This notoriously difficult star is also undeniably talented and whether he's the leading man, as in 'The Doors', or supporting, as in 'Tombstone', he dominates the screen.
Val grew up on a ranch, attended primary school with Kevin Spacey, and went on to further his education at the famous Juilliard School in New York, where he studied drama. Val appeared in several plays, but his Broadway debut came in 1983, with 'The Slab Boys', alongside Sean Penn and Kevin Bacon.
1984 saw Val featuring in his first film, 'Top Secret', which also starred Omar Sharif, but his real breakthrough came in 'Top Gun'. In 1988, he featured in Ron Howard's 'Willow', where he met future wife, Joanna Whalley. They would go on to have two children but ultimately divorce in 1996.
Oliver Stone's 'The Doors' (1991) starred Val as Jim Morrison, earning him enormous critical acclaim, including a nomination for the MTV Movie Award for Best Performance - Male. However, one of Val's most challenging roles to date came as Christian Slater's Elvis hallucination, in 'True Romance'.
Further recognition followed when Val played Doc Holliday in the 1993 Western film 'Tombstone', which was based on a true story. He was rewarded with two MTV Movie Award nominations for Most Desirable Male and Best Performance - Male.
After Michael Keaton pulled out of his superhero role, Val replaced him for the third 'Batman' movie - 'Batman Forever' (1995), which also resulted in an MTV Movie Award for Most Desirable Male for his portrayal of the caped crusader/Bruce Wayne. This was a good year for Val as his appearance in Michael Mann's 'Heat' not only led to another MTV Movie Award for Most Desirable Male nomination, but a Saturn Award for Best Supporting Actor selection as well.
A feature version of 1960s classic TV series, 'The Saint', was a huge success for Val, and he also received praise for his voice role as Moses in the animated feature, 'The Prince of Egypt' (1998), in which he also voiced God. The film, which co-starred Ralph Fiennes, Michelle Pfeiffer, Sandra Bullock and Jeff Goldblum, was a commercial success and was well received by critics.
Eternally busy, Kilmer went on to appear in a number of films including 2002's 'The Salton Sea', which earned him a Prism Award for Best Performance in a Theatrical Feature Film, and 'Kiss Kiss Bang Bang' (2005). The latter increased his list of recognitions after he won the Satellite Award for Best Supporting Actor - Motion Picture and was nominated for a Saturn Award for Best Supporting Actor.
‘Déjà vu’, a 2006 Jerry Bruckheimer crime thriller starring Denzel Washington, and 2008's ‘Columbus Day’ were just two of 17 films and television programmes Val was involved in within these two years. 2009 and 2010 were just as busy for the actor, with 22 productions, all linked to the energetic star. His latest films include 'Seven Below' (2012) and 'Palo Alto' (2014).
After his divorce from Whalley, he briefly dated supermodel Cindy Crawford.