Johnathon Schaech

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Johnathon Schaech
Johnathon Schaech 359-2.jpg
Born (1969-09-10) September 10, 1969 (age 46)
Edgewood, Maryland, U.S.
Occupation Actor, writer, producer
Years active 1993–present
Children 1

Johnathon Schaech (pronounced Shek; born September 10, 1969) is an American actor and writer.

Early life[edit]

Schaech was born in Edgewood, Maryland in 1968 to Joe, a Baltimore City law enforcement officer, and Joanne Schaech, a human resources executive.[1] He was raised Roman Catholic.[2][3] Schaech has a sister, Renée,[4] who now lives in Cumberland, Maryland and is director of Western Maryland's agency on Aging.[5] Johnathon was the smallest boy in his class til the summer before his senior year of high school. He gained forty pounds and grew four inches. He went to University of Maryland where he studied economics and took one acting class. [6]


In 1989, dance troupe Chippendales flew Schaech out to Los Angeles and offered him a job, but his father urged him to aim higher. He signed with Wilhelmina West and survived for three years doing commercials and bit parts in movies.[6] Schaech studied under acting teacher, Roy London, who also taught stars such as Michelle Pfeiffer, Brad Pitt and Forest Whitaker.[7] He studied with Roy London for three and half years until London's death in 1993.[8]


In 1991, Schaech went through a three-month audition process before he landed the lead in Franco Zeffirelli's movie El Storia de Capinera (The Sparrow),[8] a period piece drama filmed in Sicily and Rome and also starring Angela Bettis and Vanessa Redgrave.[9] However, Zeffirelli dubbed Schaech's entire performance.[10] Schaech would have become a regular fixture on Fox TV's "Brisco County Jr." but he bypassed the steady work to portray drifter Xavier Red in Gregg Araki's "The Doom Generation".[8]

Schaech won a pivotal role in How to Make an American Quilt opposite Winona Ryder. He was trained with weights for the role, and was also taught to sing Latin love songs, but his singing voice met the cutting room floor.[8] In 1996, How to Make an American Quilt received a nomination for the Screen Actors Guild Award for Outstanding Performance by a Cast in a Motion Picture.[citation needed] In 1995, Tom Hanks cast Schaech as the ambitious and self-absorbed lead singer of The Wonders in That Thing You Do!, Hanks's writing and directing debut.[10] Schaech next took the male lead opposite Gwenyth Paltrow and Jessica Lange in Tri-Star's 1998 thriller Hush.[11] He was featured as one of the most promising leading men of tomorrow on the 1996's Vanity Fair cover alongside Leonardo DiCaprio, Will Smith and Benicio del Toro.[12]

In 1997, Schaech starred in the Australian comedy Welcome to Woop Woop, directed by Stephan Elliott.[13] Taking the role of a British military man, Schaech was in the independent feature Woundings in 1998,[14] for which he won Best Supporting Actor at the 2001 New York International Independent Film & Video Festival.[15] He then accepted the role of Harry Houdini in TNT's Houdini in 1998.[16]

In 1999, Schaech starred in Finding Graceland[17] and in his second Gregg Araki film titled Splendor.[18] He then teamed up with indie filmmaker Carl Franklin and shot a CBS pilot Partners opposite Marg Helgenberger.[19] The show did not get picked up.[20] He played the love interest of Jennifer Love Hewitt in the Party of Five spin-off Time of Your Life in 2000.[21] "Time of Your Life" first aired on October 25, 1999; it was canceled in the middle of its first season, on June 21, 2000.[22]

In 2000, Schaech starred in his first major play, David Rabe's A Question for Mercy, playing a Columbian born gay Manhattanite dying of aids. He lost 35 pounds for the role.[23]


Schaech flew to Morocco in 2001 to take on the title character in Tom Fontana's Judas for ABC. The film would be highly controversial and was pushed back for several years until Mel Gibson's The Passion of Christ was released in 2004, opening a window for the network to air the film.[24]

