Cliff Curtis can best be described as an accomplished performer with a lot of raw talents. Pundits in matters of entertainment will agree on the fact that his best years are yet to come and it would not be much of a surprise if he becomes an Oscar award winner in the future.
The talented actor is of Maori descent but he has portrayed several ethnicities like Mexican-American, Arab and Latino in his acting roles. His movie credits include Once Were Warriors released in 1994, Blow which came in 2001, the 2002 Whale Rider and Live Free or Die Hard which was the flavor of 2007. Cliff Curtis was also part of the cast of 2014 The Dark Horse. He has played roles on TV series like NBC’s Trauma and Body of Proof and from 2015 to 2017, he worked on the set of ABC’s Missing, Fear the Walking Dead – the latter, an AMC horror drama series cast him in the role of Travis Manawa.
Biography and Ethnicity of Cliff Curtis
Cliff Curtis was born into a large family of 8 children in Rotorua, in the North Island of New Zealand on the 27th of July 1968. Although his personal details and that of his family background is not public knowledge, we were able to get a few tidbits from the available records – his birth name is Clifford Vivian Devon Curtis and he was born to a father who is an amateur dancer. His place of birth is an obvious indication of his New Zealand nationality and his formative years were spent in Kapiti Coast where he was active in competitions like kapa haka, break dancing, rock n’ roll dance, as well as a few theatre productions.
Although he is from the Maori ethnic group, he can competently portray the character of other ethnicities on set. The actor’s tribal affiliations are Ngāti Hauiti and Te Arawa. His boyhood was spent studying “taiaha” – a traditional fighting technique of Maori tribe- which prepared him as a performer in kapa haka.
On his educational background, he was a student of Western Heights High School Rotorua where he accomplished his high school education. After that, he joined New Zealand Drama School to study acting but on the long run, he made the decision to relocate to Switzerland where he joined Teatro Dmitri Scuola.
A trusted source pegged his annual salary at $3 million which he earned majorly from his acting career. His salary has never been published but some online sources have gone ahead to publish the range of average salary of New Zealand actors which according to their submissions ranges from $45,576 to $67,526 (average is $55,306).
Married Life – Wife
The identity of Cliff Curtis’ wife is still a mystery because he has been known to guard his personal information closely. That notwithstanding, it is a known fact that he tied the nuptial towards the end of 2009 in a lavish private wedding ceremony which took place at his home.
According to the little we could sieve from the records, the family of the bride is possibly from the Asian continent. They graced the wedding in a 22-seater private jet. It was mentioned by Toby Curtis – Cliff’s uncle that the wedding was mainly family affair and having it at home was Cliff’s idea and people should try and respect his privacy. The couple’s marriage has endured for almost a decade now and they have been blessed with three kids.
Other Facts About Cliff Curtis
- His Hollywood Experience
The actor’s Hollywood exploits include a few different roles/ethnicities in movies like 2001 Blow where he was cast as a Colombian, he portrayed the character of an Arab in the 1999 Three Kings, as well as The Insider which came the same year. 2001 Training Day and 2003 Runaway Jury saw him play the role of a Latino. His role as a drug dealer in Bringing Out the Dead (1999) was of ambiguous ethnicity but he is best known for his part in Whale Rider as Porourangi. Needless to say, he killed each and every one of the aforementioned roles.
- Nominations and Awards
Cliff Curtis has bagged three New Zealand Film and TV Awards for his roles in Desperate Remedies (1995), Jubilee (2000) and Whale Rider (2003). He was noted as 1980s champion rock-and-roll-dancer and has also received several nominations for his acting roles.
- Body Stats
His height is listed as 6 feet which is approximately 1.83 m with a commensurate weight of 180 lb. The details of his other body measurement are not known.
Although he is from Maori, he has only portrayed the character of a Maori in only two movies. Severally, he played the roles of various dark-skinned ethnicities like Mexican-Americans, Arabs, Columbians, Chechens, and Persians.