Shia LaBeouf
Shia LaBeouf, November 2006
Born Shia Saide LaBeouf
June 11, 1986 (1986-06-11) (age 31

Los Angeles, California, U.S.

Occupation Actor/Comedian
Years active 1998–present

Shia Saide LaBeouf (pronounced "SHY-uh luh-BUFF"); born June 11, 1986) is anAmerican actor and comedian.

After growing up in California, LaBeouf became known with a starring role in the Disney Channel series Even Stevens. He made the transition to film roles with Holes, a box office success, and supporting roles in Constantine and I, Robot.

Following LaBeouf's lead role in The Greatest Game Ever Played, film producer and director Steven Spielberg cast him in starring roles in the 2007 films Disturbia and Transformers. LaBeouf also worked with Spielberg in 2008's Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull and Eagle Eye. Several media publications speculated that LaBeouf, whose screen persona was described by Time magazine as that of the "scrappy kid next door",[1] would become a major film star throughout 2008.

Early life


LaBeouf was born in Los Angeles, California, the only child of Shayna (née Saide), a dancer and ballerina turned visual artist and clothing/jewelry designer, and Jeffrey Craig LaBeouf, a Vietnam War veteran who "drifted" from job to job, working as a mime at a circus and as a rodeo clown.

Shia LaBeouf's New York-born mother is Jewish and his father is a Cajun (once described by LaBeouf as a "Ragin' Cajun"). LaBeouf was raised in the Jewish religion and had a Bar Mitzvah.[2][3][4][5][6][7][8] The name Shia is Hebrew for "gift from God",[9][10] and the surname LaBeouf is a corruption of "le bœuf", the French term for "the ox" or "the beef".[11][3] LaBeouf has said that he comes from "five generations of performers" and was "acting when [he] came out of the womb."[2] LaBeouf's maternal grandfather, who shared his first name, was a comedian who worked in the Borscht Belt of the Catskill Mountains, and his paternal grandmother was a Beatnik poet and lesbian who associated with Allen Ginsberg.[11][1][12]

LaBeouf has described his parents as "hippies", his father as "tough as nails and a different breed of man", and his upbringing as similar to a "hippy lifestyle", stating that his parents were "pretty weird people, but they loved me and I loved them."[2][13] LaBeouf's father used to grow cannabis, and the two smoked marijuana together when LaBeouf was ten.[14][2] LaBeouf has also said that his father was "on drugs" during his childhood, being addicted to heroin and placed in drug rehabilitation for heroin addiction, while LaBeouf's mother was "trying to hold down the fort."[14] His parents eventually divorced, and he had what he has described as a "good childhood", growing up poor with his mother (who worked selling fabrics and brooches) in Echo Park, Los Angeles, California.[15][4]


LaBeouf attended a predominantly Latino and African-American school.[15][4] Theatrically, LaBeouf attended 32nd Street Visual and Performing Arts Magnet school in Los Angeles (LAUSD)[2] and Alexander Hamilton High School, although he received most of his education from tutors.[15] Following high-school, LaBeouf was accepted to Yale University but declined, later remarking that he is "getting the kind of education you don't get at school,"[16] although he would like to attend college.[2]



LaBeouf would "create things, story lines and fictitious tales" during his childhood, and practiced stand-up comedy around his neighborhood as an "escape" from a hostile environment.[4] He began performing stand-up and "talking dirty" at comedy clubs (including the The Ice House in Pasadena) at the age of ten (describing his appeal as having "disgustingly dirty" material and a "50-year-old mouth on the 10-year-old kid").[17][15] LaBeouf subsequently found an agent through the Yellow Pages, being taken on after doing his stand-up act for her and pretending to be his own manager, promoting himself in the third person.[4][18]



LaBeouf has said that he initially became an actor because his family was broke, not because he wanted to pursue an acting career.[17] He became well known among young audiences after playing Louis Stevens in the Disney Channel weekly program Even Stevens, a role for which he was cast three months after being signed by his agent. LaBeouf also appeared in the Disney Channel hit Tru Confessions, where he played a mentally challenged kid with a sister who made a documentary about his disability.[4] His father, at the time just released from rehab, served as his on-set parent and the two bonded.[19] LaBeouf was awarded a Daytime Emmy Award for the role of Louis[2] and has said that he "grew up on that show" and that his childhood was "kind of lost," although his being cast in the show was the "best thing" that has happened to him.[14] During this time period, LaBeouf also appeared in sketch shows on The Tonight Show with Jay Leno.[17] In 2003, he appeared in another Disney production, Holes, as Stanley "Caveman" Yelnats IV, opposite Sigourney Weaver, Jon Voight and Tim Blake Nelson. While filming Holes, Voight gave LaBeouf a book on acting, and this made LaBeouf realize acting could be more than a job.[1] The film was a moderate box office success. Steven Spielberg was also a fan of LaBeouf in Holes, saying he reminded him of a young Tom Hanks.[20]

