Sir Michael Caine, born Maurice Joseph Micklewhite, is an English actor.
Caine was born in St Olave's Hospital, Southwark, in South East London, the son of Ellen Frances Marie, a cook and charlady, and Maurice Joseph Micklewhite, a fish market porter. His father was of part Irish and Irish Traveller ancestry.
Caine grew up in Camberwell, South London, and during the Second World War he was evacuated to Norfolk. After the war, when his father was demobbed, the family was re-housed by the council in a pre-fabricated house made in Canada. In 1944, he passed his eleven plus exam, winning a scholarship to Hackney Downs Grocers School. After a year there he moved to Wilson's Grammar School in Camberwell which he left at 16, after gaining a School Certificate in 6 subjects.
He then worked briefly as a filing clerk and messenger for a film company in Victoria Street and the film producer Jay Lewis. From 1952 he was called up to do his National Service until 1954 where he served in the British Army's Royal Fusiliers.
When Micklewhite became an actor, he adopted the stage name "Michael Scott". His agent soon informed him, however, that Michael Scott was already using the same name, and that he had to come up with a new name immediately. Speaking to his agent from a telephone box in Leicester Square, London, he looked around for inspiration, noted that 'The Caine Mutiny' was being shown at the Odeon Cinema, and decided to change his name to "Michael Caine". According to reports, he has joked in interviews that had he looked the other way, he would have ended up as "Michael One Hundred and One Dalmatians"!
Caine's acting career began in Horsham, Sussex. He responded to an advertisement for an assistant stage manager for the Horsham-based Westminster Repertory Company. This led to walk-on roles at the Carfax Theatre.
After dozens of minor TV roles, Caine entered the public eye as the upper class British Army officer in the 1964 film 'Zulu'. This was closely followed by two of his best-known roles: in 'The Ipcress File' (1965) & in 'Alfie' (1966). Caine lives near Leatherhead, Surrey, and is patron to the Leatherhead Drama Festival.
Caine also published a volume of memoirs, 'What's It All About', along with other books. He was married to actress Patricia Haines from 1955 to 1958. They had a daughter, Dominique (who was named after the heroine of the novel The Fountainhead by Ayn Rand). He dated Bianca Jagger in 1968. Caine has been married to actress and model Shakira Baksh since 8 January 1973. They have a daughter, Natasha Haleema.
Reportedly, sometime after his mother died, Caine and his younger brother, Stanley, learned they had an elder half-brother, named David. He suffered from severe epilepsy and had been kept in Cane Hill Mental Hospital his entire life. Although their mother regularly visited her first son in the hospital, even her husband did not know the child existed. David died in 1992.
Caine is a fan of chill-out music and has also compiled a mix CD called 'Cained', which was released in 2007 by UMTV.