Michael Fassbender is considered by most to be one of the best actors of our day. He’s my favorite male actor right about now and I find his screen presence as fascinating, magnetic, and transformative as the next film fan. He garnered himself an Oscar nomination in 2014 for his role in 12 Years a Slave but has consistently been turning in excellent and gritty work throughout the years, whether in small independent films, flashy blockbusters, or anything in-between. I love analyzing actors’ charts and seeing what it is that makes them tick and drives their work and their impact on the public. But, I haven't done one in a long time. So, let’s see what’s going on in Fassbender’s chart!
He was born on April 2, 1977 in Heidelberg, Germany at 12:30 AM, the younger of two children to Josef and Adele Fassbender. Though he was born in Germany, which is his father’s nationality, he was primarily raised in Ireland, giving him that off-screen accent we know and love. His astrological stats make him an Aries Sun with a Virgo Moon and a Sagittarius Ascendant. I think Michael is highly reminiscent of Marlon Brando, more than any other modern actor, and Brando was also an Aries with a Sagittarius rising.
His Ascendant is what gives him that cheery, delightful persona he has in person. Celebrities’ Rising signs are what people experience when they meet them and it can often defy expectations or preconceived notions of them. For all of the dark, unsettling, intense roles Michael takes on, his Sagittarius rising allows you to meet a really upbeat, lighthearted, fun-loving guy. In fact, one of his former directors, David Cronenberg, once affectionately described him as “annoyingly cheerful.”
Yet, we also see Neptune in Sagittarius conjunct the Ascendant and in the 1st. This brings another element to Michael’s demeanor and one-on-one persona. His Sagittarius Ascendant makes him a goofy ball of fun. But, his Neptune rising makes him essentially mysterious and even unreachable, somehow. People with Neptune rising are not exactly who you think they are. They’re real chameleons, in both their projections of themselves and in their actual look. This fits Fassbender, who has a way of looking like a different person, from one picture to the next, that is the trademark of Neptune rising.
It’s also visible in his interviews. Neptune rising in Sagittarius is an intriguing combination, creating a real free spirit who is expressive, vivid, and funny but who can never be easily pinned down or known. In fact, Neptune is a massive influence in Michael’s chart, explaining why he’s such a great actor. Not only is it rising but there are a lot of aspects from Neptune to his personal planets: a trine to the Sun and Venus, as well as a square to both the Moon and Mars, which is in Pisces. This explains why he needed to be an actor. He’s a true escapist, thriving on the feeling of slipping into another person’s skin and living out his fantasies.
Neptune square the Moon and Mars is also what he probably unconsciously drew on to portray the self-destructing sex addict in Shame. Even though actors love to disappear and be other people, the roles they play are often startling reflectors of their charts. His portrayal of Brandon was the embodiment of a frustrated Pisces Mars square Neptune, in particular, which can be especially vulnerable to sexual addiction because the fantasy and the high of sex becomes so all-consuming and better than actual intimacy. Not to say that Michael is a sex addict in his spare time! But, actors are drawing on their astrological energies all the time in their roles, especially since it gives them a chance to act out these darker archetypes without actually bringing them into their personal life.
There is a famous scene in Shame where Michael went full-frontal. And it’s funny that it brought him so much attention because he’s not the first actor to do that. Some credit it to the, ahem, size of what was going on down below. But, it’s also because of him having Pluto conjunct his Libra Midheaven. Those with Pluto conjunct the Midheaven can easily become known as sex symbols in a really overwhelming way that drives the public wild. People’s reactions to Michael are really powerful. He inspires lust or, at the very least, acknowledgement of his sexiness in the majority of people, no matter what your sexual orientation is or anything. Pluto on the Midheaven gives a person an immense power over their public and with Libra in the mix, it’s the sheer power of attractiveness.
With the Midheaven in Libra, he is publicly known as a nice guy as well as a particularly beautiful, attractive one. His frequent director, Steve McQueen, gave this interesting quote that speaks to the effect of Michael’s Libra Midheaven androgyny. “He’s a very visceral male person. He’s a man but, at the same time, there’s an extraordinary femininity, tenderness and openness, and I think that’s the appeal.” Libra is an intellectual blend of masculine-feminine, so it makes real sense. Michael leaves his mark on us as being, somehow, more refined, elegant, and graceful than the macho ideal. And that sophisticated charm casts a formidable spell on us via his Pluto influence.
