Who is Michael Raymond-James?

Michael Raymond-James is an actor, perhaps best known for his recurring roles in various popular series such as “True Blood”, “Once Upon A Time”, and “Tell me a Story”.  His other notable movie credits include “Jack Reacher”, “Road to Paloma”, and “Sweet Girl”. He was born under the Zodiac sign Capricorn on 24 December 1977. in Detroit. Michigan, USA, of mixed Norwegian, French-Canadian, Swedish, German, Irish descent. As of 2021, he’s 43 years old and holds American nationality.

Early life and Family

Nothing is known about his parents and any siblings. Regarding his educational qualifications, he matriculated from Clarkston High School in 1996. From an early age, he trained football, and during his high school days, he was an excellent and stand-out athlete with great aspirations.

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To everyone’s surprise, after matriculating he developed an interest in acting, even though many thought he would continue playing sports competitively and pursue a sports career. Michael started performing in theater, unintentionally harboring his talent and love for acting, and soon decided to receive formal training, enrolling at the Lee Strasberg Theater and Film Institute in New York. After making several successful stage performances at Pantheon Theater, he relocated to Los Angeles to focus on pursuing his career as an actor.

Career

Michael made his movie debut in 2000, portraying Dill in the movie “Minor Blues”, after which he began a series of several one-episode appearances in various shows, including “North Shore”, “The Handler”, and “CSI: Crime Scene Investigation”.

In 2006, he landed the role as Gill in the black comedy/drama film “Black Snake Moan”, followed by guest appearances in “Medium” and “Boston Legal”. In 2008 he scooped one of his most notable roles, as Rene Lenier in the supernatural/fantasy series “True Blood” opposite Alexander Skarsgard and Stephen Moyer, starring in the first season and appearing as a special guest in the third and fourth seasons. Based on a series of novels by Charlaine Harris, the show, garnered huge success, and overwhelmingly positive reviews aimed at the cast’s performance and interesting take on the Southern Gothic vampire parable.

Regarding Michael’s role, his knowledge of vampires and the Harris’ novels, in an interview he disclosed that he had not been as familiar as he should have been, he said: “I didn’t know anything about the books, or I didn’t know much about vampires.

Michael Raymond-James

It’s a little embarrassing. In fact, I had to give an interview in Louisiana, one time, they asked who my favorite vampire was, and the only one I could think of was Count Chocula.”. He additionally hired a dialect coach to master the Southern accent for the role.

In the following period, he focused on more guest appearances in the shows such as “ER”, “Cold Case”, and “Lie to Me”. In 2010, he switched from his usual roles and portrayed Freeman in the indie drama/mystery film “The Twenty”, followed by the recurring role as Britt Pollack in the crime comedy/drama series “Terries”. Even though the latter show ran for one season and got canceled afterward, his portrayal of a former criminal earned him praise and recognition.

After making one-episode appearances in the series “Walking Dead” and “Law and Order”: Special Victims Unit”, in 2012 he shared the screen with Tom Cruise, portraying Linsky in the hit action thriller “Jack Reacher”; despite garnering mixed reviews, the action-packed gem was a huge commercial success. During the same year, he was cast as the recurring character Neal Cassidy/Baelfire opposite Jennifer Morrison in the fantasy adventure series “Once Upon a Time”. The show garnered substantial success over the years and ran for seven seasons, concluding in 2016.

The following year he appeared in the drama thriller movie “Road to Paloma” and the western movie “The Salvation”. In 2015, he landed the recurring role as Paul Revere in the TV miniseries “Sons of Liberty” on History Channel.

After starring in the action thriller movie “The Fines Hours”, deemed as a box-office flop, Michael booked the recurring role as Gill Harris, appearing in ten episodes of the crime drama series ”Game of Silence”, and made a guest appearance in the action/comedy series “Lethal Weapon”.

The following year, he was cast as the lead role in the action/comedy movie “Carter and June”, sharing the screen with Samaire Armstrong and Timothy Omundson. In 2018 he appeared in the third season as Fortunato in the historical/drama series “Frontier” opposite Jason Momoa, and during the same year, he portrayed Mitch Longo in the first season of the psychological thriller series “Tell Me a Story”.

Latest roles

In 2019 he appeared as a recurring character in the procedural series “Prodigal Son” and drama series “Billions”.

In 2021 he portrayed FBI agent John Rothman in the action thriller “Sweet Girl” opposite Jason Momoa and Isabela Merced – the movie opened to a hail of negative reviews aimed at the clichéd story and predictable and played-out plot.

Michael also landed the recurring role as Blake Kleinsasser in the crime-drama series “Big Sky”, appearing in four episodes. Even though the show received mixed reviews, it was renewed for a second season, which will air from 30 September 2021. Regarding his other upcoming projects, he’s set to appear in the drama movie “The Integrity of Joseph Chambers” opposite Jeffrey Dean Morgan and Jordana Brewster, which will hit the theaters by the end of 2021.

Personal Life

It appears that Michael likes to keep his private matter away from the public eye. Not much is known about his romantic interest and dating history; even though it is unlikely that he hasn’t been involved with anyone, there are no records of previous relationships, and according to the latest sources, he’s currently single.

What is his net worth?

As of 2021, his estimated net worth is around $8 million, earned as an actor during his over two-decade-spanning career, appearing in several commercially successful projects such as “Jack Reacher”, which grossed over $250 million at the box office.

Physical stats and Hobbies

Michael is 5ft 9ins tall (175cm) and weighs around 148lbs (67kgs). His hair is dark brown, while his eyes are light brown. When it comes to body ink, Michael has the Hawaiian word “Ohana” (meaning family) tattooed on his chest.

He’s very active physically and seems to enjoy getting up a good sweat. Besides working out at a gym, he also likes boxing.

As an artistic soul, Michael is a huge fan of rock music, and plays the guitar in his free time.

On that note, he is a die-hard fan of motorcycles, and owns a Harley Davidson.

In addition to his busy career as an actor, he ‘s invested his time to draw attention to some major issues in society, such as black oppression, political incorrectness, and physical violence. He is an advocate and ambassador of Bullies Keep Out, the organization that supports, mentors and raises awareness to those who have suffered harassment and bullying due to sexual orientation, physical differences, or religion. Strongly confident in his ability to reach people on his social platform, he is an avid supporter of the Black Lives Matter movement and has often spoken out against racism and the alt-right.

Michael has a special bond with Jason Momoa, who is also a supporter of the Bullies Keep Out organization, and starred in the 2015 video PSA alongside Michael.

They have shared the screen in numerous projects, and like to profess their mutual love and support via Instagram posts.

Is he active on social media?

He is very active on social media; his Instagram account has 135,000 followers, the same as his Twitter account. Besides posting updates on his current and upcoming projects, he’s also very vocal on social and political happenings in the U.S.

More about Michael Raymond-James

Having learned his lesson on doing his research project-wise the hard way, now he has a different attitude, he said: “Research is something that I really enjoy as an actor and it’s something that I really throw myself into. I don’t want to leave any stone unturned, so there’s no way I would have gone on set having not known the arc of the character, and the direction he was going to go.’

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