That same year, he was heavily featured in the HBO documentary show Project Greenlight, which chronicled the making of the independent film The Battle of Shaker Heights. He also appeared in Charlie's Angels: Full Throttle as Max Petroni, an orphan whom the Angels end up protecting. Off-screen, LaBeouf co-wrote and directed Let's Love Hate, a short drama and winner of the Children's Jury Award in 2004 and the Children's Audience Award in 2005.[21] He had a small role in I, Robot (2004) and appeared in the action-horror film Constantine (2005), opposite Keanu Reeves and Rachel Weisz, and in the Disney film The Greatest Game Ever Played, playing Francis Ouimet, a real-life golf player from a poor family who won the 1913 U.S. Open Championship.[1] In 2006, LaBeouf co-starred in the ensemble film drama Bobby, which called for him to do his first nude scene when he strips naked while on an LSD trip. He also played a young Dito Montiel in A Guide to Recognizing Your Saints, in the younger version of the same role as Robert Downey, Jr. in a semi-autobiographical account of Montiel's upbringing in 1980s Astoria, Queens. LaBeouf has said that he is not the "All-American Disney role model"[20] and chose to appear in some of his film roles in order to "curse as much as possible"[22] and "age [himself] publicly" after his Disney roles, specifying that Disney is "great and all" and a "nurturing place"[17] but "dehabilitating for an actor", being "one constant string of same".[23] He has also said that he enjoyed being a child actor and hated school.[24]

File:20070406 051844 040807 shia.jpg

In 2007, LaBeouf starred in Disturbia, a thriller released on April 13. He played a teenager under house arrest who suspects that his neighbor, played by David Morse, is a serial killer. The film was a hit and LaBeouf received positive reviews for the role, with The Buffalo News stating that LaBeouf "has grown into an appealing, bright young actor who is able to simultaneously pull off [the character's] anger, remorse and intelligence",[25] Kurt Loder of MTV writing that LaBeouf "gets his star ticket decisively punched",[26] and the San Francisco Chronicle noting that LaBeouf is "fast becoming the best young actor in Hollywood".[27] In comparing the film with Rear Window, The New York Daily News described LaBeouf's appeal as "more John Cusack than James Stewart".[28] Also in 2007, LaBeouf provided a voice role as Cody Maverick in the animated film Surf's Up and played teenager Sam Witwicky, who becomes involved in the Autobot-Decepticon war on Earth, in Michael Bay's Transformers, released on July 3. LaBeouf has said that he is a fan of The Transformers television series and the 1986 The Transformers: The Movie,[29] and executive producer Steven Spielberg cast him in the role having been impressed by his performance in Holes.[1] Disturbia was the most important film to LaBeouf of his three 2007 films, because it was a "character-driven" role.[4]

LaBeouf hosted Saturday Night Live on April 14, 2007 and May 10, 2008.[30] He was named 2007's "star of tomorrow" by the ShoWest convention of the National Association of Theater Owners,[16] and in February 2008 he was awarded the BAFTA Orange Rising Star Award, which was voted for by the British general public.[31] Impressed by his performance in Transformers,[20] in April 2007 Spielberg cast LaBeouf in Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull, which began filming that June for a May 22, 2008 release date.[32] LaBeouf has stated that he would subsequently like to appear in a smaller-scale role.[20] His next film was Eagle Eye, a thriller directed by D. J. Caruso and released in September 2008.[33] He has also signed on for two Transformers sequels.[34]

Personal life

LaBeouf bought his own two-bedroom house at the age of 18,[35] lives in Burbank, California, and remains close to both his parents;[14] his mother now lives nearby in Tujunga, Los Angeles, California and his father in Montana.[1][2][4] LaBeouf is a cigarette smoker,[2][36][1] drives a Nissan Maxima,[37] and has two bulldogs named Brando and Rex.[35][38] He has said that "sports are so big in my life"[36] and that he is a "film junkie".[39] He enjoys the music of The Shins, CKY, and the hip-hop label Definitive Jux.[17]

