Jason Priestley biography
Date of Birth: August 28, 1969
Cursed with the stigma of always being known as a teen hearthrob, Jason Priestley began his career as a child actor in TV commercials. After dropping out of acting in his teens to concentrate on high school sports, Vancouver-born Priestley got back in the professional swim following graduation, accepting one-shot roles on TV series such as 21 Jump Street, Quantum Leap and MacGyver.
His first American TV assignment was the regular role of teen orphan Todd Mahaffey on the 1989 sitcom Sister Kate. When Aaron Spelling's daughter Tori spotted Jason on the show, she suggested that her father audition him for a role in the upcoming Fox series Beverly Hills, 90210. Jason was cast as Brandon Walsh, twin brother of Brenda (Shannen Doherty), who move with their parents to the glamorous Hills from Minneapolis, Minnesota.
Unlike many of his young series co-stars, Jason was intent on laying the groundwork for life after 90210. Despite lack of fanfare with his first major film role in Penny Marshall's Calendar Girl (1993), he enjoyed some success as a 90210 director and producer. Jason encountered further success and even critical vindication with his turn as Ronnie Bostock, the B movie hunk who steals John Hurt's heart in Love and Death on Long Island (1997). Critics warmed to Jason's performance, noting that his days of idolatry had given him overly adequate preparation for his portrayal.
Unlike other teen idols who rue the day when the fan mail will cease, Jason claimed he was happy when his idoldom took a downward slide: "It's like having a big cancerous lesion on your shoulder. Because people are fickle, man."
After directing some music videos and taking on roles in small, low budget films, he returned to series television with a regular role as baddie Jack Harper in Tru Calling, starring Eliza Dushku.
In his spare time, Jason enjoys taking part in car racing, even though he was seriously injured when his car slammed into a wall during a practice run in 2002. He was literally dead for 45 seconds before medics on the scene brought him back. His injuries included a fractured spine, broken foot bones and a concussion. Jason, who has no memory of the crash, spent several months in rehabilitation.
Since then he's experienced great success with the Canadian television series Call Me Fitz, which he not only produces and stars in, but has directed several episodes. In 2014, he won a Canadian Screen Award for Best Comedy Actor in a Leading Role for his work on the show.
More recently, he starred in Zoom (2016) with Gael García Bernal and Alison Pill.
He made his feature film directorial debut with the Canadian independent film Cas & Dylan (2014), starring Tatiana Maslany and Richard Dreyfuss.
In 2000 Jason obtained a divorce from his first wife, actress Ashlee Petersen, whom he married in 1999, and in 2005 he married Naomi Lowde. They have two children together.
Jason Priestley Filmography