Christian Charles Philip Bale (born 30 January 1974) is a Welsh-born English actor. In addition to starring roles in big budget Hollywood films, he has for long been heavily involved in films produced by independent producers and art houses.
Bale first caught the public eye when he was cast in the starring role of Steven Spielberg's Empire of the Sun at the age of 13, playing an English boy who is separated from his parents and subsequently finds himself lost in a Japanese internment camp during World War II. Since then, he has portrayed a wide range of characters. Bale is especially noted for his cult following: the tenth anniversary issue of Entertainment Weekly hailed him as one of the "Top 8 Most Powerful Cult Figures of the Past Decade", citing his cult status on the Internet. EW called Bale one of the "Most Creative People in Entertainment" in anticipation of the release American Psycho (2000).
Although Bale was born in Wales, his parents were South African-born entrepreneur, commercial pilot, and talent manager David Bale, and English circus clown and performer Jenny James. He is the youngest of four children. After leaving Wales in 1976, Bale spent his childhood in several