LaBeouf has cited actors Dustin Hoffman,[17] Jodie Foster, Jon Voight, and John Turturro as inspirations,[35] and has said that he is "very serious" about his career and has made "a calculated effort to stay away from the party scene," believing that "if the industry takes you lightly because you're always partying, then they will take your work lightly as well."[2] Interviewer Jamie Portman of The Vancouver Sun described LaBeouf as seeming to have a "love-hate relationship with the teenage culture that has spawned him."[37]

LaBeouf has said that although he does not devoutly practice Judaism, he has a "personal relationship with God that happens to work within the confines of Judaism".[7]


On November 4, 2007, LaBeouf was arrested early in the morning for misdemeanor criminal trespassing in a Chicago Walgreens after refusing to leave when asked by a security guard. LaBeouf was due in court on November 28, 2007.[40] The criminal charges were dropped on December 12.[41]

In March 2008, an arrest warrant was issued for LaBeouf after he failed to turn up to a court appearance. The hearing was in relation to a ticket he received for unlawful smoking in Burbank, California in February 2008. When neither LaBeouf nor a lawyer turned up at the court at 8:30 a.m., a $1000 bench warrant was issued for his arrest,[42] however the court commissioner in California recalled this warrant on March 19, 2008 after the actor’s attorney arrived a day late to plead not guilty on LaBeouf's behalf, and a pre-trial hearing was set for April 24, 2008.[43] The charge was dismissed after the actor paid a $500 fine.[44]

In the early morning hours of July 27, 2008, authorities arrested LaBeouf on misdemeanor drunk driving charges in Los Angeles, after the actor was involved in a car collision in which he injured his hand. His passenger (Isabel Lucas) and another driver also suffered minor injuries.[45][46] Two days later, a Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department spokesman announced that LaBeouf was not at fault in the accident, saying that the other driver had run a red light.[47] Roberto Orci revealed that LaBeouf's injury had been written into the plot of Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen, which he was filming at the time, and that they wanted to ensure that his hand was protected for the remainder of the shoot.[48] Despite the fact that LaBeouf was not criminally charged in the accident, his license was suspended for one year by the California Department of Motor Vehicles for his refusal to take a breathalyzer test[49].


Year Film Role Other notes
1999 The X-Files Richie Lupone One episode ("The Goldberg Variation")
2000 Freaks and Geeks Herbert the mascot One episode ("We've Got Spirit")
2000-2003 Even Stevens Louis Stevens Television show
2000 ER Darnel Smith One episode ("Abby Road") as a child with muscular dystrophy
2001 The Nightmare Room Dylan Pierce One episode ("Scareful What You Wish For")
Hounded Ronny Van Dusen Disney Channel Original Movie
2002 Tru Confessions Eddie Walker Disney Channel Original Movie
2003 The Even Stevens Movie Louis Stevens Disney Channel Original Movie
The Battle of Shaker Heights Kelly Ernswiler Limited release
Charlie's Angels: Full Throttle Max Petroni
Dumb & Dumberer: When Harry Met Lloyd Lewis
Holes Stanley "Caveman" Yelnats IV
2004 I, Robot Farber
2005 The Greatest Game Ever Played Francis Ouimet
Nausicaä of the Valley of the Wind Asbel Voice
Constantine Chas Kramer
2006 Bobby Cooper
A Guide to Recognizing Your Saints Young Dito
2007 Disturbia Kale Brecht
Surf's Up Cody Maverick Voice
Transformers Sam Witwicky Main role
2008 Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull Henry "Mutt Williams" Jones III
Eagle Eye Jerry Shaw
2009 New York, I Love You Jacob Awaiting release
Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen Sam Witwicky Awaiting release
2010 Death and Me TBA Announced
Dark Fields TBA Announced


