Marshall Bruce Mathers III (born October 17, 1972), known professionally as Eminem (often stylized as EMINƎM), is an American rapper, record producer, and actor. Eminem is the best-selling artist of the 2000s in the United States. Globally, he has sold more than 172 million albums, thus being one of the world's best-selling artists. After his debut album Infinite (1996), Eminem signed with Dr. Dre's Aftermath Entertainment and subsequently achieved mainstream popularity in 1999 with The Slim Shady LP, which earned him his first Grammy Award for Best Rap Album. His next two releases were worldwide successes, with each being certified diamond in U.S. sales, and both winning Best Rap Album Grammy Awards—making Eminem the first artist to win the award for three consecutive LPs.He is also known for his collaborations with fellow Detroit-based rapper Royce da 5'9"; the two are collectively known as Bad Meets Evil. Eminem has developed other ventures, including Shady Records, which helped launch the careers of artists such as 50 Cent. In November 2002, he starred in the hip hop film 8 Mile, which won the Academy Award for Best Original Song, for "Lose Yourself", becoming the first rap artist to win the award.Eminem uses alter egos in his songs for different rapping styles and subject matter. His best-known alter ego, Slim Shady, first appeared on the Slim Shady EP. In this persona his songs are violent and dark, with a comic twist.Eminem downplayed Slim Shady on Recovery because he felt it did not fit the album's theme. Another character is Ken Kaniff, a homosexual who pokes fun at Eminem's songs. In August 2011 Eminem was called the King of Hip-Hop by Rolling Stone, which analyzed album sales, R&B, hip-hop and rap chart positions, YouTube views, social media, concert grosses, industry awards and critical ratings of solo rappers who released music from 2009 to the first half of 2011.