In 2005, Schaech starred in José Pepe Bojórquez's Sea of Dreams,[25] which won the Silver Goddess award for best first work. The film was shot in Mexico.[26] In 2005, he was cast opposite his then wife, Christina Applegate, in James Patterson's Suzanne's Diary for Nicholas for CBS. The film shot in Halifax, Canada.[27] Schaech starred along with David Arquette in a CBS pilot "Commuters". It didn't get a pick up.[28]

In 2006, Schaech starred in Little Chenier. Shot in Lake Charles, after filming, Hurricane Rita virtually destroyed all locations used in the film.;[29] The film went on to win best picture and best ensemble at the Phoenix film festival.;[30] In 2006, Lifetime cast him opposite Heather Locklear in Nora Roberts' Angels Fall. It was shot in Ontario, Canada.[31]

In 2007, Schaech took the lead in Sony's remake of Prom Night.[32] He received an MTV award nomination for best villain for his performance, losing to Heath Ledger's portrayal of the Joker.[33] The film was number one opening weekend and made 43 million in US Theaters.[34] In 2008, he appeared in science fiction film Quarantine, directed by John Erick Dowdle. The film is a remake of the Spanish film REC and was released by Screen Gems.[35] Its total gross is $41,319,906 worldwide.[36]

In 2010, Renny Harlin cast Schaech as a Georgian Army captain in his action indie 5 Days of War.[37]


In 2013, Schaech starred opposite Ed Harris and David Duchovny in the submarine thriller Phantom.[38] He was cast in the first season of Showtime ‘s series Ray Donovan, appearing in five episode as an eccentric movie star, Sean Walker.[39] He also played the corn-rowed villain opposite Kellan Lutz in Renny Harlin's The Legend of Hercules, gaining 30 lbs of muscle to play the Egyptian mercenary Tarak.[39]

In 2014, Schaech joined the cast of History’s miniseries Texas Rising, playing Colonel Sherman, who challenges Sam Houston's (Bill Paxton) every order.[40]


Schaech wrote his first book titled Rick Dempsey's Caught Stealing.[41] Johnathon Schaech co-founded Chesapeake Films with Richard Chizmar.[citation needed]

Screech has also written co-written a number of screenplays with Richard Chizmar, including Heroes (2002), Road House 2 (Sony Pictures Home Entertainment, 2006), based on a story by Miles Chapman, Masters of Horror The Washingtonians (Showtime, 2007), based on a story by Bentley Little and The Poker Club, based on the story by Ed Gorman.[42] Schaech and Chimer have also co-written screenplays based on stories by Peter Crowther: Fear Itself: Eater (NBC/AXN Sci Fi, 2009); Lewis Shiner: Fear Itself: The Circle (NBC/AXN Sci Fi, 2009); and Stephen King: From A Buick 8 (in production 2009) and Black House (in production 2009).[42]

Personal life[edit]

Schaech married actress Christina Applegate in October 2001 in Palm Springs.[43] In December 2005, he filed for a divorce,[43] which became final in August 2007.[44]

In December 2009, Schaech became engaged to singer/actress Jana Kramer, whom he began dating in 2008 after co-starring in Prom Night.[45] They wed on July 4, 2010 in Michigan but announced their separation one month later.[46] Their divorce was finalized in June 2011.[47]

Schaech married music and book publicist Julie Solomon, in July 2013 in Ocean City, Maryland.[48] They have one son, Camden Quinn, born in September 2013.[49]



