Pace in July 2013.
|Born||Lee Grinner Pace
March 25, 1979
Chickasha, Oklahoma, U.S.
|Education||Juilliard School (BFA 2001)|
Lee Grinner Pace (born March 25, 1979) is an American actor. Pace has been featured in film, stage and television. He is known best for his starring role as Ned in the ABC series Pushing Daisies for which he was nominated for a Golden Globe award and an Emmy Award for Outstanding Lead Actor in a Comedy Series in 2008. Pace has appeared in popular series, such as the final installment of the Twilight film series as Garrett and The Hobbit as Thranduil. He will play the villain Ronan the Accuser in the upcoming Guardians of the Galaxy.
Early life and education
Pace was born in Chickasha, Oklahoma, the son of Charlotte (née Kloeckler), a schoolteacher, and James Roy Pace, an engineer. As a child, Pace spent several years in Saudi Arabia, where his father worked in the oil business; the family later moved to Houston, Texas. Pace attended Klein High School in Spring, Texas, a suburb of Houston, with future fellow actor Matt Bomer. Pace temporarily quit high school to act at Houston's Alley Theatre before returning to graduate. At the Alley, he appeared in productions of The Spider's Web and The Greeks. In 1997, Pace was accepted by the Juilliard School's Drama Division as a member of Group 30 (1997–2001), which also included actors Anthony Mackie and Tracie Thoms. While there, he acted in several plays, including Romeo and Juliet as Romeo, Richard III in the title role, and Julius Caesar as Cassius. He graduated from Juilliard with a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree.
After graduation, Pace starred in several off-Broadway plays, including The Credeaux Canvas and The Fourth Sister. He also starred in a production of Craig Lucas's Small Tragedy, for which he was nominated for a Lucille Lortel Award as Outstanding Actor. In 2006, Pace starred in the two-character play Guardians by Peter Morris, which earned Pace his second nomination for a Lortel Award as Outstanding Actor.
April 19, 2011 marked Pace's Broadway debut, when The Normal Heart began its previews; it opened April 27 at the Golden Theatre. The show ran for a total of 96 performances, with its closing night on July 10, 2011. Pace played the character Bruce Niles in the show.
Pace has been cast as composer Vincenzo Bellini in Golden Age, which began previews November 15, 2012. The play, written by Terrence McNally, began its official run at the Manhattan Theatre Club December 4, 2012. The previews were originally scheduled for November 13, 2012 but two shows were cancelled as a result of Hurricane Sandy.
Pace first gained recognition for his role in the 2003 film Soldier's Girl, based on fact, in which he played the central role of Calpernia Addams, a transgender woman dating Army soldier Barry Winchell, played by Troy Garity. Winchell was murdered because of his sexuality and relationship with Addams.
Of the role, Pace has said:
- Not even my excellent training at Juilliard prepared me for my first movie role, where I played a transsexual who falls in love with a military guy in Soldier's Girl. Here I was, this 6'3" 190-pound lanky kid from Chickasha, Oklahoma, not knowing how to begin being a woman. So I saw documentaries about transsexuals, I lost twenty-five pounds, and I put on prosthetic boobs and hips to become that character. There were times I'd look in the mirror and wonder, "What am I doing to my life here? My dad is going to kill me!" But the reason I went into acting was to be able to play parts as complicated and important as this one. In playing a transsexual, I got the chance to help change people's perspective about other people, and that is a powerful thing. I'm playing a swashbuckling bandit in my next film, but I'll always be proud of Soldier's Girl.
He starred in the film Miss Pettigrew Lives for a Day and in Tarsem Singh's The Fall, both released in 2008. The Fall was very well received amongst critics and viewers alike and where Lee starred in one of his most artistic roles. His next film was the movie Possession with Sarah Michelle Gellar.
In 2012, Lee Pace starred as Garrett, the nomadic vampire, in The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn – Part 2. Pace was admittedly aware of the reputation linked to the Twilight franchise, and revealed that he "went in to this a little like 'you know what you’re getting into, just do what you can.'" However, he enjoyed the experience and only had praise for the director Bill Condon. Stephanie Meyer, the author of the Twilight saga, was very satisfied with Pace's performance as Garrett, since he "stood out as someone who really was just so much fun and really looked the part." The movie was met with a mixed reception by critics, however, some critics mentioned Pace as one of the highlight of the film. Such as Betsy Sharkey of the Los Angeles Times, who's only issue was that he was introduced too late in the series: "Why, oh, why didn't they introduce him sooner?." Meanwhile, Sara Stewart of the New York Post simply described him as a "standout." Pace appreciates the support of the fans, and said that he felt their support while he was appearing in Golden Age on Broadway: "a lot of them come to the play, which is nice, really nice. I just appreciate that Twilight really does bring a Community of people together."
