Pop and rock singer and musician Phil Collins' actually started out in the acting end of the business. A busy child performer, Collins played the Artful Dodger in the London production of Oliver and was also fleetingly seen in the Beatles film A Hard Days' Night (64). Upon joining the rock band Genesis in 1970, Collins abandoned acting in favor of a fruitful music-only career. In the mid-1980s, Collins began easing back before the cameras with recurring villainous appearances on the hit American TV series Miami Vice. With 1988's Buster, Collins made his film-starring debut, playing a notorious bank robber. Since that time, Collins has sporadically returned to films; in the opening scenes of Steven Spielberg's Hook (91),Collins plays the atypically businesslike role of a Scotland Yard detective. Collins would continue to dabble in film over the coming years, providing voice acting in Balto and The Jungle Book 2.
Biography by Hal Erickson
- Appeared as an extra in the Beatles' film A Hard Day's Night (1964).
- Became the drummer for Genesis after auditioning at the home of Peter Gabriel's parents.
- Took over lead vocals for Genesis in 1976, following Gabriel's departure from the group.
- Occasionally performed with fusion jazz band Brand X while remaining in Genesis.
- Began a highly successful solo career with the album Face Value in 1981.
- Reached the pinnacle of his solo career in 1985 with the release of No Jacket Required, which would be named Album of the Year at the Grammys.
- Played both locations (London and Philadelphia) during the Live Aid concert on July 13, 1985, flying across the Atlantic on the Concorde.
- Left Genesis in 1996 after 26 years in the band.