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In 2001's heist film The Score, Norton plays Jack Teller, an ambitious young thief caught in an unlikely alliance with experienced thief Nick Wells (Robert De Niro) arranged by his long-time friend Max (Marlon Brando).The Score and Norton's performance was well received. He played kids show host Sheldon Mopes, who quickly rises to fame for his character "Smoochy the Rhino", in the black comedy Death to Smoochy.Norton had two major film roles in 2006, starring as Eisenheim the magician in The Illusionist and bacteriologist Walter Fane in The Painted Veil.Set in 19th-century Austria-Hungary, The Illusionist was loosely based on novelist Steven Millhauser's short story "Eisenheim the Illusionist" and received generally positive critical reviews.He gained immediate recognition for his debut in Primal Fear (1996), which earned him a Golden Globe for Best Supporting Actor and an Academy Award nomination in the same category.His role as a reformed neo-Nazi in 1998's American History X earned him an Academy Award nomination for Best Actor.

He is a trustee of non-profit organization for affordable housing Enterprise Community Partners.During production, Norton and director Brett Ratner argued frequently over the script. It's all about intellectual debate," Ratner told The Times in 2003. Norton's next lead role was in the neo-western film Down in the Valley (2005), playing a delusional man who purports to be a cowboy.While the film was criticized for its clumsy narrative, Norton received plaudits for his acting.Raised in Columbia, Maryland, Norton was drawn to theatrical productions at local venues as a child.After graduating from Yale University in 1991, he worked for a few months in Japan before relocating to New York City to pursue an acting career.

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