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William Gaither "Billy" Crudup (/ˈkrdəp/ born July 8, 1968) is an American actor. He is known for his role in Gypsy, and supporting roles in films including Almost Famous, Big Fish, Mission: Impossible III, Watchmen, Public Enemies, Spotlight, and Alien: Covenant, as well as lead roles in films including Without Limits, Dedication, The Stanford Prison Experiment, and the animated film Princess Mononoke. He appeared in the 2017 superhero film Justice League as Doctor Henry Allen.

Billy Crudup
Billy Crudup 2015 1b.jpg
Crudup in 2015
William Gaither Crudup

(1968-07-08) July 8, 1968 (age 50)
Alma materUNC Chapel Hill
Tisch School of the Arts
Years active1987–present

He has also had an extensive stage acting career, appearing mostly on Broadway. He has been nominated four times for a Tony Award for his acting, and won once, for his role in Tom Stoppard's The Coast of Utopia in 2007.

From 1998 to 2005, Crudup was the narrator for "Priceless", a U.S. television ad campaign for MasterCard.[citation needed]


Early lifeEdit

Crudup was born in Manhasset, New York. His parents, Georgann (née Gaither) and Thomas Henry Crudup III, divorced during his childhood, and later remarried, before divorcing a second time.[1][2][3] On his father's side, he is a descendant of Congressman Josiah Crudup of North Carolina.[4] His maternal grandfather was William Cotter "Billy" Gaither, Jr., a well-known Florida trial lawyer, and his maternal grandmother later remarried to Episcopal bishop James Duncan.[5][6][7][8] Crudup has two brothers: Tommy, an executive producer, and Brooks, also a producer. He left New York with his family when he was about eight years old, first living in Texas, then in Florida. He graduated from Saint Thomas Aquinas High School in Fort Lauderdale, Florida in 1986.

Crudup attended the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, where he received an undergraduate degree, and he continued his passion for acting with the undergraduate acting company, LAB! Theatre. He also acted for UNC-STV's most popular show, General College. He was a member of the Beta Chapter of Delta Kappa Epsilon. He then studied at the Graduate Acting Program at New York University's Tisch School of the Arts, where he earned a Master of Fine Arts degree in 1994.


Film actingEdit

Crudup began acting in films such as 1996's Sleepers, 1997's Inventing the Abbotts, and 1998's Without Limits, where he played the role of running legend and Olympian Steve Prefontaine. His first role in an animated feature was in 1999's English release of Princess Mononoke, in which he starred as Ashitaka. He then played Russell Hammond, the lead guitar player of the fictional band Stillwater in Cameron Crowe's Almost Famous (2000). In 2006's The Good Shepherd, he played British spy Arch Cummings, a stand-in for Kim Philby. The same year, he played a supporting role in Mission: Impossible III. In 2007, he played the leading role of Henry Roth in the film Dedication.

Crudup completed filming Watchmen with director Zack Snyder in Vancouver, British Columbia. He portrayed the superhero Doctor Manhattan. He portrayed former U.S. Secretary of the Treasury Timothy Geithner in a TV film about 2008's financial crisis, Too Big to Fail (2011).

Stage actingEdit

Crudup in New York City, January 2011

A year after graduating, he made his debut on Broadway in the Lincoln Center Theater production of Tom Stoppard's Arcadia.

Crudup received a 2002 Tony Award nomination for Best Actor in a Play for his performance as the title character in The Elephant Man on Broadway, as well as a 2005 nomination for his role as Katurian in the Broadway production of The Pillowman, also starring Jeff Goldblum, which closed on September 18, 2005. From October 2006 through May 2007, he was featured in the first two parts of The Coast of Utopia by Tom Stoppard at Lincoln Center, playing literary critic Vissarion Belinsky, for which he received a 2007 Tony Award for Best Featured Actor in a Play.

He starred in The Metal Children, an off-Broadway play written and directed by Adam Rapp in 2010.

In 2011, Crudup received a Tony Award nomination for Featured Actor in a Play for his role in the Broadway revival of Arcadia.[9]

In August 2013, he co-starred with Ian McKellen and Patrick Stewart in the Harold Pinter play No Man's Land as well as in Waiting for Godot at the Berkeley Repertory Theatre. The shows transferred to The Cort Theatre in New York City, where they ran in repertory until March 2014.[10]

In November 2017, he starred in the world premiere of David Cale's one-man play Harry Clarke at Vineyard Theatre. It moved to the Minetta Lane Theatre the following spring.

Other workEdit

From 1998 to 2005, Crudup was the narrator for the U.S. television ad campaign "Priceless" for MasterCard. In the ads, the narrator (Crudup) lists the prices of two goods or services, then lists some third, intangible benefit gained from those purchases and concludes, "priceless". He said in 2005 that appearing in the ads "changed my life", in that they gave him the financial freedom to pursue the acting work that he wanted to do.[11]

He appeared as Zartan in the 2009 parody video The Ballad of G.I. Joe on the website Funny or Die.

