James Badge Dale

James Badge Dale Headshot

Actor

Birth Name: James Badgett Dale

Birth Date: May 1, 1978

Age: 46 years old

Birth Place: New York, New York

Partners: Emily Wickersham

Parents: Anita Morris

Actor James Badge Dale came from a family of entertainers, yet carved his own successful Hollywood career with stellar performances in film and on television. He made his big screen debut in the adaptation of "Lord of the Flies" (1990) as a mysterious young man who meets a tragic end at the hands of his fellow island castaways. Unlike most actors who have early career starts, Dale did not grow up on screen, taking years off from the business to become a professional athlete. When an injury stalled his dreams of playing hockey, Dale made a triumphant return to acting with a compelling performance as a secret agent on "24" (Fox, 2001-10). Even though his character lasted only one season on the award-winning series, the actor won over critics and audiences enough to land a high profile starring role on "The Pacific" (HBO, 2010). Produced by Steven Spielberg and Tom Hanks, the ambitious, 10-part epic told the harrowing personal experiences of U.S. Marines during World War II. Dale's breakout performance as a real life soldier-turned-historian Robert Leckie was the emotional core of "The Pacific," and solidified his status as one of the hardest working and most evocative actors in Hollywood.

James Badgett Dale was born on May 1, 1978 in New York, NY to a showbiz family. His father Grover Dale was an actor, dancer and Tony Award-nominated choreographer, while his mother, Anita Morris, starred in the feature films "Ruthless People" (1986) and "Nine" (1982), in which she played the central character's mistress Carla (the same role Penelope Cruz reprised in the 2009 remake). The future star said acting felt like a normal part of his life growing up. He made his acting debut when he was 10, starring in the 1990 film adaptation of "Lord of the Flies" as Simon, one of a group of school children stranded on a mysterious island after a plane crash. Even though the other children killed off his character, Dale's time on screen captivated audiences and made him a young actor to watch in Hollywood. He received far less welcoming treatment from his classmates at Wonderland Elementary School in Los Angeles, who teased Dale after seeing him in "Lord of the Flies." That same year, the actor was cast to star in "Radio Flyer," but was later replaced by Elijah Wood after the original director and production team was fired. After his mother died of cancer in 1994, Dale put his acting career on hold and focused on becoming a professional hockey player. He moved back to New York to attend Manhattanville College, where he played goalie for the school's hockey team. A leg injury put a halt on his athletic career, but Dale's former passion was reignited. He enrolled in the drama department and soon found his way back into the entertainment business.

Dale eased into onscreen work during the early 2000s, appearing on a 2002 episode of "Law & Order: Special Victims Unit" (NBC, 1999- ), and a supporting role opposite Emmy Rossum in the 2003 romantic comedy "Nola." The actor hit the Hollywood jackpot that same year when he joined the cast of the explosive action series "24." Dale played Chase Edmunds, a police officer-turned-secret agent who worked alongside the show's protagonist Jack Bauer (Kiefer Sutherland). His character was first introduced on the 2006 video game "24," but became a featured player during its third season. During his run on the series, Dale's character fathered a child, became romantically involved with Bauer's daughter Kim (Elisha Cuthbert), and ended up leaving the agency after a terrorist plot resulted in his hand amputation. His character did not return the following season, but was mentioned to have joined a private firm in California. Dale bounced between several primetime dramas, with recurring appearances on "Rescue Me" (FX, 2004-11) and the short-lived "The Black Donnellys" (NBC, 2007). He returned to feature film work in 2006 with a supporting role opposite Jack Nicholson, Leonardo DiCaprio, and Matt Damon in Martin Scorsese's Academy Award-winning crime drama, "The Departed." Dale played Barrigan, a member of the Special Investigations Unit and Damon's character's classmate at the state police academy.

In 2010, Dale starred in the epic HBO miniseries "The Pacific," from executive producers Spielberg and Hanks, the creative team behind the Emmy Award-winning "Band of Brothers" (HBO, 2001). "The Pacific," a 10-episode project, chronicled the first-hand accounts of three U.S. Marines during World War II. Dale portrayed PFC Robert "Lucky" Leckie - whose 1957 memoir Helmet for My Pillow inspired the mini-series - transformed from a hopeful, young soldier to a man torn by the brutality of war. The actor said he was honored to play a U.S. hero and felt compelled to stay true to Leckie's personal experiences. Dale never got to meet the man he played onscreen, as the real-life Leckie passed away in 2001. That same year, Dale starred in the political drama series "Rubicon" (AMC, 2010) as a government analyst who discovers his employers may be involved with a secret society responsible for major global conspiracies and events.

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