Sebastian Roché

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Sebastian Roché
Sebastian Roché.jpg
Roché in June 2013
Born (1964-08-04) 4 August 1964 (age 53)
Paris, France
Residence Los Angeles, California, U.S.
Alma mater French National Academy of Dramatic Arts
  • Actor
  • writer
Years active 1986–present
  • Vera Farmiga (m. 1997; div. 2004)
  • Alicia Hannah (m. 2014)

Sebastian Roché (born 4 August 1964)[1][2] is a French actor and writer, known for his roles as Kurt Mendel on Odyssey 5, Jerry Jacks on the soap opera General Hospital, Thomas Jerome Newton on Fringe, Balthazar on Supernatural, Mikael on both The Vampire Diaries and The Originals, and Reichsminister Martin Heusmann on The Man in the High Castle.

He has appeared in the films The Last of the Mohicans (1992), The Peacemaker (1997), 15 Minutes (2001), Sorry, Haters (2005), The Namesake (2006), New York City Serenade (2007), Beowulf (2007), Happy Tears (2009), Safe House (2012), Wer (2013), and A Walk Among the Tombstones (2014). Roché also starred in the Broadway plays Salome (1992) and The Green Bird (2000).

Early life[edit]

Roché was born in Paris to a French father and Scottish mother.[3] As a teenager, he lived for six years on a sailboat with his parents and brothers, Guillaume and Fabien, travelling to the Mediterranean, Africa, South America, and the Caribbean.[4] Roché is mulitlingual – able to speak English, French, Spanish and Italian fluently.[5] He was educated at the Cours Florent in Paris and the Ecole Nationale Supérieure des Arts et Techniques du Théâtre in Lyon. Roché also attended the prestigious French National Academy of Dramatic Arts, from which he graduated in 1989.[6] Roché moved to the United States in 1992.[4]


1986–2001: Beginnings and stage roles[edit]

Roché began his acting career in the made-for-television film The Murders in the Rue Morgue, appearing opposite Ian McShane and Val Kilmer, which aired on CBS on 7 December 1986. Throughout the late 1980s, he had roles in French television and cinema, including the films Adieu je t'aime (1988), La Queue de la comète (1988), La Révolution française (1989), and A Woman's Revenge (1990), and the television series Bonjour maître (1987) and The Hitchhiker (1989–1991). Roché also has an extensive classical theatre background, notably starring in Salome (1992) with Al Pacino at the Circle in the Square Theatre; Titus Andronicus (1994) with the Theatre for a New Audience, directed by Julie Taymor;[7] Macbeth (1994) at the Classic Stage Company, directed by Jack Stehlin;[8] and Arms and the Man (1995) in Hartford, Connecticut, directed by Mark Lamos.[9] He appeared in a supporting role in the Daniel Day-Lewis-starring historical epic The Last of the Mohicans, which was released in the United States on 25 September 1992. On American television, he appeared in Loving (1992), South Beach (1993), New York Undercover (1996), Swift Justice (1996), and Liberty! (1997).

In 1997, Roché was part of the main cast in the Fox fantasy adventure series Roar, playing the role of Saint Longinus. He starred opposite Heath Ledger and Vera Farmiga.[10] The series was cancelled due to low ratings later that same year. Roché's many 1990s television credits include recurring and guest starring stints in series such as Feds (1997), Dellaventura (1997), Sex and the City (1998), Merlin (1998), Law & Order (1999), and Big Apple (2001). In 1998, he returned to the stage in the Off-Broadway production of Trainspotting at the Players Theater.[11] In 2000, he portrayed Prince Renzo in the Broadway production of The Green Bird at the Cort Theatre. The play marked his second collaboration with director Julie Taymor.[12] That same year, he appeared in the television film The Crossing opposite Jeff Daniels, which aired on A&E on 10 January 2000. He also had a minor role in the Robert De Niro-starring thriller film 15 Minutes, released on 9 March 2001.

2002–2013: Television breakthrough[edit]

In 2002, Roché began portraying Kurt Mendel in the Canadian science fiction series Odyssey 5 for Showtime. He remained in the role until the show's cancellation a year later. In the pilot episode, he spoke French. He also guest starred in episodes of Touching Evil (2004), Charmed (2005), Alias (2005), CSI: Crime Scene Investigation (2005), and The Unit (2006). Roché then co-starred in the Mira Nair-directed drama film The Namesake, released on 9 March 2007, and in the Darby Crash biopic What We Do Is Secret, released on 8 August 2008. He subsequently co-starred with Freddie Prinze, Jr. the comedy-drama New York City Serenade, which premiered at the Toronto International Film Festival on 13 September 2007.