On 30 April 2011, it was announced that Pace had been cast as Thranduil in Peter Jackson's movie adaptation of J.R.R. Tolkien's The Hobbit. The announcement was made by Peter Jackson himself, who revealed on his Facebook page that Pace had been his favorite for the part, ever since he saw his performance in The Fall. The character had previously been mentioned in Jackson's Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring, and had previously been portrayed in The Hobbit, voiced by the Oscar–nominated Otto Preminger, and in the 1968 BBC radio series, voiced by the British actor Leonard Fenton. Pace spent four months filming in New Zealand, and called it a "fantastic experience." The character appeared in the prologue of The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey, and is expected to appear in the last two films of the series, due 2013 and 2014.
On July 28 July 2011, it was announced that Pace had been cast in Steven Spielberg's Lincoln, as the one-time New York City mayor Fernando Wood, an early Confederate supporter. He filmed all his scenes within a week, before he worked on The Hobbit, which made Spielberg the first Oscar Winning director to work with Lee on a feature film (Pace had previously worked with Kathryn Bigelow on The Miraculous Year). The events in the movie takes place in 1865, when Fernando Wood served in the House of Representatives. However, at the time, Wood was 53 years old, which is 20 years senior to the age that Pace had, when he portrayed him. In a Q&A, Spielberg revealed that he decided to offer Pace the part, after he saw his performance in Ceremony. Of the experience of the film, Pace said that "it was a real pinnacle of what I've done as an actor." The movie was nominated for 12 Academy Awards, including Best Picture, and was nominated for Best Ensemble at the Screen Actors Guild Award. However, Pace not included among the Lincoln ensemble nominated and several bloggers were annoyed by this, including Katey Rich of Cinemablend.com and Nathaniel Rogers of The Film Experience.
Pace played Aaron Tyler in the acclaimed but short-lived 2004 television series Wonderfalls, which was co-created by Bryan Fuller. Later, Fuller cast Pace in the lead role of Ned in the series Pushing Daisies which debuted on ABC in October 2007 and returned for its second and final season on October 1, 2008.
|2002||Law & Order: Special Victims Unit||Benjamin Tucker||Episode: "Guilt"|
|2004||Wonderfalls||Aaron Tyler||13 episodes|
|2007–09||Pushing Daisies||Ned||22 episodes
Nominated — Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Lead Actor – Comedy Series (2008)
Nominated — Golden Globe Award for Best Actor – Television Series Musical or Comedy (2008)
Nominated — Satellite Award for Best Actor – Television Series Musical or Comedy (2007–08)
Nominated — Saturn Award for Best Actor on Television
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- "Alumni News for May 2008". The Juilliard Journal. May 2008.
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- "Oscars nominations 2013 in full". The Daily Telegraph. February 24, 2013. Retrieved April 3, 2013.
- Rogers, Nathaniel (December 12, 2012). "SAG Ensemble. Our annual "Fix This" rule". The Film Experience. Retrieved April 3, 2013.
- Sneider, Jeff (April 23, 2013). "Lee Pace in Final Negotiations to Play Villain in 'Guardians of the Galaxy'". The Wrap. Archived from the original on April 23, 2013. Retrieved April 23, 2013.
- "Law & Order: Special Victims Unit: Season 3, Episode 18". IMDb. Retrieved April 3, 2013.
- Eng, Joyce (July 9, 2010). "Pushing Daisies and Law & Order Alums Join The Miraculous Year". TVGuide.com. Retrieved March 30, 2013.
- "HBO Rejects Broadway-Inspired Pilot The Miraculous Year, Starring Norbert Leo Butz". Broadway.com. November 9, 2010. Retrieved March 30, 2013.
- Andreeva, Nellie (February 26, 2013). "Lee Pace To Topline AMC Pilot 'Halt & Catch Fire'". deadline.com. Retrieved February 26, 2013.
- Siegel, Lucas (July 20, 2013). "SDCC '13: Marvel Reveals AVENGERS: AGE OF ULTRON, Guardians Cast, More". Newsarama. Retrieved August 1, 2013.
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