Mark Ruffalo is a well-known and much-celebrated actor who had earned fame by playing David Toschi, an Inspector, in Zodiac. He is also known for playing the Incredible Hulk in the famous show The Avengers. Apart from being a great actor, Ruffalo has been very vocal about various social issues relating to the environment and other humanitarian grounds. Although he has been enamored with many prestigious awards and nominations as a successful actor, his path to success has never been smooth. From being diagnosed with depression to having to deal with various medical issues and personal losses, Ruffalo has had a tragic life.
The Phase Where he Dealt with Depression
Ever since his childhood, Mark Ruffalo has been a victim of depression. In an interview, Ruffalo revealed that he had a hard time in high school. He would have to suppress his desire to become an actor when he grows up as he would be embarrassed. He used to be a loner who spent most of his time alone, wandering, surfing, and smoking. He also got suicidal thoughts.
Death of His Close Ones Dealt Him a Severe Blow
Ruffalo has always been quite a loner. When he was living in Los Angeles, Michael became his best friend. In an interview, Ruffalo revealed that Michael was the only one he could talk to every time. Their relationship emerged out of similar interests, experiences, and beliefs. When Michael committed suicide in 1994, Ruffalo was taken aback. However, the incident rocked him out of a dark phase and made him realize that suicide is not an option. The incident made him realize the worth of his own life. This death, however, was not the only death he had to deal with in his life. His brother, Scott, was shot in the head. He was shot in his own home, which caused the case to turn towards a homicide. After the death of his brother Scott, Ruffalo decided to take a break from his acting career. He left Los Angeles with his family and moved to New York.
Ruffalo’s Medical Condition
Ruffalo was also diagnosed with a brain tumor at a point in time that he had to get removed surgically. Despite the successful operation, Ruffalo had suffered side effects like complete paralysis of his face’s left side and loss of hearing in his left ear. He was so broken that he had cocooned himself to himself. His reflex had gone weak. He faced difficulty in understanding simple concepts like tying a knot. Just as his career started to gain momentum, he had to withdraw from acting as his health started to deteriorate even more severely.
In an interview that he had with Acoustic Neuroma Association to state his experiences pre and post operations, Ruffalo had talked about his recovery process- how he tried to move the muscles of his face, walk long distances, and underwent multiple therapies like massage, acupuncture, herbal therapy, and many more.
He kept his ill-health a secret and didn’t want to disclose it to the public. Staying away from the public made them assume that Ruffalo had disappeared into thin air, and his career was made. There were also rumors about the actor being addicted to alcohol, drugs, and even being diagnosed with AIDS.
Financial Crunch from an Early Age
In a Men’s Journal interview, Mark Ruffalo revealed the experiences he had as a young man. He was a resident of Wisconsin, where he lived with his family. His father had a painting business, and his mother worked as a hairstylist. When his father’s painting business went down, the family had to move to Virginia. There, Mark’s father started another business which, again, went down. The family again had moved to San Diego. There, his father only managed to get temporary employment, and the family went bankrupt.
Despite all the difficulties he had faced all his life, Mark Ruffalo emerged as a successful artist. He has been the recipient of prestigious awards like the BAFTA Humanitarian Award in 2014 and an Emmy for The Noble Heart Award. He is a perfect example to show that talent cannot be chained.