|Born||Dax Randall Shepard
January 2, 1975
|Education||Walled Lake Central High School|
|Spouse(s)||Kristen Bell (m. 2013)|
Dax Randall Shepard (born January 2, 1975) is an American actor, comedian, writer, and director. He is best known for his work in the feature films Employee of the Month (2006), Without a Paddle (2004), Let's Go to Prison (2006), and Hit and Run (2012), the latter of which he also wrote and directed, and the MTV practical joke reality series Punk'd (2003). He has portrayed the character of Crosby Braverman in the NBC comedy-drama series Parenthood since 2010.
Shepard was born in Milford, Michigan, in suburban Detroit, Michigan. He is the son of mother, Laura LaBo, who worked at General Motors, and father, Dave Robert Shepard, Sr. (deceased), who was a car salesman. His parents divorced when he was 3 years old.
Shepard's mother ended up growing a huge business by the time he was in high school. She worked car shows with traveling events at race tracks. She started as a janitor on the midnight shift at General Motors, then worked in fleet management at the proving grounds where all the cars in Milford are designed, then hosted hospitality days for all the GM family members, eventually moving into public relations at an ad agency. She went back to GM, ending up owning four shops that managed publicity events for magazine journalists. From the age of 14 to 28, Shepard worked for his mother on the road, going from racetrack to racetrack. For about 2 years, Shepard had a stepfather who was an engineer on the Corvette. Shepard's mother has been married four times—Shepard said he's had three step-fathers.
According to Shepard, his mother named him for the rich playboy Dax (Diogenes Alejandro Xenos), in Harold Robbins' novel The Adventurers. He has an older brother, Peter Shepard, who lives in Oregon, and a younger half-sister, Carly Hatter, whom he cast in his 2012 film Hit and Run.
Shepard has said that he was raised in Milford, a "hillbilly paradise," although he lived in a lot of places in suburban Detroit, growing up primarily in Walled Lake, Michigan. He graduated from Walled Lake Central High School in 1993 before enrolling in The Groundlings school. After attending Santa Monica Community College and West Los Angeles College, Shepard transferred to UCLA, graduating with a magna cum laude degree in Anthropology. He had a deal with his mother that if he went to college she would pay his rent.
Shepard has said he wasn't interested in child-acting per se. He was a class clown in school, had a sense he was funny, and wanted to do stand-up. Although he had friends who did stand-up in Detroit, he was too scared. Shepard thought if he moved to California "that commitment would force him to do it."
After a year in Santa Barbara, California, Shepard moved to Los Angeles in 1996. He found out about The Groundlings improv troupe from a friend from Santa Barbara, Kareem Elseify, ended up auditioning (the first time he acted), and took classes while also attending UCLA. After about five years of classes, he got into the Sunday Company of The Groundlings—in a group that included Melissa McCarthy, Tate Taylor, Nat Faxon, Octavia Spencer.
From 2003 onwards, Shepard became known from his work in the improv Candid Camera-type show, Punk'd, with Ashton Kutcher. When the show had its 2012 revival, he continued to appear. Shepard said he auditioned for Punk'd and while doing the pilot became friendly with Kutcher, "who took him to his agency and said this guy was really talented and you have to sign him." He auditioned unsuccessfully for 10 years before he landed the role.
In 2004, Shepard starred in the comedy Without a Paddle, alongside Seth Green and Matthew Lillard. The film received negative reviews but was a commercial success, grossing $69,631,118 worldwide. In 2006, he appeared with Dane Cook and Jessica Simpson in the comedy Employee of the Month and in Mike Judge's film Idiocracy.
During the same time, Shepard began appearing in more films and landed his first main character role in Let's Go to Prison (2006), alongside Will Arnett and Chi McBride. He also had a main role in the 2008 comedy Baby Mama, starring opposite Tina Fey and Amy Poehler. Shepard wrote the script for the Paramount venture Get 'Em Wet, in which he again appeared with Arnett. In 2010, he wrote, directed and starred in the low-budget satirical mockumentary feature Brother's Justice; the film won an Audience Award at the 2010 Austin Film Festival. He also had a supporting role in the 2010 romantic comedy film When in Rome, which also starred his future wife Kristen Bell.
Shepard wrote, produced, co-directed, and starred in the 2012 low-budget film Hit and Run alongside Bell and his close friend Bradley Cooper. Shepard said it was a "million dollar move that made $14 million." He said the movie allowed him to live out his Smokey and the Bandit fantasy.
Shepard is working on a big-screen version of CHiPs, which he'll write, direct, and star as Officer Jon Baker alongside Michael Peña as Frank “Ponch” Poncherello. The project will be at Warner Bros.
