Happy Birthday! Patrick Stewart Turns 76 Years Old

patrick stewart
(Photo: 20th Century Fox )

It’s that time of year: It’s time to wish Patrick Stewart a happy 76th birthday!

The British actor was born on July 13th 1940 in Mirfield to Gladys and Alfred Stewart. The youngest of three boys, Patrick has spoken openly about his rough upbringing as his family was plagued by poverty and suffered greatly under his father’s domestic abuse. He attended school until the age of 15 when Patrick began to work actively in local theatre. And, ever since Patrick made the decision to pursue theatre, he has yet to look back.

Patrick’s stage performances are numerous and nearly impossible to completely account for. As he became a member of the Royal Shakespeare Company in 1966, Patrick has gone on to star in versions of Hamlet, A Midsummer Night’s Dream, North and South, and many many more.

However, the actor is likely best-known for his work in franchises such as Star Trek: The Next Generation and Fox’s X-Men films. Cast as Captain Jean-Luc Picard in Star Trek, Patrick was a relatively unknown talent in the U.S. at the time as the show was his first introduction to television. His involvement with Star Trek, however, made Patrick a household name within the sci-fi community as fans applauded his impressive work on the show. And, in recent years, Patrick identifies his work on the series as one of the greatest highlights of his career.

As for Patrick’s involvement with the X-Men films, the actor reached a large and adoring global audiences as fans were enamored with his portrayal of Professor Charles Xavier. First introduced to the X-Men by Lauren Donner, Patrick was struck by the similarities he noticed between himself and the telepathic mutant. He went on to star in the three original X-Men films created by Fox before he reprised his role alongside Ian McKellen (Magneto) for the trilogy’s prequel, X-Men: Days of Future Past.