With last night’s best actor victory for Dallas Buyers Club, and continuously inspired performances in his recent projects (see: True Detective, Bernie, Magic Mike, Mud, The Lincoln Lawyer, Wolf of Wall Street), it’s safe to say that the McConaissance is complete. In celebration of the actor’s fascinating career, here are a few random tidbits that you could draw upon at upcoming social gatherings when the topic of McConaughey’s terrific acting inevitably comes up:
1. In the late 90s, McConaughey was strongly considered for the role of Jack Dawson in James Cameron’s Titanic, a now-iconic part that eventually went to his buddy Leonardo DiCaprio.
2. McConaughey was a member of the Delta Tau Delta Fraternity at UT-Austin. He graduated from UT in 1993 earning a bachelor’s degree in radio-television-film.
3. According to this article about celebrity fears and phobias, McConaughey is not the biggest fan of tunnels and revolving doors.
4. McConaughey is the founder of the ‘Just Keep Livin’ foundation, 5013c non-profit organization that “is dedicated to empowering high school students to lead active lives and make healthy choices to become great men and women.”
5. From 1996-1998, he dated Sandra Bullock, whom he met on the set for the 1996 film, A Time To Kill.
6. His brother, Michael “Rooster” McConaughey, has a son named Miller Lyte McConaughey.
7. His first speaking role was for a TV commercial for the Austin-American Statesmen newspaper, in which McConaughey said the vintagely Texan line “How else am I gonna keep up with my ‘horns?”
8. McConaughey’s memorable role in the Sex In The City episode, ‘Escape From New York’ was actually written for Alec Baldwin.
9. In 2006, McConaughey rescued a cat that a bunch of young gang members who were attempting to set it on fire using hairspray. Naturally McConaughey was not alright alright alright with this, furious for days.
10. His father, James Donald McConaughey was drafted by the Green Bay Packers in 1953, and played for the Packers for one season. He played defensive end. He played college football for Kentucky under famed coach Bear Bryant. According to Matthew, he sacked legend Johnny Unitas twice in one game.
11. He has a wax figure, which was unveiled at Madam Tussauds in Las Vegas in April 2007.
12. After high school graduation he traveled to Australia where he worked a number of different odd jobs. Upon returning, he reportedly kept the accent for a bit.
13. One of his childhood heroes was the daredevil Evel Knievel. He has stated that he’d like to star in a movie about his life.
14. Later this year, McConaughey will be co-starring alongside Anne Hathaway in the Christopher Nolan directed movie Interstellar. The film is due out in November.