Shepard met actress Kristen Bell at the birthday party of a mutual friend; they began dating in late 2007. The couple announced their engagement in January 2010, They, however, decided to delay marriage until the state of California passed legislation legalizing same-sex marriage. After section 3 of the Defense of Marriage Act fell on June 26, 2013, Bell asked Shepard to marry her through Twitter, which he accepted. They were married at the Beverly Hills County Clerk's Office on October 17, 2013. They have two daughters: Lincoln Bell Shepard (born March 2013) and Delta Bell Shepard (born December 2014).
As of January 2012 both were vegan. In June 2013 they both were named Sexiest Vegetarian Celebrities of 2013 by PETA. In a tweet Shepard said he could not accept the award because he had begun eating meat again six months before.
Shepard has said that, except for a year in high school when he used drugs (in 1992, leading to the police and his mother getting involved), he didn't party until he was 18 years old. On his addictions: "I just loved to get fucked-up—drinking, cocaine, opiates, marijuana, diet pills, pain pills, everything. Mostly my love was Jack Daniel's and cocaine. I was famous for going out on Thursday night to have a couple of beers, and that just led all the way to Saturday night."
After many struggles, Shepard got sober in September of 2004. He said that his car salesman father was a "big" addict who eventually went to treatment, got sober when Shepard was 14 years old, and never relapsed, dying approximately 30 years sober. After his father's death, Shepard revealed that his father had been involved with Alcoholics Anonymous. Shepard has said he spent time with his father sometimes, after his parents' divorce, on the weekends as he grew up.
Interests and charity work
Shepard races motorcycles at Buttonwillow Raceway, including his Ducati Hypermotard 1100S and Suzuki GSX-R1000. He donates much of his time to the Hollenbeck Youth Center, an after-school program that provides opportunity to at-risk inner-city youth. He has served as their official Master of Ceremonies, along with his friend Tom Arnold, for the Inner-City Games and Hollenbeck Youth Center's Miracle on 1st Street Toy Giveaway Program in East Los Angeles.
Shepard and his wife are advocates of no-kids paparazzi. Bell said: "We're not saying that we can't be newsworthy. We're saying that our child is not newsworthy." California Senate Bill 606 passed in 2013, with testimony by actors Halle Berry and Jennifer Garner.
Shepard practices the Transcendental Meditation program.
|1998||Hairshirt||Guy Vomiting at Party||Credited as Dax Sheppard|
|2003||Cheaper by the Dozen||Camera Crew Member|
|2004||Without a Paddle||Tom Marshall|
|2005||Sledge: The Untold Story||SFX Coordinator|
|2005||Zathura||Walter the Astronaut|
|2006||Employee of the Month||Vince Downey|
|2006||Let's Go to Prison||John Lyshitski|
|2008||Confessions of an Action Star||Bucky|
|2010||When in Rome||Gale|
|2010||Brother's Justice||Himself||Also writer, director, stunt coordinator|
|2012||Hit and Run||Charlie Bronson/Yul Perrkins||Also writer, director, editor|
|2014||Veronica Mars||Overconfident Club Boy||Cameo|
|2014||This Is Where I Leave You||Wade Boulanger|
|2014||The Judge||C.P. Kennedy|
|2004||Life with Bonnie||Kyle Levine||1 episode|
|Dr. Iskarr||1 episode|
|2004–06||King of the Hill||Zack (voice)||2 episode|
|Asa (voice)||1 episode|
|2005||My Name Is Earl||Dirk||1 episode|
|2005||Robot Chicken||Various voices||2 episodes|
|2007||The Naked Trucker and T-Bones Show||Joe Sands||1 episode|
|2007||Halfway Home||Ben||1 episode|
|2009||The Goode Family||Steve (voice)||1 episode|
|2010–present||Parenthood||Crosby Braverman||Main role, 90 episodes
Director, 1 episode
|2011||Good Vibes||Jag Knullerbrod (voice)||1 episode|
|Smilin' Mike (voice)||1 episode|
|2012||Punk'd||Himself||Guest host, 1 episode|
|2013||Hollywood Game Night||Himself||1 episode|
|2014||It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia||Jojo||1 episode|
|2014||About A Boy||Crosby Braverman||1 episode|
Awards and nominations
|2003||Teen Choice Award||Choice TV Reality/Variety Star – Male||Punk'd||Nominated|
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- Shepard, Dax (30 January 2014). "Why Our Children Should Be Off Limits to the Paparazzi". Huffington Post. Retrieved 20 September 2014.
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- "Senate Bill No. 606, Chapter 348". California Legislative Information. 24 September 2013. Retrieved 20 September 2014.
- Majewski, Lori (1 October 2013). "31 things you didn't know about Kristen Bell". Women's Health (Australia). Retrieved 20 December 2014.
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