Roché with the cast of The Vampire Diaries in June 2013

Roché next starred in the motion capture epic fantasy film Beowulf, alongside Anthony Hopkins and Angelina Jolie, which was directed by Robert Zemeckis and released to cinemas on 16 November 2007. He reprised his role as Wulfgar from the film in the accompanying video game Beowulf: The Game, released on 13 November 2007.[13] In 2007, Roché began appearing in the ABC soap opera General Hospital as terrorist/criminal Jerry Jacks (although, when the character reappeared, he was going by the pseudonym James Craig). By early 2009, Jerry had minimal screen time and was ultimately written out. Later, from July to August 2009, Roché returned to the series in a recurring capacity, and returned again to the role in December 2010. From August 2012 to October 2013, Roché again returned as the character on a recurring basis.[14] He starred in a total of 319 episodes, and has spoken Russian, Spanish, and French in the series.[15]

In 2009, Roché guest starred in The Mentalist as Shirali Arlov, and as John Quinn in both 24: Redemption (2008), and the 2009 season of 24. He then appeared in the comedy-drama film Happy Tears with Demi Moore and Parker Posey, released on 19 February 2010, and lent his voice to the animated film The Adventures of Tintin, directed by Steven Spielberg and released on 21 December 2011.[16] In 2010, Roché joined the recurring cast of The CW's drama series Supernatural. He starred in six episodes of the sixth season as Balthazar, a rogue angel and longtime friend of fellow angel Castiel.[17] He was next cast in the Fox science fiction drama series Fringe, recurring in the second and third seasons as Thomas Jerome Newton, the leader of an army of shapeshifters from a parallel universe and a main antagonist of the series.[18][19]

In 2011, Roché began recurring as Mikael, the father of the Original Vampires, in The CW's supernatural drama series The Vampire Diaries.[20] He then recurred as Clyde Easter in the CBS procedural crime drama series Criminal Minds.[21] Roché next had a supporting role in the action-thriller film Safe House, starring Ryan Reynolds and Denzel Washington, which was released on 10 February 2012.[22] Also in 2012, he made a guest appearance in NBC's procedural fantasy drama series Grimm.[23] He then starred in William Brent Bell's horror film Wer, released first in Japan on 16 November 2013.[24]

2014–present: Continued television roles[edit]

Roché at the Supernatural Convention in May 2014

From 2014 to 2015, Roché reprised his role as Mikael in The Vampire Diaries spin-off series, The Originals.[25] Roché then starred in the American crime drama-thriller film A Walk Among the Tombstones alongside Liam Neeson, released on 19 September 2014.[26] In March 2014, he joined ABC's political drama series Scandal in a recurring capacity.[27] In December 2014, it was announced that Roché would guest star in season four of ABC's fairy tale drama series Once Upon a Time as King Stefan.[28] Roché starred as Pierre Curie in an episode of the documentary miniseries The Mystery of Matter: Search for the Elements, which aired on PBS on 19 August 2015.[29] Roché then guest starred in season seven of CBS' procedural drama series NCIS: Los Angeles, as Lee Ashman.[30]

In 2016, Roché co-starred as Cardinal Michel Marivaux in Paolo Sorrentino's drama series The Young Pope, alongside Jude Law and James Cromwell.[31] He also had a recurring role in the second season of Amazon Video's drama series The Man in the High Castle as Martin Heusmann, the estranged Nazi father of main character Joe Blake (Luke Kleintank).[32] In May 2016, Roché joined the cast of Christopher Gorham's directorial debut comedy We Love You, Sally Carmichael!, portraying film star Perry Quinn, alongside Gorham and Bitsie Tulloch.[33]

Personal life[edit]

Roché met American actress Vera Farmiga while co-starring together in the short-lived series Roar. They eloped to the Bahamas after the series ended in 1997,[34] and lived on a 117-acre estate in Upstate New York.[35] After seven years of marriage, Roché and Farmiga separated in 2003 and divorced the following year.[34] On 31 May 2014, he married Australian actress Alicia Hannah (née Kim) at the Chateau Les Bouysses in Mercuès, France.[36] The couple will star together in the upcoming film We Love You, Sally Carmichael! (2017).



