|Born||Paul W. Sparks
October 16, 1971
Lawton, Oklahoma, U.S.
|Alma mater||New York University|
Paul W. Sparks (born October 16, 1971) is an American actor. He is known for his roles as gangster Mickey Doyle in the HBO period drama series Boardwalk Empire, writer Thomas Yates in the Netflix political drama series House of Cards, and attorney David Tellis in the Starz anthology drama series The Girlfriend Experience. Sparks has also starred in the films Deception (2008), Afterschool (2008), The Missing Person (2008), Mud (2012), Parkland (2013), Stealing Cars (2015), Thoroughbreds (2017), and The Greatest Showman (2017) .
Early life and career
Sparks was born and raised in Lawton, Oklahoma, to Michael "Mike" Sparks, a high school football coach, and Jane (née Ellis), an elementary school teacher. He attended Marlow High School, where his father coached, graduating in 1990. While attending school in Marlow, Paul was a part of the Marlow Outlaw Speech Team (M.O.S.T.) where he was coached by Paula and Gary McConnell.  Sparks earned a scholarship to Oklahoma State University to study chemistry, but later transferred to New York University's Tisch School of the Arts. He graduated with a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree in drama in 1995.
In 2010, Sparks began portraying the regular role of Mickey Doyle on HBO's drama series Boardwalk Empire, which was created by Terence Winter and executive produced by Martin Scorsese and Mark Wahlberg. The series ended in 2014, after completing five seasons.
Sparks is married to actress Annie Parisse, after meeting in 2005. Their first child, a son named Emmett, was born in October 2009. The couple are also parents to a daughter, whom they welcomed in 2014. Sparks suffers from diabetes mellitus type 1 and works with the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation. He is good friends with fellow actor Michael Shannon; the two have worked together on a number of projects including The Missing Person, Mud, Boardwalk Empire, and Midnight Special.
|2008||Synecdoche, New York||Derek|
|2008||Rachel Getting Married||12 Step Member|
|2008||The Missing Person||Gus Papitos|
|2010||Please Give||Blind Date|
|2010||Edge of Darkness||Police Detective|
|2012||Forgetting the Girl||Tanner|
|2015||Stealing Cars||Conrad Sean Lewis|
|2016||Midnight Special||Agent Miller|
|2016||All the Birds Have Flown South||Stephen|
|2016||In the Radiant City||Michael Yurley|
|2017||The Greatest Showman||James Gordon Bennett Sr.|
|1998||Trinity||Rod||Episode: "In a Yellow Wood"|
|2000||Law & Order||Paul Luterik||Episode: "Panic"|
|2001||Law & Order: Special Victims Unit||Marvin Posey||Episode: "Manhunt"|
|2005||Law & Order: Criminal Intent||Keith Durbin||Episode: "Shibboleth"|
|2010–2014||Boardwalk Empire||Mickey Doyle||36 episodes|
|2011||Mildred Pierce||Ted Hobey||Episode: "Part Five"|
|2012–2013||Underemployed||Guy Doyle||3 episodes|
|2013||M.Y.C.||Mickey Mothstein||Television short|
|2013||Person of Interest||Wilson||Episode: "Relevance"|
|2014||Believe||Karl McKenzie||Episode: "Bang and Blame"|
|2015–2017||House of Cards||Thomas Yates||27 episodes|
|2016||The Girlfriend Experience||David Tellis||12 episodes|
|2016||The Night Of||Don Taylor||6 episodes|
|2017||Get Shorty||Owen||Episode: "The Pitch"|
|2017||The Crown||Billy Graham||Episode: "Vergangenheit"|
|2018||Waco||Steve Schneider||Upcoming series|
|2000||Coyote on a Fence||Bobby Reyburn||Urban Stages|
|2003–2004||Take Me Out||Jason Chenier||Walter Kerr Theatre|
|2004||Blackbird||Baylis||Edge Theater Company|
|2005||Orange Flower Water||Brad Youngquist|
|2006||Landscape of the Body||Marvin Holahan||Signature Theatre Company|
|2007||Essential Self-Defense||Yul Carroll||Edge Theater Company|
|2009||Hedda Gabler||Ejlert Lovborg||American Airlines Theatre|
|2010||Dusk Rings a Bell||Ray||Atlantic Theater Company|
|2016||Buried Child||Tilden||The New Group|
Awards and nominations
|2000||Drama Desk Awards||Outstanding Actor in a Play||Coyote on a Fence||Nominated|
|2005||Outstanding Featured Actor in a Play||Orange Flower Water||Nominated|
|2007||Outstanding Actor in a Play||Essential Self-Defense||Nominated|
|2010||Screen Actors Guild Awards||Outstanding Performance by an Ensemble in a Drama Series||Boardwalk Empire||Won|
|Drama Desk Awards||Outstanding Actor in a Play||Dusk Rings a Bell||Nominated|
|2012||Screen Actors Guild Awards||Outstanding Performance by an Ensemble in a Drama Series||Boardwalk Empire||Nominated|
|Film Independent Spirit Awards||Robert Altman Award||Mud||Won|
|2014||Screen Actors Guild Awards||Outstanding Performance by an Ensemble in a Drama Series||Boardwalk Empire||Nominated|
|2016||Lucille Lortel Awards||Outstanding Featured Actor in a Play||Buried Child||Nominated|
|Primetime Emmy Awards||Outstanding Guest Actor in a Drama Series||House of Cards||Nominated|
- Rooney, David (July 15, 2010). "Embracing a Tragic Masculinity". The New York Times. Retrieved March 10, 2013.
- Hayer, Melissa. ""Boardwalk to Success": Oklahoma native Paul Sparks turns advice, acting experiences into successful career". The Oklahoman. Retrieved December 7, 2014.
- "Boardwalk Empire Cast & Crew: Paul Sparks". HBO.com.
- Lardaro, Mariangela (January 31, 2011). "Tisch Alumni Rack Up Accolades". New York University. Tisch School of the Arts.
- Hetrick, Adam (February 11, 2009). "Hedda Gabler's Sparks Signed for HBO Pilot "Boardwalk Empire"". Playbill. Retrieved March 10, 2013.
- "Q&A with Paul Sparks". HBO.com. October 25, 2012. Retrieved March 10, 2013.
- Simon, Lizzie (April 2, 2012). "The Theater Of Discomfort". The Wall Street Journal.
- Scott, Marcus (March 28, 2016). "American Horror Story Star Transitions to the Stage With the Help of Her Buried Child Cast". Playbill.
- "On the Rise: Paul Sparks On His Career, Role In Clark Gregg's 'Trust Me' & More!". Icon vs Icon. August 29, 2014.
- "Film: Michael Shannon – Interviewed by Paul Sparks". The Lab Magazine. March 29, 2011.