Personal lifeEdit

From 1996 to November 2003, Crudup dated actress Mary-Louise Parker. Parker was seven months pregnant with their son, William Atticus Parker, when Crudup left her for actress Claire Danes, then 24 years old.[12]



Year Title Role Notes
1996 Sleepers Tommy Marcano Debut role
Everyone Says I Love You Ken Risley
1997 Inventing the Abbotts Jacey Holt
Grind Eddie Dolan
1998 Monument Ave. Teddy Timmons
Without Limits Steve Prefontaine
The Hi-Lo Country Pete Calder
1999 Princess Mononoke Ashitaka (voice) English dub
Jesus' Son FH
2000 Waking the Dead Fielding Pierce
Almost Famous Russell Hammond
2001 World Traveler Cal
Charlotte Gray Julien Levade
2003 Big Fish William "Will" Bloom
Stage Beauty Ned Kynaston
2005 Trust the Man Tobey
2006 Mission: Impossible III John Musgrave
The Good Shepherd Arch Cummings
2007 Dedication Henry Roth
2008 Pretty Bird Curtis Prentiss
2009 Watchmen Jon Osterman / Dr. Manhattan
Public Enemies J. Edgar Hoover
2010 Eat Pray Love Stephen
2011 Thin Ice Randy Kinney
2012 The Watch Paul (Creepy Neighbor, Orgy Host) Uncredited
2013 Blood Ties Frank Pierzynski
2014 Rudderless Sam Manning
The Longest Week Dylan Tate
Glass Chin J.J. Cook
2015 The Stanford Prison Experiment Dr. Philip Zimbardo
Spotlight Eric MacLeish
2016 Youth in Oregon Brian Gleason
Jackie The Journalist
20th Century Women William
2017 1 Mile to You Coach K
Alien: Covenant Christopher Oram
Justice League Dr. Henry Allen
2019 After the Wedding Oscar Post-production
2019 Where'd You Go, Bernadette Elgie Branch Post-production


Year Title Role Notes
2011 Too Big to Fail Timothy Geithner Television film
2017 Gypsy Michael Holloway 10 episodes
2019 The Morning Show Cory Ellison

Short filmEdit

Year Title Role Notes
2009 The Ballad of G.I. Joe Zartan
2017 Alien: Covenant - Prologue: Last Supper Christopher Oram [13]


Year Play Role Production Notes
2018 Harry Clarke Various Minetta Lane Theatre
2017 Vineyard Theatre
2013 Waiting for Godot Lucky Berkeley Repertory Theatre and Cort Theatre
2013 No Man's Land Foster Berkeley Repertory Theatre and Cort Theatre
2011 Arcadia Bernard Nightingale Ethel Barrymore Theatre Nominated – Tony Award for Best Featured Actor in a Play
2010 The Metal Children Tobin Falmouth Vineyard Theatre
2009 The 24 Hour Plays Billy Staged reading
2006–07 The Coast of Utopia: Part 2 – Shipwreck Vissarion Belinsky Lincoln Center Theatre
2006–07 The Coast of Utopia: Part 1 – Voyage Vissarion Belinsky Lincoln Center Theatre Won – Tony Award for Best Featured Actor in a Play
2005 The Pillowman Katurian Edwin Booth Theatre Nominated – Tony Award for Best Leading Actor in a Play
2004 The 24 Hour Plays Bobby Staged reading
2002 The Elephant Man John Merrick Royale Theatre Nominated – Tony Award for Best Leading Actor in a Play
2002 The Resistible Rise of Arturo Ui Flake / Defense Counsel National Actors Theatre
2001 Measure for Measure Angelo Public Theatre Shakespeare in the Park
1998 Oedipus Oedipus Blue Light Theatre Company
1997 The Three Sisters Staff Captain Solyony Roundabout Theatre
1996 Bus Stop Bo Decker Circle in the Square Theatre
1995 Arcadia Septimus Hodge Lincoln Center Theatre
1994 America Dreaming Robert Vineyard Theatre



  1. ^ "Billy Crudup Biography". Yahoo! Movies. Retrieved 2008-05-21.
  2. ^ Evertz, Mary (2001-10-26). "Crudup family keeps busy in New York Series: PEOPLE". St. Petersburg Times. Retrieved 2010-05-19.
  3. ^ "The Miami News – Google News Archive". 1966-07-17. Retrieved 2012-06-22.
  4. ^ Group works to save historic Crudup home site in Kittrell
  5. ^ "Billy Crudup Biography". filmreference. 2008. Retrieved 2008-05-21.
  6. ^ Jesse Green (10 October 2004). "Billy Crudup: Almost Infamous". The New York Times. Retrieved 2008-05-21.
  7. ^ "Miami Herald: News Archive". 1997-04-03. Retrieved 2012-06-22.
  8. ^ Who's who in the South and Southwest – Marquis Who's Who, LLC – Google Books. Retrieved 2012-02-11 – via Google Books.
  9. ^ "2011 Tony Nominations Announced! THE BOOK OF MORMON Leads With 14!". Retrieved 2012-02-11.
  10. ^ "カードローンの借り入れ条件の年収は重要?".
  11. ^ Hill, Logan (May 30, 2005). "Free Billy". New York magazine.
  12. ^ Lee, Esther (November 10, 2015). "Mary-Louise Parker Finally Addresses Billy Crudup Leaving Her for Claire Danes During Her Pregnancy". Us Weekly. Retrieved August 3, 2018.
  13. ^ 20th Century Fox (22 February 2017). "Alien: Covenant – Prologue: Last Supper – 20th Century FOX" – via YouTube.

External linksEdit