Stage and film actor, comedian. He was born on June 23rd 1975 in Kraków.
In 1999 he graduated in psychology at the Jagiellonian University. He then started his studies at the Theatre Academy and received his diploma in 2003. Between 2004 and 2008 he worked in Warsaw's Dramatyczny Theatre. Since 2008 he's been a member of Nowy Teatr, led by artistic director Krzysztof Warlikowski. During his studies he co-founded the Po żarcie cabaret.
He made his stage debut as a student. In 2001 he played Raskolnikov in Crime and Punishment staged by Bogdan Ciosek in Rozrywki Theatre in Chorzów. The intimate play featured only two actors: Stuhr and Henryk Talar.
In the theatre he collaborated with director Andrzej Domalik on a number of classic Russian plays: in Dramatyczny Theatre he played Khlestakov in Gogol's The Government Inspector (2002) and the main character in an adaptation of Mikhail Ugarov's Oblomov entitled Obłom-Off (2005). He could also be seen in Peter Quilter's Glorious! directed by Domalik in Polonia Theatre (2007). In Dramatyczny he also played in Per Olov Enquist's Sisters, directed by Piotr Cieślak, inspired by the famous drama by Anton Chekhov (2006). In 2005 he worked in Rampa Theatre with Maciej Wojtyszko, who gave him the role of the energetic and ironic Candide in a musical inspired by Voltaire's Candide, or the Optimist. One of his best theatrical roles was Joe Porter Pitt in Tony Kushner's Angels in America directed by Warlikowski in TR Warszawa (2007). He successfully joined an established team.
Never before has Maciej Stuhr worked with Warlikowski but, paradoxically, his foreignness turned to be an asset in his portrayal of Pitt.
– noted Janusz Majcherek ("Teatr" 2007, nr 5).
The actor continued his collaboration with Warlikowski in (A)pollonia based, among others, on texts by Euripides and Hanna Krall (2009), The End (2010), Kabaret Warszawski (2013) and The French based on Marcel Proust's In Search of Lost Time (2015) .
Stuhr was often asked how psychology influenced his vision of acting. He answered:
A role is not formed through theory but through experience. Out of imagination, thought, out of being a specific person. When, during rehearsal we analyze a character, we look for examples from our own lives to imagine it better. I know hundreds of such examples from my time at the university. Psychology developed my sensitivity towards other people, a curiousness and openness ("Zwierciadło", vol. 1, 2005).
The young actor, who also gained popularity as a comedian, was also often asked about the motives that led him to acting:
I never tried to hide that becoming an actor was easier for me – I've been observing this profession all my life and I spent a lot of time in the Stary Theatre where my father worked ("Dziennik Polski" 2005, nr 6/8).
Stuhr stood in front of the camera for the first time in 1988 in the 10th episode of Krzysztof Kieślowski's Decalogue. Three years later, in 1991, he played the main part in War's Children directed by Krzysztof Rogulski, a Polish-French co-production. In the late 1990s Stuhr appeared in films more and more often: he played Aleks in Maciej Dutkiewicz's Fuks (1999), Kuba Brenner in Boys Don't Cry (2000) and Kuba in Coyote's Morning (2001), both directed by Olaf Lubaszenko. His image of young, unpretentious boys was something he fought with in his later roles – a young policeman learning his craft from his master (Jerzy Radziwiłowicz) in the crime series Glina (Cop) directed by Władysław Pasikowski and Mateusz, the wedding cameraman in Wojciech Smarzowski's dark, ironic The Wedding (2004).
His following roles were, among others, Chwastek in Robert Wichrowski's The French Trick (2006), Sebastian Tretyn in Testosterone directed by Tomasz Konecki and Andrzej Saramonowicz (2007) and Sapieżyński in Operacja Dunaj (The Danube Operation) by Jacek Głomb (2009). Maciej Stuhr also played in Dariusz Jabłoński's Strawberry Wine based on Andrzej Stasiuk's prose (2007).
He starred in Małgorzata Szumowska's moving, widely recognized 33 Scenes from Life (2008). For his portrayal of Piotr he was awarded with the Zbyszek Cybulski prize. He received the Orzeł Polish Film Award for his role in Władysław Pasikowski's controversial Aftermath (2012). He also played in Maciej Kryształowicz's widely acclaimed Manhunt alongside Marcin Dorociński, in Smarzowski's Traffic Department (2013) and Janusz Majewski's The Eccentrics: the Sunny Side of the Street (2015). In Citizen, directed by his father, they performed together (2014). He also starred in popular romantic comedies directed by Mitja Okorn: Letters to Santa (2011) and Planet Single (2015).
He made his debut on TV theatre aged eighteen. He played young Scrooge in A Christmas Carol inspired by Charles Dickens's story (1993, dir. Robert Gliński). Later he performed, among other things, in Szczęście Frania (Franio's Luck) by Włodzimierz Perzyński (2001, dir. Agnieszka Glińska), in Janusz Głowacki's Fourth Sister (2002, dir. Agnieszka Glińska), and in Piękna pani Seidenman based on Andrzej Szczypiorski's novel (The Beautiful Lady Seidenman, dir. Janusz Kijowski, 2002). He also performed in modern dramas – as the workoholic Nikodem in Najwięcej samobójstw zdarza się w niedzielę (Most suicides happen on a Sunday) by Anna Burzyńska (2005, dir. Maciej Dejczer), Cezary, one of the members of a family which is being crushed in Bezład (Bedlam) by Krzysztof Czeczot (2006, dir. Witold Adamek) and as Bongo in I. znaczy Inna (D. for Different) by Andreas Sauter and Bernhard Studlar (2006, dir. Maria Zmarz-Koczanowicz).
- 2008 - Zbyszek Cybulski Award for 33 Scenes from Life
- 2009 - Orzeł Award for best leading role for 33 Scenes from Life
- 2001 - Wiktor Award for television personality
- 2013 - Orzeł Award for best supporting role for Manhunt
- 2013 - Orzeł Award for best leading role for Aftermath
- 2014 - Medal for Merit to Culture
Monika Mokrzycka-Pokora, December 2006, updated by NMR, June 2016.