The Los Angeles-born actor initially had hopes of becoming a classical pianist before turning to acting. He started his career in the theater, eventually landing his first film role opposite Eli Wallach in 1967's "The Tiger Makes Out."
In a career that's spanned five decades, Hoffman earned a reputation for playing antiheroes and vulnerable characters in more than 60 films, earning Best Actor Oscars in 1980 for "Kramer vs. Kramer" and in 1989 for "Rain Man," among his seven nominations.
Some of Hoffman's other memorable roles included performances in "Midnight Cowboy," "Little Big Man," "Straw Dogs," "Papillon," "Lenny," "Marathon Man," "All the President's Men," "Tootsie," "Hook" and "Wag the Dog."
The versatile actor also has lent his voice to such animated hits as "Kung Fu Panda," and made his directorial debut in 2012 with "Quartet."
Hoffman married Anne Byrne in 1969. After more than 10 years of marriage, they divorced in 1980. That same year, he married his current wife, attorney Lisa Gottsegen.
Hoffman has six children: Karina -- Byrne's daughter from a previous marriage whom he adopted -- and Jenna with Byrne, as well as four children with Gottsegen: Jacob Edward, Rebecca Lillian, Maxwell Geoffrey and Alexandra Lydia.