Year Title Role Notes
1993 The Webbers Giampaolo TV movie
1993 Sparrow (AKA Storia di una capinera) Nino
1995 How to Make an American Quilt Leon
1995 The Doom Generation Xavier Red
1996 Poison Ivy II Gredin
1996 That Thing You Do! James (Jimmy) Mattingly II
1996 Invasion of Privacy Josh Taylor
1997 Welcome to Woop Woop Teddy
1998 Hush Jackson Baring
1998 Finding Graceland Byron Gruman
1998 Houdini Harry Houdini TV movie
1998 Woundings (aka Brand New World) Douglas Briggs
199 Splendor Abel
1999 Caracara (1999) David J. McMillan TV movie
2000 If You Only Knew Parker Concorde
2000 The Giving Tree (aka Brutal Truth) James
2000 After Sex Matt
2000 How to Kill Your Neighbor's Dog Adam
2001 Sol Goode (2001) Happy
2001 The Forsaken Kit
2002 The Sweetest Thing Leather Coat Guy (uncredited)
2002 They Shoot Divas, Don't They? Trevor TV movie
2002 Heroes Francis
2002 Kiss the Bride Geoffrey 'Geoff' Brancati
2002 Blood Crime Daniel Pruitt
2004 Mummy and the Armadillo Jesse
2004 Judas Judas Iscariot
2005 Suzanne's Diary for Nicholas Matt
2005 8mm 2 David
2006 Sea of Dreams Marcelo
2006 Road House 2 Shane Tanner
2006 Little Chenier Beauxregard "Beaux" Dupuis
2007 Angels Fall Brody TV movie
2008 Living Hell Frank Sears
2008 Prom Night Richard Fenton
2008 Quarantine Fletcher
2009 The Poker Club (2009) Aaron Tyler
2009 Laid to Rest Johnny
2010 Takers Scott
2011 5 Days of War Capt. Rezo Avaliani
2013 Phantom Pavlov
2014 Hercules: The Legend Begins Tarek
2014 The Prince
2015 Vice Chris


Year Title Role Notes
2001 Time Of Your Life John Maguire
2003 Arrested Development Goldstone
2009 Cold Case Julian Bellows
2011 CSI: Miami Joseph Crumbaugh
2013 Ray Donovan Sean Walker
2013 The Client List Greg Carlisle
2014 Star-Crossed Castor
2015 Sleepy Hollow Solomon Kent
2015 Texas Rising Col. Sydney Sherman
2015 Quantico Michael Parrish


  1. ^ Respers, Lisa (1998-12-05). "O's a great escape for 'Houdini' actor; Movies: Johnathon Schaech always listening for the buzz on Baltimore". 
  2. ^ Magazine, People (1998-10-05). "Fascinating TV Stars!". People. Retrieved 2010-05-24. ..., while Schaech is Catholic. 
  3. ^ Doyle, Paula (2004-04-05). "'What if Judas almost got it?'". The Tidings. Retrieved 2010-10-07. Fontana's Judas, played with a passionate intensity by 34-year-old Catholic actor Johnathon Schaech,... 
  4. ^ Respers, Lisa (1998-12-05). "O's a great escape for 'Houdini' actor; Movies: Johnathon Schaech always listening for the buzz on Baltimore". 
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  43. ^ a b "Christina Applegate's Hubby Seeks Divorce". People. December 6, 2005. Retrieved September 8, 2013. 
  44. ^ Boehm, Kristin (August 10, 2007). "Christina Applegate's Divorce Finalized in L.A.". People. Retrieved September 8, 2013. 
  45. ^ Leonard, Elizabeth (December 28, 2009). "Johnathon Schaech Engaged to One Tree Hill's Jana Rae Kramer". People. Retrieved September 8, 2013. 
  46. ^ Finn, Natalie (August 9, 2010). "One Tree Hill Actress's Marriage Over After a Month". E! Online. Retrieved September 8, 2013. 
  47. ^ "One Tree Hill's Jana Rae Kramer Finalizes Divorce". Us Weekly. June 8, 2011. Retrieved September 8, 2013. 
  48. ^ Leonard, Elizabeth; Blumm, K.C. (September 6, 2013). "Johnathon Schaech Marries Julie Solomon". People. Retrieved September 8, 2013. 
  49. ^ Takeda, Allison (September 12, 2013). "Johnathon Schaech's Wife Julie Solomon Gives Birth to Baby Boy Camden Quinn!". Us Weekly. Retrieved September 12, 2013. 

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