Melissa McCarthy, Antonio Banderas and other well-known people celebrate this month
by Susan Wloszczyna, AARP, July 31, 2020|Comments: 0
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Aug. 1: Chuck D, 60
En español | This influential rapper cofounded the group Public Enemy in 1985 with Flavor Fav. The group was known for their politically charged lyrics on songs such as “Fight the Power,” which was featured in Spike Lee's 1989 movie Do the Right Thing. Chuck D, still fighting the power with his latest song “State of the Union (STFU),” recently joked to Billboard magazine that he's so old, he has “damn near got songs about Noah's Ark."
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Aug. 3: Martin Sheen, 80
The actor, born Ramón Gerard Antonio Estevez, starred in such influential films as 1979's war epic Apocalypse Now and 2006's Oscar-winning mob drama The Departed. But most of his fans know and love him as President Josiah Bartlet on NBC's long-running hit The West Wing. Sheen now costars on the Netflix sitcom Grace and Frankie as Robert, the gay ex-husband of Grace (Jane Fonda).
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Aug. 6: M. Night Shyamalan, 50
"I see dead people.” That's the famous line of dialogue that kick-started this Indian-born filmmaker's career in the 1999 supernatural thriller The Sixth Sense. It was up for six Academy Awards and was the second-highest grossing film of the year. He went on to make other plot-twisty hits such as 2000's Unbreakable and 2002's Signs. He's an executive producer of the chilling series Servant on Apple TV+.
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Aug. 10: Antonio Banderas, 60
This handsome actor found fame in the 1980s in a series of sexy Spanish films with director Pedro Almodóvar, including Tie Me Up! Tie Me Down! and Law of Desire. Hollywood beckoned and turned him into a musical star in 1996's Evita, a swashbuckler in 1998's The Mask of Zorro and a feline in 2011's Puss in Boots. But it wasn't until he reunited with Almodóvar for 2019's Pain and Glory that he was finally nominated for an Oscar for best actor.
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Aug. 15: Anthony Anderson, 50
This comic actor plays Andre “Dre” Johnson, the patriarch of a suburban African American family who wants to preserve black culture in his household, on ABC's hit sitcom Black-ish. (He's also an executive producer.) And he (along with his mom, Doris) also gets laughs as the host of the network's reboot of To Tell the Truth. While social distancing during the pandemic, Anderson cohosted a virtual COVID-19 relief event on BET that raised $16 million, and also found time to drop 17 pounds and grow a garden.
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Aug. 17: Sean Penn, 60
Most of us first got to know Sean Penn as the righteous surfer dude Jeff Spicoli in the 1982 comedy classic Fast Times at Ridgemont High. But he soon revealed himself as a serious thespian, getting nominated for a best-actor Oscar for 1995's Dead Man Walking and laterwinning best-actor Oscars for his work in 2003's Mystic River and 2008's Milk. Penn is also known for his activism; his nonprofit Community Organized Relief Effort (CORE) has helped fund free COVID-19 tests.
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Aug. 22: Giada De Laurentiis, 50
An Emmy-winning chef and author, De Laurentiis got her start on TV in 2003 as the host of the Food Network's daytime cooking show Everyday Italian. She runs restaurants in Las Vegas and Baltimore; has penned nine best-selling cookbooks, including her latest, Giada's Italy; and has a children's book series called Recipe for Adventure. During the coronavirus outbreak, she has hosted a self-taped series on the network called Giada at Home.
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Aug. 25: Claudia Schiffer, 50
This German-born supermodel, discovered at age 17 in a nightclub in Düsseldorf, still holds the Guinness world record as the model with the most fashion magazine covers. She has flirted with films, most notably in a cameo role in the popular yuletide movie Love Actually. Schiffer lives in England with her filmmaker husband, Matthew Vaughn (Kingsman franchise) and their three children.
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Aug. 25: Sean Connery, 90
For many of us, this dashing Scottish-born actor will always be the one and only James Bond, starting with 1962's Dr. No and ending with 1983's Never Say Never Again. Connery feared being typecast, saying at one point: “I have always hated that damn James Bond. I'd like to kill him.” But the actor has had plenty of other notable roles, including in 1987's The Untouchables (nabbing an Oscar for best supporting actor) and 1990's The Hunt for Red October.
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Aug. 26: Melissa McCarthy, 50
You know (and love) her for over-the-top characters in comedy blockbusters such as 2011's Bridesmaids. But in recent years she's shown off her range in darker, more serious roles, including her Oscar-nominated portrayal of author Lee Israel in the 2018 drama Can You Ever Forgive Me? She also runs a production company with her husband of 14 years, Ben Falcone. “I've never minded getting older,” she told AARP in 2018. “The older you are, the more interesting you are as a character.”