Biography

In the '80s, Spader made his name playing a string of memorable big-screen baddies, from scummy rich kids (Pretty in Pink) to scheming yuppies (Wall Street). But sex, lies and videotape, which capitalized on his pretty-boy looks and offbeat sexuality, turned him into a leading man. Although he never lacked for work, his career never quite took off, and Spader languished in substandard fare throughout most of the '90s. But his kinky turn as an S&M obsessed lawyer in 2002's Secretary reminded Hollywood what he was capable of and the next year he found his greatest success to date as an ethically challenged lawyer on the final season of The Practice and its 2004 spin-off Boston Legal. Off screen, Spader has very poor eyesight and cannot tolerate contact lenses, so many of his characters wear glasses.

Fast Facts

  • Jobs before becoming a successful actor included yoga instructor, busboy, truck driver, stable boy and railroad-car loader.
  • Studied acting at the Michael Chekhov School in New York.
  • Has extremely poor eyesight and cannot wear contacts. Has said that when his characters do not wear glasses he can barely make out the faces of the other actors in the scene.
  • Received Emmys in two consecutive years for portraying the same character in two series: The Practice in 2004 and Boston Legal in 2005.

Awards

  • 2007, Emmy — Outstanding Lead Actor in a Drama Series: Winner
  • 2008, Emmy — Outstanding Lead Actor in a Drama Series: Nominee
  • 2008, Screen Actors Guild Awards — Outstanding Performance by an Ensemble in a Drama Series: Nominee
  • 2008, Screen Actors Guild Awards — Outstanding Performance by a Male Actor in a Drama Series: Nominee
  • 2006, Screen Actors Guild Awards — Outstanding Performance by an Ensemble in a Drama Series: Nominee
  • 2007, Screen Actors Guild Awards — Outstanding Performance by an Ensemble in a Drama Series: Nominee
  • 2006, Screen Actors Guild Awards — Outstanding Performance by a Male Actor in a Drama Series: Nominee
  • 2007, Screen Actors Guild Awards — Outstanding Performance by a Male Actor in a Drama Series: Nominee
  • 2005, Screen Actors Guild Awards — Outstanding Performance by an Ensemble in a Comedy Series: Nominee
  • 2012, Screen Actors Guild Awards — Outstanding Performance by a Cast in a Motion Picture: Nominee
  • 2011, Screen Actors Guild Awards — Outstanding Performance by an Ensemble in a Comedy Series: Nominee
  • 1989, Cannes Film Festival — Best Actor: Winner
  • 2014, Golden Globe — Best Performance by an Actor in a Television Series - Drama: Nominee
  • 1990, Independent Spirit Awards — Best Male Lead: Nominee
  • 2005, Golden Globe — Best Performance by an Actor in a Television Series - Drama: Nominee
  • 2004, Emmy — Outstanding Lead Actor in a Drama Series: Winner
  • 2005, Emmy — Outstanding Lead Actor in a Drama Series: Winner
  • 2005, Screen Actors Guild Awards — Outstanding Performance by a Male Actor in a Comedy Series: Nominee
  • 2015, Golden Globe — Best Performance by an Actor in a Television Series - Drama: Nominee

Relationships

  • Victoria Kheel — Ex-wife
  • Jean Spader — Mother
  • Elijah Spader — Son
  • Sebastian Spader — Son
  • Todd Spader — Father
  • Leslie Stefanson — Significant Other

Details

  • Birth Name: James Todd Spader
  • Birth Place: Boston, Massachusetts, United States
  • Birthday: February 7, 1960, Aquarius
  • Profession: Actor
  • User Rating:4.58 out of 5 (825 ratings)
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