His Pluto in Libra is opposing his Sun in Aries and Venus in Aries in the 4th. In fact, there’s an intriguing polarity in his chart between Libra and Aries. His Sun is exactly conjunct the Nadir and, therefore, exactly opposite his Midheaven. He also has the North Node in Libra in the 10th opposing his Aries Venus is which conjunct his Aries South Node. Therefore, with a Libra Midheaven and North Node, our worldly (Midheaven) and spiritual (North Node) life purposes, the qualities Michael is reaching for in this lifetime are very concentrated. He is on a truly Libra mission this time around: to be fair, objective, thoughtful, and artistic. It’s a significant challenge for him to keep working toward becoming these Libra traits, which only makes it that much more satisfying when he does.
The Aries traits, meanwhile, are a comfort zone for him in a way that goes really deep. The North Node-South Node axis is a true part of your soul, while the Nadir is what’s going to make you comfortable in private. So, his foundation is highly Aries, maybe even to his detriment. He confessed once, in an interview, that he’d never been in a relationship for more than two years because of his self-involved focus. Venus in Aries conjunct the South Node can definitely do that! Venus on the South Node would make him deeply comfortable in relationships yet, thanks to it being in Aries, only if they go his way. So, there are some conflicts there that need working out, like all of us with our North and South Node.
A celebrity’s Midheaven and Rising sign are the filters through which we see them. There’s their overall impact and status (Midheaven) and the person we expect to meet (Rising). That’s what we know them for, more than their Sun or Moon, unless these planets are conjunct the Midheaven or Rising. This is especially true for Michael, since his Sun in Aries is opposing the Midheaven. So, his truest self comes out in private. Sun in the 4th conjunct the Nadir also brings intense pride in one’s home and roots. Michael still lives in the same apartment he lived in while struggling as an actor through his 20’s, seeing it as a point of pride to stay there, in spite of how far he’s come. The foundations that he lays down truly define who he is, way more than anything he achieves in the world.
It’s also interesting with him having oppositions from the Sun and Venus to Pluto. This makes him a highly intense person and his career (Midheaven) acts as an outlet for that intensity (Pluto). I’ve found that amongst the best working actors, the majority of them have some significant Pluto aspect to their inner planets. Plutonians are extremely magnetic, charismatic, and sexually alluring, as well as capable of fearlessly confronting difficult, complex emotions and parts of the human psyche. All ingredients for a great actor! Sun opposite Pluto and Venus opposite Pluto is just another reason why he has such visceral sex appeal. But, Michael can be prone to projection, with these oppositions. It might be way more comfortable for him to project his shadow material on to his characters or anyone else than himself. That brings an imbalance into his life that needs correcting.
His Moon sign is in Virgo. Just to prove how perfect astrology is, one interview with him actually began with him apologizing for having a messy apartment, expressing a bit of a complex about his mother, which is symbolized by his Moon (“Just give me two seconds to do a little bit of a sort of tidy-up”, he requests. “My mother wouldn’t be happy.” He then goes on about how his mother was a stickler for cleanliness while growing up). The imagination, intuition, and emotion that acting requires makes actors prone to preparing for and going about their roles in ways that strongly reflect their Moon. The obsessive-compulsive side of the Virgo Moon is evident in Michael’s process, as he apparently reads a script close to 300 to 350 times before shooting! The anal nature of scrutinizing every possible detail makes him feel free to do whatever once the cameras actually roll.
His rigorous, detail-oriented Virgo Moon is in the 9th, bringing that sharp clarity toward his philosophies and belief systems. This placement only reinforces his Sagittarius Rising by giving him a deep inner need to explore everything around him. But, he will do so with a very critical, logical Virgo Moon filter. His beliefs are supported by clear facts, as well, and when faced with the beliefs and the lessons of others, he has to carefully scrutinize them before agreeing. He can also bounce back from things very easily, due to the blend of Virgo problem-solving and 9th House optimism. He certainly won't wallow in his feelings for long.
It’s a combination that makes him a wild child, on the inside, who still has the common sense to not get too wild. The Moon is also sextile Uranus and opposite Mars. So, rest assured that he will fight for his freedom, his space, and what he wants! Beneficial Jupiter is his chart ruler and is placed in the 5th House. With a 5th House Jupiter ruling his chart, Michael’s life unfolds in a way that’s all about living in the moment and embracing the unknown involved in the journey. And in the process, more and more doors will keep opening for him.