Matthew Modine is an award-winning American actor. His film roles include Private Joker in Stanley Kubrick's Full Metal Jacket, the title character in Alan Parker's Birdy, high school wrestler Louden Swain in Vision Quest, football star turned spy Alec McCall in Funky Monkey and the oversexed Sullivan Groff in Weeds.
His first film role was in John Sayles' Baby It's You. His performance caught the eye of director Harold Becker, who cast him in Vision Quest (Crazy for You) based on the novel by Terry Davis. He appeared in the sex comedy Private School, co-starring Phoebe Cates and Betsy Russell. The director Robert Altman propelled Modine to international stardom with his film adaptation of David Rabe's play Streamers. Modine and his fellow castmates won an unprecedented Best Actor prize from the Venice Film Festival for the tragic story of young American soldiers about to be shipped to Vietnam. Modine played Mel Gibson's brother in Mrs. Soffel and starred with Nicolas Cage in Alan Parker's Birdy. The film was awarded a prize at the Cannes Film Festival.
Modine might be best known for his role as Private Joker, the central character of Stanley Kubrick's 1987 war movie Full Metal Jacket. Subsequently, he played the dangerous young criminal Treat in Alan Pakula's film version of the hugely successful Lyle Kessler stageplay Orphans, and played the goofy, earnest FBI agent Mike Downey in Jonathan Demme's screwball comedy Married to the Mob opposite Michelle Pfeiffer. In 1990 he led the cast of Memphis Belle, a fictionalized account of the famous B-17 Flying Fortress. Modine was nominated for an Emmy Award for his performances in And the Band Played On (an HBO TV movie about the early years of the HIV/AIDS epidemic) and the dark comedy What the Deaf Man Heard.