  1. ^ Sebastian Roché [@sebroche] (4 August 2016). "Happy birthday @BarackObama, I'm proud that we share the same birthday" (Tweet) – via Twitter. 
  2. ^ Marin, Alex (5 August 2014). ""The Originals" Celebrate Sebastian Roché's Birthday". WhoSay. 
  3. ^ Richenthal, Matt (26 September 2007). "A Few Words from Sebastian Roche". TV Fanatic. 
  4. ^ a b "Sebastian Roche: Coming to America". Soap Opera Digest. 20 September 2007. 
  5. ^ Thorne, Will (27 October 2016). "Sebastian Roché on Why 'Young Pope' Might 'Create A Little Controversy'". Variety. 
  6. ^ "Sebastian Roché: Supernatural, The Vampire Diaries, The Originals". Armageddon Expo. 
  7. ^ Richards, David (16 March 1994). "Theater in Review: 'Titus Andronicus'". The New York Times. 
  8. ^ Brantley, Ben (10 December 1994). "Theater in Review: 'Macbeth'". The New York Times. 
  9. ^ Johnson, Malcolm L. (15 May 1995). "A Stylish 'Arms And The Man' At Hartford Stage". Hartford Courant. 
  10. ^ Richmond, Ray (20 July 1997). "Review: 'Roar'". Variety. Retrieved 13 June 2012. 
  11. ^ Brodesser, Claude (21 October 1998). "'Trainspotting' cast onboard". Variety. 
  12. ^ Isherwood, Charles (19 April 2000). "Review: 'The Green Bird'". Variety. 
  13. ^ "Hopkins heads Beowulf cast". GameSpot. 24 October 2007. Retrieved 13 June 2012. 
  14. ^ Roots, Kimberly (4 August 2012). "General Hospital Shocker: Jerry's Back for More Mayhem, and [Spoiler] Isn't Far Behind!". TVLine. 
  15. ^ Smith Sciuto, Melissa J. L. (7 August 2012). "General Hospital Scores Murder Hat Trick With Roché, Howarth, Mattson". TV Overmind. 
  16. ^ Jagernauth, Kevin (29 April 2012). "Sebastian Roché Joins 'The Devil Inside' Director William Brent Bell's 'Wer'". IndieWire. 
  17. ^ Richenthal, Matt (7 August 2010). "Sebastian Roche to Play Shady Angel on Supernatural". TVFanatic. 
  18. ^ Andreeva, Nellie (21 October 2009). "Sebastian Roche joins 'Fringe'". The Hollywood Reporter. 
  19. ^ O'Connor, Mickey (22 October 2009). "General Hospital Vet Signs On to Fringe". TV Guide. 
  20. ^ Bierly, Mandi (10 August 2011). "'Vampire Diaries' casts Sebastian Roche as mysterious vampire hunter". Entertainment Weekly. Retrieved 13 June 2012. 
  21. ^ Andreeva, Nellie (7 January 2011). "Exclusive: Sebastian Roche To Recur on Criminal Minds, Do More Supernatural". TVLine. 
  22. ^ Bierly, Mandi (18 November 2011). "Sebastian Roche joins cast of Denzel Washington, Ryan Reynolds thriller 'Safe House'". Entertainment Weekly. 
  23. ^ Eckstein, David (29 February 2012). "'Grimm': Sebastian Roche and Neil Hopkins cast for a game of cat and mouse". Screener. 
  24. ^ Franklin, Garth (30 April 2012). "Sebastian Roché Joins "Wer"". Dark Horizons. 
  25. ^ Bucksbaum, Sydney (27 August 2013). "'The Originals' casts 'Vampire Diaries' patriarch Sebastian Roche and 'Supernatural' shapeshifter Todd Stashwick". Screener. 
  26. ^ Platten, Dominic (7 March 2013). "Casting Couch: Sebastian Roché Added To 'A Walk Among The Tombstones', Trio Of Actresses Join 'Larry Gaye'". 
  27. ^ Swift, Andy (31 March 2014). "TVLine Items: An Originals Actor Relocates to Scandal, S.H.I.E.L.D. Casts Major Villain and More". TVLine. 
  28. ^ Roots, Kimberly (22 December 2014). "Once Upon a Time Casts Originals Baddie as Aurora's Father". TVLine. Retrieved 23 December 2014. 
  29. ^ Drahl, Carmen (20 August 2015). "PBS's The Mystery Of Matter And Its Message For Chemistry". Forbes. 
  30. ^ Frith, Vanessa (20 May 2015). "'NCIS: LA' Season 7: Sebastian Roche & Lauren Bowles Set For Chris O'Donnell Directed Episode". 
  31. ^ Vivarelli, Nick (4 August 2015). "Paolo Sorrentino's 'Young Pope' Rounds Out Cast With James Cromwell And Slew Of Top International Talent". Variety. 
  32. ^ Petski, Denise (11 April 2016). "FX's 'Tyrant' Casts Annet Mahendru; Sebastian Roche In Amazon's Man In The High Castle'". 
  33. ^ McNary, Dave (23 May 2016). "Bitsie Tulloch, Sebastian Roche Join 'We Love You, Sally Carmichael'". Variety. 
  34. ^ a b Brown, Mick (30 August 2008). "Vera Farmiga: rare breed". The Daily Telegraph. London. Archived from the original on 3 September 2008. Retrieved 16 July 2009. 
  35. ^ David, Mark (5 October 2007). "Soap Stud Sebastian Roche Buys Venice House". Variety. 
  36. ^ Cosgrove Baylis, Sheila (16 June 2014). "Sebastian Roché Marries Alicia Hannah – See the Exclusive Photos". People. 

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