare Company, and the Royal Court Theatre.
Danny Boyle, who has confessed to being a spiritual atheist, had priesthood planned for him by his mother, but he soon started doing theater, which changed his life completely. Although he still thinks, there is something extremely theatrical about being a priest and often compares his destiny to celebrated directors like Martin Scorsese
, John Woo
, and M. Night Shyamalan
, who were all meant to devote themselves to the services of the church.
Boyle, in 2002, separated with his partner of 20 years, Gail Stevens, due to irreconcilable reasons. The couple has three children- Caitlin Boyle, born in 1985, Gabriel Boyle, born in 1989 and Grace Boyle, born 1991. In 2013, a romance brewed on the sets of the psychological thriller Trance between Danny Boyle, the director of the film, and Rosario Dawson
, the lead actress. The couple was reluctant to make their relationship public, but, eventually started appearing together in various award functions, confirming the rumors of an affair. However, after just one year of being together, the couple, mutually parted ways. Dawson, on various occasions, has expressed her fondness for the director, maintaining that there are no hard feeling on either side.
As a Director
Boyle made his directorial debut with the dark comedy Shallow Grave, which follows the story of three flatmates, who discover the dead body of their fourth flatmate, alongside a bag full of money. Starring Ewan McGregor
, Kerry Fox
, and Christopher Eccleston
, the movie was very well received, both critically and commercially, earning Boyle the Best Newcomer Award in the London Film Critics Circle, in 1996. This successful project led to Boyle international claim to fame- Trainspotting
(1996). A movie based on the novel of the same name, Trainspotting received worldwide critical acclaim, with The New York describing it as “perversely irresistible” and its characters as “funny, sharp, well-played and fiercely memorable.” Starring Ewan McGregor, the movie, at the time of its release was the fourth highest grossing in the history of British cinema.
In 2000, Boyle directed Leonardo Di Caprio
in the adventure drama film The Beach
. Adapted from the novel of the same name, the movie chronicles the story of a young man, who travel to the islands of Thailand, in search of adventure. In spite of earning profits at the box office, the movie was panned by the critics, with Rotten Tomatoes giving it a rating of 19%, based on 116 reviews. He subsequently directed 28 Days Later
(2002), a horror film, Millions (2004), a comedy-drama, and Sunshine
(2007), a thriller.
Danny Boyle then helmed the international blockbuster Slumdog Millionaire
, which is also widely regarded as his most critically acclaimed work. Loosely based on the novel Q & A, by Indian writer Vikram Swarup, the movie follows the rags-to-riches tale of a slum dweller, who wins 20 million, on the Indian version of Who Wants to Be a Millionaire? Starring Dev Patel
, Freida Pinto
, Madhur Mittal
, Anil Kapoor
and Irrfan Khan
in important roles, the movie received rave reviews, with Boyle taking home Academy and BAFTA Awards for Best Director. In the coming years, he made movies like Alien Love Triangle (2008), 127 Hours
(2010), and Trance (2013). Following this, Boyle directed Michael Fassbender
and Kate Winslet
in the biographical drama film Steve Jobs
, based on the life of the co-founder of Apple Inc., who is globally referred to as the architect of the microcomputer revolution of the 1970s. Featuring Fassbender in the titular role, the movie opened to positive reviews and was declared a box office hit.
Boyle's 2017 release includes the sequel to his 1996 film, Trainspotting. A black comedy drama, T2 Trainspotting
includes the original ensemble cast, including Ewan McGregor
, Ewen Bremner
, Jonny Lee Miller
, and Robert Carlyle
in the lead roles.
As a Producer
As a producer, Boyle has been associated with films like Twin Town (1997), 28 Weeks Later
(2007), 127 Hours
(2010), Trance (2013), Steve Jobs
(2015), T2: Trainspotting
(2017), and Battle of the Sexes (2017).