Nick Cassavetes

Born May 21, 1959, in New York to filmmaker John Cassavetes and actress Gena Rowlands, Nick Cassavetes was in no hurry to enter the family business, until an injury cut short his college basketball career and he shifted his focus to acting.

After making his big-screen debut in Mask (1985), Cassavetes spent the next decade acting in a string of B movies. By the mid-1990s, however, he found mainstream success in big-budget films such as Face/Off and The Astronaut's Wife.

At the same time, Cassavetes began to make his mark behind the camera, directing his mother in Unhook the Stars and then tapping one of his father's unproduced screenplays for She's So Lovely (Sean Penn, Robin Wright Penn), nominated for the Palme d'Or. Since then, he's continued to split his time in front of and behind the camera, directing John Q, The Notebook and Alpha Dog.