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George Clooney is the kind of actor who can sneak into your casino and walk out with millions, save lives in surgery, and voice a sly, stealing fox.

This week we get to see Clooney up in space, acting his usual charming, slightly cocky self. In "Gravity" Clooney plays Matt Kowalski, a loquacious astronaut who blasts country music to feel close to home and rambles on about youthful memories.

While we've seen the Oscar winning actor for years on the big screen, there are probably a ton of things you didn't know about Clooney. From an aliment in his youth to his famous pet pig, check out these interesting facts about the star below.

1. In his youth Clooney worked in tobacco fields and took up smoking into his late 20s. He finally quit after one of his uncles died from lung cancer and has expressed his regret over it in many interviews.

2. He tried out for a position on the Cincinnati Reds baseball team in 1977, but did not pass the first round of cuts.

3. His mother Nina Bruce was a former beauty pageant queen and his father Nick Clooney was an AMC host. Of course Clooney comes from good looks and classic movie knowledge.

4. He is the nephew of singer and actress Rosemary Clooney and of Oscar-winning actor José Ferrer ("Cyrano de Bergerac"), and the cousin of their actor sons Miguel Ferrer ("Iron Man 3") and Rafael Ferrer. He is also the cousin-in-law of Grammy-winning singer Debby Boone.

5. Clooney's first film role was in 1982's "And They're Off," which also starred his cousins Miguel and Rafael. Miguel Ferrer made a guest appearance on the pilot of "ER," the show that brought Clooney fame. His aunt Rosemary also made cameos on the first season of "ER."

6. He was the second man after Richard Gere to make an appearance on the cover of Vogue magazine.

7. In middle school Clooney temporarily suffered from Bell's palsy, a condition that partially paralyzes the face. The aliment went away within a year, however Clooney has noted that as the worst time of his life saying, "I was mocked and taunted, but the experience made me stronger."

8. Clooney has said he will never get married again and not have any children. In 2007 Michelle Pfeiffer and Nicole Kidman both bet $10,000 each that he would be a father before he turned 40. They were both wrong and both sent him a check, but he returned the money and bet them double or nothing that he won't have kids by age 50. The 52-year-old still doesn't have any children, and apparently broke up with his most recent girlfriend, Stacy Keibler, over not wanting to start a family.

9. He was the very first guest on Rosie O'Donnell's talk show in 1996.

10. Clooney owned a pet pig named Max the Star for 18 years, which was a gift from then-girlfriend Kelly Preston. Max is often credited with saving Clooney's life by waking him up before the 1994 Northridge, California earthquake. Max appeared in interviews with Clooney, shared his bed, and also got to ride in John Travolta's private jet (pigs can fly, but only Clooney pigs).

11. Clooney committed to 2000's "O Brother, Where Art Thou?" before reading a script because of his wish to work with the Coen brothers. He even accepted a significantly lower salary than usual.

12. Despite his many known relationships with women, Clooney's sexual orientation has long been a subject of debate in the media. When asked about the it in an interview with The Advocate, Clooney noted that he wouldn't deny the rumors outright because he said, "That would be unfair and unkind to my good friends in the gay community. I'm not going to let anyone make it seem like being gay is a bad thing."

13. Clooney is the sixth actor to play the Caped Crusader when he starred in 1997's "Batman and Robin."

14. Clooney auditioned five times for the role of J.D. in "Thelma & Louise," a role that went to Brad Pitt and boosted Pitt to fame.

15. Clooney owned two bulldogs, Bud and Lou, named after the famous comedy team Abbott and Costello. Both dogs have died, one from a rattlesnake bite.

16. While he was a struggling actor in L.A., Clooney rode a bicycle to get to auditions and also lived in a friend's closet.

17. Clooney reportedly got into a fistfight with "Three Kings" director David O. Russell on the set over Russell deriding a few extras. Russell has since said, "I wouldn't make another George Clooney movie if they paid me $20 million."

18. In the early '80s Clooney shared an apartment with actor Thom Mathews ("The Return of the Living Dead").

19. In 2007 Clooney and his then-girlfriend Sarah Larson were both injured in a motorcycle accident in New Jersey. A month later more than two dozen staff at the hospital Clooney was treated at were suspended without pay for looking at the actor's medical records in violation of federal law.

20. He was the best man at the wedding of Richard Kind ("Argo").

21. Clooney has been spoofed multiple times by the "South Park" creators in episodes and movies. However, Clooney loves the show and has even said that he would've been offended if they hadn't made fun of him. When he got in touch with the creator of the series, Clooney asked for a part in an episode and he was given the role of "Sparky," the gay dog. In the feature film "South Park: Bigger, Longer, and Uncut" Clooney got a larger role as an ER surgeon.

22. His voice was dubbed for the singing scenes in "O Brother, Where Art Thou?"

23. Clooney has said in multiple interviews that he has suffered from bleeding stomach ulcers and is still on medication for stomach pain.

24. In September 2006 he addressed the United Nations Security Council, urging it to act over Darfur.

25. He auditioned for the role of Mr. Blonde in "Reservoir Dogs," but was turned down and the part went to Michael Madsen.


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