  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 1.4 1.5 1.6 Winters Keegan, Rebecca (2007-07-05). "The Kid Gets the Picture". Time.,9171,1640381,00.html. Retrieved on 2007-07-08. 
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 2.3 2.4 2.5 2.6 2.7 2.8 2.9 Koltnow, Barry (2007-04-13). "Watching the moves". OC Register. Retrieved on 2007-04-13. 
  3. 3.0 3.1 Allsletter, Rob (2007-07-02). "Transformers' Shia Labeouf". Comics Continuum. Retrieved on 2007-07-04. 
  4. 4.0 4.1 4.2 4.3 4.4 4.5 4.6 4.7 Strauss, Bob (2007-04-07). "Shia LaBeouf has come a long way in Hollywood". Inland Valley Daily Bulletin. Retrieved on 2007-04-08. 
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  11. 11.0 11.1 "Oh Boy! Shia LaBeouf Mouths Off". Gurl. 2007.,,648254_711127-2,00.html. Retrieved on 2007-07-21. 
  12. Strickler, Jeff (2007-04-12). "'Disturbia' actor still just a kid". Minneapolis Star Tribune. Retrieved on 2007-04-13. 
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  16. 16.0 16.1 Moore, Roger (2007-04-13). "As Shia LaBeouf grows up,critical acclaim grows stronger". The Orlando Sentinel.,0,899414.story?coll=orl-ent-promos-movies. Retrieved on 2007-04-13. 
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  18. Harvey, Shannon (2007-04-14). "‘He's a natural’". Sunday Times. Archived from the original on 2012-12-30. 
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  20. Cite error: Invalid <ref> tag; no text was provided for refs named designer
  21. Shia LaBeouf on the Internet Movie Database Retrieved October 14 2007
  22. Johnson, Neala (2007-04-12). "Shia ground". The Herald Sun. Archived from the original on 2012-12-30. Retrieved on 2007-04-13. 
  23. Cite error: Invalid <ref> tag; no text was provided for refs named rodeo
  24. Cordova, Randy (2007-04-13). "Career window opening for Shia LaBeouf". AZ Central. Retrieved on 2007-04-13. 
  25. Schobert, Christopher (2007-04-13). "Movies: Creepy cool 'Disturbia'". The Buffalo News. Retrieved on 2007-04-13. 
  26. Loder, Kurt (2007-04-13). "'Disturbia': Watchmen, By Kurt Loder". MTV Movie News. Retrieved on 2007-04-13. 
  27. Stein, Ruthe (2007-04-13). "If only Jimmy Stewart had had Wi-Fi and a cell". San Francisco Chronicle. Retrieved on 2007-04-13. 
  28. Weitzman, Elizabeth (2007-04-13). "Movie Review: Nightmare in suburbia". The New York Daily News. Retrieved on 2007-04-13. 
  29. Carroll, Larry (2006-08-31). "'Transformers' Set Has Flashy Cars, Robot Models, Exploding Furbys". MTV. Retrieved on 2007-04-14. 
  30. SNL Archives | Episode. Retrieved August 31, 2007.
  31. "Bafta Film Awards 2008: The winners". BBC News Online. 2008-02-10. Retrieved on 2008-02-10. 
  32. Coming (2007-04-13). LaBeouf Confirmed for Indiana Jones 4. Press release. Retrieved on 2007-04-13. 
  33. Thomas, Brian (2007-07-10). "Shia LaBeouf signs for thriller "Eagle Eye"". IF Magazine. Retrieved on 2007-07-10. 
  34. Murray, Rebecca (2006-11-10). "Exclusive Interview with Shia LaBeouf and Brian Geraghty". Retrieved on 2007-07-09. 
  35. Cite error: Invalid <ref> tag; no text was provided for refs named star3
  36. 36.0 36.1 Randall, Laura (2007-04-13). "Shia LaBeouf's hot, and he's caught Spielberg's eye". Philadelphia Daily News. Archived from the original on 2007-05-28. Retrieved on 2007-04-13. 
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  38. "Shia LaBeouf trivia". Retrieved on 2007-06-12. 
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  40. Hollywood, Access (2007-11-04). "Shia LaBeouf arrested at Chicago Walgreens". MSNBC. 
  41. "Shia Transforms Rap Sheet". E! News. 2007-12-12. Retrieved on 2008-02-14. 
  42. "Shia In Arrest Drama". Sky News. 2008-03-19. 
  43. "Shia off the Hook". Sky News. 2008-03-20. 
  44. "Shia's Smoke Release". Sky News. 2008-04-25. 
  45. "'Indiana Jones' star arrested for DUI". AP. 2008-07-27. 
  46. "Transformers' co-star Isabel Lucas in Shia LaBeouf's truck crash!". Los Angeles Times. 2008-07-28. Retrieved on 2008-07-29. 
  47. "Other driver, not LaBeouf, at fault in L.A. accident". The Baltimore Sun. 2008-07-30. p. 2C. 
  48. "Welcome Mr. Robert Orci, you may ask him questions". (2008-08-21).
  49. Shia LeBoeuf's Driver's License Suspended, January 20, 2009

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