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Last Updated: Tuesday, 28 August 2007, 12:15 GMT 13:15 UK
Profile: Owen Wilson
Owen Wilson
Owen Wilson is a member of Hollywood's so-called Frat Pack
Hollywood star Owen Wilson has asked to be allowed to "heal in private" following news reports he was taken to hospital in Los Angeles after a suicide attempt.

The star of films like Zoolander and You, Me and Dupree was reportedly rushed to hospital in Los Angeles at the weekend, where he is said to be in a "good condition".

Although there has been no official word on what happened, the actor and Oscar-nominated screen-writer said he was experiencing a "difficult time" and urged the media to give him privacy.

The 38-year-old came to the attention of the public for his improvisational approach to comic film-making and distinctive nose, which has been broken several times.

Wilson got his big chance in the 2000 comedy action hit Shanghai Noon, opposite Hong Kong martial arts star Jackie Chan.

From there he went on to star alongside Ben Stiller and Will Ferrell in the 2001 film Zoolander.

Acting career

Wilson had moved from his home state of Texas, where he was educated, to Los Angeles, after writing a screenplay with Wes Anderson.

The pair had met at the University of Texas, and they were quickly given financial backing to make a film based on their screenplay, Bottle Rocket.

Wilson took on the role of Dignan in the resulting film in 1996 and, shortly afterwards, set off for California with brothers Luke and Andrew to pursue an acting career.

Stiller, then a rising star, was a huge admirer of the low-budget movie and cast Wilson in a minor role in his film The Cable Guy.

Ben Stiller and Owen Wilson
Stiller and Wilson teamed up in a remake of Starsky and Hutch

After further minor parts in action films like Anaconda, Armageddon and The Haunting, Wilson went on to appear in two dramatic roles, Permanent Midnight, and The Minus Man, in which he played a serial killer.

A second screen-writing collaboration with Anderson followed with Rushmore, but it was their 2001 effort The Royal Tenenbaums, which starred Gwyneth Paltrow, that landed them an Oscar nomination.

After this, Wilson began landing bigger and bigger roles in high-profile comedies like Starsky & Hutch (2004), The Life Aquatic with Steve Zissou (2004), Meet the Fockers (2004) and The Wedding Crashers (2005), with Vince Vaughn.

They played womanising friends who gatecrashed weddings in order to meet women. The film was a huge hit, and cemented Wilson's growing reputation as a big box office draw.

Frat Pack

In the last two years he has voiced the lead character, Lightning McQueen, in Pixar's animated hit Cars, and starred in You, Me and Dupree. He also briefly appeared in Stiller's hit Night at the Museum.

To date, Wilson has appeared in eight films with best friend Stiller - The Cable Guy, Permanent Midnight, Meet the Parents, Zoolander, The Royal Tenenbaums, Starsky & Hutch, Meet the Fockers and Night at the Museum.

Owen Wilson and Vince Vaughn in Wedding Crashers
Wedding Crashers was a hit for Wilson and Vince Vaughn

He and Stiller are members of Hollywood's so-called Frat Pack - a group of actors that includes Steve Carell, Will Ferrell, Vaughn, and Luke Wilson. They often appear in each other's films.

Wilson once told the BBC that he and Stiller had a strong working relationship.

"For me it's just working with someone who I can rely on - someone I think is not just going to come up with good stuff, but have good ideas for me also.

"That isn't so much a factor of us having worked together a lot, because we had that from the very beginning. We just have a very similar sense of humour. Similar tastes, I guess."

Wilson's latest film, The Darjeeling Limited - written by Anderson - is due to debut at the Venice Film Festival next month.

But its launch on the Lido waterfront is likely to be overshadowed by news of Wilson's condition.

He had been expected in the Italian city for the premiere, ahead of the film's cinema release on 28 September.

Wilson plea over 'suicide' claims
28 Aug 07 |  Entertainment
Wilson comedy tops UK box office
29 Aug 06 |  Entertainment

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